ELGG – Social Technology Software

    March 19, 2007

If you want to build out your own DIY social network, then you need to check out ELGG.

ELGG is a new open source social network software package that is available on source forge. We spent the last day and a half installing the software and playing with some of the mods and other goodies that come with the software.

Good parts about this is that it is fairly easy to install, there are some mods we had to make to the SuSe Linux that we were installing it on.

There is a mod in the httpd.conf file to add the .htaccess used by ELGG (documented on site) and then we had to modify the apache2.conf file to use mod_rewrite. Once those two mods were done, the system came up with no problems with using the system.

Overall, for a .7 product it has some neat features, and as it gets more mature and more modules are added, it should be a strong product in the longer run when the get to a 1.0 release.

It is a cool chunk of software to be using, has some really mature features, like the privacy and use polices. It defaults to a copyright policy of "this web site does not want to own anything you put up". The registration process is really easy, and has support for Google Ads and Analytics by mod or simple file hack.

Support is good, when we asked a question, we got an answer back within 24 hours, that actually made sense and helped us set up the software. Our major problems were with setting up mod rewrite in the SuSE apache configuration. They did not have anything specific for SuSE (and we forwarded our information to them, so now they do) and that is what made the install pause with the support group.

We spent probably 6 hours installing and tweaking the software in total, and have a functioning social networking site that is open to public beta (in case anyone is interested) to stress out the system (server, components, site).

There are a lot of uses for this software, especially building a community around a web site, better than blog comments, it allows that Web 3.0 social integration features where you can determine friends by degrees, and share community interests or personal social interests.

Overall, if you are interested in a DIY Social Network software package, ELGG is well worth looking at.