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Clear Hack Instructions : Help & File Template...
Chris M
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 6,186

Chris Murphy, BSc - Developing a couple of New Projects for release in 2010!

Northampton, England
by Chris M Chris M is offline 31 Oct 2002

Help Guide
==========

This help guide is designed to help you write a clear and easy to understand hack instruction file...

=-=
The variables I used in the file

You might be wondering what i meant by "#directory#" or "#query#"...

I have given you a template to make a clear and easy to follow hack...

Here is an explanation of what all the queries mean:
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
(This starts from the top of the file downwards)

===

#warnings# - This is for giving any warnings to the installer - If your hack contains Database modifications, such as Queries, then you can put something like :

You MUST BACKUP your Database AND your .php Files before installing this hack
===

#support information# - This is for notifying the user whether you want them to reply in the thread, email or PM you, or whether you do not wish to be contacted for support, not even via the thread

===

#directory# - This is what directory the file can be found...Some people just put down "global.php"...Unfortunately, people do not know whether you mean "admin/global.php", "mod/global.php" or the "global.php" file that can be found in your vBulletin root folder...

Therefore, the directories can be (as standard):

root (where newthread.php, showthread.php and usercp.php are found)
admin (the admin folder)
mod (the mod folder)

===

#filename# - Quite simply, what the name of the file is...Is it newthread.php, newreply.php, functions.php or whatever...

===

#code to find# - This is a fundamental thing of a vBulletin hack; There is always going to be something to find...That is why I have named the variable "#code to find#"

===

#instruction# - This is the instruction you are giving to the user; This tells them whether you are adding a piece of code above, below, or replacing a block/line of code...

The special thing about the "#instruction#" variable is that it is surrounded by:

=====
=====
These help to make the instruction stand out from the code...

It is necessary to make sure the "=" reaches the ":" found at the end of each instruction line:

i.e.

========
Add below:
========
===

#codeinstruction# - This is simply the code that corresponds to your instruction

===

#query# - This is where you enter what Query/Queries the user has to run

===

#templatename# - This is the name of the template, either one being added or one being modified - If an instruction is given before it, it is usually one to "edit" the template named

===

#templatecontents# - This is the contents of the new template to be created

===

#html/java to find# - This is what needs to be found in the template you are editing

===

#templateinstruction# - This is what code that the edited template is going to be replaced with / what code is being added

===

# hack credits # - This is the Credits you give to anyone, if any. If not applicable, just remove the "Credits -" section entirely

===

What else can be done to make it smart?

I find that leaving a line break between instructions and code always makes for an easier to follow regime...

That way you dont suddenly emerge from code with:

========
Add below:
========

followed by more code...

===

Why did you make this tutorial?

I made this, so that people who are hacking have an easier life...

Alot of why hacks go wrong is because their instructions are not accurately written, or are too squashed up to be able to distinguish what is meant to be found/replaced or not...

If any of you have been downloading any of my Full Releases hacks recently, you will notice that I have used this style in all my instruction files...

I find it easy to use, easy to follow, and have not had any complaints (yet) about faulty or difficult to read instructions...

===

What else can you suggest?

Well...I have provided a kind of basis for an instruction file...Now I think one more thing is in order...

It is all very well having a nicely laid-out instruction file...

But if your instructions themselves are very cryptic, it does not fare good...

You must treat the potential hack users as if they know nothing at all about PHP, MySQL or Template editing/adding...

You must provide thorough and descriptive instructions on how to install your hack...

Most new hackers will find it easier to understand how vBulletin works if the instructions they have to follow are clear and presented nicely...

===

If you have any questions, please post them below

Satan
Attached Files
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Last edited by hellsatan; 31 Oct 2002 at 15:15..
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