Is CBox the best solution for my problem?
March 25, 2013 at 7:38 pm #2321
Any advice would be appreciated..
I’ve been experimenting with BuddyPress and the P2 theme in an effort to find a way to keep several work groups communicating. The P2 top posting feature is key to the way the site needs to operate, so I’m hoping to stick with it. However, reading about CBox has me wondering if I’ve been struggling in the wrong direction and perhaps there is a better way to reach my goal. The basics of my needs:
– Ability to group people into their logical work groups. Let’s say ‘physics’, ‘biology’, and ‘chemistry’.
– Some people may be in more than one group.
– Each group should (ideally) have its own blog, or there should be a way to filter posts from a single blog to see only those from your preferred group or groups. The P2 theme is desirable as it provides the ability to post the way I want.
– One login should let you wander the site at will.
– @mentions that notify members by email (a la BuddyPress) is important.
As is so often the case in open source projects, some of the basic concepts are simply assumed to be understood and simple explanations just don’t exist… that’s where I’m struggling. I’ve got a big pile of bones that are evidently useful to me, but I’m having a tough time deciding how to put them together to form the skeleton of the animal I need…
In my case, I’m looking at how CBox appears to do much of what I need. I see the BP Groupblog plug-in and ponder what it might do for me. It lead me to the multisite idea and CBox.
I’m thinking now that I perhaps need to go to the Multisite variant of WordPress and include several of the plug-ins used by CBox, but with the P2 theme. I’m realizing that there is no way to incorporate multiple blogs into a single site without ‘multisite’. Is that understanding correct?
Might it be as simple as installing CBox multisite and then running P2 within the individual sites? Or am I trying to connect the leg bone to the arm bone…?March 26, 2013 at 2:34 am #2322RayKeymaster
About your needs, BuddyPress should handle your working groups just fine.
Groups each have an activity post form similar to P2 that your members could use to communicate. You could disable BuddyPress’ Discussion Forums component to avoid any additional noise.
The BP Groupblog plugin might be overkill for your needs if all you want is a simple posting mechanism; if you need groups to function more like a conventional blog, then the Groupblog plugin might work for you.
The best way to figure out if BuddyPress / CBOX is for you is to test it yourself!
Have you had an opportunity to test BuddyPress? If not, you can either try the BuddyPress test site at testbp.org or the CBOX test site at demo.commonsinabox.org.
I would recommend setting up a local installation to figure out if BuddyPress is right for you; P2 might be all you need; though it doesn’t offer the groups feature that you want.
You might also want to test out BuddyPress 1.7 as that version will offer theme compatibility to all WordPress themes including P2.
Hope that helped somewhat!March 26, 2013 at 2:00 pm #2330
Thanks Ray. I’ve been running a simple BP installation for the last year or longer and a regular WordPress installation for probably two years, so I’ve had some basic experience with both flavours. I’m running my own Linux server with those two sites on it, and have run several Linux file servers, VPN’s and firewall boxes since RedHat 5, so I’m more comfortable with pure Linux admin and networking than I am with the in’s and out’s of the WordPress and BuddyPress details. I have no training and absolutely no coding ability so I have enough knowledge to get myself into trouble, but not always enough to get back out again…
I have a test site running BP 1.7 B2 with P2 Theme as my sandbox. The page formatting isn’t entirely right in places, but that’s just cosmetic. Otherwise, the 1.7 ability to work with most themes seems to be generally functional.
I have seen the activity post feature in BP you mentioned and if it could be injected with the P2 steroids, it would probably work fine. But it is just too basic for my purposes. I need to be able to include a title or subject line (like P2 allows) as a proper blog post, I need to be able to search and I need to have the resolved/unresolved plug-in going. I also pondered using bbPress forums in BuddyPress, but they are too rigid and structured to support the steady flow of blog activity I will need.
My understanding is that the GroupBlog plug-in requires Multi-Site, which is how Google led me here. And coincidentally, I have been using Infinity theme Github builds on my older BuddyPress site since last fall.
I think where my understanding fails is related to how or why there can evidently be only ONE blog page per WordPress site. I am now left with the impression that the WordPress core is built to support one blog only, which is why GroupBlog requires multi-site to be going. I won’t be able to bend a single WordPress site to allow multiple blogs so I should stop looking for a plug-in to allow this.
That in turn makes me wonder how/if log-in credentials can be passed between the multi-sites to make them appear as one site (with several blogs). I can experiment, but it would be helpful to know that this can be done before I put in the labour to find out it can’t…
As this is a project I use lunch break time to advance (I have a ‘real’ job that will benefit from the finished product, but it doesn’t have a job description to allow the development time!!), I don’t have the luxury of spending days exploring and experimenting (even though I enjoy that process). I need to put something together that’s going to have a good chance of working right from the start, without going back to the start multiple times.
If I was to install CBox, multisite, the BP1.7 B2 and some CBox-recommended plug-ins, should I be able to utilize the P2 theme rather than the Infinity default theme structure? I suspect this has a good likelihood of working the way I need… Do you think I’m barking up the right tree now?
Thanks!April 9, 2013 at 12:22 pm #2414
In case Google leads someone to this post, I will close it off by saying I did install CBox and it is performing as hoped, using P2 Theme and the BuddyPress Template Pack. Some odd formatting in a few places, but the skeleton is there and the functions I need are operational.
I see that BuddyPress 1.7 has been released, so the need for the Template Pack should be gone!April 9, 2013 at 8:16 pm #2418RayKeymaster
Apologies for not replying to your post on March 26th, I must have missed it!
With regards to what you mention about BP Template Pack and BP 1.7, you are absolutely correct. No need for BP Template Pack!
Glad to hear that you are up and running. Let us know if you encounter any issues.
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