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Transitioning to Version 5

Version 5 is a response to input from our users, who wanted easier and more flexible site design, and a great selection of more modern website themes. Consequently, much of the Version 5 release is focused on the introduction of a new CMS or content management system.

A CMS, or website builder as it is also known, is a module used to set up and customize website pages. Wild Apricot’s new CMS represents a complete redesign of the entire site setup process.

In addition, there are a number of other improvements, including several enhancements to the events module. A summary of the changes and enhancements appears below. 

What's new

Page layout

  • Page layout is now inherited from page templates, rather than the website theme
  • Pages can be based on different page templates
  • Pages templates are modified using the same tools as you use for page design
  • Page templates can include content which is also inherited by pages that use that template
  • Page headers and footers (including logos) are now defined as part of page templates
  • Page templates inherit their layout from master layouts
  • Master layouts are theme-specific and can be modified through theme overrides
  • Master layouts provide a broad outline of a page, along with graphic elements that define the theme

Page management

  • Page management and page design now take place on the same screen – Site pages
  • Page access restrictions are now set as part of page settings
  • Page settings can also be used to set the position of the page within the site menu
  • A page can now be publicly accessible without being displayed as part of the site menu
  • Page order can also be set via drag and drop from the new Reorder pages screen
  • Any page can be made the home page by dragging it to the top of the page list
  • The limit on menu sublevels has been removed
  • Each time you make a change to a page or a page template, a separate version is saved
  • You can view the previous versions of any page or page template, and restore any version
  • Deleted pages are now moved to the trash, instead of being completely removed
  • From the trash, you can view deleted pages and templates, and restore them or empty the trash
  • A copy of the page or page template you are editing is saved every 10 seconds, so you can resume your work if your browser crashes before you have a chance to save your changes

Page design

  • All pages can now combine a mix of static content – what appeared on content pages – and dynamic functionality – what appeared on functional pages
  • All content is now added as gadgets
  • Functional pages have been replaced by corresponding gadgets
  • Static content – e.g. text and graphics – is added as a content gadget
  • New gadgets have been added to display Google maps, slideshows, sitemaps, and social media links, among other new functionality
  • The behavior and appearance of most gadgets is controlled through gadget settings
  • To provide control over the positioning of gadgets, you can insert layouts to create sections consisting of multiple rows and columns
  • You can add any number of layouts to a page or page template
  • Gadgets are dragged and dropped into, above, or below layout cells
  • Layouts also have settings that you can modify to control its appearance (e.g. background color or image)
  • System pages that perform routine functions such as authentication and event registration can now be customized

Content editor

  • Content gadgets are modified using the content editor, which is also used to edit emails and event descriptions
  • You can use layers to provide even more control over positioning of content
  • Links can be formatted as buttons, not just text or graphics
  • Text styles and text formatting can be copied to paragraphs or selected text
  • Enhanced HTML editor now features line numbers, autocomplete, and tag matching, while retaining code structure and indenting

Advanced customization

  • The Colors and styles screen has been completely reorganized and simplified
  • Through the Colors and styles screen, you can set a background color or image for your entire site, or for sections within the site
  • Through theme overrides, you can customize the available gadgets and add your own

Website themes

  • Several new website themes, with a more modern look and feel, have been added
  • The Whitespace theme set features simple, clean layouts that makes it a good starting point for total site customizations
  • New themes can be made more scalable – aka responsive – on mobile devices
  • Switching themes – even to older themes – involves permanent changes to your site pages, which cannot be undone simply by switching back to the previous theme

Non-CMS changes

  • You can now jump to most admin screens simply by selecting a pull-down menu option
  • Options previously found only under Settings can now be found under the appropriate menu
  • You can now set up events and accept registrations without having to set up a publicly accessible events calendar
  • A URL is now available for each event that you can copy and share through social media or email
  • Access to events can now be restricted by membership level or member group, or limited to administrators only
  • You can now choose which common fields appear on the registration form for each event
  • You can now archive a filtered list of contacts from the Contacts module
  • The Settings / Authorization required message is now a fully customizable system page

What's been renamed

Previous name

New name



Custom report layouts

Search result layouts

Donation form option

Donation fields option

File management


Insert document

Insert file

Member ID

User ID

Picture icon

Image icon

What's been removed

  • Distinction between functional and content pages – all pages can now display both static content and dynamic functionality
  • Restricted access section pages – page access is now a page setting
  • Site setup wizard
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