Extensions in Joomla: Installing an RSS Feed Reader

Joomla provides a feed reader for reading RSS feeds, but if you need more flexibility, you can install any of the RSS feed reader modules available on the Internet. In this section, you’ll learn how to install an RSS feed reader module named Simple RSS Feed Reader, which was developed by JoomlaWorks (www.joomlaworks.net). Simple RSS Feed Reader, which is based on the SimplePie PHP class, supports both RSS and Atom formats. With an efficient caching system, it displays feeds quite quickly.

After you select this module on the Internet, you’ll see an introductory description, as shown in Figure 9-38.

Note If you use the FeedWind RSS feed to display in a Joomla site, you need a module extension because FeedWind RSS contains JavaScript (to run JavaScript, you need a module extension).

The module’s archive file, as I downloaded it from the Internet, is mod_jw_srfr-v3.3_j2.5-3.x.zip.

You can download it from www.joomlaworks.net/extensions/free/simple-rss-feed-reader to a folder on the local disk drive. To install the module, open the Extension Manager and select Extensions ➤ Extension Manager. The Extension Manager will open, and you can specify the location of the Simple RSS Feed Reader archive file by clicking the Browse button of the package file option. After selecting the archive file on the

local disk drive, click the Upload & Install button to install the module. The Simple RSS Feed Reader module is installed and can be seen listed in the Module Manager.

To open the Module Manager, select Extensions ➤ Module Manager, and you’ll find the newly installed Simple RSS Feed Reader module, as shown marked in Figure 9-39. The module is in unpublished mode because it is the default for every newly installed module.

To convert the Simple RSS Feed Reader to published mode, just select its check box in the Status column. The module will be changed to published mode and will be visible on the front end. Click the module title to edit it. You’ll see a screen like the one shown in Figure 9-40, displaying the module type and a description.

On this screen, you specify the position at which the module is to be displayed on the front end. From the Position combo box, choose position-7 to make the module appear on the right top of the site. You can also specify the access level: whether the module can be used by any visitor of the web site (Public), or is meant only for registered or special user groups. The module also displays certain parameters to configure the module. In the Enter RSS Feeds to Fetch field, you can specify the feed (RSS) URLs of the web sites that you want to syndicate (from which you want to receive RSS feeds). By default, the field contains three URLs: http://feeds.feedburner.com/joomlaworks/blog, http://feeds.feedburner.com/joomlaworks, and http://feeds.feedburner.com/getk2/blog.

The Maximum Items to Fetch Per Feed field is set to 5 by default to show only 5 syndicated feed items at a time. The Feed Item Title and Feed Item Date & Time fields are set to Show to display the title of the feed item as well as the time it was last modified at the source. You can leave the remaining parameters at their default values.

Note You can add feed URLs of any The Simple RSS Feed Reader module will detect your web site’s encoding and adjust all feeds to that specific encoding.

When you invoke the front end of your Joomla web site by going to http://localhost/joomlasite, you’ll see that the Simple RSS Feed Reader module lists the feed items from the specified feed URL, as shown in Figure 9-41. You can select any feed title from the list to navigate to that web site to view details.

Source: Harwani B M (2015), Foundations of Joomla!, Apress; 2nd ed edition

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