Getting the Most Out of Your Mambo Site

An introduction to Components, Modules & Mambots

The default installation of Mambo includes a variety of features which are available for your use at the click of a mouse. Without installing any additional software, you can manage banners, set up surveys and polls, syndicate your content, and do many other common tasks.

The tools that make these functions possible are called Components, Modules and Mambots.

What is the distinction among Components, Modules & Mambots?

  • You can consider a Component as a full application that runs inside Mambo. Components extend Mambo and give it extra functionality. The output of a component is displayed inside the main content area.
  • Modules are smaller, generally “helper” applications. Some run autonomously, others work in cooperation with Components. They are generally displayed around the edges of the main content area, in places defined inside the templates (called “module positions”).
  • Mambots are small pieces of code that enable a new feature across the entire site. There are two types of Mambots: Those that have a visual effect (like {mosimage}), and those that affect the way Mambo behaves but without adding any true visual impact (like the search Mambots).

Just to make things a bit more confusing, sometimes a function will require a combination of these tools. For example, the Banners and the Polls functions include both a Component and a Module.

While the technical distinction between these items is useful information, the most important points concern what they can do, and how you can use them. To assist with that, we have provided below a quick summary of the Components and Modules bundled in your Mambo package.{mospagebreak}

A Quick Overview of the Bundled Components

  1. Banners: Controls the Banner ads on your site. This component allows you to manage the banners, while the display is handled by the Banners Module.
  2. Mass Mail: Allows you to send email to all registered users.
  3. News Feeds: A tool for managing News Feeds (RSS) to display on your site.
  4. Polls: Allows you to create a Poll (Survey) for the visitors to your site. Works in conjunction with the Polls Module.
  5. Syndicate: Use this component to format the RSS syndication of your site’s contents.
  6. Web Links: A component for creating and maintaining a “Links” page for your site.


A Quick Overview of the Bundled Modules

Mambo provides for two types of Modules: Site Modules and Administrator Modules. The difference between the two has to do with where the modules are displayed. Site Modules are displayed on the front end of the site, visible to your visitors. Administrator Modules are visible only when logged into the Administrator system and are primarily intended to make the Admin interface friendlier and more useful. We discuss here only the Site Modules. If you wish to learn more about the Administrator Modules, please visit our Help Site.

Site Modules

  1. Banners: The Banners module will display banners from the Banners component.
  2. Header Image: This module will show an image based on the current user selection.
  3. Bottom Image: This module will show an image based on the current user selection.
  4. Main Menu: This is the module that controls the menu on your site named “Main”.
  5. Latest News: This module shows a list of the most recently published Items.
  6. User Menu: This is the module that controls the menu on your site named “User”.
  7. Other Menu: This is the module that controls the menu on your site named “Other”.
  8. Login Form: This module displays a Username and Password login form.
  9. Syndicate: The Syndicate module will display a link whereby people can syndicate your site contents (typically via RSS).
  10. Statistics: The Statistics module shows information about your server installation and statistics on the web site.
  11. Template Chooser: The Template Chooser module allows a visitor to change the site template on the fly from the front-end via a drop down selection list.
  12. Archive: This module shows a list of the calendar months which contain Archived items.
  13. Sections: The Section module shows a list of all Sections configured in your database.
  14. Related Items: This module displays other Content Items that are related to the Item currently displayed.
  15. Wrapper: This module will display an iFrame window in a specified location.
  16. Polls: This module compliments the Polls component. It is used to display the Polls.
  17. Who’s Online: The Who’s Online module displays the number of users that are currently accessing the web site.
  18. Random Image: This module displays a random image from a directory.
  19. Newsflash: The Newsflash module randomly selects one of the published items from a category upon each page refresh.
  20. Popular: This module shows a list of the currently published Items that have been viewed the most.
  21. Top Menu: This is the module that controls the menu on your site named “Top”.
  22. Search: This module will display a search box.{mospagebreak}

A Quick Overview of Mambots

As Mambots are a bit more technical, we ask that you refer to the Help site to learn more about what these are and how you can extend the functionality of your site through the use of Mambots. You can find more information here:

How Do I Install Additional Components, Modules or Mambots?

Mambo users enjoy access to a wide variety of extensions for their sites. Many are free, others are commercial. All can be installed easily by anyone, without the need for programming skills. To learn more about how to install these tools on your site, please visit our Help site and read the following:

Where Can I Find More Information?

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