Lots of websites use a discussion forum to help their users.
- Some websites have forums for people to chat freely on whatever topic they choose.
- Other websites use forums to provide support. People post their questions and staff members reply with the answer.
Our choice of discussion forum for Joomla is Agora from JVitals.com. We use Agora to support our Joomla training students and in this tutorial we’re going to show you how to set it up on your site.
- Agora can be downloaded from the downloads section of JVitals.com.
- Download the Agora component to your desktop. It will have a file name similar to com_agora_3.0.12.zip
- In your Joomla site, go to Administrator >> Extensions >> Install / Uninstall and upload Agora.
- Go to Components >> Agora Forum and you should see a Control Panel in front of you:
The first place to start with Agora is to make it visible so that you can see how it appears on your site:
- Go to Menus >> Your choice of menu >> Click “New”
- Click “Agora Forum”, enter a title for your menu link and click save.
When you visit that link on the front of your site, you’ll see Agora but without any content. The first thing you need to do is add some categories. If you’re running a movie forum, these might be “Romance”, “Action” and “Drama”. As we run a Joomla forum, we have “Extensions”, “Templates” and more.
- Go to Components >> Agora Forum and click “Categories & Forums”
- Agora classifies “Forums” as the top-level and “Categories” as the second-level. This is an example of how ours are set-up. “Drupal” and “WordPress” are Forums. “Newcomers” and “Anything” are categories and this is what people post into:
- To set these up, start by clicking on “Add Forum” in the top-right corner.
- Once your forums are set-up, you can click “Add Category” to finish your set-up.
You can create groups of users who have access to different forums and categories. For example, we allow our Drupal students access to the Drupal support forum but not WordPress or Joomla:
- Go to Components >> Agora Forum >> Groups. Click “New” and name your group.
- Go to Components >> Agora Forum >> Categories & Forums and open a particular category.
- Click “Add Group” in the top-right corner and you can give that group access to the category.