Cook and Co

Joomla again gives way to WordPress for a website almost lost to SquareSpace.

A Rescue from SquareSpace, June 2019

Upon sending out the annual hosting invoice out I was told that the website was going to be moved to a simpler one on the self publishing service SquareSpace. These services make it very easy for to general users but they do take work away from freelance web designers, so I don’t have much affection for them.

Hoping to keep my client’s business I pointed out that SquareSpace charge a monthly fee making it more expensive than the current Joomla site. Plus using WordPress makes editing content much easier. These two points were enough to retain Cook and Co’s website business, so onto the next build using WordPress this time.

Moving the content to WordPress

As the new site was to only have certain elements from the old a manual copy and paste was done. The shop was being omitted but this could have been redone with Woo-Commerce.

The new home page for Cook and Co, June 2019.

Header Image Tint

I wanted to put a tint over the header image which is featured in the new Twenty Nineteen theme that comes with WordPress. Twenty-seventeen theme was used as it’s simpler making it easier to add the additional CSS.

.custom-header-media:before {
   content: "";
   display: block;
   position: absolute;
   top: 0;
   bottom: 0;
   left: 0;
   right: 0;
   background: rgba(19, 28, 110, 0.53);
   z-index: 2;
 }
An excellent YouTube video that explains how before and after pseudo elements work along with the content property which is important so you can see the effect.

Upgrading Joomla! October 2014

Janis Cook, an accomplished pianist, needed to upgrade her website from the website’s ageing Joomla version 1.5.

Unlike WordPress upgrading Joomla from version 1.xx to 3.xx is not a quick job. Content needs to be moved over manually. There are plug-ins to help but the website they create needs finishing off.

The client liked the Joomla version of Eltham Model Railway Club’s website which was completed not long before.

The 3.xx version uses the Jomi 3 template which is based on the Warp Theme Framework from YOOthemes. It was a good theme to work with and it features many short codes to invoke many graphical effects.

Book Shop

At the same time as the new website build the client was releasing a book that was to to be sold online. Initially I used Jumi to create a PHP page that featured a form to collect and verify the customer information and then send the order.

e Commerce

While this was ok for one product when more came along another solution was needed. First I tried Virtuemart, but the compatibility with Joomla wasn’t great and I quickly moved onto Digistore which proved much easier to set up. DigiStore was originally developed by iJoomla.com and then
DigiStore 3.x developed by foobla.com (which seems to have gone offline).

Product page using Digistore

The easy to read and well presented product page.

My Cart page

The straight forward shopping cart

The new Cook and Co website has been online since late October.

Joomla’s Bugs

Since upgrading to PHP 7.1 (due to security issues) some of the menu items crash to just “Error” printed on the page instead of the article being rendered. Other articles are fine so it’s very puzzling.

I tried removing plug-ins and extensions that were not in use as they were coming up as errors in the errorlog file. This didn’t help and the hosting provider Net Origin doesn’t have the option to set the PHP version for each folder and therefore website.

I have recommended to the client to change to WordPress as soon as possible as it’s better supported and much easier to create posts with images.

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