Simple:Press Documentation

FAQ: How to use Sneak Peek for Guests or Other Usergroups

Sneak Peek is an implementation that allows the guest usergroup or other usergroups to view groups and forums within groups without viewing forum topics OR view topics within forums without being able to view the actual content of posts. When members of the guest usergroup or the selected usergroups attempt to view topics or post content not allowed, they are instead shown a message specified by the forum Admin or are re-directed to a URL designated by the forum Admin.

When a website is set up, usergroups can be defined that cover all the forums being planned for the site. Usergroups may be in some forums and not in others. Similarly, permission sets can be defined that cover all the forums being planned. As with usergroups, permission sets may be in some forums and not in others.

When forums are set up, the forum Admin specifies which usergroups are to be in a forum and assigns a permission set to the usergroup within that forum. The same usergroup may have one permission set in one forum and a different permission set in another forum. All usergroups with the same permission set have the same privileges regardless of the forum they are in.

Sneak Peek relies on restricted visibility settings being in place on the guest’s or other usergroup’s assigned permission set(s).

Note: For restricted visibility permissions within a usergroup’s permission set to be in effect, the permission “Can view a forum” must be disabled in that permission set. A permission is disabled when its check box does NOT have a green check mark in it.

The “Can view a forum” permission allows the usergroup to view the “Group View”, the “Forum View”, and the “Topic View” pages of the forum.

For more information regarding these “views” and the template files governing their content, please see the About Template Files Codex page.

The restrictive permissions under the “Viewing” section of forum permission sets are:

  • Can view a list of forums only – the users in the usergroup can view the “Group View” page showing the groups and the forums within each group.
    • When clicking on a forum to view the topics within a forum, instead of going to the “Forum View” to view the forum’s topic list, the user only sees what the forum Admin has specified, either a) the unique “Sneak Peek” message specified by the forum Admin or b) the page designated by the re-direct URL set up by the forum Admin.
  • Can view a list of forums and list of topics only – the users in the usergroup can view the “Group View” page and can view the “Forum View” page with the list of topics in the forum.
    • When clicking on a topic to view topic content, instead of going to the “Topic View” to view the topic’s posts, the user only sees what the forum Admin has specified, either a) the unique “Sneak Peek” message specified by the forum Admin or b) the page designated by the re-direct URL set up by the forum Admin.

Example Sneak Peek Configuration

In this example there are two (2) forums, Forum 1 and Forum 2. There are several usergroups in each forum, but the restricted forum viewing (Sneak Peek) configuration to be set up the same for each forum is:

  • The Guests usergroup is to see only the “Group View” page listing the groups and the forums within each group.
  • The Beginners usergroup is to see only the “Group View” page and the “Forum View” page with the list of topics in the forum.

Finding the Usergroup Permission Sets

The various usergroups in each forum have specific permission sets assigned to them. The forum Admin has decided which usergroups in which forums are to have the restricted “sneak peek” permissions.

From the Forum Admin menu on the left of admin pages, select Forum > Forums > Manage Groups And Forums to see the forums on the website.

  • In the section for a forum which is to have the “sneak peek” restriction, click on “Forum Permissions” to see the list of usergroups in that forum and the permission set associated with each usergroup.
  • For the usergroups in that forum to have restricted forum visibility, record the permission set associated with each of those usergroups.
      In this example, clicking the “Forum Permission” button in Forum 1 shows:
      • Guests => “Read Only Access” permission set
      • Beginners => “Limited Access” permission set
  • When finished reviewing the permission sets assigned to usergroups with a forum, click the “Cancel” button at the bottom of that forum’s section to move onto the next forum.
  • Repeat the above steps for each forum to have restricted visibility, recording the name(s) of the permission set(s) for each usergroup in the forum to have restricted visibility.
      In this example, clicking the “Forum Permission” button in Forum 2 shows:
      • Guests => “Read Only Access” permission set
      • Beginners => “Limited Access” permission set
  • Because the similar usergroups in the two forums have the same permission sets, only the permission sets “Read Only Access” (for Guests) and “Limited Access” (for Beginners) need be set up for the restricted “Sneak Peek” viewing.

Setting Permissions for Sneak Peek

From the Forum Admin menu on the left of admin pages, select Forum > Permissions > Manage Permission Sets to see the permission sets available.

In this example the “Can view a list of forums only” permission (view Group View page only – not Forum View and not Topic View pages) is to be set in the “Read Only Access” permission set to limit the Guests usergroup forum visibility and the “Can view a list of forums and list of topics only” permission (view Group View and Forum View pages only – not Topic View page) is to be set in the “Limited Access” permission set.

  • Assigning the “Can View a List of Forums Only” Permission to the “Read Only Access” Permission Set
    • Can view a list of forums only permission
    • Restricting users to view only the “Group View” page is controlled by their group permissions.
    • Each member group that is to have that ability must have the permission turned on.
    • This is accomplished from the Simple:Press Administration panel Admin menu by clicking/opening Forum > Permissions > Manage Permission Sets.
    • Select “Edit Permission” for the permission set to be updated to view the “Permissions – Manage Permissions” panel.
      • For this example, select the “Read only Access” permission set.
    • Under “Viewing” click the check box next to “Can view a list of forums only” to set/enable the permission if it does not already have a green check mark. When enabled, the check box contains a green check mark.
      • Be sure the check boxes next to “Can view a list of forums and list of topics only” and “Can view a forum” permissions are not enabled. When not enabled (disabled), the check box does NOT contain a green check mark.
    • Click “Update Permission” at the bottom of the page to have the selection(s) saved.
    • Repeat these steps on each permission set to have this permission configuration. In this example, only the “Read only Access” permission set is so configured.
    •  

  • Assigning the “Can View a List of Forums and List of Topics Only” Permission to the “Limited Access” Permission Set
    • Can view a list of forums and list of topics only permission
    • Restricting users to view only the “Group View” and “Forum View” pages is controlled by their group permissions.
    • Each member group that is to have that ability must have the permission turned on.
    • This is accomplished from the Simple:Press Administration panel Admin menu by clicking/opening Forum > Permissions > Manage Permission Sets.
    • Select “Edit Permission” for the permission set to be updated to view the “Permissions – Manage Permissions” panel.
      • For this example, select the “Limited Access” permission set.
    • Under “Viewing” click the check box next to “Can view a list of forums and list of topics only” to set/enable the permission if it does not already have a green check mark. When enabled, the check box contains a green check mark.
      • Be sure the check boxes next to “Can view a list of forums only” and “Can view a forum” permissions are not enabled. When not enabled (disabled), the check box does not contain a green check mark.
    • Click “Update Permission” at the bottom of the page to have the selection(s) saved.
    • Repeat these steps on each permission set to have this permission configuration. In this example, only the “Limited Access” permission set is so configured.
    •  

Setting up a ‘Sneak Peak’ message or assigning a re-direct URL

From the Forum Admin menu on the left of admin pages, select Forum > Components > Custom Messages to see the “Components – Custom Messages” panel with its “Sneak Peek Statement” section.

  • Sneak Peek Statement Section
  • When a member of a usergroup with restricted access tries to view forums or posts they do not have permission to see, the forum Admin can elect in this section to have a message displayed to the forum user or re-direct the forum user to a specific page by specifying its URL.

    • Sneak Peek Statement
      This message is a custom message that can be displayed to the guests usergroup and/or other usergroups when they try to view a forum or a post their permission set does not allow them to see. The specific permissions being enabled that cause the message to be displayed are “Can view a list of forums only” and/or “Can View a List of Forums and List of Topics Only”. If both these permissions are not being used, this message will never appear.

      NOTE: To have the message displayed due to either one of the restrictive permissions, the “Can view a forum” permission MUST not be enabled in the permission set.

      • In the text input box under “Sneak Peek Statement” insert the text for the Sneak Peek Statement.
        • For this example the text “Guests register and Beginners contact the Admin to see this information.” might be input as the message.
      • Click on the “Update Custom Messages Component” button at the bottom of the page if there are no other entries to make, otherwise move on to make the next entry.

       

    • URL to Redirect for Sneak Peek
      If it is desired to re-direct the forum user to a specific page rather than display a Sneak Peek Message, the URL is input in this subsection.

      NOTE: This entry takes precedence over the Sneak Peek Statement entry.

      • In the text input box under “URL to redirect to for sneak peek:” insert the URL.
        • For this example the URL “https://simple-press.com” might be input.
      • Click on the “Update Custom Messages Component” button at the bottom of the page if there are no other entries to make, otherwise move on to make the next entry.

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