Netgate Blog

Something more elegant...

Well, after there was not too much love for my last theme I tried to do something more masscompatible this time trying to take all the critics in consideration that I earned so far:

  • less colorful, stick with the original pfSense-colors (grey/red)
  • don’t waste too much space for the header/footer
  • kind of corporate look
  • static menu, that doesn’t scroll away (I guess that at least was something everybody liked about the hackathon theme)
  • more lightweight on graphics

So here is what I came up with so far. This is still in the making so (like always) your feedback is appreciated and might influence the final result.

Update 1:

I worked on some bits so here’s an updated screenshot for you.

  • Menutext changed to white
  • Who needs a footer anyway? Found a way to present the copyright information without getting into the way with content. Netbookusers will love it ;-)
  • Made the alerter a bit less “agressive” (it’s showing notices too, not only “end of the world alerts”)

So there is one thing left: changing the alerter completely and displaying the hostname at the same time. I have looked into this and it is only a minor code change in PHP, however all other themes need some css-fixing then as the hostname gets out of place when the alerter is displayed. Not sure if we want to do that and if so, if this will be a change that only would affect the 2.0 branch or gets backported to 1.2.x as well (as the themes that are in 1.2.x are a bit different from the themes in 2.0 css-wise).

Stay tuned, we are not there yet…

Update 2:

Lots of small changes on lots of elements that you probably will only notice when comparing older screenshots…

Here’s a screeny with alerter

and one without.

Update 3:

Tonight I worked out lots of browser- and os-compatibility issues. It now looks the same on all the browsers that I have tested so far (Firefox, Opera, Safari and I got reports on IE and Chrome too). Also tweaked some fontsizes again and added a shadoweffect to the dropdownmenus. Only some 2.0 specific things left open and maybe redoing the alerter as this seems to be a frequent request in the comments.

Screenshot here.

Update 4:

Guys, we listen closely to all your suggestions and there are some news especially on the alerter topic: Erik Kristensen, the original author of the themesupport in pfSense just rejoined the team after being away for a few years. I already had some discussions regarding the alerter and other theme topics with him. Atm it looks like the theme will come to the 1.2.x-branch like shown on the screenshots (no alerter change for this version) though we won’t make it the defaut theme for now but it probably will be part of the 1.2.3 release.

However for 2.0 (and here comes the great news) Erik will work on improving the theme support as well as on a new alert system. We already have some great ideas for this:

  • different levels of alerts e.g. critical, notice,…and maybe different treatments of these alerts
  • being able to not only display alerts locally in the webgui but to email them, maybe even growl them away or whatever might be useful
  • alerts dashboard widget
  • different presentation of alerts in the webgui (looks like the scroller is anoying too many people)

Like always: keep the comments comming. We already got some good suggestions from you here :-)

Update 5:

Perry has added the theme to the Fit123 package (thank you Perry!). It’s pretty final (at least for the 1.2.x branch). Please note that you will get some other addons by installing this package, so have a look at the package description before bumping the install button.