|3. CGI-BIN script ( Pre Configured CGI-bin Scripts We Provide )|
The script is one
from Matt's Script Archive which we have installed and
preconfigured for your domain. FormMail is a generic www form to
e-mail gateway, which will parse the results of any form and send
them to the specified user. This script has many formatting and
operational options, most of which can be specified through the
form, meaning you don't need any programming knowledge or
multiple scripts for multiple forms. This also makes FormMail the
perfect system-wise solution for allowing users form-based user
feedback capabilities without the risks of allowing freedom of
There is only one form field that you must have in your form, for FormMail to work correctly. This is the recipient field. Other hidden configuration fields can also be used to enhance the operation of FormMail on your site. The action of your form needs to point towards this script (obviously), and the method must be POST in capital letters.
Here's an example of the form fields to put in your form:
<input type=hidden name="recipient" value="email@example.com">
<input type=hidden name="subject" value="Order">
<input type=hidden name="return_link_url" value="http://yourdomain.com/">
<input type=hidden name="return_link_title" value="Back to Main Page">
The following are
descriptions and proper syntax for fields you can use with
Description: This form field allows you to specify to whom you wish for your form results to be mailed. Most likely you will want to configure this option as a hidden form field with a value equal to that of your email address.
Syntax: <input type=hidden
Description: The subject field will allow you to specify the subject that you wish to appear in the email that is sent to you after this form has been filled out. If you do not have this option turned on, then the script will default to a message subject: "WWW Form Submission".
Syntax: If you wish to choose what the subject is:
<input type=hidden name="subject" value="Your Subject">
To allow the user to choose a subject:
form field will allow the user to specify their return email
address. If you want to be able to return e-mail to your user, I
strongly suggest that you include this form field and allow them
to fill it in. This will be put into the From: field of the
message you receive. If you want to require an email address with
valid syntax, add this field name to the 'required' field.
Syntax: <input type=text
realname form field will allow the user to input their real name.
This field is useful for identification purposes and will also be
put into the From: line of your message header.
Syntax: <input type=text
you wish to redirect the user to a different URL, rather than
having them see the default response to the fill-out form, you
can use this hidden variable to send them to a pre-made HTML
Syntax: To choose
the URL they will end up at:
<input type=hidden name="redirect" value="http://yourdomain.com/to/file.html">
To allow them to
specify a URL they wish to travel to once the form is filled out:
can require certain fields in your form to be filled in before
the user can successfully submit the form. Simply place all field
names that you want to be mandatory into this field, separated by
commas. If the required fields are not filled in, the user will
be notified of what they need to fill in, and a link back to the
form they just submitted will be provided.
To use a
customized error page, see 'missing_fields_redirect'
Syntax: If you want to require that they fill in the email and phone fields in your form, so that you can reach them once you have received the mail, use the syntax like:
Description: Allows you to have Environment variables included in the email message you receive after a user has filled out your form. Useful if you wish to know what browser they were using, what domain they were coming from or any other attributes associated with environment variables. The following is a short list of valid environment variables that might be useful:
Sends the hostname making the request.
REMOTE_ADDR - Sends the IP address of the remote host.
HTTP_USER_AGENT - The browser the client is using.
(Note: In our
case, both REMOTE_HOST and REMOTE_ADDR are the same, since our
servers don't do the reverse DNS lookup needed to generate the
true REMOTE_HOST string).
Syntax: If you wanted to find all the above variables, you would put the following into your form:
<input type=hidden name="env_report" value="REMOTE_HOST,REMOTE_ADDR,HTTP_USER_AGENT">
field allows you to choose the order in which you wish for your
variables to appear in the email form that FormMail generates.
You can choose to have the field sorted alphabetically or specify
a set order in which you want the fields to appear in your mail
message. By leaving this field out, the order will simply default
to the order in which the browsers send the information to the
script (which is usually the exact same order as they appeared in
the form). When sorting by a set order of fields, you should
include the phrase "order:" as the first part of your
value for the sort field, and then follow that with the field
names you want to be listed in the email message, separated by
Syntax: To sort alphabetically:
<input type=hidden name="sort" value="alphabetic">
To sort by a set field order:
print_config allows you to specify which of the config variables
you would like to have printed in your e-mail message. By
default, no config fields are printed to your email. This is
because the important form fields, like email, subject, etc. are
included in the header of the message. However some users have
asked for this option so they can have these fields printed in
the body of the message. The config fields that you wish to have
printed should be in the value attribute of your input tag
separated by commas.
Syntax: If you
want to print the email and subject fields in the body of your
message, you would place the following form tag:
type=hidden name="print config" value="email,
Description: print_blank_fields allows you to request that all form fields are printed in the return HTML, regardless of whether or not they were filled in. FormMail defaults to turning this off, so that unused form fields aren't emailed.
Syntax: <input type=hidden
form field allows you to specify the title and header that will
appear on the resulting page if you do not specify a redirect
Syntax: If you wanted a title of 'Feedback Form Results':
type=hidden name="title" value="Feedback Form
field allows you to specify a URL that will appear, as
return_link_title, on the following report page. This field will
not be used if you have the redirect field set, but it is useful
if you allow the user to receive the report on the following
page, but want to offer them a way to get back to your main page.
Syntax: <input type=hidden
Description: This is the title that will be used to link the user back to the page you specify with return_link_url. The two fields will be shown on the resulting form page as:
Syntax: <input type=hidden
name="return_link_title" value="Back to Main
another form processing script, totally different than FormMail,
discussed above. It is a program written in the C language that
takes the contents of fill-in boxes on a form and emails them to
a specified location. In addition to the form specification in
the .html file, a mail specification in a .txt file is required
to format the resulting email message.
We provide the cgiemail in the cgi-bin directory of your server. You need to have an action in your order.htm file to call it. It should look like this:
<form method=post action="http://www.yourdomain.com/cgi-bin/cgiemail/order.txt">
Details are provided below. While there are a number of subsections below this one, they all work together and are meant to be read from start to finish.
Look for a file in your www directory called order.htm. This is our example form we put on your site that shows how a form should be configured to work with Cgiemail. Look at it in a browser, and download it to your hard drive using FTP so you can see how it works. If you've never dealt with HTML forms before, don't worry, they're easy to create and understand.
The form prompts the user for data which is sent to the server as simple key-value pairs. Each <input> tag specifies a record. The key is given by the name attribute, and the value is given by the value attribute. The type attribute tells the browser what kind of data to expect. Now, try looking at the example.
Please note that the hidden items are used to transmit critical info to Cgiemail. They provide the location of the success file, the name of the person the results should be sent to, and the subject of the form. When making your own forms, you may want to change the email address in the "required-to" field, and likely the subject in the "subject" field. The first item tells Cgiemail what to show the user after successfully completing the form. You can, but don't need to customize this.
After that come the items that are actually presented to the user. You'll want to use type=text input items with cgiemail: it's a simple tool. The size=60 tells the browser how big to make the box. The name=something is required in each input tag, otherwise the browser wouldn't know how to send the data to the server. The value=" " attribute is correct in most cases, unless you want a default value in the form.
Note that if a field begins with required-, cgiemail will require that the user enter a value for this field. This is particularly useful if you want to require a user to submit their email address.
When the user presses the Submit button, the data goes to our machine where cgiemail starts doing something with it. What is does is controlled by the order.txt file discussed below.
By the way, you can name your HTML form anything you want to.
Now that we have
all this data, what do we do with it? Mail it, of course! But for
flexibility, cgiemail requires that you create a mail.txt file to
show it what to send. (If you didn't want flexibility you'd use a
mailto link.) The program will read this file, perform
substitutions, and pass it to the mail system.
Make sure that you upload mail.txt in ASCII mode. Failure to upload mail.txt in ASCII mode will generate the message:
"Server Error: The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request."
There is already an example order.txt document in the forms directory in your www directory.
By the way, there's nothing magical about the name order.txt. Feel free to call it mail1.txt or form1.mail, or whatever suits you, as long as the form has the correct name for what you uploaded.
Note that the first several lines are mail headers. You probably shouldn't change that part, or the corresponding parts in your form. In particular, there must be a To: header or the mail won't go anywhere!
What cgiemail does is simply replace every string that looks like [key] with the value the user typed into the field with name=key. That's all. You can lay out your form as is best for your users, but lay out your mail.txt as is best for you to read. You can even insert gobs of text to help format the output. Only the [key] parts will be replaced by cgiemail.
Cgiemail does not report environmental variables like FormMail will, but other than that, it is an excellent program, allowing you more flexibility in the way you want your data returned by the form.
Guestbook allows you to set up your own comments page. From there, visitors can add entries to your guestbook and they will be displayed with the most recent at the top and scrolling down, or vice versa. Other options include the ability to limit HTML in the entry, link to e-mail address with mailto tag, use a log to log entries, redirect to a different page after signing, emailing whenever a new entry is added, and much more.
Guestbook is already set up for use on your server. You can simply use the following URL to access it:
If you want to change any of the configuration options, locate the guestbook.cgi file in your Guestbook directory (inside your www directory). Download it to your hard drive in ASCII mode, and save it somewhere safe. Create a copy of the file and give it the same name, then edit the options as specified below. Keep your backup of the original guestbook.cgi in case you run into problems.
Option 1: $mail
This option will allow you to be notified via an E-mail address when a new entry arrives in your guestbook. The entry will be mailed to you as a notification. If you should choose to turn this variable on you will need to fill in the 2 variables that go along with it:
$recipient - Your email address, so that the mailing program will know who to mail the entry to.
$mailprog - The location of your sendmail program on your host machine.
Option 2: $uselog
This will allow
you the ability to use the short log feature. It is already
turned on so you will have to change it to 0 if you do not wish
to use it. It has been implemented since there are probably many
people who feel no need to have a log when people are making
entries to a file anyway. Keep in mind that it will show errors
which is one nice aspect about it.
Option 3: $linkmail
option on will make the address links in your guestbook become
hyperlinked. So instead of simply having (firstname.lastname@example.org) it will
so that anyone can simply click on the address to email them.
Option 4: $separator
This allows you to
choose whether you want guestbook entries to be separated by a
Paragraph Separator <p>, or a Horizontal Rule <hr>.
By changing the 0 in the script to a 1, you will turn on the
<hr> separator and turn off the <p> separator. The 0
option will do the reverse of that; turn on the <p> and
turn off the <hr>.
Option 5: $redirection
By choosing 1 you
will enable auto redirection and 0 will return a page to the user
telling them their entry has been received and click here to get
back to the guestbook.
Option 6: $entry_order
Set this option to 0 and the newest entries will be added below the rest of the entries. Keep this option at 1 and the guestbook will add the newest entries at the top.
Option 7: $remote_mail
Many users of the
guestbook have requested that a form letter be automatically sent
to the remote user when they fill in the guestbook. Turning this
option on will tell the script to automatically mail any user who
leaves an email address. You can specify the contents of the mail
message by editing the section of the script that sends mail to
the remote user. By default it sends a message that says,
"Thank you for adding to my guestbook." and then shows
them their entry. If you should choose to turn this variable on,
you will need to fill in the 2 variables that go along with it:
$recipient - Your email address so that the mailing program will know who to mail the entry to.
$mailprog - The
location of your sendmail program on your host machine.
Option 8: $allow_html
This option allows
you to turn on or off the use of HTML tags by users of your
guestbook. Setting this variable to 1 allows users to embed html
tags such as <b> or <H1> or <a href="
"></a> into your html document. Setting this
variable to 0 will not allow them to use any html syntax in their
comments or any other field. You can still link to their comments
or any other field. You can still link to their email address by
turning $link_mail to 1.
There is also the ability for users to add their own URL and then their name is referenced to their URL in the guestbook.html file. This helps to eliminate the need for allow_html to be turned on, and lets users point you to a spot that will tell you more about them. Several users of the guestbook script have asked for this option. If you wish to disable the option, simply delete the following line from your addguest.html file:
URL: <input type=text name=url size=50><br>
These are the rest of the important guestbook files found in your Guestbook directory:
This is the file that you will link to that will contain the Guestbook Entries. You may want to edit the title and heading spaces and customize the look any way you desire. Do not delete the line <!--begin--> from this guestbook, or else the script will have no way of knowing where to begin the editing. The <!--begin--> line is the only necessary line in your guestbook.html file, but the link to the addguest.html file is also a good idea. :-)
Free For All Link Page allows you to set up a web page which your users can then add links to in specified categories. Newest links are added to the top of each category. A running total of the number of links present as well as the time when the last link was added is shown at the top of the page. Your preconfigured Free For All Links page is already set up on your server at
The only configuration you may want to do is to customize the look of the links.htm page. Just leave the method and input tags the way they are. If you decide to change the category names, you must do so in the links.htm document, AS WELL AS the links.pl file in your cgi-bin.
This script is preconfigured for your server. There is a directory in your www directory called "random." Inside that directory is a file called random.txt. Just download this file to your hard drive and edit it with any random text you would like placed in an html document. Remember to keep the %% separator between quotes. You can use any html formatting tags you want to, including <href> tags so you can configure it as a random link generator. You can put in as many quotes as you wish. Upload the random.txt file to your server in the same location you found it, remembering to upload it in ASCII or text mode.
The script uses SSI (Server Side Includes) so the page you want to use random text on must have the .sht, .shtm, or .shtml extension. On your page, just put this tag wherever you want the random text to appear:
That's all there is to it!
WWW Board is a threaded World Wide Web discussion forum and message board, which allows users to post new messages, follow-up to existing ones and more. It is already preconfigured for your server. Just go to http://www.yourdomain.com/bbs to post your messages there.
There are several options you may want to configure. First of all, the index.sht file in the bbs directory can be customized any way you wish as long as you leave the method and input tags the way they are.
Additionally, here are some options contained in the wwwboard.pl script itself (located in your cgi-bin directory) which you may want to change, depending on your needs:
$show_faq = 1;
This option allows you to choose whether or not you want to display a link to the FAQ on every individual message page or not. It defaults to 1 and the link will be put in at the top of the message along with links to Followups, Post Followup and Back to $title. Setting this to 0 will turn it off, and keeping it at 1 will keep the link. You need to create a faq.html file and put it inside the bbs directory. The FAQ can contain any information you want to give your visitors about how the board works, your organization, types of postings that will be allowed, etc.
$allow_html = 1;
This option lets you choose whether or not you want to allow HTML mark-up in your posts. If you do not want to allow it, then everything that a user submits that has <>'s around it will be cut out of the message. Setting this option to 1 will allow HTML in the posts and you can turn this option off by setting it to 0.
$quote_text = 1;
By keeping this option set to 1, the previous message will be quoted in the followup text input box. The quoted text will have a ':' placed in front of it so you can distinguish what had been said in the previous posts from what the current poster is trying to get across. Setting this option to 0 will leave the followup text box empty for the new poster.
$subject_line = 0;
There are three options for the way that you can display the subject line for the user posting a followup. Leaving this option at 0 which is the default value, will put the previous subject line into the followup form and allow users to edit the subject however they like. Setting this option to 1, however, will quote the subject, but simply display it to the user, not allowing him or her to edit the subject line. The third and final option can be achieved by setting the $subject_line variable to 2. If it is set to 2, the subject will not be quoted and instead the user will be prompted with an empty subject block in their followup subject line.
$use_time = 1;
This option allows you to choose whether or not you want to use the hour:minute:second time with the day/month/year time on the main page. Day/Month/Year will automatically be placed on the main wwwboard.html page when a new entry is added, but if you leave this variable at 1, the hour:minute:second time will also be put there. This is very useful for message boards that get a lot of posts, but if you would like to save space on your main page, you can set this to 0, causing the hour:minute:second display not to be added.
Search will look at all your html pages for words you enter, and return all pages on a list with links. This program is completely configured and ready to run, but for Search.cgi to return a response, it need to be activated. This is easily done by logging in via telnet and at the prompt after login type the following command:
chmod +r /www/yourdomain
Now you can access search.cgi with the following URL: http://yourdomain.com/cgi-bin/search.cgi.
There is a configuration file called search_define.pl which accompanies search.cgi and sets up the variables for it. You can customize which files you wish to exclude from searches, and also the cosmetics of the search and results pages.
The database is
composed of 5 essential files: database.cfg, database, post.html,
search.html, and output.html. These are located in the directory
called "database" in your www directory. They are
already set up to run a simple database, but you can customize
them to meet your needs.
This is the configuration file for your database. You need to make sure your Unix permissions are set to chmod 666 for this file to work properly.
The first line is the location of the database, which has the default value of our text database.
The second line is what page it should return to after posting to database; the default value is to return to the post page for another entry.
The third line is where you will start listing any fields you want to have posted to the database. For example:
You may have as many as you like listed for these fields. These become your input fields and they must be associated with the input statements on your post.html for each of the ones you want to use. You should have a matching input statement that looks like the following on your post.html page (note "name" and "address" are for example and can be changed with whatever field you wish to use, also the size attribute can be whatever you want):
<input=text name="name" size="25">
<input=text name="address" size=30">
This is nothing more than the actual data being stored after it is posted from your post.html page.
This page is used to write to the database from a webpage. You should have an input statement for each field used in the database.cfg file. You may also use query boxes or radio buttons. The method tag needs to remain the same as the one already on your server, but the rest of it can be configured as you want.
If you want to activate the email feature, add the following tag to your form:
<input type="hidden" name="email" value="your email address">
When active, each time someone posts to the database you will receive an email of the content.
This is the page that reads the actual database file based on the criteria you would like to search. This can also be customized to meet your requirements, in keeping with the fields you set up above.
You must make sure the Unix permissions are set to chmod 666 for this file to work properly.
Each field you want printed in the output page is enclosed in [brackets]. These may be laid out anywhere on the page -- this effectively becomes a printout template for your file. You may surround these variables with as much normal text as you would like to have printed with these records.
To use this one,
put the following tag somewhere on your page, but change the
yourpage.htm to be the address of the actual page you are putting
this counter on. Also, don't break up the tag like we did. We had
to do that to fit it on the page. The width=5 part refers to how
many digits you want in your counter.
This counter is not as reliable as the others mentioned.