Meteotemplate 10.0 Banana

Meteotemplate 10.0 Banana

Hi guys,

you might have noticed there has not been many updates recently…. this is because I was intensively preparing version 10. However, I should say that this version also includes many changes I wanted to do long time ago, but never completed so did not include in previous versions.

Meteotemplate 10.0 Banana is a major update, probably the most significant update yet, and this includes not just many new pages and things you will see directly on the page, but majority of the code of the Weather Station section – code that I have written over a year ago, while learning PHP, has been rewritten, optimized and some pages done completely from scratch.

One thing that you will appreciate especially if you are a new user is that I have completely re-written the data import and database update scripts. There are no more WD.php, Cumulus.php, meteobridge.php etc. scripts… there is simply “an update script”, “an import script”. These now also work totally differently. In previous versions you made a file that was compatible with Meteotemplate for import – now Meteotemplate adjusts based on what your files look like – and so you can now import data and update database with practically any file that contains the necessary information, regardless of its structure.

And in addition, this version finally completed my long-term goal – the database update was the very last thing that still had to be set up in the code itself. Now it uses GUI and is accessible from your control panel. And this therefore means, that unless you want to make specific customizations, you can now install and setup Meteotemplate, setup and install blocks and plugins and do admin actions, without ever seeing the code. And this is also a major advantage for me because it gives much less space for potential errors that people can accidentally make when they for example delete a semi-colon etc.

Some of the new features might look like minor, but they will also save you time – for example the new “remember me” function – stay logged in as an admin even if you close the browser or shut down your PC until you click the log out button, current conditions in header, site search in footer. Your homepage blocks now also have some new features – a new “header block” and “footer block” further extend the layout possibilities, possibility to highlight important blocks, set names for menu blocks. There is lot of new things, so just keep reading and then especially explore it once you have it installed yourself – btw. the update should be very easy.

New/redesigned pages

  • new page: Rain Seasons
    • calculate statistics for “rain season”select month you want as season beginning
    • year comparison and visualizations
    • month averages
    • tables + graphs
    • seasonal graphs
    • graphs resizable
    • graph selection – line/column
    • all month data
    • comparison with absolute station values
    • available also for mobile version
    • DEMO
  • new page: Day-time Statistics
    • detailed statistics for day-time – select day iterval on the fly (from-to)
    • alltime stats
    • hour averages – graphs, tables
    • monthly averages – graphs, tables, comparison with absolute values and deviations
    • yearly averages – graphs, tables, comparison with absolute values and deviations
    • all-values graph – resizable, zoomable
    • smart caching for very fast loading
    • available also for mobile version
    • DEMO
  • new page: Night-time Statistics
    • detailed statistics for day-time – select night interval on the fly (from-to)
    • alltime stats
    • hour averages – graphs, tables
    • monthly averages – graphs, tables, comparison with absolute values and deviations
    • yearly averages – graphs, tables, comparison with absolute values and deviations
    • all-values graph – resizable, zoomable
    • smart caching for very fast loading
    • available also for mobile version
    • DEMO
  • new page/discontinued: Weather Outlook/forecast
    • this page is based on the Outlook plugin. The Outlook plugin is now DISCONTINUED as well as the WWO page! The new forecast/outlook page is now included for all in the core template files
    • added new forecast summary table – see all forecasts in a single table overview
    • available also for mobile version
    • DEMO
  • new page: Astronomy Calendar
    • month almanac – graphical monthly overview of sun rises, sun sets
    • Moon phases
    • solar/lunar eclipses
    • meteor showers
    • season changes
    • twilights
    • day/night length visualization
    • day number
    • zodiac
    • available also for mobile version
    • DEMO
  • daily report
    • complete redesign and code clean up/optimization
    • added station long-term averages to tables and graphs
    • added deviations from long-term station averages to tables and graphs
    • added absolute min/max for station for comparison
    • new “all-data” graph – graph shows all parameters in one graph, you can turn on/off just the ones you want to compare
    • color-underlay in tables for all parameters
    • redesign included for mobile version
    • speed optimization
    • graphs resizable
    • bug fixes – for example, in previous versions, no data showed as “0” in graphs, which completely shifted the axis. Now the graphs simply are blank when there is no value
    • DEMO
  • monthly report
    • complete redesign and code clean up/optimization
    • new all-parameter graph – all parameters in one graph
    • new “almanac” section with month calendar, moon phases, sun rise/set
    • added to graphs and tables: comparison with long-term station
    • added to graphs and tables: deviation from long-term averages
    • added to graphs and tables: absolute min/max
    • redesign included for mobile version
    • color-underlay in tables for all parameters
    • graphs resizable
    • bug fixes – see daily reports, correctly shift months when the first month in database is not January (previously showing January in all cases…)
    • DEMO
  • yearly report
    • redesign and code clean up/optimization
    • added station averages
    • added deviations from long-term station averages
    • DEMO
  • station climate/statistics
    • complete redesign and optimization – all parameters now handled by 1 script – much easier code management and speed
    • added station averages to tables
    • added deviations from long-term station averages to tables
    • added absolute min/max for station for comparison
  • trends
    • redesign and optimization
    • all parameters now handled by just one script
    • now for mobile version as well
    • code clean up, bug fixes (same features, 95% less code…)

New features for blocks

  • block highlighting – in homepage setup you can choose which blocks you want to be highlighted (different background color based on your color theme), works for mobile version as well
  • header block – you can now select one block which will be right at the top and span the whole width of the page regardless of how many columns you have – ideal for gauges for example and no need to use single-column layout and multiple blocks, just put header block at the top and have 3 columns below, works for mobile version as well
  • footer block – the same as above, but this time a block spanning the whole width of the page at the very bottom below all other blocks, works for mobile version as well
  • menu block names – you can now specify names for menu blocks. This is optional. If you specify a name, it will be shown at the top of the menu block below the blocks menu selector, the template will also try to translate this name if it is available in the language strings, if not, it will show it as specified, works for mobile version as well

New features

  • show current conditions in the header – in the Main settings you can now specify if you want to enable this. If yes then you will see the current conditions on every page directly in the header below the flag icon. The values iterate automatically and you can specify the interval for the change to another parameter. Works also for mobile version.
  • site search – you can now include a search for your whole site in the footer! This can be enabled/disabled in the Main settings. For this to work you will need a Google API key, instructions included in the Main settings file.
  • new feature – insert custom image background to header for mobile version (setup in Main settings)
  • new features for you as an admin
    • “remember me” feature – select this and you will stay logged in as an admin even if you close the browser or shut down the computer, until you log out. This feature uses cookies and the currently most sophisticated encryption available (B-crypt)
  • new Import pages – now accessible via cPanel directly
    • any software -> one import file
    • you can now import data to the database from practically any file or WU. You can precisely define the format of the file and it will automatically import it, no need to adjust the format. This allows importing log files from any software.
    • very detailed overview of what exactly is happening during the import to spot any errors (over 200 possible messages based on what is happening)
    • possibility to “test import” to see if correct values will be saved to db
    • possibility to set the time span for WU import (for slow servers importing by month was a problem, in contrast, on faster servers you can now set longer intervals for import at once)

Bug fixes/optimizations/minor changes

    • naming standardization – at the beginning I simply called the files whatever I just first came up with, so some pages were renamed to respect the naming convention of the rest of the template
      eg: daily_report -> reportDaily
      annual_report -> reportYearly
  • station/pages/calendar.php
    Bug fixes, optimizations, CSS tweaks
  • station warnings icons moved inside the header to save valuable space below the header
  • climate pages – optimization, CSS tweaks, redesign
  • interactive graph – prevent graph from not loading when there is no data available for selected period
  • alldata table now created automatically when testing MySQL in Main settings
  • possibility to test emails – mail server must be correctly configured on the server for emails to work, you can now test directly in Main settings, if notifications and plugins using emails will work for you
  • footer code clean up – previously included all days available in the db in the code for day report selection, now handled by separate script
  • prevent the settings block showing “opened” below the footer if db empty
  • removed all PHP notices caused by the METAR script
  • few new icons
  • fixed “sun theme” issue
  • new spinner
  • liveData – fixed issue with total rain not showing

Depracted pages:

  • all update pages (WD, WView, WU, Cumulus – replaced by update.php)
  • all import pages (CSV, WU, WD, Cumulus – replaced by import.php)
  • worldweatheronline.php – replaced with outlook

Depracted plugin:

  • outlook – now part of main template files with even more features

Update Instructions

Before you do the update, let me explain one very important thing – database updates. The database updates are now all handled by a single script, the update.php. This script is much better than the original scripts because it allows much better diagnostics – in other words, if something does not work, I will be able to tell exactly what the problem is.

HOWEVER! This means that assuming your updates are already working fine, there is no reason for you to change your updates to this new script. It will have NO ADVANTAGE for you and I would even say – if it works now, just leave it. Not updating the update scripts will in no way affect the rest of the template, the only thing you will not be using is the update setup via cPanel, but again, if it is working now, just leave it as it is. This way there is no risk of any potential problems and also, you do not need to make any changes to your CRON jobs. The new script for updates is very useful, but only to NEW USERS!

  1. Make a backup of your files, you can use the backup feature of the template, back up the main template files, a copy of them will be created on your server in Backup directory. This is extremely important and not only during updates, but also in case something goes wrong in the future – always good to have a restore point! (if you don’t believe me ask Jeff from NY :D)
  2. open the admin folder and replace all the files inside. DO NOT replace the entire directory, this would delete your homepage settings, which is saved there too. So only replace/add the new files that are inside it.
  3. open css directory and replace/add corresponding files
  4. open homepage directory and replace/add corresponding files
  5. delete your icons directory on your server completely and replace it with the new icons folder in the update package
  6. open install directory and replace/add the corresponding files, you can also delete the WU.php, WD.php, Cumulus.php and CSV import pages and showColumns pages, these are all now included in the admin folder and handled from the control panel.
  7. open mobile folder and replace/add the corresponding files, in the same structure as they are on your server – again, DO NOT delete and replace the entire folder, go file by file
  8. open pages folder and then you will see 5 folders, delete the same folders on your server and replace them with the new ones. However, DO NOT replace the entire “pages” folder, because there are also your custom pages in the “other” folder, which is not part of the update package
  9. delete and replace the scripts folder
  10. update your language files from lang folder
  11. in your template root folder, replace the index pages, the header, the footer and the menu.
  12. the update package does contain the new update directory as well, you can open the update folder and copy the new files into your update directory, but I highly recommend you also keep the original files and do not change anything regarding your database updates, just keep in mind that if you keep using the old files, you will not be able to set it up in the control panel – but again, if it is working now, there is no need to set it from the cPanel, so better leaving it
  13. reload your page cache in the browser (CTRL+F5) or long press the reload button

Now you are ready to go, a few notes for the new features:

  • open your main settings and set up the new features:
    • new section to enable/disable site search
    • new section to enable/disable current conditions in the header
    • in the customization section you can now set a background image for mobile header
    • if you are using the Outlook plugin, copy your API key in the Main settings and delete the outlook plugin from the template, if you are not using the Outlook plugin, you need to get the API key from (free)
  • new features for homepage
    • on the page where you set blocks for your homepage are new sections for: header block, footer block, highlighted blocks and possibility to give names to menu blocks. Wiki has been updated, but to see how to set the name, you can also click the Brief Instructions and read how to do it.

NOTE: It is absolutely crucial that you update your header, footer and the menu! These files were modified and they do not contain just the new links, but also other scripts that are necessary for the template to work now! If you have modified your menu, then it would be better if you took the new one and added your custom links to it, there are many changes in that file in other parts and same goes for the other pages. Some pages were renamed, some are handled differently.

E N J O Y !!!!!

19 thoughts on “Meteotemplate 10.0 Banana

  1. I just discovered Jachym and his untiring efforts. I’m a real novice who simply relied on other programs like VWS. I set up my personal weather station as a pure hobby with no more interest in the weather than simply reporting current conditions for myself and a few friends. THEN, I discovered Meteotemplate! Now, things are changing for the better — all because of Jachym. We had our first “conference” call the other night and it was amazing. How this guys functions on 4 hours of sleep is still a mystery 🙂
    I’ll tell on myself a bit here — Jachym is trying to coach me along the way step by step. I wanted to demonstrate that I can be useful on my own (a little anyway), so I began downloading various Blocks and Plug-ins — only to have Jachym kindly remind me to follow our plan and not run ahead — thus, damaging the hard work he has already invested in me and my new site.
    I know I speak for everyone who’s had the opportunity to work with him — THANK YOU!

  2. Bonjour Jachim,

    Lors des prochaines mises à jour est-il possible d’envisager une mise à jour (update) beaucoup plus simple – automatique comme le font la plupart des logiciels. Je trouve qu’il est fastidieux de toujours suivre une procédure manuelle qui n’est pas très simple au risque que cela ne fonctionne pas.

    A part cela je trouve votre logiciel superbe et j’encourage vivement les utilisateurs à participer financièrement à cette élaboration. Tout travail mérite salaire.

    Bien à vous.

    Didier de

    • Hi Didier,
      I see exactly what you mean. Yes, I have thought about this many times, it would technically be possible to do the update just by running one single script.

      However…. there is a major problem with this. The problem is that many users have various permissions set in various folders. So what could happen is that the update would not proceed correctly. Either it would completely fail (if the permissions for PHP are not “write”, it would not be able to overwrite or add the new files), or, which is even worse, in some folders it would upadte the files and in other folders it would not. This would lead to a complete mess and most likely non-functional site because some scripts would be updated and others not and they are not always compatible. And it would then be very difficult to make it working again because you would have to go one by one, checking which one worked and which one did not.

  3. Amazing!

    Firstly – Jachym – *thank you* for all your hard work on this, it is simply amazing the amount of things you have gotten done while working and getting your PhD!

    Second – thank you for including the menu group title/name functions … dumb question about this (and I haven’t yet dug into the CSS to check it out) is there a way to vertically align the name of the menublock with the action/menu button/icon?

    again – thanks for everything 🙂

    • Hi John,
      the problem with this is the menu action button uses absolute positioning. It is relatively complicated to explain, without including all the details of the code, but I know exactly what you mean, and I tried it as well, the problem is that it could cause problems with some blocks, it is all down to the fact that I as a developer have no clue which blocks you included and what is the column width. It is the width that is problematic because if the title was longer than the block width, if I placed it also with absolute positioning next to the menu action button, it could overflow and in absolute positioning it would overflow the block completely rather then creating a new line. Maybe something to try to figure out for version 11 🙂 But it is not something you can very easily adjust with just CSS.

      • Makes absolute sense (no pun intended) – I had not had time to review the CSS and I see what you mean

        No worries – it is still great … and its only a minor design thing 🙂

        Now to go find some time to rearrange the menublocks into logical groups and tweak the layout

  4. What a long way you’ve come from when i first started using Meteotemplate.
    I can now redesign my entire homepage and add or subtract plugins without knowing or changing any code.
    And you keep coming up with new features, blocks and plugins.
    Just fantastic!!

  5. Holy mother of many nights of coding!

    Just this email/post itself looks like it took a week to compose. ..

    I will be updating today/tomorrow and can feel a donation brewing up with the morning coffee. 🙂

    • LOL, thanks, dont worry, yes I do have time, but I spend all the rest of my time to work on Meteotemplate. But I always make sure I get my job and school tasks done first and sometimes it is possible to combine the two 🙂

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