Ethereal Realms » Frequently Asked Questions Help Site Map
Frequently Asked Questions
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Administrators
Additional maintenance scripts?
Additional scripts exist withing Ethereal Realms for administrators to use for various reasons. It is important to note that many of these scripts fall into disuse and are not necessarily maintained. So if a script fails to work we would love to hear about it!

./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl
This script can be useful to locate tags that are no longer being used within the code base. This is especially useful when you have upgraded from a previous version.

./mgmt/commandline/publish.pl
This script is used to re-generate PDF's for every prose document on the site. This is especially useful in cases where the templates are changed and we want the documents to reflect said changes. Otherwise the PDF's will only be changed once the original documents are.

./mgmt/commandline/reverse.pl
The ability for Ethereal Realms to search through works requires heavily on reverse look-ups. This script will generate them accordingly.

./mgmt/commandline/thumb.pl
If you happen to change the formal, style, size of thumbnail generation, then administrators can use this script to re-generate all images and thumbnails as required.
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How do I change images in realm select?
If you wish to change the highlight images in the realm selection portion of the site, then change 'r_on' and 'r_off' variables in '/Template/WebDescription' to match the desired values.

The rest can be managed directly from '/Attribute/Portal/TmplRealmItem' or in rare cases from '/Template/WebPortal.'
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How do I change images in toolbars?
Toolbars are the Javascript enabled sections which allow a user to implement HTML formatting with little knowledge of the markup language.

While the initial images are changed directly using the appropriate macro such as '/Template/RealmZoom' and '/Attribute/Configuration/TmplFormat.' The additional changes are done through modification of the Javascript code itself.

Simply change the relevant links in the format.js file provided with the Ethereal Realms release and all image changes will be complete.
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How do I change news items displayed?
Behaviour of the news items displayed in realms can be dynamically changed. When the '/Attribute/SystemSetPortalNewsItem' is set to '0' the system will only display items which are recent. Otherwise, if a non-zero value is provided the system will show up to that amount of entries.
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How do I change the puppet list?
The '/Attribute/System/SetPortalPuppet' tag must be set to 1 in order to generate the condensed line. Reversion to 0 will cause the larger scrolling list to appear.
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How do I change the realm list?
The '/Attribute/System/SetPortalPuppet' tag must be set to 1 in order to generate the javascript functionality of the realms selection. Reversion to 0 will cause the larger scrolling list to appear.
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How do I disable components?
Versions of Ethereal Realms 4.2.x and above have the ability to disable Homepage, Gallery and Social Networking aspects of the site. These kill switches are implemented directly into the code as to prevent accidental changes.

To disable these features from their normally enabled state simply change the following attributes defined in Database.pm to 'false'.
  • COMP_HOME - Homepage component
  • COMP_GALLERY - Gallery component
  • COMP_VANITY - Social Networking and Vanity Images
Once these changes are in place, the scripts that handle such features directly will be disabled from operation. The only exception is the User Details script which will simply not show the relevant material.

To reverse the operation reset the above to 'true' to enable their use. Scripts will then regain their normal operation.

Note: To remove certain components from the contributor panel, change the templates to remove the unneeded aspects.
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How do I expire users, realms and such?
Please see What is CROND? for more details on this matter.
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How do I fine tune gallery image settings?
There are six attributes which can be set at the system level in order to fine tune the look, size and format of thumbnails/images used on the site. Listed below:

  • SetImgBackground: The background colour of the full demension thumbnails. - Default Transparent
  • SetImgQuality: Compression level used - Default 30
  • SetImgType: Format of image used - Default GIF
  • SetImgView: Viewing images maximum size - Default 640
  • SetImgFull: Maximum size of an image - Default 800
  • SetThumbnail: Thumbnail size - Current 200
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How do I generate reports automatically?
Please see What is CROND? for more details on this matter.
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How do I make use of cache?
Caching on Ethereal Realms is done through Berkeley DB and requires some minor changes to the Ethereal::Database module file. Before you proceed, realize that you will need to create/use a directory structure which will allow the web user name and group to access these files directly.

If you are attempting to implement caching under a multi-server system (more then one web server) you will need to make sure that the servers share the same cached information. This can be done through a network share or for those with money some sort of SAN.

To make use of this feature modify lines 68-70 in the Database.pm file. This file MUST be the same that is used by the scripts otherwise the changes will not take effect.

Change the lines to look like the ones below:
  DBAUTH => '/path/to/db/auth',		# Path for auth cache
  DBHASH => '/path/to/db/hash',		# Path for system tags
  DBROOM => '/path/to/db/room',		# Path for room tags
Alternatively, to disable you'd reset all of these to 'undef.' That will stop the cache files from being used even if they are present.

To create the hashes an administrator will need to access each series of attributes and the templates as to create the initial set. The files will update automatically as changes are made.

Note: It may also help if the maintenance script user has enough rights to remove stale files from time to time.

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How do I setup donations?
Ethereal Realms makes use of PayPal to automate the process of making donations to the site itself. This process will in turn allow a site to grant access to homepage space, galleries and perform verification without having to lift a finger.

This process is done using the /main/donation.pl script along with a few key system attributes on the site itself:
  • SetDonationsName - Name used when sending correspondence to users;
  • SetDonationsAddress - Email address used when sending the above;
  • SetDonationsVerify - Script used by PayPal and our script to verify that this donation is valid;
  • SetKey - Encryption key used when passing certain details to PayPal; and
  • SetKeyCipher - The encryption algorithm used to pass on the information itself.
In addition to the above, you may wish to modify the 'MailDonation' and 'WebDonation' templates in order to match them up with your needs. These are both fairly straight forward as the existing templates are fully operational.

It is important to note that Ethereal Realms will in fact base its decision on the amount of currency received. The default based in the code is a minimum of 2.50 for verification and multiples of 10.00 to increment the homepage space by a year. As a result it is imperative that PayPal only accept payments in one type of currency and additionally that all donations should be done through your scripts.

Once all of the above has been established it also becomes necessary for the donations address to be registered with PayPal, verified and in the end the location of the /main/donations.pl script be provided to PayPal under the Profiles, Instant Payment Notification section. This will tell PayPal to warn your system whenever a donation is made.
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How do I show/remove forum lists?
The '/Attribute/System/SetPortalForum' tag must be set to 1 in order for the appropriate macro to be generated.
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How do I show/remove news lists?
The '/Attribute/System/SetPortalNews' tag must be set to 1 in order for the appropriate macro to be generated.

Note: Setting the amount of items displayed is not done through the above attribute.
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How do I upgrade?
In most cases directions for specific releases are found under the 'Caveats' section of the installation documentation. Additional details can be found in the header section of files pertaining to the version your moving to under the ./upgrade directory of your Ethereal Realms release.

Along with these instructions, it becomes necessary to replace every script in your current release with the newer releases. Without this change the system will not be able to pull required information as it may not be there after the upgrade is complete.

Before you run the appropriate .sql file you must first run prior versions if you are not listed within that upgrade path. For example 'ethereal-upgrade_420_421.sql' is designed for users moving from 4.2.0 to 4.2.1 and no other.

Prior to running these .sql files against the database, replace PGSCHEMA. with the appropriate schema you wish to upgrade. One complete run this .sql file directly against the 'psql' command like you did for the initial install. Example:
 > cat ethereal-upgrade_420_421.sql | psql -h localhost -p 5432 -U postgres ethereal
The reason for ther above is simple. Web-based and direct client methods will generally roll back all changes if an error is sounded. This will continue despite that attempt. which is required.

For the sake of a clean upgrade you should also consider running ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl to find and remove all unecessary tags. This script may lock up however, so you may want to run it by section to make it less likely to do so. For example:
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl admin
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl bio
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl board
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl configuration
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl contrib
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl faq
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl gallery
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl gummy
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl login
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl mail
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl poll
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl portal
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl realm
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl system
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl user
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl vanity
 > ./mgmt/commandline/locate_tags.pl vcodes
As with the .sql files release ethereal. with the appropriate schema to which it applies to. Once that step is done, you should be at the latest version of Ethereal Realms.

Note: These instructions apply to Ethereal Realms 4.2.1 and above.
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How do I use xfer.pl
New with 4.3.1 is the ./mgmt/commandline/xfer.pl script which is used to transfer one instance of an Ethereal Realms site that is different from the latest implementation. While simplicity is the aim of this script, there are some steps that have to be followed to use it effectively.

Firstly, you have to copy ./mgmt/Ethereal/Database.pm to ./mgmt/Ethereal/Source.pm. This will allow the script to connect to two servers at the same time and pass information from one to another as the need arises.

Secondly, Source.pm must be modified with the connection string necessary to connect to the original source. This is how the connection is made and how more importantly that Ethereal Realms will be able to pass information from the old source onto the new.

Thirdly, when you run the script specify the schema under which the sites are stored. This can be pulled from the sites individual ./conf/config.pl readouts. If you really cannot find this information ask your site administrator or browse the database itself.

Lastly, select which parts of the site you wish to have transfered over. Please note that Destroy is meant to signify that all existing information (test data presumably) on the new site will be removed before the old is moved into place. Once you type in 'Done' the process will begin.

Note that Realms are never transfered. Realms suffer the most amount of changes between major releases of Ethereal Realms and should always be redone from scratch prior to the move itself.

Also note that there may be errors or tweaks required to make the script work properly. If you experience faults, ask for support from the author of the scripts.
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I am missing files in my install?
Under no circumstance should you open the archived file on a Windows based operating system and transfer the contents to its new home. This will cause several needed symbolic links in being lost and may severely hinder your ability to use the site.
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I cannot change realms after install?
There is a known issue where escaped characters in database dumps may not remain as such. This causes issue in the JavaScript code found under /Templates/WebDescription and can be easily corrected by using the following lines:
var re = / (d+)$/;
var spc = /W+/g;
This will re-enable the regular expressions critical to the operation of the code itself.
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Just installed Ethereal Realms! Password?!?
The password for the user 'admin' is simple 'password' and as a general rule it is considered wise to change this as soon as humanly possible.
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Key error when using maps?
Google is pretty explicit in its errors and this is normally related to the fact that they key provided is not valid for the site attempting to use it, is not being used at all or the domains do not match.

If this is related to a site like Ethereal Realms itself which has many domain names then there is little you can do on the matter. Only request that your users be directed to the registered domain.

For those interested in their own key, please visit: http://www.google.com/apis/maps/signup.html
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Problems with Image::Magick, help?
Image::Magick is critical for the use of advanced features used in contributor scripts. Unfortunately, there is little one can do on this matter, Image::Magick is required for all image related actions including determining the size of images.
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Spell checker will not work?
The spell checker requires that a few things be in place prior to use. The first being that ispell/aspell must be installed with valid dictionaries. This will allow the daemon to actually confirm spelling.

Secondly you must configure all pertinent attributes at in Attributes/System to match your current setup and needs. This will ensure that there is proper communication between the scripts and the daemon itself.

Lastly you will need to have the daemon running by using the ./mgmt/commandline/spel.pl script This script will remain active in the background and allow the service to continue. Normally you want this script running at system start up, after the database itself has been initiated.

Note: This service is normally not available to users of shared hosting as you cannot normally keep the daemon running for extended periods of time.
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The ./conf/config.pl script does not work?
This script requires Config::IniFiles, DBI, Digest::MD5, File::Copy in order to work properly. If the first module especially is missing, the script will complain that it cannot find specific files in the search path.
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What Perl modules do I need installed?
These are the modules required for Ethereal Realms version 4.1.0 and above.
  • Standard Modules
    • CGI
    • CGI::Carp
    • Cwd
    • File::Copy
    • IO::Socket
    • IPC::Open2
    • Math::Trig
    • POSIX
    • Symbol
  • Bundled Modules
    • Config::IniFiles
    • Lingua::EN::NameCase
    • Lingua::EN::Tagger
    • Lingua::Stem
    • Number::Format
    • Text::Wrap
  • Non-Standard Modules
    • Archive::Zip
    • DBI
    • DBD::Pg
    • Crypt::CBC
    • Crypt::Blowfish
    • Digest::MD5
    • Geo::IP
    • Geo::IP2Location
    • Image::ExifTool
    • Image::Magick
    • LWP::Simple
    • LWP::UserAgent
    • MIME::Entity
    • Time::HiRes
    • XML::RSS
Note: Standard modules are characterized by those which can be readily found on most modern Perl installations. While bundled modules are released with Ethereal Realms itself in order to reduce the need for installation.
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What e-mail addresses do I need for my site?
You should create the following as e-mail addresses or as forwarders to other e-mail addresses.

  • council@mysite
  • no-reply@mysite
  • submissions@mysite
  • banned@mysite
  • webmaster@mysite
  • postmaster@mysite

It's simpler if you create them as e-mail lists for all of your 'council' members. This excludes the no-reply e-mail address, which could just be a forwarder to another e-mail of your choice.
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What is Berkeley DB?
Berkeley DB are single file databases which can carry information using various methods from hashing to binary search trees. These files have the additional capability of being implemented directly into Perl cutting out a lot of overhead when used.

Ethereal Realms uses this format of database in order to cache frequently accessed information cutting down on database load. For more information on this matter look up the 'How do I make use of cache' question in this FAQ.
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What is CROND?
The cron daemon schedules commands to be run at specified dates and times. Commands that are to be run periodically are specified within crontab(5) files.

Crontab entries are additionally critical for Ethereal Realms in running maintenance and generating reports without user interaction. While you can run any of the maintenance scripts manually from the command line, generally it becomes rather time involving especially if one opts to generate rotation scripts.

Crontab can be accessed from the crontab(5) command or for those using CPanel you can generally access it through one of the sections available on the main screen. In either case you probably want something that looks like the following:
  */15 * * * * /home/myspace/crond/quarter.shl > /home/myspace/crond/quarter.out
  2    * * * * /home/myspace/crond/hour.shl > /home/myspace/crond/hour.out
  5    3 * * * /home/myspace/crond/day.shl > /home/myspace/crond/day.out
  10   4 * * 0 /home/myspace/crond/week.shl > /home/myspace/crond/week.out
  20   5 1 * * /home/myspace/crond/month.shl > /home/myspace/crond/month.out
The scripts above listed as quarter.shl, hour.shl, day.shl, week.shl and month.shl are all available within the ./misc directory of Ethereal Realms 4.2.1 and above. Please note that the paths within all of these files would need to be adjusted to match your own environment, as would the cron entry above.

An additional script, ./mgmt/commandline/queue.pl is also capable of doing the abve task with additional safeguards it does necessarily work under all environments. As a result, if you are using a shared host, do not make use of it. Otherwise it may be worth a try with a crontab(5) entry looking a bit like:
  */15 * * * * ./mgmt/commandline/queue.pl quarter > /home/erealms/crond/quarter.out
  2    * * * * ./mgmt/commandline/queue.pl hour > /home/myspace/crond/hour.out
  5    3 * * * ./mgmt/commandline/queue.pl day > /home/myspace/crond/day.out
  10   4 * * 0 ./mgmtl/commandline/queue.pl week > /home/myspace/crond/week.out
  20   5 1 * * ./mgmt/commandline/queue.pl month > /home/myspace/crond/month.out
As with the .shl files you will also need to adjust queue.pl to have the correct path names.
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What is a macro and template?
Macro's are keywords the system will recognize and replace with appropriate material. These range from simple name fill-in to the more complex addition of user interface widgets.

A brief list is as follows:

M-SERIES - Dropping in words and phrases;
L-SERIES - Dropping in urls and links;
LST-SERIES - Drops in generated lists of elements such as the realms list on the portal; and
W-SERIES - Drops in a user widget such as a drop-down menu, text area and such.


Note: Some older templates do not make use of this precise naming scheme, however their function should become clear upon examination.

Templates are areas of text which contain macro and are expanded to form into a finished end product. There are two sets of templates.

Ones which reside in the 'Templates' section of the administrative section and are considered major templates independent of other attributes.

Lastly templates under 'Attributes' combined with others similar and will generally always begin with 'Tmpl.' These work the same however and are left together to make modifications easier.

Note: Some templates use other templates to generate their macros. The LSTREALMS macro in WebPortal for example uses another template within the Portal grouping to generate the listing.
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What is lock-down?
Lock-down mode is a simplification of Ethereal Realms to support sites which cannot or will not deal with a multi-handle environment. Sites such as Plenty of Fish and MySpace typically require the user to exist as one avatar due to the nature of the content they are peddling.

As a result of the recent code changes and future plans of on the code supporting social networks, it becomes critical to feature a locked-down experience for sites who choose to be more like a MySpace; in turn becoming a lot less like the traditional Ethereal Realms site is. The best aspect of lock-down however is that the changes are entirely at code level with no database changes that could potentially slow either mode of operation.

In order to enable lock-down the user simply needs to uncomment the definition of the $self->{'DEFAULT'} variable within the Database.pm module. This in turn will trigger all basic intelligence for the site to force the user to make use of their default handles wherever they go, all scripts that in turn require an avatar will simply force the default and continue.

Caveats to this method are that the macro's still exist as they did in the other mode. This is simply to allow the site owners to transition from one to the other with minor annoyance. For those administrators wishing to make it permanent, move the macros to an out of the way place and they will not bother you any longer (since it generates a hidden form attribute).

Also note that beyond simple template changes, the Puppet management page will also never allow a locked-down site to reach any other page other then the default handles properties. Sites who use lock-down would be best served removing the appropriate menu macros to avoid confusion.
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What is rotate?
Rotate is a subsystem provided by Ethereal Realms which will allow administrators to display various material in rotation. Filters can be applied that will additionally allow the display of Image and Prose based works.

When creating a new rotate template certain macros can appear if you use the appropriate filters:

Image
  • MNAME - Name of Work;
  • MPENN - Pen Name;
  • MRATE - Viewer Rating; and
  • LTHMB - Link to Thumbnail.
Text
  • MNAME - Name of Work;
  • MPENN - Pen Name;
  • MRATE - Viewer Rating; and
  • LTEXT - Short Experpt/Description.
Static. Nil.

Filters can be applied also to various sections of the site. Some of which make use of JavaScript injection, while others employ SSI or are part of the code itself. The possible zones of creation for rotation templates are as follows:
  • Banner, as displayed in realms themselves;
  • Gallery, using SSI to rotate on gallery themed pages;
  • JavaScript, rotation using JavaScript injection;
  • Portal, appearing when the user uses the Gateway/Portal; and
  • SSI, themed to matched the main site using SSI to rotate.
Note: Banner templates also have a reset ability, this allows you to clear all timestamps on the last rotation to set a new order in the rotations shown.
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Why do users, realms and mail expire?
The system as a whole is required to expire certain information in order to keep the database from getting bloated. However, the lapse in time requires for the expiry of such features can be controlled individually.

Modifications to the '/Attribute/System/SetTimeout*' attributes will set the expiry time in days for each listed component.

Note: The use of the command line tools are required for any maintenance to be conducted. See 'What is CROND' for additional details.
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Contributors
What does a 'Verified' user get?
Verified users have access to additional content (if it exists) on the site itself. For example, an realms or gallery's restricted to adults would require verification in order to continue.

Verified users also have access to a different series of gummies and the ability to remove gummies altogether from a users handle.

Verified users will also never expire from the system itself. This allows the users to ensure their accounts will last, even if their ability to return to the site is severely reduced.
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What is a 'Verified' user?
Users who have donated to Ethereal Realms via Pay Pal have been verified as adults, therefore allowing them access to our adult realms. This is our way of ensuring minors cannot access inappropriate material. Verified users have a 'tick' beside their login in their Privileged portal. Those who have access to the Privileged portal, but are not verified, have a 'denied' symbol.
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Where's the keywords field?
Some sites require you to select certain keywords which would play out in a search for the work in particular. Ethereal Realms instead uses the title, description and text body of works to produce keywords.

This process is first started when you update a work. The site will take process your works and generate a wider set of keywords allowing for more generalized searches to work!
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Why do my works not show up in search?
In order for works to show up in a search they need to have been updated at least once. For image galleries in particular this allows the search engine to avoid entire galleries which exist as image farms.

In order to correct this, simply update the work, putting in a description will only help matters and the search engine will pick it up when the appropriate criteria is met!
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General
Can we make a donation to Ethereal Realms?
All donations to Ethereal Realms are welcome and gratefully received. Follow the Donate link in the top right menu to peruse our donation options. Please note, you need a Pay Pal account in order to donate to Ethereal Realms.
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What is Ethereal Realms?
Ethereal Realms is a concept web-based chat system, originally based on two chat sites which are now both defunct. This system emulates what features and functionality those sites possessed while adding to the initial design and scope as time progressed. Over time the code base has picked up message boards, internal messaging, image/prose galleries and a social network interface.

Released under the GNU General Public License (GPL), this project also has the secondary aim of creating an advanced role-play and gallery environment that will can be shared and modified freely throughout the community.

Ethereal Realms has also moved well beyond the original mandate of offering chat capabilities. This includes the addition of threaded message boards, web polls, homepage management, collaborative galleries and social networking profiles with geographical searching. While these additions are not necessarily core to the role-play aspect of the site, they do compliment the existing feature set and provides communities a method of remaining self-sufficient.
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Who manages Ethereal Realms?
Ethereal Realms was created by Martin Foster, who continues to maintain the site at his own expense. It is run by a body of people known as the Council, who anonymously donate their time to managing it on his behalf. Both Martin and the Council are contactable via the Contact page found in the top right menu.
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Hosts
Can I be a mod and host?
In versions prior to 3.7.0 of Ethereal Realms hosts could not be a moderator in another realm. This was restricted at the code level in other to prevent a conflict of interest.

With 3.7.0 and the addition of roles for moderation staff, this restriction has been lifted.
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How do I use the weather generator?
The weather generate is automatic once you have selected a weather station with which to track. In order to do this visit the National Weather Service and find an appropriate station. With that information, input the ICAO number which is 4 characters in length and the system will automatically post that information to your splash page!
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Why can't I ignore a user in my realm?
By default no host can ignore a user in their own realms. This would reduce their capabilities of actually being able to monitor a scene since information is missing.

However, this can be overridden in the 'User Details' area available through the Portal.
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Why won't Tab-Enter work?
Check your Comm Panel and make sure that the TAB INDEX attributes for the buttons and links are not in conflict with one another.

If this is a recent change in which even the default realms will not work, then chances are an upgrade of a module has resulted in this failure. This can only be corrected by moving to version 3.7.0+ of Ethereal Realms.
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Realms
Are there 'Quick Keys' in realms?
There are quick keys in realms and by using the key combinations listed below, specific actions will be completed.

Note: Based on your browser the behavior may differ.

Alt+P: Sends off a post.
Alt+T: Selects the text box.
Alt+R: Refreshes the frame / restarts stream.
Alt+Z: Brings up the post zoom window.
Alt+G: Brings up the color selection chart.

When posting however, the classical TAB-Enter combination will still be available.
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How do I create a realm?
For information in this matter, see 'Hosting Guidelines' in the 'Information' menu at the top of this page.
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How do I protect a private room?
Password protecting a private room means added security from uninvited guests. If you intend to protect a private room called 'Secret' with the password 'safe' you enter 'safe@Secret' in the Private Room field.

This will create the room 'Secret', and allow only those with the password to enter. Note that you cannot password protect a private realm that already exists. Private realms linger on the system for 24 hours after last use, then expires. You can keep your private room indefinitely private by not allowing it to expire.
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What is the 'Post Zoom?'
The 'Post Zoom' allow your to increase the size of your posting window in order to compose larger posts are your ease. This feature also allows you to check for spelling mistakes and insert various HTML formatting from the click of a button.

In certain browsers, it is even possible to transfer a post to the post zoom in order to quickly post a reply and multi-task in realm.

Note: This option requires javascript in order to function properly.
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What is the [Attach/Detach] link for?
For those who make use of Javascript and Internet Explorer. There exists the ability to detach the Comm Panel from the browser itself.

Visually, it creates a new window, which is separate from the main post viewing area. This does not reduce functionality in any way shape or form and it can be reversed as the user sees fit.

In order to enable this option, simply click on the [Detach/Attach] link located at the bottom of the Comm Panel itself. In order to reverse the effect, simply press again on that the same link.

Note: This feature is only available for Internet Explorer.
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Users
Can I stop getting private messages?
Yes you can! This option is available through the 'User Details' portion of the site itself, available from the Portal. Simply look up 'Privacy Options' for more details.
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Help I get an error when selecting a realm!
Certain personal and/or corporate firewalls filter out Javascript or cripple the code in such a way that it will behave differently then expected. 'EZ Firewall version 4.5' for example, will disable the virtual links used and result in a file listing instead.

The simplest way to correct this issue is to simply disable the sites use of generating Javascript. This can be done through the 'User Details' section of the site.
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How can I post emoticons?
Visit the current listing of usable emoticons. In order to use them simply copy the descriptor next to the image and your done!

Note: Emoticons are not available for use everywhere. If they fail to show up, it simply means that script does not support the capability.
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How do I hide the date time tag?
The DATETIME tag works the same was the NAME macros works in the title field of your Puppet Configuration panel. You can alter its appearance as you like with appropriate HTML or CSS attributes.

To conceal it against a black background, simply set the font to black and size one.

To conceal it against a background image, select the dominant color in the image as the font color for the tag.
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How do I remove my gummy?
Removing gummies is a bonus for verified users, along with access to an assortment of contributor gummies. Verified users are patrons who have made a donation to Ethereal Realms via Pay Pal.

If you have made a donation to Ethereal Realms you will find a --none-- option at the bottom of the drop down menu for gummies in your Puppet Details panel.

Removing the gummy will place your user details in a link under your puppet handle instead.
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My login does not work. What do I do?
There are a few reasons why your account may not be working as expected:

The first is related to an account going idle. Any account that has not seen activity within the last 90 days will in fact be removed from the system. In order to correct this, the user simply needs to register a new account with Ethereal Realms.

The second can be due to a lost password. Ethereal Realms does offer a reset ability for password, but must have a valid and current Email address for the new password to be sent to.

If you are having problems continued with your log-in please contact us and we will assist you with your account. Be sure to include your log-in name and the email address that you used to sign up for your account. We will get back to you as soon as possible.
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What are chat preferences?
Chat preferences are different methods in which the user plays in a realm. The following modes are outlined below:

Basic Mode is the simplest chat interface avialable. It will work under a myriad of browsers even some which do not support images!

Framed Mode is the second generation of chat interfaces. This one features a posting frame and viewing frame, allowing you to type up a post and check for new posts manually from time to time.

Stream Mode is similiar in many ways to Framed, however the posts arrive automatically and require no manual request.

Autoscrolling Mode is an upgrade to Stream in which a user can opt to have the posts move into focus for them without any use of the scrollbars. The speed is entirely controlled by the user.
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What do gummies do?
Gummies provide a link to all your user information you choose to make available, including E-Mail, Homepage, Instant Message Services, and an image. Gummies also allow for private messaging and ignoring.
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Why are posts slow in stream?
There will always be a bit of lag in between a post and its appearance to the screen. First of all even in the busiest of sites the script will only query for new posts ever few seconds, so a wait is expected in that regard.

However in realms that have less activity Ethereal Realms will pull back and increase the time as to ease strain on the system. While this lag may be noticeable in such instances, generally the critical nature of posts being instant will not exist.
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Why can't I select a handle?
You used to be able to select handles, manage them and that option is no longer available or hidden from you? Chances are that the staff of the site has implemented lock-down mode which prevents that sort of activity. Speak to them about your problem and see if that is the case.
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Why can't I view a profile?
Before you can search for a user's profile, you must first have your own. Details from your own profile will be used directly in the searching ability for the site.

You can create a new profile through the 'User Details' section of the site.
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Why does the site think I am in X city?
The system users your IP address to determine where you are from. Now this technology is not exactly perfect so it may be picking up invalid information or reflecting the network you are on.

There is no need to worry, simply change the information to reflect proper information and use the map to pinpoint your proper location. While you can specify location like Antarctica, you would be best to avoid such places because you will not be able to find people close to you as a result!

Note: Sites such as Ethereal Realms use debugging keys to lock people into a specific location. This is due to the fact that the site proper is non-functional and is not meant to be used live.
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Why don't I get Emails?
Ethereal Realms gives the user options on where to send notices to. If a user has opted to keep it internally, no notices will be sent through Email, instead they will be stored locally.

On the other hand, you can also opt to have it sent directly to your inbox. A useful feature if you do not check your internal mail regularly and want to know when something new arrives to the inbox.

This option can be adjusted at any time through the User Details panel.
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Why is my profile not visible?
Profiles on Ethereal Realms require a certain amount of information to function. First and foremost location information is required else you will not be able to continue to other steps for registration until that step is complete.

In addition you will have to provide a default handle. These can be selected from the Puppet Management screen and will become your default avatar for social networking once you establish it as default.

Note: All new users will have a default handle created at registration time. This problem only applies to established users.
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Quick Help

Frequently Asked Questions is a section desgined to aid the user in quickly finding answers to questions freqently asked to the hosts, administrators or even other users on the site itself. By provinding an easy to reference list it is hoped that new users to the site will be better prepared in using the site and enjoy its intricacies.

For quick reference, choose a group of questions which interests you the most from above or look at the overview located on the left.