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Templates for Gallery 2 Software

The open source Gallery 2 software has a very simple default template. This will make it easy for us to customize the template to match the rest of our website. This tutorial is part of a group of tutorials about how to use the Gallery 2 software as an online portfolio. See the links below to read the previous tutorials.

If you haven't done so already, log in to the Site Admin area and go to the Themes section. Verify that the Default theme is Matrix. If another theme is set as the default, use the drop-down menu to set the default to Matrix. Leave all the default Matrix Theme Settings.

There are several ways to customize a template for a CMS. Yes, a gallery software is really just a specialized CMS system. The method I use works best for me because I only need to backup two custom folders when I upgrade the software. Then I just paste those two folders back into the gallery2 directory and I'm good to go.

Our first step is to take a look inside the gallery2 folder. There you will find many files and folders. We will add one of our two custom folders here. This custom folder will hold our website images. These will not include the images and swfs in our gallery itself. This folder is for those images that match our website. So, make a new folder inside the gallery2 directory and give the new folder a name you will easily remember. I always use dCipollo - it's easy. That takes care of our first custom folder.

C:\xampp\htdocs\gallery2\dCipollo

Our second custom folder is made from a copy of the Matrix theme folder. We will use this copy of the Matrix theme to create a new theme. You will find the matrix folder here.

C:\xampp\htdocs\gallery2\themes\matrix

You want your new theme to have its own name. So rename the copy of the matrix folder to the name of your theme. Again I use dCipollo. If I create more than one theme, I number them in sequence such as dCipollo1, dCipollo2 and so on. It's not fancy but they are easy to find in a long list of folders.

Let's look inside our new theme folder. There you will find an images, po and templates folder along with the theme.inc and theme.css files. As we customize our theme, we will make a few changes to these files. We will also make changes to the album.tpl, photo.tpl and theme.tpl files which are inside the templates folder.

Now that we've taken a tour of the gallery2 directory, we are ready to start working on our new theme.



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