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DNN Website Basics

DNN Implementation partner explains the basics of a DNN portal
DNN Portal Elements Explained

What are the basics of a DNN website?

A DotNetNuke (DNN) website is a site that uses the online content management system DNN. DotNetNuke or DNN uses innovative technology and is one of the most popular open source CMS , .NET and ASP developmental frameworks. Web developers enjoy using it to build professional looking websites with interactive features and content.

The main reason why DNN is gaining popularity is because of the control it gives website developers. It easily allows you to control the settings for the pages, site and modules. A DNN website is easy to use and comes with many useful modules that will help you get the specific functionality you are looking for, while they are also easy to customize through modules, language packs, data providers and skins.

HTML Responsive Template

What are Skins?

Individuals operating a DNN website can access special skins for their site. A DNN Skin would be akin to a WordPress Theme. They both are the HTML styling and page templates that jump start the design and build-out of a website. The skin developers, Amol were able to separate content and design to create these new skins. These skins require only the understanding of basic HTML. DNN has a skinning engine where anyone can go to get free skins. Skins that are downloaded from the skinning engine can be uploaded to a DNN website using the administration pages of your website. The DNN store also has some 3rd party skins and they're pretty inexpensive (less than $200). The best ones (Clarity's used them on numerous client projects) from the store are from Easy DNN Themes and Porto.

Navigable Web Pages

What are Pages?

Every DNN website essentially starts out with nothing on it, meaning you will need to create the base pages, the you will have to add modules to each page to add more information. The modules will display different types of content (i.e. text, graphics, calendars, journals, news items, feeds, forms, etc.). Within a DNN site, most often the HTML or Text module is utilized. People who use a DNN website will also be able to change the security of a page, as well as granularly controlling access to content within the page. You can grant special permission to certain users, groups or roles. Perhaps the best part of using DNN website is that you are easily able to change the containers, modules and skin of your website.

Stylizing Global Classes

What are Containers?

Containers are very similar to skins, they decorate and make a DNN website look appealing. The design application of a container can be used on a page applied to only specific parts of a website with proper programming coding. It can be used with modules and is typically part of skin or controlled by a skin.

A container is good for isolating content and highlighting certain information and making things really standout visually on a website like a quote or banner. Some people also like to use containers to add an extra space between web content or to break up ugly empty white space, which makes a web page unappealing to the eye. The best part of most DotNetNuke website containers is that they are free, you can find them on message boards and other websites.

A container is good for isolating content and highlighting certain information and making things really standout visually on a website like a quote or banner
Controlling Features & Content

What are Modules?

A DNN module is akin to a WordPress plug-in. It provides functionality and controls the type of content that is generated or displayed in it (i.e. gallery module, blogging module, calendar module, banner module, text module, etc.). There are many free and fee-based modules, mostly available in the DNN Software Storefront. A module is also a structural part of a column. Basic default DNN websites come with many modules that can be used to customize many functionalities of a site. These basic modules are able to create an ecommerce website or regular company marketing website. The regular functionality of DNN can be increased by installing additional 3rd party modules. Modules are maintained by a group of DNN community members.

Clarity has been working with DNN for over 13 years, and have successfully designed, built and launched over 1,300 DNN portals. Clarity is a Top DNN Implementation Partner, and has been a DNN partner since the program was started over 11 years ago. If you have any questions, or need any help with your DNN project, fill out the form below and we'll be happy to assist.

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