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Setting Up A News-Voting Website With Pligg

This article shows how to set up your own news-voting website with Pligg. Pligg is a content-management system published under the Affero General Public License, and it is written in PHP and uses a MySQL database for storing its data. With a little work you can create your own community and let users vote news to the front page.

I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!


1 Preliminary Note

To install Pligg, you need some web space with FTP access, PHP, and a MySQL database. Ask your ISP to set it up for you, or use your hosting control panel to set it up yourself. If it is your own server, you can also use the command line to set up the web space, the FTP account, and the MySQL database.

Pligg works with both PHP 4 and PHP 5, but PHP 5 is preferred because some optional modules work only with PHP 5.

In this tutorial I will use the URL for my web space, and my FTP user is web2_falko with the password Kreationnext. My MySQL database is web2_db1 with the MySQL username web2_u1 and the password Kreationnext.


2 Download Pligg

Go to and download Pligg to your desktop. At the time of this writing the current version of Pligg is Pligg beta 9.

Afterwards, unzip Pligg. You should then have a directory called Pligg_Beta_9.0 with the Pligg sources in it.


3 Upload Pligg To Your Web Space And Change Permissions

Next open your favourite FTP client and connect to your web space:


Go to the document root of your web space (in this case /web). If there is an index file in it (like index.html), delete it:


Then upload the contents of the Pligg_Beta_9.0 directory (not the directory itself) to your document root. This can take a few minutes:


After the upload has finished, it should look like this:


Now we rename /settings.php.default to /settings.php like this:



Do the same for /libs/dbconnect.php.default.

Next we must change the permissions of the /templates folder to 777 (chmod 777) (777 = Read, Write, Execute for Owner, Group, Other) like this:



Do the same for /templates_c, /backup, /avatars/user_uploaded, settings.php, /libs/dbconnect.php, /libs/options.php, /libs/lang.conf, /rss/templates, and /rss/templates_c.

Then change the permissions of /config.php to 655:



4 Run The Pligg Installer

Now start your browser and go to You should see this page:


Click on proceed to the next step and install Pligg.

Fill in your database details (Database Name, Database Username, Database Password). The Database Server usually is localhost (unless your ISP told you something else). The table prefix pligg_ is ok. Then click on Check Settings:


If the database connection is ok, click on Next:


Now the installer creates all needed database tables. In case of success, you should see the sentence Pligg appears to have installed successfully!


Now only a few things are left to do (as shown below Things to do next:).


5 Post-Install Steps

Next do a chmod 655 on the /libs/dbconnect.php file:



Then delete the /install folder. If your FTP client refuses to do so, go to the /install folder and its subdirectories and delete the files in there first before you finally delete the /install directory:



6 Configure Pligg

Now go to and log in as god with the password 12345:


The Pligg admin interface looks like this:


Go to god Profile -> Modify to change the password:


In the admin menu you will find the following submenus:


This is the User Management interface:


Under Category Management you can create news categories that the users can submit news to (like Politics, Sports, Technology, etc.):


Under Modify Language you can modify every single word and phrase used in Pligg:


Under File and MySQL Backup you can back up all Pligg files, the users’ avatars, and the Pligg MySQL database:


When you click on Modules, a new browser window opens where you can enable additional modules (like Embed Videos or Private Messaging):


Under Configure Pligg Beta 9 you can do the main configuration for your Pligg installation. Browse through all the options; most of them are self-explanatory.


In the Template submenu you can change the Pligg template. The default template is called digitalnature:


You can find all available templates in the /templates folder – digitalnature, mollio-beat, and paul01:


The paul01 template looks like this:


And mollio-beat like this:


When you click on RSS Importer, a new browser window opens. If you do it for the first time, some database tables will be created:


Refresh the page. You should get the following message:


So delete /rss/create_mysql_tables.php with your FTP client:


Refresh the browser again. You should see this:


You can use the RSS import tool to let Pligg read RSS feeds and insert the news in these feeds into its database (so that people can vote for them). Of course, news can also be submitted by users.

After you have configured Pligg and gained enough users and news, your Pligg web site could look like this (this screenshot was taken from


  • Pligg: