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Code libraries are software packages that allow you to utilize plugins and other scripts that are dependent on sets of external code to operate. An example of this is the code libraries many website-building platforms such as Joomla! and WordPress use, to allow you to add specific functions to your site. Making use of code libraries is actually rather simple, and can save you the time and effort of installing individual software packages and dependencies.

Joomla Default Code Library

Once you’ve got Joomla hosting, the first step in starting your website is to install the latest release of the Joomla! Content Management System. This installation will include all of the code needed to run a Joomla site, and a few software packages known as External Libraries.   A Joomla installation contain external libraries which are included with Joomla! CMS version releases.

Here are the included external libraries in a Joomla installation:

Mootools and jQuery

Two of the most notable software packages in your default Joomla code library are Mootools and jQuery. Mootools is a JavaScript framework that enables you to make use of JavaScript code, plugins and extensions on your site. Also included in your library is Mootools More, which connects you to a vast repository of Mootools extensions.

To make use of Mootools, use Mootools More to find extensions that give your site the added features you’re looking for. Browse the repository to get ideas as to how to upgrade your site further. jQuery is a JavaScript library included in your installation. Use this library to reduce the amount of new code you need to write, by importing existing code. This saves web developers countless hours when working on routine projects. Also included in your library is the jQuery UI, which is a nice point and click interface for using jQuery.

Bootstrap

Bootstrap a front-end open source framework for web design. It runs well on any server capable of Joomla hosting. Bootstrap includes common design elements, fonts, and functional resources. Use Bootstrap to add buttons to your website, as well as other user interface features like fields and forms. Bootstrap is based on HTML and CSS and will save you the time recreating common design elements. You can also use Bootstrap JavaScript extensions to enhance your site’s usability and install features that HTML isn’t capable of alone. Bootstrap is widely used in Joomla, WordPress, and HTML websites. In fact, it was created by the developers of Twitter, and is possibly the most versatile tool in your default code library.

SimplePie

Another part of your default code library that you will likely want to use is SimplePie. This software allows you to parse RSS and Atom feeds into a simple, singular collection. SimplePie can be used on social media sites, news sites, or anywhere else you want to form RSS feeds from multiple sources. SimplePie is written in PHP and will work best on your server if your host is optimized for Joomla hosting. This software is easy to use and has a large user-base and plenty of online documentation if you get stuck.

PHPMailer

Included in the default code library of Joomla and many other content management systems (CMS’s) is the greatly useful PHPMailer. As its name implies, this software is a mailer library for PHP. You can use this tool to send emails in HTML and even include attachments. PHPmailer is a simple utility, which allows you to send mass or single emails from your local server, or a SMTP sever.

Other Tools in Your Default Code Library

Included with the newest release of Joomla, and many other CMS installations, are several other useful tools. Among these is PHP UTF-8, a universal encoding tool which makes life easier if you’re going to be working on PHP or MySQL projects. Also present is a related tool, IDNA Convert. This utility allows your site to convert international domain names and display them in the correct local character set. This is helpful for sites dealing with links or domain names that include foreign or special characters.

Also among the packages in your library are Password_compat and Random_compat. These are coded in PHP and you can use them to increase security on your website. Password_compat is a library for hashing password algorithms and Random_compat allows you to use PHP to generate random numbers. Those wanting to take advantage of LESS on their Joomla site will appreciate the included tool lessphp. This is a joomla-compatible compiler for LESS that is entirely based on PHP. It allows you to utilize LESS features, adding variables, operations, and functions to your site’s back-end.

Having a solid default code library allows you to install a plethora of tools and applications on your server, ready for future use at any time. This will save you time and make sure you have all the necessary software dependencies in place for future design and development work. Make use of these simple ways to put your default code library to work for you, and avoid redundant and inefficient work.

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