Menalto Gallery 2 – hide view count

When everything else is fairly configurable, why are some things so difficult?

Here is how to hide the view count on albums in Gallery 2 using the Matrix default template.

Edit /themes/matrix/templates/album.tpl

Replace this:


With this:


Color code e-mail in Apple Mail

colorpaletteHave you figured out that you can color code your Apple Mail messages?

Go to Format –> Show Colors

Select a message in your inbox, then click a color in the Colors palette.

You can’t sort based on the colors, but at least you can do more than just mark as flagged, read/unread, or by priority to quickly find something in your inbox.


PayPal shipping per order

Here is a simple hack that took me a while to locate, so here is a post to document…

The PayPal cart and buy now buttons allow you great variety in shipping, but how do you charge a flat rate for shipping per order? It isn’t obvious.

Add the following line of code to your “buy now” or “add to cart” button forms:

<input name="handling_cart" type="hidden" value="2.00" />

The value above is the flat rate you want to charge per cart in dollars.

The above works as long as people are ordering one type of product. If more than one product is added to the cart, the handling_cart value for that product will be added also. If someone knows how to get true per-order flat rate shipping implemented, let me know.

Joomla 1.5 hack – replace the META Generator tag

In Joomla 1.5, the system automatically creates a META Generator tag that you might want to change or hide.

The default tag looks like this:

<meta name="generator" content="Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management" />

There is no way within Joomla to change or remove this tag, so you have to put a little line of PHP in your template.

Edit your template and look for this line:

<jdoc:include type="head" />

Just above that line, paste in the following:

<?php $this->setMetaData('generator','my site'); ?>

The two lines together should look like this:

<?php $this->setMetaData('generator','my site'); ?>
<jdoc:include type="head" />

In the above code, substitute your custom generator tag value in place of the words my site.

Because this hack is in your template, you don’t have to worry about the next upgrade to Joomla overwriting hacked core files.

Thanks to for showing the way.

Creating a favicon.ico that loads in IE


I’ve never had a problem with browsers, specifically IE, loading favicons created for my client sites. But this week I had one site where the favicon would load in every browser EXCEPT Internet Explorer.

Normally, I create favicon images in Adobe Photoshop, at 16×16 pixels, and use Save for Web & Devices… to create a GIF named favicon.gif

I rename favicon.gif to favicon.ico and upload. 

This week, I downloaded and used successfully an Adobe Photoshop plugin called ICOFormat from

I’m a big fan of one-trick ponies, and this is a good one. It does one thing and it does it well.

I opened the previous favicon I had created then selected File –> Save as… and selected the ICO (Windows Icon) format option. Posted the revised file and suddenly IE was loading the favicon.

Open .dat attachments on Mac OS


Occasionally in Mac OS, I’ll get an e-mail with a .dat file extension. .dat is pretty generic, but typically this is from an older Microsoft e-mail program bundling the message and one or more attachments into the .dat. The Microsoft program knows what’s there, but the Mac doesn’t.

In the event I receive a .dat file, I fire up TNEF’s Enough, a freeware application from

Save the .dat file out of the e-mail, then drag and drop it on top of TNEF’s Enough. This great little utility makes extracting attachments from .dat files quick and easy.

Joomla 1.5 hack Contact component form redirect

When it somes to Joomla 1.5, sometimes having to create a feedback form is overkill, when all you really need is for a Contact to do a graceful redirect to a thank you page upon submission.

This hack requires modifying a core component, so be sure to save a copy of your original 🙂

The file to edit is:

Create your redirect page and have the URL for the redirect handy.

Look for the following code at line 193 in Joomla 1.5.10 (this is the version I was working on this week):

$msg = JText::_( 'Thank you for your e-mail');
$link = JRoute::_('index.php?option=com_contact&view=contact&id='.$contact->slug.'&catid='.$contact->catslug, false);
$this->setRedirect($link, $msg);

And replace it with this code:

$link = JRoute::_('redirect url goes here');

Replace the text redirect url goes here with the URL of your redirect page. Save and upload the revised controller.php file.

Thanks to Sulu for showing the way.

Gmail Notifier hack for Mac OS X


I’ve been using Gmail Notifier for a couple weeks now, and it is growing on me. The default value for checking for new mail is something like 4 minutes, much too long when I’m in the middle of a busy day and have people counting on me to be on top of my e-mail.

You can change the interval using this little trick: hold down the Command (aka Apple or propeller) key and the Option key, then select Preferences… from the Gmail Notifier menu in the menu bar.

A new window will pop up. Enter the values shown:


Click Set, then close the window. 

Thanks to for showing the way.


I’ve been doing a lot of random research lately, looking for ways to get things done and to extend the functionality of the various systems I work with daily.

I’m a big fan of Delicious, but the very nature of the Internet means these resources I have bookmarked for later reference are just as likely to disappear tomorrow — this has happened to me more than once. And I hate having to search for something I know used to exist before that random website did a redesign or went offline.

So for my own future reference as much as anything, I’m going to start a Hacks series of blog posts. Now, when I see a hack I like and use successfully, I’m going to blog it for future reference and credit the original source. Most of these tricks and tips will be for Joomla, WordPress, SugarCRM, Mac OS applications, the Adobe Creative Suite, or something along those lines.

So enjoy. Hopefully these tidbits will be of help to someone besides myself.