Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

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shoulders
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Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by shoulders » Wed Sep 30, 2020 11:55 am

Does anyone know of an alternative admin template for the Joomla 4 admin area?

Atum is horrendous to use, i last about 5 minutes before I want to bang my head against the wall. :(

If there was an upgraded clone of the J3 admin that would be great. Easy to use and made sense.

P.S. if any developer wants a list of what I hate I will provide it. The main one is the vertical menu and fact that using a 24" monitor I still have to do scrolling with my mouse.

Also I do like Joomla, I just cant use this admin template.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by gws » Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:16 pm

Everything you want to know; viewtopic.php?t=970614

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Wed Sep 30, 2020 3:06 pm

an interesting read of course.. one thread I "unsubscribed" from.

yes indeed, this template is causing some damage to the visual part of your brain when on screens larger than 10".
also the multicolumns options per fieldset is pretty much impossible.. the overview is totally gone.


adjust your style using user.css in the template folder.

these are the @media sizes I could find:

Code: Select all

@media (min-width: 576px) { ... }
@media (min-width: 768px) { ... }
@media (min-width: 992px) { ... }
@media (min-width: 1200px) { ... }
There are more but these are just to make corrections to the pixel (like 767.98px)

Sample of user.css to make it a little bit more friendly to the eye..

Code: Select all

/* change of some background-colors to enhance ui/ux */
/* get rid of pyjamas blue */
#wrapper {
	background-color: var(--white);
}

/* have author at least see where to put the title when authoring some content..*/
.title-alias label {
	font-weight: bold;
}

/* zoom the lot to not go entirely nuts on DUPLO blocks */
@media (min-width:992px) {
	html {
    	zoom: 80%; 
	}
}
Zoom does not work in firefox though, but it is a sample on how you can make it acceptable using simple technology.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by shoulders » Wed Sep 30, 2020 3:31 pm

@gws - the template was designed in a bubble and is not going to get changed because the bubble thinks its brilliant. I think I have read this thread.

@waarnemer - I will have a play with this code and when the hate starts, hope they put the J3 theme back.

Just incase, this is a link for the horizontal top menu by Phoca.

https://extensions.joomla.org/extension/phoca-top-menu/

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Wed Sep 30, 2020 4:14 pm

@shoulders, that is 14+ forum pages in a nutshell indeed...

I am waiting for a Release Candidate before building my complete set of websafe user.css.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by nicol » Mon Oct 12, 2020 8:24 am

Thanks for this thread. I just logged into this forum for the first time in many years to ask the same.

I appreciate a huge amount of work and human time/emotional investment has gone into the new Joomla 4 template. I appreciate too I am judging it on my laptop, and not a phone or tablet, which might be its intended audience

However there's no way I could justify to any of my clients upgrading to Joomla 4 unless there is an alternative admin theme. imnsho [ISIS](https://github.com/asika32764/joomla-bo ... s-template) is a brilliant admin interface and sets a really high expectation around usability for many of its screens (not the media manager or article editor page, obvs).

Is there a plan to port much of the ISIS look-and-feel (not the name maybe) to J4? I don't know how much time I can contribute but would donate some money.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by sozzled » Mon Oct 12, 2020 8:03 pm

nicol wrote:
Mon Oct 12, 2020 8:24 am
Is there a plan to port much of the ISIS look-and-feel (not the name maybe) to J4?
Nope. There are no plans to backport J! 4 into an Isis lookalike.

nicol wrote:
Mon Oct 12, 2020 8:24 am
... there's no way I could justify to any of my clients upgrading to Joomla 4 unless there is an alternative admin theme.
I agree but, let's look at this more practically. There's no way I could justify to any of my clients to use J! 4 for production purposes until we've seen a showcase of real-world examples of J! 4 in production usage that demonstrate the u-beaut features that the new version is supposed to deliver. There's a lot of discussion about what new features will be delivered with J! 4.0.0 (and the discussion has shifted around a lot in the [nearly] five years that J! 4 has been in design/development) but we don't really know what, when or if these things will materialise at any time.

In the meantime, if people have clients who want to future-proof their websites based on J!, there's nothing specifically wrong by starting now (using the most recent release of J! 3.x) and when the market has demonstrated an uptake of J! 4 in future, to migrate those J! 3.x websites to J! 4.x at a future time. By way of contrast, the market demonstrated an enthusiastic take-up of when J! 1.5, J! 2.5 and J! 3.x were released and provided [relatively] easy mechanisms to convert websites using previous versions to the later versions, and here we are [nearly] eight years after the last major version—J! 3.x—came on the market, and people are still using J! 2.5, J! 1.5 and J! 1.0 websites. Go figure. :pop
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by nicol » Mon Oct 12, 2020 8:26 pm

Thanks @sozzled, good points.

Provided a nearish 3.x EOL isn't set then used as a stick to force people to migrate - as I guess some Drupalers felt when they created Backdrop – then it's good to have an promising new branch growing.

In fact we got CiviCRM's installer working on Joomla 4 today and merged into core https://github.com/civicrm/civicrm-joomla/pull/52 (which is how I cam to see the design had improved but still feels a long way to go). We've still some issues for compatibility (https://lab.civicrm.org/dev/joomla/-/milestones/1) but it's a step closer.

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"Sticks and carrots ..."

Post by sozzled » Mon Oct 12, 2020 9:10 pm

Doesn't really matter how big a stick may be used to corral people into migrating to whatever-is-the-latest version of J!, people will remain "content" to stay with whatever-version-of-J!-they-are-currently-using, right?

For instance, this forum is rife with people asking questions (and expecting help) about J! 1.5, J! 2.5 or anything less than J! 3.9.22 and what is the typical response from volunteer experts? Need I say more?

People—our colleagues, friends, clients—will use whatever they want to use (or can afford to use given their budgetary/time constraints) and that's just a fact of life. For those people who want to venture from the safety of what is currently defined as "stable"—those bleeding-edge, early adopters of new technology—they're in a category all by themselves. For those people who remain mired and reliant upon outdated technology, we could (unkindly) refer to them as dinosaurs.

Sometimes one has to adapt. For example, it's impossible to use telephones designed in the mid-20th century with today's telephone infrastructure or, as another example, to use a TV (or VHS recorder) to receive analogue TV broadcasts. These devices may have their use ... perhaps in a museum or in a display case ... but they may have little practical use without significant modifications to them. Is it worth it to modify some antique for everyday practical purposes?

I build websites using technology that I'm comfortable with, using technology that's in mainstream, "widespread", general usage, using techniques that I'm familiar using and using techniques and technologies that deliver reliability, durability, flexibility at the same time as affording me security. When one ventures into a kind of "unknown" future, by adopting something that hasn't been proven against those architectural parameters, it's all a bit of an experiment. One does not want to live in the worst house on the street, and perhaps it not a good idea to over-capitalise on your property to have the best house in the street, but we try to keep up with the neighbours. When it comes time to sell the house, you'll realise whether you invested the "right amount", enough to deliver a good ROI. And, in my opinion, I think that's what it all boils down to.

We're in the middle of a house renovation at the moment: re-painting the interiors and exteriors, tidying the garden, a little bit of building (I want to make some stairs to make things easier to get from one level of the garden to another level). However, we're getting older and one day the house will be too large or costly for us to maintain and we'll sell and move somewhere else. It's similar, in some respects, to webcraft. You do what you can, when you can ... but I'm finding woodcraft is more enjoyable and more gratifying than working in the virtual world of webcraft. ;)
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by shoulders » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:45 am

I dont think in general most people dont want to move to Joomla 4, it is just I find the admin unusable. Everything takes longer to do and the whole admin area is cluttered with oversized icons and there is absolutely no contrast.

The code under the hood is a lot better and I understand about all of the hard work that has gone into it.

You could have the best car in the world but if it does not have a steering wheel you cant use it.

Time will tell and I am going to let everyone vote with their feet.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by Jaydot » Sun Oct 18, 2020 1:22 pm

I've been playing with J!4 for a bit now, and I honestly don't understand what the fuss is about.
The backend is perhaps not "pretty", but it's a backend, for crying out loud. It doesn't have to be pretty, as long as I can find what I need, show others where to find what they need, and customize what bothers me. Which I can.
The frontend I absolutely love! It looks like it's very easy to customize into whatever shape, form and colour I might wish - as someone who really likes writing CSS I'm going to enjoy every minute of it!
The fact that an opinion is widely held is no evidence whatsoever that it is not utterly absurd.
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:29 pm

The back end is not pretty is something that of course is in the eye of the beholder. But there are people working with this on a daily basis.

The new back end was clearly created with some other CMS in mind...
I don't see the need for that. You can find that in many of my posts here.

Also there is an idea that authors only work from tablets or even smartphones nowadays...
Why all in duplo blocks? This template hurts the eye on a 22"plus desktop monitor... sizes, blocks anything..
Imagine someone trying to work on a 26" or widescreen...

It needs a change.

I too love writing CSS, but this time it is not for fun but by definite need.
Though I am sharing.. https://github.com/pieter-groeneweg/ATUM-user.css
For my members it makes it all a little less tiresome to the eyes...
And we are working on even better adjustments.

Can't make changes to the underlying tech... I am ok with that.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by ceford » Mon Oct 19, 2020 5:51 pm

Interesting! I gave the quoted user.css a try. I was not keen on bold titles and form fields, and overall I think I preferred the original. But that is just me. The fact that you can do it is good. It would be nice to have some screen shot comparisons.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Mon Oct 19, 2020 6:57 pm

@ceford.. and that is what it is, a sample of what you can do.

When I started Joomla! somewhere in 2008 I discovered the template system to be absolutely superiour over any other CMS out there.. open source or closed sourse... the Joomla! templates is abfab.

A simple override to a component or module view can do more that a dozen extensions in many cases.

When the discussion on the admin template Atum started, I first started howling too.. (and sometimes I still howl.. I am Dutch.. that is what we do.. complain about the weather and when the weather is fine, complain about the rest) .. then I thought.. the template technology applies to back end too.. so why not use it and have the front end fun in the back end...

The bold titles I just added to make at least some extinct from the rest of the thin clean design...

Anyway.. the user.css at least explains we should not whine about the design..
There is a difference between design and technology..

I still don't see why modules had to move from extensions to content other than trying to please the WP crowd... oops, started howling again...

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by shoulders » Mon Oct 19, 2020 7:14 pm

vertical menu = wordpress

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Tue Oct 20, 2020 7:28 am

@shoulders... I don't mind about that location of the menu... that s something we can get use to.
there is bunches of apps with vertical menus...

the position and order in that menu, to me and my teams, is more important. That should be more consistent with previous versions.. and it is not.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by ghazal » Wed Oct 21, 2020 6:49 pm

hi all,
C-Lodder released this dark themed alternative backend template a while ago:

Releases · C-Lodder/joomla4-backend-template
https://github.com/C-Lodder/joomla4-bac ... e/releases

Not bad, even though, personally speaking, I don't really like dark backgrounds.

Besides, as I work half my time on a 13" MacBook pro, and as stuff would easily overflow, I added these css styles to a user.css file in Atum:

Code: Select all

.main-nav-container{}
#sidebarmenu{}
.sidebar-wrapper, .item-level-1 {
 max-width: 12rem;
}
.item-level-1{}
.main-nav li .menu-dashboard > a {padding:0.9rem 0.9rem 0.9rem 0.3rem;}
.sidebar-wrapper .item > a .fas{margin: 0.85rem 0.85rem 0.85rem 0.5rem}
.main-nav .has-arrow::after{width: 1rem;}

.sidebar-wrapper .item-level-2>a{padding-inline-start:1rem;}
It reduces some white spaces.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Wed Oct 21, 2020 7:59 pm

Interesting, so a 13" has its own issues too...

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by sozzled » Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:31 pm

A lot has been written about the J! 4 backend ...

... and I don't know who has been reading what has been written or if it's affected the planning for J! 4 but, from all accounts, I don't think it's made any difference.

We should remember that when the working party for J! 4 was first formed in July 2015, one of the principal objectives was to overhaul and redesign the administrator interface. That wasn't the only objective, of course, but it was one that probably generated the most interest in the project. We should also remember that the composition of the J! 4 project team(s) has changed over time (although the release lead has remained in that role) and as participants left the project and newcomers arrived to the project, opinions varied about what should be implemented whenever J! 4 was released to the public and what might be addressed in future. In the meantime, as members of the general community were exposed to draft versions of J! 4 and contributed their opinion—often heavily criticising the design(s) at the time—things were pretty-much set in concrete and it would have taken a jackhammer to prise things apart and re-do the work that had been done beforehand.

Sometimes it's better to stop, rethink and consider starting-over. I'm not suggesting that's what should happen but I am saying it's an option. It's in the future; the market will determine if the backend of J! 4 delivers improvements in managing a J! website or if people stay with what they know, i.e. J! 3.x. :)
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by ghazal » Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:35 pm

waarnemer wrote:
Wed Oct 21, 2020 7:59 pm
Interesting, so a 13" has its own issues too...
Yes, it does. Sometimes I have to squint eyes to read something. I probably spent too much time in front of screens...
But what really bugs me in Atum UX/UI is why tables are still used in the design now that we got css grid and flex. Go figure ..

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by Jaydot » Thu Oct 22, 2020 9:57 am

ghazal wrote:
Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:35 pm
...why tables are still used...
Huh? I'm playing with beta5, and as far as I can tell there isn't a table to be found. It's all grid+flexbox...
The fact that an opinion is widely held is no evidence whatsoever that it is not utterly absurd.
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by ghazal » Thu Oct 22, 2020 10:39 am

Jaydot wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 9:57 am
ghazal wrote:
Wed Oct 21, 2020 9:35 pm
...why tables are still used...
Huh? I'm playing with beta5, and as far as I can tell there isn't a table to be found. It's all grid+flexbox...
...hmm ...
If you do a grep on the administrator folder like:

Code: Select all

grep -r "<table" "administrator/"
you find about 92 occurrences.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by Jaydot » Thu Oct 22, 2020 11:38 am

ghazal wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 10:39 am
...hmm ...
Oh, you're right, sorry. Tables are used for lists. I suppose there is a certain logic to that, though. And responsiveness is handled by dropping columns, which seems to work well enough...
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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by waarnemer » Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:18 pm

@Jaydot.. beta5? I can only find beta4 on GitHub.

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Re: Alternative Admin Template for Joomla 4

Post by Jaydot » Thu Oct 22, 2020 2:59 pm

waarnemer wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:18 pm
...beta5?...
It's a Nightly Build, 4.0.0-beta5-dev, downloaded from here: https://developer.joomla.org/nightly-builds.html. I love the expression "Nightly Build", it has a nice mysterious ring to it :).
The fact that an opinion is widely held is no evidence whatsoever that it is not utterly absurd.
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