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Review on DZOIC Handshakes adm... | By: kdeguru

This community script review will talk about the administration control panel of DZOIC Handshakes. It is a community software and it must have a good admin panel to be able to manage the site information, users, etc. So, let’s see how good is its admin panel.

For this Handshakes review I’ll be using the admin panel demo which is located over here:

Login: admin
Password: password

On that location we’ll have the following screen where we’ll have to put the login and password and click on the “Login” button:

We’ll get the main window of admin panel:

The big menu items do not have submenus which will open when you hover over them. Would be useful in order not to waste time on going through all the menu items to find the necessary section. The main window of admin panel contains some kind of statistics which shows Total members, First member joined, Last member joined (who the hell needs that data? do they joke or what?), Photos waiting for approval, Profiles waiting for approval, Total classifieds, Total events. Total clubs. We'll, pretty unusable First member joined and Last member joined statistics. And as for the usability. If you show Photos waiting for approval and Profiles waiting approval, it would be better to create those wordings as the links to the section where admin would be approving or deleting that unapproved content. I think that the developers of Handshakes should consider that.

Now let's examine each point of the admin panel one by another.

Here's how the management section look. As you can see the submenus are located on the right which is not very comfortable to browse. The sections load when you click on specific section link. For default it is loading the Manage Members section which has a user search window and also lists the users sorted by Member ID. Well, what if you need to sort the users by their names, for example? The system doesn't have such an ability which is bad. There are different tasks which should be performed by the site admin and the developers of Handshakes should have developed a more configurable admin panel.

In this section you can manage all the features of the site, approve or delete profiles, photos, music files, video files, polls, approve or delete recordings. I'll not examine each section separately and will slightly move to the next menu item :)

That's the section for the main settings of the site including the admin password (which loads for default), Global Settings, Geo-positioning, Modules, Paths. Not so useful to show Admin Password change section for default when you first click on the Setup button.

The main settings are being done in the Global Settings section where you can set up the site name, system e-mail address (presumably this is the address which will appear as From address for the letters automatically sent by the site). There are a lot of other settings which you can make including the site description, image size, etc. Don't find it absolutely necessary to examine all the points one by one.

The next section about which I would like to talk in this community script review is the Customize section.

So, in this section you can customize your web-site. For default it loads the System messages, the error messages which appear when you do something wrong :) Besides of it through this message you'll be able to configure the Page Titles, Preset Invitations, Forums, Menus, Bad Words and can also Translate the site into another language. I'm curious to see that very section:

Here we see the system confirmation messages which you'll need to translate into the language you wish. Please note, Handshakes supports 1 language at a time, so, it is not a multilingual solution. You can't have it, for example, in English and in Spanish at the same time letting the users change the language somewhere. You can have it in 1 language only. After you complete the translation of the first page from 10 available, there's a button Next in the footer which you'll need to click to proceed to the next page, which… does not work… Yes, it tries to pass you to the next page, but it fails, doesn’t do anything.

The next section on the queue in this community script review is “Design”.

Let's see what this section of Dzoic Handshakes Admin panel contains:

The section loads the Themes Manager for default where you can switch the theme or delete the theme. There's another button with an arrow on it. To be honest I did not understand what was that button for. It did not have an Alt text and did not do anything when I've clicked it. The other sections of the Design submenu are Page Composer and Public Templates. In the Page Composer section you'll be able to create custom pages and in the Public Templates you'll be able to manage the templates for various sections of the site, such as Blogs, Classifieds, Events, etc.

I assume that this is a section where we can develop some new features or make changes in the existing features. Let's see what we can do over there.

Well. Here we can see 3 sections – 3rd Party Scripts (the section loads first), JavaScript and Functions Manager. On the first page we see that there 4 third party scripts integrated and there's a button to Integrate New Script. Let's see what's hidden under it.

So. Here we will have to put the 3rd party script data to integrate it work with this very script – Dzoic Handshakes. This is a good feature. However you'll need to have some technical knowledge as otherwise you'll not even understand what is meant by “Initial Handler”. But if you're a technical person you'll not need such graphical interfaces to integrate a third party software. This is a good feature but not an absolutely necessary one. Better to create good features than offer the integration of third party solutions which are paid as well (IPB, vBulletin, for example).

In the section JavaScript you'll be able to edit the JavaScript functions used on the site. You'll need technical knowledge to do that:

And the Functions Manager sections lists all the functions of the site letting you to edit them.

This section contains the letters sent and received by the site administrator. Looks like all major e-mail services.

The tools section contains several tools which you can use on your site. The dashboard looks like follows:

For default it loads the Newsletter section where you can send a letter to all the users of your site. I think that it would be better to give the admin a chance to chose the group of the users the newsletter is being sent to, age range, orientation, etc. In such a way the newsletter will be sent to all the users which is not so comfortable.

The Internal News section just adds news to the site.

Import Members section will import users (presumably). The section doesn’t tell you in what exact format should the profiles be, which database to use, etc. Too complicated.

In the Moderators section you’ll be able to set some users to be the moderators of your site which are admins but with limited rights just to manage some predefined content.

In the ImpEx section you can import users from phpFox script. I have a question on this occasion – what’s the difference with Import Members section? Why to create 2 different sections which do the same action?

And the last section in this submenu is Import Gadgets which meaning I didn’t understand at all.

In this section you’ll be managing everything regarding the payments, advertisements and other stuff in relation to money.

Here you can create new packages, add payment systems, manage advertisements, get access to the sales history and manage the pending sales.

And the last section to be examined in this Dzoic Handshakes review is the Statistics menu.

This section simply shows the quantity of each item as follows:

Well. This is the end of this community script review. The admin console is not bad, however there are a lot of usability lacks, complicated and non-user oriented sections which the developers could avoid.

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