Magento Frustrations

Magento seems like a very good e-commerce application and for the most part is pretty intuitive but the following may help for future reference:

Supported Payment Gateways
There is a list of the supported Payment Service Providers on the features page.

Back-End Address
The address for the back-end control panel is http://thedomain.tld/index.php/admin

Front-end Horizontal Menu
I wanted the horizontal top menu to display the product categories but spent some time working out that I needed to drag-and-drop the categories I had created onto the ‘Default Category’ which I subsequently renamed. I also need to change the settings on this default category to IsActive ‘Yes’ (think I may also have chosen ‘Footer Links’ too.

Three-column Product View
If you do not need the left column go to the Categroy and click the ‘Custom Design’ tab. For ‘Page Layout’ choose ‘2 Column with right bar’.

Change the main logo
System > Configuration > Design – there is a setting in there.

Removing unnecessary side panels

The side panels are nice but I needed to remove some that were not relevant in my case, such as the poll. To remove the poll CMS > Poll Manager and set the poll to closed.
Right now you’ll have to manually edit files in


to change the call outs on the right and left.
Also, part of the footer can be modified in footer.phtml which is located at


To remove the ‘Report All Bugs’ link at the footer add comments (see code block below) to /app/design/frontend/default/default/template/page/html/footer.phtml
With comments these can be re-enabled if necessary.

// echo $this->__(‘Help Us to Keep Magento Healthy’) ?> – //echo $this->__(‘Report All Bugs’) ?> //echo $this->__(‘(ver. %s)’, Mage::getVersion()) ?>

Magento Connect for new Extensions
When I first tried using this I received an error about write permissions. Using SSHexecute the following commands:

  1. cd
  2. find . -type d -exec chmod 777 {} \;
  3. chmod 666 downloader/config.ini

You should now be able to access the Magento Connect Manager. When you have finished the installation/upgrade, you should reset the permissions by executing the following SSH commands:

  1. find . -type d -exec chmod 755 {} \;
  2. find . -type f -exec chmod 644 {} \;
  3. chmod o+w var media app/etc/use_cache.ser

Some extensions (e.g. Protx) will not install without enabling the beta channel in Admin > Config > Magento Connec > Settings > Beta. Then install again, configure and test for bugs before deploying.

Styling the template / Adding a New Theme
To add a new theme visit the Magento website to get the Extension Key for the new module then use Magento Connect from your admin control panel providing the . For more details about the modern theme:
To enable the new theme System > Configuration > Design. In the Theme section type modern into each space and save. For the modern homepage go to CMS -> Manage Pages. Click on the Home Page. You’ll be in the General Information section. Under Content, put the following:

{{block type="core/template" template="sample/home.phtml"}}

You can either comment out what’s already there, or just remove it completely.Then go to Custom Design and set the Layout to 1 column.

Then if you would like to amend the actual default layout of the modern theme homepage edit the file:

Footer Links / CMS Pages
If you rename the About Us page from the default one which includes the word Magento you will also need to visit CMS > Static Blocks > Footer Links and change the HTML code there to the page name you used.

Product catalog 2 column-left layout
I had difficulty getting the left column working instead of the right column on my product catalog pages until discovering Catalog > Categories > MyCategory – ‘Custom Design’ tab and change the page layout yo ‘2 columns with left’.

Product Image Uploading
I had a problem when uploading images. I did not have a valid SSL certificate while setting the site up and needed to disable SSL in System > Config > Web > Secure.

SEF Urls and Mod_Rewrite
I needed to add a .htaccess file at the website root with the mod_write options described by Freddy at

Out of Stock bug
I had a product listed as ‘Out of Stock’ but wasn’t. The fix is available here.

Add Address to Contact Us form
Add a new static block for the address and phone number then manually edit the file:
More info here.

Language Localisation
For English (UK/Ireland) localisation get the files from and unpack into the magento installation. Enable the new langauage

Adding Footer and Top Links

To add a Home link to the footer menu: CMS > Static Blocks > Footer Links
To add a Home and Contact Us link to the top links edit the file:

and add links such as the one described here.

3 Responses to “Magento Frustrations”

  1. sales

    Very helpful! I've been beating y head against the wall with the modern theme; and you gave me a lot of answers in one posting! Thanks!


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