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Old 05-14-2008, 11:55 PM
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Morgan Morgan is offline
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Default Geek Gazette Newsletter: Time to GAZ

Geek Gazette Newsletter

Features

The Geek Gazette (GAZ) is a community newsletter system for vBulletin 3.6.x and up. GAZ goes far beyond conventional newsletter systems by introducing a modular layout that enables you to quickly customize your newsletters how you see fit.

Need multiple types of newsletters? With GAZ, you can! Create any number of newsletters, each with their own custom layout and settings.

Can't be asked to sit around generating mailouts at just the right time? With GAZ, you can skip even thinking about generating newsletters and sending them out. With GAZ's unique system, you can configure your newsletters to be created at any given point on a regular basis (i.e. once a day, or week, month, or next Easter).

Went off to the pub and forgot to send out the newsletter?!? Not a problem with GAZ. GAZ can automatically send off generated emails in batches. In other words, you can set GAZ up and let it do the newsletter work for you!

Ever wanted to browse previous issues or give the ability for users to email past issues to their moms and dads? With GAZ you can. That's right, GAZ comes with an issue browser that lets users spend hours of fun reading past issues of your newsletters.

Front-end Demo: http://www.thevbgeek.com/newsletter.php
Back-end Screenshots: http://www.thevbgeek.com/geeki/index.php/Category:GAZ

Issues

Most common email readers will prevent downloading external images and style heets until the user requests these items. This means that HTML emails look pretty freaking ugly in most email readers until you choose to 'download all images/content/whatever'. To add insult to injury, many popular email readers such as Gmail and Hotmail actually strip out the entire contents of your HTML email header. Since this area usually contains the style information, that means most (if not all) of your CSS will get eaten alive in these readers, not to mention that some email readers will replace style attributes with 'Cleaned' attributes.

To counter this, GAZ gives you the option to put a lot of your common CSS classes definitions in line. This can bulk up the size of the email a little, but the trade off is a much nicer looking email (for those email readers that do not clean out inline style attributes) even if the user doesn't download images.

To access the inline definitions, go to the inline style information (AdminCP -> GAZ -> Inline Style Info). There you can enter inline style information, or extract it from your existing CSS (you can extract all of your style CSS details by using the AdminCP -> GAZ -> Tools -> Rebuild in line style info link).

Note that any external images will get stripped out of Gmail and Hotmail, so you shouldn't really bother putting those in (the extraction tool doesn't). Remember too that some email readers are set to replace style attributes with 'Cleaned' attributes.
  • FROM <td class="alt2" align="center" style="background-color: #FFFFFF; color: #000000;">
  • TO <td class="alt2" align="center" Cleaned="background-color: #FFFFFF;color: #000000;">
Send yourself an email using the online demo to see what your email reader does, and remember that the type of email you receive (plain text or HTML) can be set here in the 'Geek Gazette Format' drop down menu.

Installation

Please see http://www.thevbgeek.com/geeki/index.php/Category:GAZ for further details. There you will find installation instructions, upgrade instructions, plus other useful information for your viewing pleasure. Question mark icons appear in the GAZ ACP settings for more help.
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