#5. Global Search & Replace
What it doesThe search & replace table can replace *something* with *something else* in all of your page content (template included), without actually altering the content itself.
Why it’s awesomeThe search and replace table is like the ultimate duct-tape/fix-it-now tool for website changes that you want to be reflected on every page. It’s uses are limitless. Do you have some straggler links to an old website littered throughout various pages? Overwrite them with search & replace. Want to find all instances of the words “contact us” and link them to your contact page? No problem.
How to get to itMain Menu > Database Tables > User Tables > UDT_CONTENT_SEARCH_REPLACE > View/Edit Records > Add New Record
- Regular expressions work in the “SEARCH FOR” field
- HTML is allowed, both in the SEARCH FOR and in the REPLACE WITH fields
#4. Database Table Formatting Tools
What they doSometimes looking through a massive amount of database data can be a daunting task. You have to scroll and scroll, just to see the fields and the data that currently concern you. By using the data table formatting tools, you can cut and format your data so that the only thing that displays is exactly what you need, and nothing you don’t.
You can hide all irrelevant fields, you can make UNIX timestamps human-readable, and you can even minimize fields so that you can still see them but they take up less room.
Why they’re awesomeThe data formatting tools reduce the need to scroll, give you a more meaningful at-a-glance view of the data, and save you the time of having to “convert” certain pieces of data (e.g., timestamps) just to be able to read them. In short: They reduce frustration and tedious action.
How to get to themMain Menu > Database Tables > (pick any table) > View/Edit Records > (top right) > Click on “Show collapse options”
All of those bulleted-links up there are your formatting tools.
- “Hide blob data” is the first thing you should click on tables where the rows are too tall
- [->|<-] This means collapse a field (cut down to minimum characters)
- [<-|->] This means expand field
- Scroll down to the bottom to see the “hide” links for each field, or you can use the Hide multiple fields tool.
- Use "Decode data" on fields that have been base64 encoded (relevant to some plugins)
- “Format serialized data” helps format price variation data in the cart_invoice table
- Show all fields puts everything back to normal
#3. Testing Builds
What it doesSoholaunch releases new public versions about every two weeks. However, we often release quick-wrap “testing” versions to test upcoming fixes and features on multiple customer sites.
For example, let’s say a bunch of customers are having trouble with a photo ablum bug that we’ve already fixed in the next version, but we’re not ready to do a public version wrap yet. We may put out a pre-release wrap of the next version to test the fix on the affected sites.
The secret is that everybody can download and install these versions.
Why it’s awesomeWith testing builds, you can get fixes and new features a week or more before they are officially released!
How to get to itMain Menu > Webmaster > Software Updates > [?] Technical Diagnostic Info (for geeks) > Allow installation of un-released internal testing builds? > Yes
Once you have enabled testing builds, you can check for updates as normal, and if there’s a test build available it will appear in the lest under the standard “stable” and “latest” builds.
#2. Create Table From .csv File
What it doesThe “create table from .csv” feature takes a .csv file (e.g., one created by exporting a MS Excel spreadsheet) that you’ve uploaded and creates a user database table (prefixed with UDT_) using all of the column names and data found in the file.
Why it’s awesomeBefore this feature, if you wanted to Create a table from a spreadsheet you had to manually create the database table, type in ever single field name by hand, and then import the data from csv. That can easy take 10-20 minutes, depending how many columns you have. Now table creation and importing is all one step, and all automatic.
How to get to itMain Menu > Database Tables > Create Table & Import CSV (link at top-right)
#1. Secret Super Tool
What it isHelp Me Help You (so named because you have to enter the secret code “helpmehelpyou” in webmaster to access it) was invented to help Soholaunch support staff troubleshoot customer websites when they only had limited access. It is the all-powerful hidden wonder-tool of Soholaunch, and until now only a select few have known of its existence.
It was originally built to mimic a command-line/SSH prompt (as if you were logged in to the server directly), but it grew into something much more powerful.
What it doesWith Help Me Help You, you can browse and edit all site files, execute mysql queries, troubleshoot and fix permissions problems, run shell commands, get file sizes, extract zip files, and view a quick report of compatibility conflicts between Soholaunch and your server.
Why it’s awesomeHelp Me Help You is totally useless to newbies. But to somebody who regularly troublehsoots Soholaunch websites (permissions issues, server conflicts, etc), it’s a godsend.
How to get to itMain Menu > Webmaster > Enter “helpmehelpyou” (no quotes) in the Verify New Username field > hit the Change Username/Password button.
Shortcut: Main Menu > Press your F4 key