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Delete "stuff" from CMS

The most important thing to remember about deleting in CMS is that deletion of pages or contents is not complete until you publish the change (a.k.a. publish the delete).

Delete a content element

To delete a content element from CMS,

  1. Use the Page module and select the page from the Pagetree where the content element is located
  2. Hover your mouse over the content element to delete
  3. Click the Delete  button that displays on hover
  4. Publish the content as usual

Delete a page

Warning: Deleting a page means that the page, all of the content elements in the page, and all sub-pages/contents will all be deleted. If you want to preserve the sub-pages or contents, you need to move them somewhere else and publish the move before deleting the page. In the Pagetree shown below, deleting the Content page will result in all 5 pages and all contents in all 5 pages to be deleted.

To delete a page element from CMS,

  1. Use the Page module
  2. Right-click the page to delete
  3. From the context menu, select Delete
  4. Publish the page as usual

Delete a file

Warning: unlike pages and contents, there is no undo file delete. If you accidentally delete a file, you should re-upload the file.

To delete a file from CMS,

  1. Use the Filelist module
  2. Browse to the file you want to delete, expanding the folders if necessary
  3. Click the file icon (appearance varies ) for the file to delete
  4. Select Delete  from the context menu that opens
  5. Click OK in the confirmation prompt

References to this record

CMS tracks when contents reference a record. For example, if there is a link to a page or file, or if an image is inserted in a page. The references may not operate how you expect:

  1. Only links to the original file will count. For example, if you insert a Text w/Images content element and include images in the Images tab, a reference is NOT created, because CMS makes a copy of the image for display in the page. Or, if you insert an image into the Rich Text Editor and use CMS to make the image smaller (i.e., a Magic Image instead of a Plain Image) a copy is also created and a reference is NOT recorded.

  2. Each edit to a content element that creates a reference--a content element that has a link to the file or page, for example--will create an additional reference. This is because of the way that CMS creates "versions."

    Imagine that instead of publishing a page to the Web, you were printing pages on a printer. Each time you "publish," or print, a new version--even when you don't change the inserted image or link--you re-print that image or link. So a new reference is created.

    In CMS, even if you delete (and publish) the content elements that link to the file or page, the reference count will not go to zero. This is because of the CMS "undo" feature, which enables you to un-delete contents later, so the reference still exists.

These two factors mean that you may find the references to be less than helpful indicators for whether it is safe to delete a file from the CMS filesystem. One method you could use, if you are not certain, is to rename a file, clear your site's branch cache, clear your browser cache, and then check the links on your site to make sure they still work. If they do, it is safe to delete the file.


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North Dakota State University
IT Help Desk: +1 (701) 231-8685
Physical address: IACC 206, 1320 Albrecht Blvd., Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 4530 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
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Last Updated: Thursday, November 14, 2013 4:05:33 PM