Exciting New Features in Version 1.11

YourSites 1.11 adds some new and exciting features to enhance your client site management.

  1. Create a temporary clone of a website for testing
  2. Change Joomla update server settings for specific sites
  3. Diagnose client fatal errors
  4. Allow export of action logs as csv file from summary view
  5. Allow auto-retry of site up checks if sites time out
  6. Significant performance gains in long list views
  7. Set custom database session query settings

1. Create a Temporary Clone of a Website for Testing

Have you ever wished you could test out a new extension, changes to a design, make sure an extension upgrade works on a staging site without working on a live site?

With YourSites v. 1.11 this is now possible - on the "Advanced Settings" tab of the YourSites configuration there is a new option to allow Joomla! site cloning.

As the explanation alongside the config option explains - YourSites can create a cloned copy of most Joomla! sites to allow you to test updates, experiment with new extensions, modify templates etc. The cloned sites is created within a 'hidden' randomised sub-folder of your main site. We disable sending of emails in the Joomla config of the cloned site to reduce the risk of users being informed of the cloned site.

For example if your main site is at https://www.yourdomain.com/ then the cloned site would be created in folder/url such as https://www.yourdomain.com/._ysts_ft8u/ - this site is only hidden by virtue of a highly obscure URL and you may want to add basic authentication controls on the URL to eliminate the risk that someone or a search engine may stumble across this.

This cloning works by copying all the files of the site into this sub-folder and copying the database tables, views, stored procedures, functions and triggers all using a corresponding database table prefix. Please bear in mind that if your site has a lot of images, videos etc. that the clone will copy all of these and it will double your client site's store usage.

Once you are finished testing on the clone site you can select the option to delete the site completely - this will free up the file and database storage that the clone uses.

2. Change Joomla Update Server Settings for Specific Sites

Do you have a site that you want to experiment with a major upgrade of Joomla e.g. Joomla 3.x to Joomla 4.0? You may have created a clone of a site so that you can test an upgrade.

With YourSites 1.11 you can configure a specific site to allow you to change the update server URL. You could set the custom update URL to one of the ones that provide the Joomla Nightly builds (https://developer.joomla.org/nightly-builds.html)

3. Diagnose Some Fatal Errors on Client Sites

Are you seeing a white screen on your client site or unable to access the backend then YourSites 1.11 may be able to help you find the cause of the problem. You may, for example, be experimenting with a Joomla upgrade on a clone and find that the site is broken once you perform the upgrade. You suspect there is a incompatible system plugin on the client site.

If you are experiencing this type of problem and are perhaps unable to identify the problem plugin or may even be unable to login to the site to disable the broken plugin or component. If you use the

Export Action Logs Summary as CSV File From Site List View

You can now download a CSV summary of the recent action logs for a specific site from the recent site actions list which you get by clicking the action logs summary in the site entry in the site list view.

4. Site Up Checks Perform Second Check in Case of Timeout

If your client site server is temporarily busy or being rebooted then a timeout may be triggered from the site up checks in YourSites. If you are getting too many "false alarm" site down notifications then enable this option on the first tab of the YourSites config under "Site Up Checks Settings".

5. Significant Performance Gains in Long List Views

If you like to display a long list of client sites as you use YourSites rather than a paginated view then once you get over 100 sites you may have found you needed to wait several seconds each time the view was refreshed. Version 1.11 has made a few changes which will improve the page load/display times dramatically in this situation.

Technically what we have done is

  • Added Chart.js and moment.js to our installation rather than relying on a CDN that was sometimes leading to a few seconds extra waiting time.
  • Loaded background tasks on demand from site information icons rather than in main site info popup - this saves DB processing time and means then less content to render.
  • Allow uikit to lazy load images
  • Defer the loading of uikit and chosen javascript files
  • Always display data based icons not url based icons for speed
  • Cache some site data in list view

6. Set Custom Database Session Queries

If your YourSites server database connection is being dropped when you perform slow tasks in YourSites you can now set a MySQL session value to help avoid this on the advanced settings tab

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