Spring Forward Web Design
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One of the drawbacks of social networking is that you open your website up to internet spam. One way to reduce internet spam is to add a CAPTCHA filter to your feedback and registration forms. A particular drawback of Joomla websites is that the Joomla default registration form does not include a CAPTCHA filter. Joomla sites are therefore easy targets for spammers. This article describes using yet another Joomla Extension, called Alpha Registration, to improve the Joomla Registration Form.
The default Joomla Registration form consists of two steps:
On the Home page, there is a User Log In Form:
If a viewer is not already registered, they can click on CREATE AN ACCOUNT at the bottom of the Log In form. Doing this brings up the default Registration form:
We will use the Alpha Registration Extension to improve this registration form. The first step is to download the Alpha Registration Extension to your C drive. Go to the Joomla Extension Directory (JED)
Click on the download button. This takes you to the alphaplug.com download page where you again click on the download button. This brings up the zipped folder which you save to your C drive.
Next, from your Joomla Administrator Control Panel, go to Extensions > Install and upload this zipped folder to your website. Once uploaded and installed, go to Extensions > Plug In Manager and activate the Alpha Registration plug in. Finally, go to Components > Alpha Registration, Click on this, then click on the word “Configuration” in the center of the page. This will bring up the Configuration page where you can make additions and changes to the Joomla Registration Form (Add New Account page):
Fill in the selections on the General and Steps Tabs with whatever you want. When you get to the reCaptcha Tab, you will see field boxes for adding Public and Private Keys. You need to get these keys by going to http://recaptcha.net. The link for this is provided just below the empty field boxes. Click on this link and go to the recaptcha website to get the key codes you need. Then come back to this tab and fill in the key codes. Make sure you have enabled recaptcha. Then finish with any other settings you want and click on SAVE.
Finally, test your new registration form by going to your website and clicking on “ Create an Account.”
This will bring up your Joomla registration page:
The above form shows that steps have been added, including a confirm email step and a captcha step.
After completing the form and clicking on the Register button, a second screen will appear:
This let’s the viewer know that in order to complete the registration process, they will have to confirm their email address. Once this is done, a third screen appears letting the viewer know that they have successfully completed the registration process. If you have also clicked YES to showing the log in form after the last step, the Joomla log in form will appear which the user can complete and then be re-directed to any page you want (which can be either the home page or a special page you have created for registered users of your website). These precautions will not only cut down on spam, but increase the reliability of email addresses which are on your user email list.