d) Document Library

Document Library Module

Why would you use the document library? The purpose of the document library allows for organization, sorting, storing and a consistent method for retrieving information.  The single most powerful benefit of using the TownLife document library is that when you upload a document every term within the file is searchable.

For example, if you upload July2009council_minutes.pdf to a standard website you could only find this if you search for a word in the file name.  On TownLife our search looks inside each document and retrieves information relevant to your search request.  So if you search for "dog bylaw" and this was amended during the July 2009 Council Minutes this would be returned on your TownLife search!


When should I use the Document Library versus the File Storage?

Using the File Storage is two fold: Firstly this is where you would upload photos that are to be part of the webdesign (i.e. header photos). Secondly it provides an area where you can store micellaneous files that are not going to be permanently kept on your site (i.e. registration forms). The downside to using File Storage for meeting minutes etc, is that (1) you cannot organize them into folders and (2) you cannot search for keywords within the document.

Always use the Document Library when adding documents that are long-term (i.e. meeting minutes, bylaws etc).


How do I create a document library?

You can think of a document library as a folder which will hold documents of similar topic (i.e. meeting minutes, bylaws etc). To create a new document library:

  1. Click on CREATE and select DOCUMENTS.
  2. A new window will appear in which you will have to fill out the following information:
  • The NAME of your document library becomes the name in your navigation menu, while the DESCRIPTION allows you to provide more information to your visitors (this is especially important if you have multiple document libraries).  Finally, the STATUS of your document library can be either:
    • Public - this shows the document library as an option in your module website navigation
    • Private - the only way to access a private document library is if you know the exact URL, this is used when creating a new document library but not wanting to release it to the public
    • Inactive - this will block access to everyone from seeing information inside this library

How do I upload a document?

  1. Click on EDIT in the Administration menu.
  2. Select DOCUMENT LIBRARY. You will see the following. Click on ADD A DOCUMENT.
  3. The following window will appear. You need to create individuals "categories" (or folders) within the document library. For example you may need a category for: Meeting minutes, bylaws etc. Fill in the information and click SAVE. This window will only appear when you are first setting up your Document Library. In future attempts to upload a document you will be directed to the Add Document feature shown in #4 below.

  4. Click on ADD DOCUMENT once you created the category. The following window will appear. Fill in the information requested. Click SAVE. **Information on proper Document Titles is discussed below.**


How do I manage my documents?

There are three basic things that need to be consistent across the documents that you upload.

  1. All document should be uploaded in PDF format. If you do not have a PDF converter on your computer you can download free converters online (i.e www.cutepdf.com)
  2. Use short but descriptive titles when saving files. Follow this example "Council Minutes 2007/03/30" by including the term Council Minutes, when creating a link to all the files in your document library you will quickly be able to find the council minutes vs the organization minutes etc.
  3. Include the date of the document in the title name. This will allow the user to easily search and retrieve the information. By using the naming convention "year/month/day" yyyy/mm/dd when the files are displayed they will auto sort alphabetically thereby displaying in ascending order by default.  If you were to name the files by month (August 2008), then August will display before January (A before J).


TIP:  Normally when you are uploading documents to the library you would want each file to have a unique TITLE.  This is true only if you want to SORT by name.  When you have a category that you wish to sort by PUBLISH DATE (newsletters, council minutes etc...) the TITLE needs to be the exact same for all items.  When the search finds a list of information where the TITLE is the same, it then sorts by date (newest at the top).