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Hi everyone,

Often these days we need to have an ability to access a disabled Section or Category Item on the Front-end without having it shown in the list among other Enabled Sections or Category Items.

There is a beautiful solution that Google Picasa has for this - Direct URL which contains some "key" for authenticating the user and showing him hidden by default content.


I propose we implement the same for Section (later for Category Items).

  1. If Status is Pending or Disabled we show a new "Access with Link" field right after (below) that Status field
  2. New "Access with Link" field will have a Check-box (enabled by default) and a Label field (which can be copied) with full URL to that Section.
  1. We would need to have 2 new DB fields ( in Categories table (and later for Category Items) to store the Status and the Authentication Key. I suggest calling them as AllowAccessWithLink and AuthKey, but I am insisting on these names.
  2. Let's use some random Alpha-numeric (case sensitive) algorithms (nothing fancy) to generate (automatically) and save this keys. Keys will NOT change! Suggested length 15-20 chars.
  3. One of hard questions is - which of the URLs to show:
    1. with ModRewrite or without - I believe it should be based on current website settings
    2. which language - default one for Front-end
  4. Need to make sure if In-Portal performs a URL redirect due to forcing the HTML URL when user visits without one we need to keep AuthKey in URL as well.

I know we might need todo some changes in the ModRewrite and Caching part, but I strongly believe it's a MUST for us to have this.


INP-851 - Getting issue details... STATUS

INP-1076 - Getting issue details... STATUS


  1. It's like Picasa album functionality (,
    where you can give access to private album with a direct link.

    From technical viewpoint it will be pretty easy to implement:

       1. create 2 fields in a Category table: *DirectLinkEnabled* (Yes/No) and
       2. when someone enables direct link functionality (on category/section
       editing page), then
          - random alpha-numeric string will be generated and stored in
          category/section record
          - link to that page with freshly generated authentication key will be
       3. in *checkItemStatus *method (where check is made to prevent viewing
       Pending/Disabled categories/sections) also check is authentication key is
       present in url and it matches one from current category/section record
       4. if all matches, then show category/section and don't redirect to "no
       permission" page as usual in this case

    If there will be a need, then such approach could be applied to any category
    item or any page on the site.

  2. Dmitry do you have task created for this functionality?

  3. Hi Alex,

    Thanks for looking at this. Here is a new task for this feature:

    1050: Ability to access Disabled Section with Direct Link

    INP-851 - Getting issue details... STATUS


  4. Hi guys,

    Looks like I have found a bug in this functionality (committed to In-Portal
    5.2.0 branch).

    Access URL gets some junk (ie. admin=1 and so on) if Section is accessed via
    Content Mode (clicked Section Properties) see

    Not major issue, but needs to be fixed.



  5. good catch

    2011/7/22 Dmitry A. <>

  6. Here is a patch for this issue - provided by Alex.

    Patch is tested successfully!



  7. nice :)

    2011/9/12 Dmitry A. <>

  8. Looks like we have a little bug/issue with this functionality.

    In some rare cases (but possible) we can have Admin installed on separate
    sub-domain or location then main website. Current newly developed here
    functionality would use that sub-domain and NOT URL/domain of the main


    Front-end -
    Admin -  

    Also, who don't we do similar for all Category Items (links, articles,
    topics) - simple and useful, what you think?


  9. I think it could be useful, as it'd let admin subdomain unknown from people who are receiving the direct link.


  10. What about site-domains? If administrator would also login to that
    different domain then we have no other choice but to always build link to
    primary website domain from config.php file.

  11. Hi Alex,

    Yes, good point, but I think we can draw a line here and have ONLY Primary
    domain which is specified in config.php

    One other idea is to have s drop-down with sub-domains next to the actual
    field or something, but I personally don't think it's necessary at this


  12. I've created a separate task

    INP-1076 - Getting issue details... STATUS

    fixing that issue.

    On Sat, Jun 9, 2012 at 7:27 PM, Dmitry A. <> wrote:
    > PING

  13. Here is patch with a fix, ready for testing.