Manage membership data through your website with Admidio

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© Lead Image © Jan Will, 123RF.com

© Lead Image © Jan Will, 123RF.com

Article from Issue 183/2016
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Admidio manages membership data online no matter what the platform and also manages event dates, times, and participants elegantly.

Large associations often use commercial software to manage membership data. Smaller associations with more limited budgets sometimes face the difficult choice of spending money on an expensive commercial alternative or spending time and energy on rolling their own membership management solution. An open source tool called Admidio offers a better option. Admidio is a free user management tool for websites and organizations, and it even comes with modules for supporting member lists, managing events, building a guestbook or photo album, and creating a user-friendly download area.

Setting Up

Admidio is a classic web application that requires at least PHP 5.3.7 and MySQL 5.0 or PostgreSQL 9.0 for the server. The installation is similar to other Linux tools: First, download the latest version from the developer's homepage [1] and unzip the archive on your computer. Remove the components related to the software version from the folder name. Then, move the folder to a web server using an FTP program.

You should assign the 777 rights for the adm_my_files directory on the server, because the server needs to write some files there. The software creates the configuration file during installation. You can perform the initial configuration via the http://<Server>/admidio/index.php page in the browser. This page lets you specify data about the server on which the software is running (Figure 1), along with details on the association and the administrator.

Figure 1: Admidio requests access information for the MySQL database in the setup dialog.

If everything is fine, the installation is performed. Under certain circumstances, the setup script might not succeed in saving the config.php file in the adm_my_files directory. In this case, you can download the file and then manually copy it into the admin directory using FTP.

Tour

Admidio comes up with a clutter-free interface. The larger, left pane shows current information (first for the manufacturer then for the user). On the right, you'll find a login pane and an overview of the available modules.

After logging in, the program only displays the modules that the respective user is allowed to use in the main pane. The first user created is automatically made the administrator and therefore has access to the entire management area. The left-hand side displays an explanation about the functions of the individual modules; on the right in the sidebar are links to the individual sections (Figure 2).

Figure 2: The plain Admidio interface is well integrated on the existing pages and can easily be adapted to other designs.

The panes with the messages, the current notifications, and the appointments department – where there is the option to register for activities – are the most important panes for normal users (i.e., association members). It is also the administrator's responsibility to manage the membership data. Among other things, this includes activating members who have registered directly via the website.

New Members

The Admidio homepage offers new members the opportunity to register themselves, either in short form or in detail. Alternatively, you can disable this function and provide a classic application form as a PDF file. When new members register, they receive a message saying that the administrator first needs to activate their login. The administrator also receives a notification via email so that no new registration is missed.

The list of new registrations can be found under New registrations. You can open the data via the Assigning registration (plus) button and add additional information to it as required (Figure 3). You can then assign the new member a role – the Members role by default – and save the data. The member is thus created and can log in with the entered data.

Figure 3: Admidio is only familiar with three roles by default: Member, Association board, and Webmaster. You can add other roles as required.

All members appear in the User management menu. You can access the data records here and make changes to the roles and the individual data. To change the role, access the data record for the person in question by clicking on the name. Within the view, you will find the Additional Functions menu at the top right. You can then adapt the role as desired via Change role memberships.

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