When installing Omeka, 3 plugins are installed as well by default: COinS, Exhibit Builder and Simple Pages.
I ignore the reasons behind this choice, it might just simply be that they were the first plugins created by the Omeka Team (that is still maintaining them).
But, as there seem to be now many useful plugins around (of which many also created by the Omeka Team), that really improve Omeka’s capabilities, I think it could be the right time to redefine that list, and maybe add/replace some of the default plugins.
Which plugins do you think should be available by default?
And, while we are at this: is there any plugin function that should be included in Omeka’s core, instead (f.i.: I find Item Order quite useful, and I think its functions could become part of the core and be always available)?
Great question @DanieleB. You’ve prompted me to add Item Order to my own setup, and all the suggestions from @ebellempire also sound fine to me. On the other hand, much as I value Zotero I’m not sure that COinS earns its place in the default list.
And perhaps that makes the point that almost everyone might want their favourite plugins included! So, as long as plugins are easy to find and install, well documented, and don’t number in the hundreds, I can equally see a case for keeping the default installation lean.
As for moving plugins’ functionality to the core, you’ll have a much better idea that I do of the advantages and tradeoffs involved. My only suggestion here would be (an improved version of) the Maintenance plugin. This seems to me a core function in that it has nothing to do with the site content.
You’re right, of course, Charles, when saying that plugins can be added according to preference, and everyone has probably different needs for them. My question was mostly meant to identify which one might be the most useful/most used ones (I share your opinion on COinS, but we might be the only ones not needing it).
Some plugins, like the mentioned Geolocation for instance, are quite specific, so many Omeka installation are probably not using them (of the few ones I’m taking care of, none); some others might be more common (like Simple Contact Form, as many sites might offer to visitors a chance to get in touch with the curators/admins); and some (like Search by Metadata) really improve the search options of the original core, so they (IMHO) might be considered for inclusion.
Let’s see if someone else would like to add their thought.
First, a bit of context – we host Omeka installations for small public libraries’ local history collections. At site creation, I install about 18 plugins, and deactivate COinS. There are a number of additional plugins that we install if useful to a particular site.
The handful of plugins that I see as most universally useful are (in alpha order because, you know, library) Add Item Link, Collection Tree, Item Order and Simple Contact Form. Another candidate would be Bulk Metadata Editor.
What I would most love to see is a backup plugin which could be used by admins (not just Supers) to back up the entire site - database, uploads, theme… - which could be downloaded to a local computer or saved in the cloud. (I realize this is off topic, but like to scatter the seed of that idea wherever possible!)
Yes, I have installed the Database Backup plugin (separately, not the whole Admin Tools suite) on the sites we host. It is available for admin users, but misses my target in that it only backs up the database. My dream is to have the capability to create a complete backup that could be used to restore an Omeka site in one fell swoop.
And sadly, the Database Backup plugin does not work at all on a couple of sites! I haven’t yet been able to pin down the problem.
I see your point. But to create a backup of a whole Omeka site would mean to copy not just the db, but also the core files (doable, but who needs that since they can be downloaded again from Omeka’s website?!), the plugins and themes (doable, but see my point above) and… all files from the Files folder (and that could be a lot of stuff, probably causing the whole procedure to run out of time. I think a procedure to automatically copy backup those files should be available with your hosting provider…
As for the second issue (the original plugin not working on some sites), I have no idea why that would happen, but since I’ve changed quite a lot the code of the original plugin could you maybe try to install the Admin Tools plugin on those sites and see whether the db backup works there?