A Module is a Joomla structure which displays particular content at a specified position; in the context dealt with here, the content consists of a Local Menu. Click for more detail on how the process works.

Creating a Module

To make a Local Menu visible, you need to create a Module for the menu. The menu is just a hierarchical list of page links; the Module is a displayable Joomla entity, which associates the menu with a location on the page. This can only be done by a Site Administrator: 

  • Go to the Module Manager via the Extensions drop-down menu;
  • Click New;
  • Select Extended Menu as the Module Type.
  • Give the module a Title (we have adopted the convention that Local Menu Modules for wide screens have a title ending in "local menu", and those for narrow screens have titles ending "short menu");
  • In the Module tab of the form:
    • Set Show Title to Hide;
    • To specify where and how the module is displayed:
      • If the Module is for a wide screen, select top-menu in the Position drop-down menu, and type "_topmenu" in the Module Class Suffix box;
      • If the Module is for a narrow screen, select sub-menu-sm in the Position drop-down menu, and type "_smmenu" in the Module Class Suffix box;
    • Leave Status and Access as published and public respectively;
    • The setting for Ordering does not seem to matter.
  • Now click the Menu Assignment tab, in order to specify when the module is to be displayed - more details are given below;
  • Now click the Source tab; in Menu Name you should normally select Main Menu compressed (or Guidance Menu compressed for a page in the Guidance for Authors section). Occasionally, a better result is obtained by using uncompressed page titles in Main Menu or Guidance for Authors Menu. It is not possible to give general guidelines on when this is the case - try both, and see;
  • Click the Style tab of the form, and first set Expand Menu to Yes. Now:
    • If the Module is for a wide screen, there are two options:
      • To display a menu with a number of child items displayed horizontally, each of which optionally can expand vertically to display grand-child items, set Maximum Depth to 2 and Show Parent to No;
      • To display a menu that displays a single parent item, expanding vertically to display child items, set Maximum Depth to 1 and Show Parent to Yes.
    • If the Module is for a narrow screen, set Maximum Depth to 1, and set Show Parent to Yes.
  • Now click the Split tab of the form, and set the what for the module, i.e. exactly which part of the Joomla Menu (Min Menu compressed or whichever other is chosen) is to be displayed. See below for more detailed guidance.
  • Now click Save & Close.

Specifying when the Local Menu is displayed

This is controlled in the Menu Assignment tab of the Module form. First, when you enter the Menu Assignment tab, set Module Assignment to "Only in the pages selected". This tab will now show a list of Joomla Menus, with all the items (i.e. pages) in those Joomla Menus. You only need to consider the Main Menu and Guidance for Authors Menu in this context. For convenience it is generally helpful first to click Select: None at the top of the list. Now in the lists, find those pages that you have decided need to display the Module you are creating (these will be ones close in content), and click to enable those pages.

Specifying what the Local Menu will display

The instructions above specify that the Module will display part of one of the Joomla Menus (Main Menu compressed, etc.). However, the Local Menu created by the Module will only show a small part of the Joomla Menu, the part that is closely related logically to the currently displayed page. Precisely which part is specified in the Parent Menu Item box in the Split tab of the Module form. Here you need to specify either the Name or the ID number of the item in the Joomla Menu which is the immediate parent of the items you want included in the displayed menu. For example, when you are displaying a page in the Village Maps section, specifying the menu item called Village Maps as parent will display all the top-level pages within that section.

You need to provide the Name of the parent item exactly as in the Joomla Menu - case matters. Alternatively, by going to the appropriate Joomla Menu using the Menus drop-down list, you can find the ID number of the required parent item.