Using The Forms In Our Templates

The majority of templates that we have built to-date have at least one form. We are contacted on a regular basis asking why the forms don't work or how they can be made to work.

After writing numerous emails we have decided to get lazy and do a write-up here. All of the forms that can be found in our templates are non-functional - meaning, they can't be used as is for any processing.

The forms need to be configured and or adapted to be used within a CMS, Blog or other type of content management or blog system.

So, getting down to the realistic truth:

What types of forms do we have in our templates, the following are mostly used:

  • Contact Forms
  • Comment Forms
  • Search Forms

Setting up any of these forms need some type of dynamic solution, be it PHP, ASP or some other form of server side scripting.

The basics:

If you are using a CMS, Blog etc. and you wish to use one of our templates, you will have to port the complete template to the system you intend using. At the same time, you need to configure the individual forms to work within that system.

Click the relevant link for more information on porting templates to: WordPress, MODx, Joomla

An example:

If you intend on using WordPress as your system of choice you will find the individual forms in their respective file / place:

  • The comment form is in the "comment.php" or "commentspopup.php"
  • The search form can be found in the "searchform.php"
  • The contact form will be in the "contact.php" or similar name (if your default theme has one)

Once you have found the appropriate file you can remove the original form and add our form, adding any dynamic features where applicable.

For more information about setting up, styling and building forms in WordPress view their WordPress Form Styling page.

A good resource for understanding the comment form can be found here: Unraveling the Secrets of WordPress' Comments.php File

There are a load of contact forms as plugins and standalone forms available for WordPress - simply do a search in your search engine of choice for "WordPress contact form tutorial".

Other Ways To Get The Forms Working

Standalone form processing scripts:

Here you will need knowledge of the programming language that needs to be used to process the form e.g. PHP.

You can of course download a free script from the internet and modify it to suit your needs, but again, we suggest that a basic knowledge of the programming language is needed, unless you know someone who can confirm that the script you have downloaded is harmless and will not compromise your website.

There are plenty of free scripts and tutorials online for contact forms and comment forms - simply search for: "contact form script", "form to email", "comment form script" or even "feedback form script"

Flat file search engine

The best bet here is to carry out a search for "Flat File Search Engine" or "Full Text Site Search" - there is a flat file search script that can search static files and give the results back in a customisable template.

This system / script can be downloaded here: cSearch - you will find a "read me" file in the downloaded zip, which tells you how to use the script. We do not offer support for this script in any way, as it is 3rd party.

Important Note: You download and use the script at your own risk. OS Templates have nothing to do with the "cSearch" script, it comes "as is" without any kind of warranty. In no event shall OS Templates be held liable for any damages including, but not limited to, direct, indirect, special, punitive, incidental or consequential, or other losses arising out of the use of or inability to use the "cSearch" script.

3rd party script hosting and or processing

Generally speaking this is something we do not suggest on doing, unless its a recommended paid service - why, simply for security reasons.

There are tons of sites that offer free email form processing, simply do a search and find a provider. They will let you know how you have to integrate their scripts.

You can use this type of processing for pretty much all of the forms - if you use a flat file system (static) then you can add Googles' search function and then you have a search engine

Comment forms can be used in a static site as well, it simply means using a provider to process the form and you then manually add the comment - its a lot of work, but it works.

Conclusion

Using the forms in our templates is easy when you know where to look and if you have someone who can help you with the technical side it makes it even easier.

This complete page is based on the emails we've sent to those who have already asked how to use the forms, so if you have further questions about using the forms in our templates, please don't send us an email, we can't give you any other / new information, its all here.

If problems should arise, do a search in your favourite search engine first, if that doesn't help, you can contact us but we can only provide limited free help with this subject as it takes up an extensive amount of time.