This document contains a a brief summary of how themes in Rilke
CMS work This document is a work-in-progress and will be replaced with
more detailed information as it is updated.
What are Themes?
A Theme lets you personalize the look and feel of your Rilke CMS
powered site. Themes in Rilke CMS consist of standard HTML, CSS and
some embedded PHP.
Where are Theme Files Located?
Each Theme has its own folder, and is located under the main themes
The name of a theme folder is
the same as the name of the theme. For example, the files for the "illusion" theme are located in the
illusion folder. So, for
What Kind of Files Make up a
The files in a theme folder have the following extensions:
.php, .css, and .png.
Each theme folder should have four
.php files, with the following names:
index.php [ Holds the main
page's content ]
submit.php [ Allows a website
visitor to submit content ]
categories.php [ Allows a
website visitor to view all the categories defined for a site, and the
posts in each category]
allposts.php [ Allows a visitor
to browse all posts which have been posted to the site ]
Each theme folder should also have two
image files. If your theme is named Illusion, your image files will be:
illusion.png [ full screen
image of the theme being used]
illusion_tn.png [ thumbnail of
the theme being used (recommended size: 100 x 54 pixels) ]
Most themes also contain a CSS file with the same name as the theme
name, i.e. illusion.css.
How do I Create a New Theme?
If you want to a create a new theme called "Spiffy", perform the following
1) Create a newfolder
called spiffy, under the existing themes folder. For
example, the spiffy folder would be located at:
2) Copy all the files from the
themes/default folder to this
3) Open up the four .php files - index.php, submit.php, categories.php
and allposts.php and look for embedded
PHP tags such as the following:
$title . " - " . $header ;?>
Do not edit any such tags.
You can safely edit other non-PHP HTML tags.
4) The easiest way to customize the design is to simply edit the css file which was copied
over (in this case illusion.css). I recommend TopStyle ( http://www.bradsoft.com
) for editing CSS files such as this one.
5)When you are done, upload the new
spiffy folder to the themes folder at your webhost.
6)Log in to the Administration Screen,
and click on "Themes" at the
7)Choose the "Add New Theme"
link and type in the name of the new theme you are adding. In this
case, type "spiffy".
8)Press tab to go to the next text input field, and the path to the
theme will be automagically filled in.
9)Press the add new theme
button, and if all goes well (if it can find the Theme files),
the new theme will be added.
How do I Remove a Theme?
Currently, you cannot remove a theme from the
Administration Panel directly. I plan on adding the user interface for
this in the upcoming 1.0 version. (Before the 1.0 version there will be
other incremental versions). You can remove a theme manually by
following the following steps:
Set a theme other than the one
you want to delete as the default
one by going to "Themes" in the Administration Screen.
Using PHPMyAdmin, you
can remove the entry for a particular Theme by deleting its reference
in the themes table. (Please check prefs.php for the name of the themes
table if you chose a different one when you generated prefs.php). Great caution is advised if you choose
delete a Theme row manually.
Once you have deleted the reference to the theme from the Themes
table, you can remove the folder which contains its files. For example,
if you are removing the "Illusion" theme, you can delete the following
How can I use an Existing Design as a
Theme (adding Rilke CMS PHP tags)?
You can use any design that you have already created as a Rilke
CMS Theme. Also, you can adapt a theme you download from oswd.org or Blog Your Design but you will need to add in the necessary Rilke CMS
PHP tags to them. These tags help Rilke CMS indentify which
information is to be pulled from a database (such as the title and
content of the currently viewed post) and the information which is
pulled from the preferences file (such as the site's name).
Which Rilke CMS PHP tags do I need to
add to my Theme files?
In the following examples, HTML tags are in red, PHP tags are
highlighted in in yellow:
Common PHP Tags:
The four .php files ( index.php, allposts,php, submit.php,
categories.php ) all contain the following PHP tags:
Display Selected Post, Comments
and Related Posts:
Important note - two versions of this
PHP code block are listed below. The first is for the existing
0.82 version of Rilke CMS. Due to
changes in the upcoming 0.83 version, this PHP code block is due to
change. The code block for the upcoming 0.83 is listed
More detailed documentation, and a browser-based Themes generation
wizard that will automatically insert the necessary PHP tags into your
existing HTML design (similar to the installation wizard) are planned.
It is hoped that this beginning information helps. Detailed Theme
information is set to follow. If you need help integrating an existing
design as a new Rilke CMS Theme, please contact Jay Sheth using the address