The Joomla! Extensions Directory ™

Steve_

Reviews(3)
 
bySteve_, January 13, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
jDownloads
jDownloads is basically a one-man project and surpasses all other download components such as Docman by far. You can easily create categories, upload files, insert them in articles, displaying them in modules and much more.

The developer Arno is a very kind person and spends his valuable free time for excellent support over at the support forums, and everything is free. I wish other developers of free extensions would take a lesson from him.

I encourage everyone that likes this extension to donate. It's worth every penny even though it's free.

Thank you Arno :)
CComment Pro
If you want comments in Joomla articles it is inevitable to install the right comment extension. There are quite a few solutions to choose from, both free and commercial ones.

New users naturally look at the free extensions first and the statistics prove that at the end of the day most of them stick to a free extension.

I have tested several comments extensions, which some of them either lack essential features, boast unnecessary features, didn't work how they supposed to do, have annoying bugs or simply didn't appeal to me.

Compojoom Comment (former JoomlaComment) was the most convincing comment extension. First of, there is a wonderful written pdf documentation available for download, which should clear up most of the questions beginners may have. After installing it (like all other extensions), there appears a new item in the component drop-down list, which splits in 6 sub-items/tabs (Manage comments, Settings, Import, Maintenance, About, Live update).

"Manage comments" shows a list of all comments with detailed informations. Compojoom Comment supports many components apart from Joomlas own com_content. You can choose from what component the comments should be displayed. This is very usefull in case you have for instance K2 installed and want only to manage the K2 comments. Many other components are supported, such like myblog, jevents, docman, easyblog, adsmanager, hotspots, virtuemart, phoca download and many more.

In "Settings" you can easily select for what component Compojoom Comment should be enabled. Once selected, there appears 5 tabs(General, Security, Posting, Layout, Integrations).

You can set general settings like including/excluding categories, improving the security by for instance install a reCAPTCHA, exclude guests from posting, manage a censorship black list, ban list, assign different user groups, enable gravatar support, use akismet spam protection, enable avatars and more. Nested comments are supported and can also be disabled.

Compojoom Comment's Layout settings are awesome. 9 templates, 5 stylesheets and 7 emoticon packs are included. People with some html and css knowledge can easily make a custom template in the backend via a smart built-in template override function. Unfortunately there is no option to add custom emoticons in the backend. You must directly add them via Compojoom Comment's index.php file.

If you were using a different comment extension and want to change to Compojoom Comment, you can import all your comments via the Import option. If your old comment extension is supported, you can easily import your comments with one step. If it's not supported, then you have to do the mapping manually. If you are not experienced enough to do this yourself, you can get help in the compojoom commtents support forum.

The "maintenance" item displays the current used Joomla version, PHP version and Database version.

Under the "Live update" option you can update Compojoom Comment to the lastest version if possible.

Compojoom Comments comment rating feature is unique compared to its competitors. Instead of summing up all positive and negative ratings and displaying the overall value, it works excatly like the popular rating system of Wordpress, which is awesome. Negative and positive ratings aren't summed up together, which means you always know how many positive and negative ratings a comment did recieve.

With Compojoom Comments visitors always have the option to use a comment title. Unlike some other comment extensions it is not possible to disable the comment title field in the backend. One have to remove the code from the core files. Hopefully an option to disable the title will be integrated in the next version.

There are several plugins for Compojoom Comments available and a module which displays the lastest and most commented comments in a module field. There are also a lot of language packs available for download.

Last but not least a few words about the support. I never had to ask for support because Compojoom comment just works. It's easy to use and the documentation is good. The forum is publicly visible and my impression is that the support is awesome since problems were always addressed by the developer himself. I had a few email converstions with the developer and he is a very very nice guy :)

Bottom line, if you are looking for a high quality comment extension that boasts many usefull features with excellent support and that just works, then Compojoom Comment is the right extension for you.
K2
I chose Joomla as CMS for my very first website due to its good reputation and user-friendly admin control panel. However I quickly learned that the default joomla article structure is not usable for serious websites. So I searched in the extensions directory for content components and after testing several of them it was clear that K2 wins the competition of the most user-friendly content extension.

In short: K2 just works. It should be integrated in the Joomla core as far as I'm concerned. But don't make a mistake about it, K2 is NOT a content construction kit (cck), it's just an extension that extends (or actually replaces) Joomlas content structure.

Of course K2 is not perfect and has his limitations and negative things, for instance it's not possible without core modifications to remove user pages and its html structure could be improved for SEO and other things. It doesn't use h1 tags for article topics and uses h3 tags for article topics in category blog view instead of better suited h2 tags (which are used in article view).

K2 is easy to learn and probably suited for most Joomla beginners, but sometimes you want to go beyond K2's default capabilities, for which you HAVE TO make code modifications. If you aren't a coder, your first place to ask is of course the k2 support forum, but here's the thing, there is a high chance that you won't get support at all there. Most topics are left unanswered, there are only 2 moderators for the beginners section and currently the forum is spamed a lot by I believe bots (could as well be some morons, though).

To make it short:

* If you want a content extension that just works how it should for most cases and can live WITHOUT support (you have to trial and error a lot), then K2 is the right extension for you.

* If you want a content extension but can't afford no support, then something else is better suited for you.

* If you are a pro and want a flexible content extension, don't mind K2 then, use SEBLOD instead. SEBLOD is a real content contruction kit and is by far superior than K2 and any of its competitors, but it's very hard to learn and the documentation is somewhat lacking.
Owner's reply

SEBLOD also depends on com_content, the Joomla! core article system. And this creates performance issues the least. K2 on the other hand is completely standalone as a component within Joomla! and has no other dependencies. This allow for more flexibility and better performance compared to any other "content" extension.

On a sidenote, we never say K2 is a "CCK" component. We always say it's a powerful "content" extension with CCK capabilities. Basically what 99,9% of users will ever need ;)