Designer’s Guide

Let’s be Creative!

All websites start out with the index or first page. Normally called “index.htm” or “index.html” in static sites, it contains all of the layout and content elements that we want displayed using (X)HTML script. It is the template on which all other pages in the site are based. The sNews CMS only requires the one template file, since all of the site content is generated dynamically using the PHP functions within the sNews engine file.
Here we’ll provide you with a few techniques to make your site display content in almost any way you want.

We can start with a plain text file when beginning a new design and modify it to run as a PHP file, or we can use a pre-made template and alter it to run with sNews.

If You are working with (adapting) a pre-made template, then the Template Tags page (link in the right side-bar block) may be all you need to complete the job. This process is commonly refered to as “porting the template”.
Porting your template for sNews is a 2-step process: 1) copying the file and re-saving it as index.php; 2) replacing the static content elements, within the file, with the PHP function-tags used by sNews to display the generated content in their place.


sNews requires PHP, MySQL and mod rewrite. If your server meets those requirements, get started and learn how to install sNews on your website in 3 easy steps.


Browse through our help center and learn about template tags and how to simply create your own theme. Dig into sNews and customize it to behave the way you want.


sNews can be a simple blog tool and a full blown CMS. Customize it with addons, mods or play with different themes.