How to write a hello world plugin


If you have read our first blog post you might know the below two principals followed by our forum's plugin system:

  1. A plugin must be very very very easy to develop
  2. A plugin must be able to modify every aspect of the forum without modifying the core


Step 1: Required files & content

create folder structure for forum plugin
The first thing you need to do is create the plugin folder and setup the structure . To do so, open your codoforum folder and browse to sites/default/plugins/. Create the plugin folder helloworld here. Inside the folder create the required files helloworld.info.php & helloworld.php as shown in the image above.

Note: The file names must match the folder name. so, if you have a plugin folder named myplugin, then the two files will be myplugin.info.php & myplugin.php


Step 2: Plugin Info & activation


The very first piece of code added to any plugin should be the plugin information. The helloworld.info.php file tells codoforum that your plugin exists and adds it to the plugin management system in the backend so that it can be activated. As a minimum, the plugin name, version and core is required, but you can provide other information such as a description or author details. The info code can be seen below – this should be added to the helloworld.info.php


<?php

  $info['name'] = 'Hello World';
  $info['description'] = 'A Demo Plugin';
  $info['version'] = '1.x';
  $info['author'] = "codologic";
  $info['author_url'] = 'http://codologic.com';
  $info['license'] = 'MIT License';
  $info['core'] = '1.x'; //works with which version of codoforum?



With that added to the info file, open up codoforum admin in your browser and have a look at the plugins section. The plugin should be listed, click enable to activate the plugin as shown below. activate-forum-backend-plugin


Step 3: Display Hello World



Now open the helloworld.php file and copy the code shown below,


<?php

  dispatch("helloworld/", function(){

    echo "Hello, World!";

  });


Now open your browser, and enter http://domain.com/index.php?u=helloworld or http://domain.com/helloworld if you have enabled search engine friendly URLs.
you will recieve a raw output as shown below,

hello-world-forum-plugin-routing

You just saw how to get raw output based on the URL by using the dispatch method, you can learn more about the dispatch method or move to the next part i.e how to display hello world in an existing layout/template.

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