“Take a lesson from this, and make frequent back-up copies as you work, so if something goes wrong, you can easily restore your previous settings.”“Take a lesson from this, and make frequent back-up copies as you work, so if something goes wrong, you can easily restore your previous settings.”
In this installment of Project: Pic Post, we will explore the mechanics of modifying our Pic Post script. Two reasons that I chose Perl Coders’ PC PicPost script for this project were that the script, while itself simple in its base configuration, was incredibly flexible, allowing modification to fit the “look and feel” of any site design, and Perl Coders’ excellent support – which I put to the test in trying to resolve a few bugs I found in the script. I was quite impressed at how responsive they were, quickly solving the problems and updating the necessary files for me.
Now let me first say that I’m command line impaired. I’m not a programmer, and have only the most basic understanding of how this script works. Still, I’m not afraid to “poke” at it, although I did screw everything up several times, and reinstalled this script more times than I’d like to admit. Take a lesson from this, and make frequent back-up copies as you work, so if something goes wrong, you can easily restore your previous settings.
There are two main areas with which you can experiment: the script itself (picpost.cgi) and the files within the “templates” folder. If you want to play things safe and easy, limit yourself to modifying the basic html pages in the templates folder. The header and footer pages are where the banners are, and you can control the page background color or image (<body> tag elements) from the header template. These pages are all standard html that can be easily edited with notepad or your favorite html editor.
Problems & Solutions
The two problem areas that inexperienced users will run into (read: that *I* ran into) were remembering to reset the file permissions after uploading the script, and to make sure that I properly “escaped” the quotation marks in the html coding that I added. This is a simple procedure, and one that is required when modifying most scripts. What it means in simple terms is adding a backslash before all quotation marks. For example, if you were to insert the tag <FONT size=”2″> into the script, you would have to put <FONT size=\”2\”> in order for the script to work.