• Ajax Cookbook for the FHA Website

    Most users of the website have read the Bulletin Board (the most popular page on the site!) or looked up other residents' (or their own) directory information. These two website facilities share a common technology that makes them fast and efficient. The technology is called AJAX - short for Asynchronous Javascript and XML. In brief, AJAX provides a way for a Javascript program to load a program on the web server and pass directive information to the program, then to retrieve the output from the program (which might be HTML, XML or JSON) and insert this output onto the page where the Javascript is running. Under normal circumstances, the time between the Javascript call and the appearance of the results of the call is measured in a few tenths of a second, or almost instananeously. This article will explain how that works, using a key "simplifier" Javascript function written for and...

  • Create an E-newsletter From Source Documents

    This article describes the procedure to take the two source documents for the FHA newsletter, which are in a dialect of Microsoft Word and Portable Document Format (PDF) formats, and create the emailed "e-Newsletter". All of the procedures described below assume you are logged into the back end as a Manager, Administrator, or Super-Admin.

    Preserve the Source Documents

    When you receive the source .doc and .pdf files from one of the Editors, upload it to the website into the directory /images/newsletter/. These documents are named 

    nl_mar12ORIGINAL.doc for the .doc file, and
    nl_mar12ORIGINAL.pdf for the .pdf file.

    (Of course replace "mar12" by the applicable month and year.)

    This is a permanent repository for back-issues. The editors never thought a back-issue repository was important, but I disagree.

    Also make a local copy of the Word document so you can cut-and-paste from it later. 

    The Word copy of the newsletter is dodgy. It may...

  • FHA Newsletter, July/August 2020


    July/August, 2020 Volume 39 Number 7


    Open Meeting/Webinar Scheduled for Thursday, July 16 at 7 pm

    The FHA board invites you to a webinar in which board members will present an overview of important issues that confront the FHA. This is in lieu of an open meeting that we would normally hold at this time of year. Three presentations are planned.  Click on a link to read an update on a specific topic.

    Before attending the meeting, you will need to...

  • FHA Newsletter: December 2020

  • FHA Newsletter: January 2021

  • FHA Newsletter: November 2020

  • How to Link a PDF File in an Article

    First, RENAME THE FILE. You don't need to upload files like "Bylaws as amended 2017.pdf". Before you upload them change their name to a simple, one-word, easy to remember name like "bylaws.pdf" Why?

    Assuming the file is replacing a previously linked file of the same name, when you upload (see below) the updated file, it will just replace the previous one on the website, and you're done. No relinking needed, no hunting around for a lengthy file name. Go pour a favorite beverage and congratulate yourself.

    If this is a file to be linked for the first time, upload the PDF file (video instructions here) to your group's image directory, usually found in


    *REMEMBER: Give your uploaded PDFs a generic file name like "ApplicationForm.pdf" instead of "Application Form for 2014 dated 1-15-2014.pdf" so you don't have to change the LINK every year, just upload the new file, remaned to be...

  • Post FHA Meeting Agenda or Minutes to Website

    In late 2016 the FHA Board adopted a policy of posting Board meeting agendas and, after approval, meeting Minutes with attachments (reports by Board Members). This article describes the process of posting these documents on the FHA website.

  • Quick Reference Page Updates

    The Quick Reference page linked on the top menu under "Info" needs to be updated when the directory is republished in order to get the page numbers in the "printable" Quick Reference to match the new directory pages.

    Clicking the Quick Reference link shows only website links for available information, while the "Print" box at the bottom of the page will print the information on a single sheet of paper and will refer to page numbers in the FHA directory. Three files are used to display and print the information:

    1. /fhaphp/fyi.php - invoked by a Joomla article. Calls a function to display the reference material, and displays a print "button" at the bottom
    2. /newprint/fyisource.php - contains reference material source, including page numbers that may change. CSS (@media groupings) used to differentiate between screen display and print display.
    3. /newprint/fyi.css - CSS to display the Quick Reference page as a web page or as a print...
  • Refresh the Dev Site

    The "DEV Site" is the FHA administrators' test bed, and is accessed as

    When embarking on a new project that has the potential of disrupting or breaking the function of the FHA website, the DEV site should be "refreshed", meaning the production site's current state should be replicated on the DEV site.

    This is easily done using a current backup file from Akeeba Backup, plus a downloaded (to get the most current copy) program called kickstart.php, available at

    Download the kickstart zip file, unzip it, and then extract from the ZIP file two files:

    1. kickstart.php and
    2. eng-GB.kickstart.ini

    Upload these to the website's /dev directory.

    Now login to and, using the cPanel's File Manager, copy the latest backup (a large file with extension 'jpa') from /public_html/administrator/components/com_akeeba/backup to /public_html/dev.

    There are now three new files on the DEV site, and you can begin the restoration of the backup on DEV...

  • Submit a Directory Changes Report

    The monthly Directory Changes report is due to the newsletter editor by the 15th of the month.

    Begin by going to Info/Find People/Directory Changes (top menu). Generate a report beginning with the last day of the previous report and ending with the current day. Check to make sure no entries overlap. Cut and paste the report into a Word document. Clear all formatting. Follow the format of previous Directory Changes, using only tab stops and hard returns to format the document. The typeface both editors use is Verdana; the size you use will vary according to the size of the report in a given month.

    Keep the size of the report to one page, even if it means reducing it and squashing it until it is unreadable by anyone. If you do not do this, the newsletter editor will, and will let you know that you should have done it...

  • Using the Pop-up Notification on the Front Page

    This capability is provided by the free Joomla plug-in "Simple Popup", which is configured under Plugins on the back end.

    To activate the Simple Popup, copy and paste the following three lines of code into the bottom of ehe website home page FHA Front Page (NOTE: EDIT THIS PAGE TO VIEW CODE):

    Remember to remove these lines after the reason for the message goes away.

    The article with ID=3433 is entitled "Emergency Urgent Notice". The {simplepopup} on the first line will cause the article #3433 to be displayed as a popup in what's called "fancy window" style, provided a) the article is published, and b) there is no cookie named "spuFhaUrgentMessage". (spu=simple pop up, of course.) If 3433 is not published, or has expired, or the cookie exists, nothing will be shown. If the popup IS shown, the cookie is set with a lifetime of seven...

  • Village Calendar Maintenance

    Adding to and editing events in the Village Calendar is documented in this PDF file. The source for the PDF file is here.