BoltWire is a FREE content management system written in PHP.

Its innovative architecture combined with best-in-class forms processing gives surprizing power in the tiniest of footprints.

Our software is ideal for creating complex, interactive, web applications fast...

Changing Site Layout

Documentation > Start Here > Changing Site Layout

The layout and styling of each page is determined by the skin you are using. You can modify these skins to meet your needs, download entirely new skins, or create your own. Some knowledge of html and css is helpful. Here is how it all works:


Skins, sometimes called themes, determine the overall look and layout of your site. The default skin is a special page called code.skins.default.html. The style sheet associated with it is called code.skins.default.css. Both are in the boltwire/shared/skins directory of your BoltWire installation. (There is also a print and mobile skin as well). You can edit these using any standard web editor.

You can read more about how to create or modify a skin later, but for now you just need to know that the skin divides your page into certain zones. The default skin looks something like the following:




The top zone provides the BoltWire banner and the various site actions across the top. The menu items down the side are provided by the side zone. There is no content in the header or footer in the default distribution, but the zones are there if you need them. Finally, the bottom zone contains the BoltWire logo and your copyright notice. The actual content of the page you are viewing is inserted into the main zone. You can create additional zones, delete them, rename them, or position them however you want, by changing the skin and associated style sheet.

Using Zones

The content of each zone is drawn from specific pages in your site, and they can be edited like any other site page. The exact page used for each zone is determined by the page group and the available zone pages. For example: suppose you have two sections of your site, named plants, and animals, and you want to give each section a custom side menu. Simply create a page called plants.side and animals.side. All pages in the plants hierarchy (plants, plants.trees, plants.trees.oaks, etc.) would display plants.side. Animals pages would use animals.side. In cases where a more specific side page cannot be found, the default side page (side) will be used.

BoltWire comes with a "zone" action. Click it on any given page to see which zone pages are being used to construct that page. There are also links there to view the content of each zone page, and edit them. Remember that when you change a zone page, it changes the display of every page in your site that uses that page to fill a zone.

Zones are powerful and can accomplish some very useful things. You could, for example, put a page title and breadcrumb on every page by adding a bit of code to a header page. Or you could put a comment box on every page in a forum area, by simply adding a few lines to forum.footer. Everything gets updated instantly!

There's much more you can do with zones, but this gives a nutshell of how skins work in BoltWire!