Creating and Managing Accounts

Introduction

Member accounts are the heart of AutoRank Pro. It's basic functionality is to manage a database of member accounts and to rank those accounts against each other based on the hits they send you or the hits you send to them. This document will describe how you can create accounts and completely manage them through the control panel.

Adding New Accounts

There are two ways to add new accounts, either through the control panel or through the accounts.cgi interface. The control panel is your interface to AutoRank Pro, while the accounts.cgi script is for website owners. Website owners will be able to use the accounts.cgi script to create their account and maintain it. When creating an account you or the website owner will be prompted to enter information about the website. Each of those fields is described below. Along with this basic information you have the option to collect three additional pieces of information through the user defined fields. You can collect any information with those fields, including (but not limited to) a sample image URL, ICQ number, contact name, etc. Reviewing New Accounts

If you have the 'Review new accounts before listing?' option enabled in the Edit Options interface you will need to review all new accounts before they can be ranked on your site. To review new accounts click on the Review New Accounts link in the Member Accounts section of the control panel menu. A page will load showing you a list of the new accounts that you will need to review. An example of how each new account will appear is shown in the image below.


As you can see the basic information about the site is displayed so that you can review it. If you need to make any changes to the information click on the [Edit] link for the account that you want to change.

To approve an account put a check in the box next to the username of the account you want to approve. Scroll to the bottom of the page and press the Approve Selected button. All of the accounts with their checkbox checked will be approved. This will cause them to be moved into the live database and they will then be eligible for ranking at the next rebuild. The email_approved.tpl email message will be sent to each approved account. You can alternatively click the [Approve] link to approve a single account at a time.

To reject an account put a check in the box next to the username of the account you want to approve. Scroll to the bottom of the page and press the Reject Selected button. All of the accounts with their checkbox checked will be rejected. This will cause them to be deleted from the database immediately. You can select to send an e-mail message to each rejected account. The Reject Message field can be set to the e-mail message that you want to send. You can create custom rejection e-mail messages; that process is covered in the Rejection E-mails section of the software manual. You can alternatively click the [Reject] link to reject a single account at a time.

Reviewing Edited Accounts

AutoRank Pro gives you the option to review all account editing before the new information goes live on your site. This can be very useful to prevent a malicious user from creating an account with acceptable information and then changing it to something that is not accetable for your site. To enable this feature make sure the 'Review all member account editing before listing?' option is checked in the Edit Options interface.

To review account edits, click on the Review Edited Accounts link in the Member Accounts section of the control panel menu. A page will load showing you a list of the edited accounts that you will need to review. An example of how each new account will appear is shown in the image below.


As you can see, each of the items that has changed is being displayed. The items with a green background show the account information as it is currently, and the items with a red background show what the account holder wants to change it to. If either of those is blank it means that there was no previous value set (for green) or that the previous value has been removed (for red).

To approve an edit put a check in the box next to the username of the account edit you want to approve. Scroll to the bottom of the page and press the Approve Selected button. All of the account edits with their checkbox checked will be approved. This will cause all of the approved account edits to be merged into the live member database. The next time the ranking pages are rebuilt the new information will appear. You can alternatively click the [Approve] link to approve a single account edit at a time.

To reject an edit put a check in the box next to the username of the account edit you want to approve. Scroll to the bottom of the page and press the Reject Selected button. All of the account edits with their checkbox checked will be rejected. This will cause them to be deleted from the database immediately and the change will not take affect. You can alternatively click the [Reject] link to reject a single account edit at a time.

Managing Accounts

Once a member account has been created you can manage it completely through the Display Members interface. To access this, click on the Display Members link in the Member Accounts section of the control panel menu. A page will load showing you the top 20 accounts sorted by hits in since the last reset. Below is an image showing you how a member account will appear in the Display Members interface.

As you can see the information displayed is fairly comprehensive and you can also get to the complete account information by clicking on the [Details] link. You also have the option to edit the account, scan it's URLs, and even delete it from the database. To assist in locating a specific account you can search the database or enter the account's username at the top of the page in the box labeled 'Display Members'. From here you can control what categories are displayed, how the accounts are sorted, and how many are listed on each page.

Updating Accounts

Any time you need to edit one of the member accounts you will need to first locate that account through the Display Members interface. You can either use the search feature or enter the account's username if you know it. You can then click on the [Edit] link for the account you need to update. A window will pop up displaying a form where you can edit the account's information. You can change the values to whatever you want and once your changes have been made, press the Update Member button. Your changes will be confirmed, and you can then close the pop up window. Note that your changes will not be reflected in the Display Members interface until the page is reloaded.

Deleting Accounts

If you need to delete an acccount for any reason you will need to first locate that account through the Display Members interface. You can either use the search feature or enter the account's username if you know it. You can then click on the [Delete] link to delete the member from the database. You will be asked to confirm that you do want to delete the member, and once you press Ok the account will be permanently removed. The only way to restore a deleted member is to recreate the account. Note that the account will still be displayed in the Display Members interface until you reload the page.

To delete several members at once, put a check in the checkbox next to the account username for all accounts that you want to delete. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and press the Delete Selected button. You will be asked to confirm that you want to delete the members, and once you press Ok the accounts will be permanently removed.