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How To Setup Reader Accounts (read-only access)


I've been trying to tweak Geeklog so that I can use it for a blog, but with specific reader settings. These are the things I wanted to achieve:
-a password-protected site without using an .htaccess file
-access for logged-in members to read articles, but not post articles
-separate user groups (e.g. if an aquaintance finds the site, I want to be able to give them a reader account with limited access; if a friend wants access, they should be able to read everything)

I tried to find existing posts on how to do this, but the solutions weren't what I wanted. For example, this thread discusses the option of ensuring that submissions need to be approved before they appear on the site, but I don't want my readers to have the option to submit anything. It also doesn't give a solution for different reader levels.

So after playing with the Geeklog demo site, I think I know how to setup different reader levels. I have itemized the steps below for anyone who is interested. If you have questions/comments, please post them here. I'm a tweaker, not a developer, so please keep that in mind Wink

1. Log into your Geeklog site as either the administrator or as yourself (assuming that you have created an account with your name rather than "Admin"). Please note that if you log-in as the administrator, you will need to log-in as the administrator when you post. If you want your stories to have your name associated with it, log-in as the administrator, and give yourself access to everything.
2. Go to the "Groups" section.
3. Create a new group (e.g. "Readers"), and do not include the group in any other security groups or give them any rights. Repeat as necessary (e.g. "Red Readers", "Blue Readers").
4. Go to the "Blocks" section.
5. For the blocks which are identified as "gldefault" (listed under the "Block Type" header), remove read-access for "Members" and "Anonymous" if you do not want your readers to see the block. For example, if you do not want readers to see old stories, remove read-access to the "Older Stories" block for "Members" and "Anonymous".
6. Repeat step #5 for blocks identified as "phpblocks" and "normal". You may also want to change the group to "Block Admin" if it is not already set to that.
7. Go to the "Topics" section.
8. If you already have existing topics, adjust the access of the topics similarly to step #5.
9. Create the topics which belong to your reader groups. In the "groups" section select the respective reader group, and in the "permissions" section activate read-access at the group-level, remove edit-access at the group-level, remove read-access at the member- and anonymous-level, and leave read- and edit-access activated for the owner. This will force the topics to be readable to persons who have logged-in, and not allow them to submit items to the topics.
10. Refer to Geeklog documentation for account setup options. After reader accounts are setup, ensure you give the readers access to their reader group because they will otherwise not be able to read anything. It is safe to keep them in the "All Users" and "Logged-In Users" groups, because of the permissions you have set above. If you want a user who can read "Red" articles and "Blue" articles, simply place them in both groups.
11. When you create new stories, you will need to ensure that the "Access rights" and "Permissions" are set properly. Chose the proper reader group for your story, and remove read-access for "Members" and "Anonymous" (if you do not, and leave readers in the "Logged-In Users" group, all logged-in users will be able to read the story).

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