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Click on the Section Manager icon in the Control Panel or click on 'Section Manager' in the 'Content' menu on the back-end of your Joomla! installation.
The Section Manager is where you can edit existing Sections and create new ones. Articles in Joomla! are organized into Sections and Categories. Sections are the top-level of organization and Categories go under Sections. For example, a web site might have the following organization:
In this example, 'People', 'Projects', and 'Events' would be the Sections. The sub-topics under each Section (for example, 'Volunteers', 'Staff', and 'Board Members') would be the Categories for each Section. When an Article is added, it would be assigned a Section (for example 'People') and a Category (for example, 'Board Members').
You can have an many or as few Sections and Categories as you need. Joomla! has a built-in Section and Category called 'Uncategorized'. This allows you to create Articles without creating or assigning any Section or Category. You just assign the Article to the 'Uncategorized' Section.
Sections are used for two reasons. The first reason is for organizing Articles on your web pages. The Section Blog Layout and Section Layout allow you to display multiple Articles on a page for a given Section. So, in the example above, you could have a page for 'People' that shows Articles related to this Section. A second reason to use Sections is to help manage your Articles in the back-end Article Manager. If you have a large number of Articles, you can filter by Section so you only see the Articles one Section.
In the table with all sections from your Joomla! site displayed, you will see different columns. Here you can read what they mean and what is displayed in each column.
Checkbox: You can select this box to select a section. You will need to do this for several actions, for example editing and deleting.
Title: The title of the section. When you click on this title, you will go to the edit page of this section. You can find the help screen about this part of the Section Manager here: Screen.sections.edit.15.
Published: In this column you can see whether the section is pubished or unpublished. A green hook is shown when the section is published, a red cross sign when the section is unpublished. Click on the icon to toggle between published and unpublished.
Order: The order of the sections. You can change this order by changing the number and click on the save icon at the column header, or by using the small green triangles.
Access Level: The access level of the section. It will display the word Public (everyone can see it), Registered (all logged-in users can see it) or Special (every one with a higher group then 'Registered' can see it). Click on it to toggle between the different access levels.
# Categories: The number of categories within this section. The categories can be made for a section in the Category Manager.
# Active: The number of active articles within this section. The active articles include the published and unplished articles, but not the trashed ones.
# Trash: The number of trashed articles from this secticon. These articles can be found at the Article Trash. You can restore or delete them there.
ID: The ID number of the section. You can not change this number.
You can sort the rows of the table in different ways. You can also decide to only show the published sections or the unpublished sections.
Title: Click on this column header to sort the sections by title, ascending, or when you click another time on it, descending.
Published: Click on this column header to sort the sections by their state, ascending (Published first), or when you click another time on it, descending (Unpublished first).
Order: Click on this column header to sort the sections by order, ascending, or when you click another time on it, descending.
Access Level: Click on this column header to sort the sections by their access level, ascending, or when you will click another time on it, descending.
ID: Click on this column header to sort the sections by their ID, ascending, or when you will click another time on it, descending.
Select State: Select from the drop-down box 'Published' to only display the published sections, or select 'Unpublished' to only display the unpublished sections.
Filter: Enter words to search for particular sections. Click on the 'Go' button to search, and on the 'Reset' button to go back to the main screen of the Section Manager and delete the search results.
Display #: Select from the drop-down box how many sections there should be displayed on one page.
At the top right you will see the toolbar:
The functions are:
Publish: Select one or more sections who are currently unpublished and click on this button. The selected sections will then get an unpublished state.
Unpublish: Select one or more sections who are currently published and click on this button. The selected sections will then get a published state.
Copy: Select one or more sections and click on this button. Fill in the title for the new section, and click on the Save button. A new section will be created with the categories and articles from the copied sections.
Delete: Select one or more sections and click on this button. The sections you selected will be deleted.
Edit: Select a section and click on this button. You will enter the Section Manager - Edit page. More information about this page can be found here: Screen.sections.edit.15.
New: Click on this button to create a new section. You will enter the Section Manager - New page. More information about this page can be found here: Screen.sections.edit.15.
Help: Click on this button to access the Help Screen for the Section Manager. That is the same screen you are reading right now.
The differences between the Joomla! 1.0.x Section Manager and the Joomla! 1.5 Section Manager are mostly about the sorting of the sections. In the Joomla! 1.0.x versions you were not able to click on the column headers to sort the sections by the specific column, ascending or descending. In Joomla! 1.5 there is only a Title, while there was a Section Name and a Title in Joomla! 1.0.x. In Joomla! 1.5 you are able to set the Alias, used for SEF, in Joomla! 1.0.x this option was not available.
You will use the Section Manager when you want to do some actions with your section database. Here you will find some of the reasons for the use of this screen.
When you change the state of a section, this section will not be displayed in a Section Layout or a Section Blog Layout. When you create a new section, you can choose this section when creating a new category or a new article.
More dependencies about editing the sections can be found here Screen.sections.edit.15#Dependencies.