Feeder Configuration

Configuration is done in two files and a third file that is used by the Feeder to save run-time data. All reside in the config directory.

feeds.inicontains all feed configuration, like name and URL of feed, rss version, usage of print version and filters and how VA should handle it
config.inisets some values that are not specific to a certain feed, like testing and debug levels and where VA resides
data.inicontains runtime data for the feeder, should normally not be changed by you!

Options are either ASCII strings or 1/0 options (1 = yes, 0 = no - you have to use the numbers!) or numbers.

All strings should be given in ““.

Most of the options are self-explanatory once you know a bit about the Feeder.

Options can be given in any order, line by line, but I suggest using the order below.

Options are grouped by [...] sections. The [...] sections in feeds.ini and data.ini designate a configuration block for that specific feed. The [...] sections in config.ini designate certain related global options. The options have to be listed in the correct section or they will not be recognized.

How to add a new feed

The typical steps of adding a new feed are as following:

  1. copy an existing feed section that you think may best match your new feed
  2. give it a new name (identifier): [Feed ...]
  3. give it a title
  4. give it an id so you can test it
  5. set disabled = 1 in case you use scheduling, so we don't try to fetch a "half-configured" feed
  6. set the folder path that VA should import it to: vapath
  7. go to the site that offers the feed, choose the link to the feed you want to add and open it in your browser
  8. copy that URL to url
  9. set the version of the feed in version, this is usually announced in the link to the feed or nearby or at the top of the feed itself
  10. double-check with "View Source" that the provider announces the correct version by comparing the tags in the source with the comparison list on top of feeds.ini
  11. check with "View Source" which date format the feed uses and set it in version_date, the formats are explained on the feeds.ini page
  12. if the date format is not "none" check if the feed presents the articles in non-standard order (= ascending, add article_order = “asc”)
  13. now it's time to look at the articles themselves, click the first link and open an article in the browser
  14. determine if there is a print version available and decide if you want to use that, if yes add a print version option block
  15. determine the character-set of the page (if you use a print version that is the character-set of the print version and not of the article, of course)
  16. decide if you want to use filters on the content, if you use a print version you can often go without filters, see simple and regexp filters in feeds.ini for details, you can only use one type of filter, you first include the main content and then exclude any remaining "malstuff"
  17. with most feeds you will want to fetch_links = 1, so this stays as is
  18. if your feed works and you want to go live set disabled = 0

I very much recommend using the following tests to check your configuration for correctness. All tests do not save any data to the configuration or to VA and can safely be used for testing non-working or working feeds.

php test_url.php 10Tests feed 10 for existence and shows you the first article URL, in case of a print version it also shows you the print version URL.
You can check if the correct URLs are used.
php test_feed.php 10Additionally downloads the article and applies all processing to it that it would do in non-testing mode, most notably it uses the configured filter. Shows how the filters look to the Feeder (important if it includes QUOTEs) and if they fail or succeed. It saves the downloaded article to the test directory as an HTML page for inspection.
php feeder.php 10Tests feed 10 by showing all available articles in the feed. With debug levels over 3 it shows which articles it would fetch as new and which not and other debugging information. It does not actually download the articles.
vaosfeeds/configuration.txt · Last modified: 01.07.2007 18:00 by kai
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