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  1. #1
    Uranium Lounger
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    Lazarus Guestbook

    For those of you who already have a website with a guestbook, or have considered it, I wanted to share this find with you: Lazarus Guestbook.

    I was using an open-source guestbook on my website known as Advanced Guestbook, but recently I found it getting spammed to no end by bots. The upgrade to Lazarus takes what was already a powerful solution and makes it secure, along with adding some nice administrative features. The author promises an easy upgrade from existing Advanced Guestbook installations, but since I had tinkered with the MySQL database I ended up doing a little work under the hood. Still - very nice. If you would like to see how I have it integrated into my website, drop in for a peek.
    -Mark

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    I tried using a guestbook on my web site several years ago and had the same spamming experience as you, so I quit. I might give this Lazarus a look, although my web is not as nearly interesting as yours. As an aside, I have only been back to your site a time or two in the past couple of years, and today I wished I hadn't chosen the link I did! I re-read something that AGAIN brought tears to my eyes - your tribute to Jade! The poem from your Dad was also very emotional. Thanks fer the post.

  3. #3
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    You're welcome for the link. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    Lazarus is a great "script" - I hate to call it a script because it's a full on package for a website, but it's good regardless of the name it goes by. Now that I don't have to worry about phentermine ads showing up every day, I can work on the other rough edges on my site... like making my photo gallery template match the site design... <img src=/S/laugh.gif border=0 alt=laugh width=15 height=15> and right after that I will solve the world's peace problem...
    -Mark

  4. #4
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    I'm also appreciative of your posting this information about the Lazarus Guestbook. In fact, just yesterday, I disabled the Guestbook on my site after using one for nearly 10 years. I got sick and tired of having to delete the "spam" and "smut" entries 3 or 4 times per day; and one-by-one too. I decided that I had better things to do with my time.

    So, I downloaded the latest version at the link provided and read through the "Readme.txt" file but became confused. As I understood the announcement, this new version doesn't require editing the "config" file to point to your mysql database server, etc..... but the Readme.txt file says you have to do that, but the file itself is not included in the zip package. So, that's where my confusion comes in. And, of course, there is the matter of creating a link on one's website to point to the Guestbook too. Guess some more investigation is required on my part.

    Jeff
    Jeff
    simul iustus et peccator

  5. #5
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    Are you upgrading from Advanced Guestbook 2.x or replacing the one you have already?

    You will indeed need to edit the config file and put your MySQL information into it. I hadn't realized there was misdirection in the announcement, the readme.txt is correct. The config file is in the Admin directory in the package you downloaded.

    To point towards my guestbook, there were two things that needed to be done: one, create a link to the directory on the webserver where it is installed, and then add an .htaccess file that defines index.php as the default page. This can vary based on where a website is hosted, in my case it's required in order for PHP files to render.
    -Mark

  6. #6
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    Mark,

    I have never used "Advanced Guestbook", so I am starting from scratch. I would like to simply replace my present guestbook setup with this new one; not integrate it or anything like that. In other words, I would totally remove what I have now and use this Advanced Guestbook.

    I looked through every single file in the downloaded setup folder and there is no "config.inc.php" file to be found. Perhaps I downloaded the wrong file? The one I downloaded is named, "update15.zip". I don't remember seeing anything else. So, I went back to the Download page and found the full version download file... <IMG SRC=http://www.the-highway.com/Smileys/duh2.gif>

    Also, I haven't a clue about creating a .htaccess file which "defines the index.php as the default page".

    Addendum: Okay, got it up and running and so far I am VERY impressed, particularly with the Admin/Security features. This should eliminate the spamming problem completely. But I'm still curious about this matter about creating a ".htaccess" file which you mentioned. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

    Jeff
    Jeff
    simul iustus et peccator

  7. #7
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    You answered your first question... full versus upgrade. Like the <IMG SRC=http://www.the-highway.com/Smileys/duh2.gif> too. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    About the .htaccess file: each web server is different, and some need to be told what to load as the default page. .htaccess allows you to define directives for the web server on a directory by directory basis. The dot in front of the file name hides it from public view (as well as many FTP clients). Let me explain by way of example.

    If, for instance, I upload something to my webserver to {root}/guestbook/ and the file extension is PHP, the server does not automatically load the page when a visitor attempts to go to www.broge.com/guestbook/. The trailing slash is important in this case since it tells the server to load the default document found there. Since there is no default document, usually something with an HTM or HTML extension, I need to tell the server what to look for. Keep in mind that this applies to my hosting company and may not apply to others.

    To display the main (default) page, create a simple text file called .htaccess which defines the default. The file's contents:

    DirectoryIndex index.php

    That's it. Now the server knows to dish out the defined DirectoryIndex instead of providing a directory listing. There is more information available in the Apache documentation if you're interested in other uses for the file.
    -Mark

  8. #8
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: Lazarus Guestbook

    Apparently, in my particular situation, I don't need the ".htaccess" file since everything is working just perfect at the moment. I remember from ages ago, that ".htaccess" files were the rage in regard to securing documents on a web server. I also noticed, browsing through the various folders for Lazarus Guestbook, that there are already some ".htaccess" files included. The one in the root directory is for "zlib compression".

    Anyway, thanks for your help and for the link. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>
    Jeff
    simul iustus et peccator

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