Ordering Articles

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The order your articles appear in on your site can be very important.  Should they be ordered alphabetically?  By date?  Or would you rather set the order manually according to their importance to your viewers?
 
Well, you have control over the order in which items show up on your site - so lets look at how it is done.
 
How your items are ordered.  To determine how your items will appear on a blog, category or section view page you will want to open then menu item pointing to the list.  Log into your admin, select the “Menus” drop down and then click the menu in which the menu item appears.
 
One you have the menu item open, look in the right-hand column.  You will see a “Parameters (Advanced)” tab.  Open that up to get the the ordering parameters.
 

Category Order  The first option you wil see is “Category Order.”  This will give you three options,
 

  • No, Order by Primary Order Only
  • Title (Alphabetical)
  • Title (Reverse Alphabetical)
  • Order

And it will look like this:

Ordering1b.png

That’s a little confusing isn’t it?  Well, Alpha and Reverse Alpha are obvious enough.  But, what is Primary Order, and Order?
 
“Order” will order the items by the “order” column in the Article Manager (See “Reordering your articles,” below.)
 

Primary Order  “Primary Order” tells Soapbox to order by the primary order, which you set in the drop down below “Category Order.”
 
In that drop-down, you will see the following options:
 

  • Default
  • Oldest First
  • Newest First
  • Title (Alphabetical)
  • Title (Reverse Alphabetical)
  • Author - Alphabetical
  • Author - Reverse Alphabetical
  • Most Hits
  • Least Hits
  • Order

 
And it looks like this:

Ordering2b.png

Default may sound be confusing, but it’s really simple.  This is the order that Soapbox decides to order them - usually Newest First.  If you really don’t care what order your articles appear in, this one is fine.  However, in almost all cases, you will want to make a preference.
 
Oldest First / Newest First: This will order the articles starting with the oldest or newest article based on publish date.  The publish date is sat automatically when you first publish an article.  However, you can set this manually in the article manager (see “Add, Edit or Delete an Article [link]” for more on that.)  This will allow you some manual control over the order above and beyond the date they were actually published.
 
Title (Alphabetical) / Title (Reverse Alphabetical) / Author - Alphabetical / Author - Reverse Alphabetical: As you would expect, these setting look at the title or author of each article and will order them in either alpha or reverse alpha accordingly

Most Hits / Least Hits: Joomla counts the number of times each article is viewed (You can see the number of “hits” an article has had in the Article Editor: Go Admin -> Content -> Article Manager, click the Article’s Title then look in the right-hand column for “hits.”)

And finally, Order: Again, this is the order that you see the articles in the Article Manager.  This is actually redundant to the “Order” option in the Category Order drop-down we saw above.

Multi Column Order  You will see one more order-related parameter below the “Primary Order” drop-down.  Look for the “Multi Column Order” checkbox.  

Ordering3.png

This only comes into play if you are using a multi-column list.  It determines if the articles will be ordered down (down the first column, then continuing at the top of the next) or across (Across the fisrt spot of each column, then the second etc.)

Once you have selected the ordering parameter you want, click “Save” to save the menu item and set the ordering.

Reordering your articles  If you have selected “Order” as the method by which you want the articles to appear then you will want to know how to change the ordering of the articles themselves.  To do that, you will want to go to the Article Manager:

1- Log into your admin area ( www.yoursite.org/administrator )
2- Select Content -> Article Manager

Once you are in the Article Manager, you will see a list of all of your articles.  You will also see a column labeled “Order” and below that label, order numbers and green Up and Down arrows.

It will look like this:

 

Ordering4.png

 

To move articles up or down one line at a time, simply click the appropriate arrow.

If you want to move an article more than a line or two, the arrows can be pretty cumbersome.  In that case, change the number in the order number field to the order number where you would like the article to appear, then click the gray floppy disk image at the top of the column.  That will zap the article right to where you want it to be.

Check to make sure its not a line above or below where you want it, and use the arrows to adjust if it is.

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