TUTORIAL. How to customize a journal with overrides. - note, not a tutorial ON overrides. Just how to install a layout.
FIRST. Find your overrides; determine what kind of layout they are and if they're installable on IJ. This tutorial is on S1 layouts; if you have S2, I will do one later if there is a need.
SECOND. Log into your journal. Go to your profile and make sure you have a website defined. You need to have a website defined because that's how the new header (and new navigation links) show up. If you're having trouble getting those to show up, make sure you have a website. If you don't want anything, just put http:// and that works to. Or just insanejournal.com.
This is the worksafe sidebar. Go to "Customize Journal" or to the link above.
Parts of Installation
BASIC TAB This takes you to the basic display page. You should see something like this:
You can enter your journal titles here; you don't need to if there's <TITLE> in your GLOBAL_HEAD in the overrides.
This is also where you select S1 or S2. For now, click S1 and Save Changes.
LOOK AND FEEL TAB
The first part is your layouts. Your default setting should be "Default Insanejournal" for everything. I don't like this layout. I am working on overrides for other layouts, but for right now, select Generator (or whatever your overrides are but the rest of the tutorial doesn't matter what kind, mostly).
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This is where you select your colors. If you're just going with the default layout, you can select from one of the premade layouts. If you are using an override, most layout makers will tell you if you need default colors and which ones to keep. Sometimes they need to have weak-text or something, but generally (for my layouts at least) I need them all blank. You can select colors like this, or just put in your hex code. Or clear it completely like I have.
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This is where you select your mood theme. I hate them, so I select NONE and "force this on your friends". It doesn't get rid of the actual mood, just the bouncy or gross cartoon next to it. You can do what you like!
CUSTOM TAB This is the place where you will put your overrides.
Once you have edited your overrides (i.e. changed USERNAME to your desired username and followed the instructions of the layout maker) this is where you paste them. Put them in the box and click Save Changes.
ADVANCED TAB This is for if you have a paid layout. I will do a tutorial on this. But for now, ignore it.
Once you've pasted in your overrides, check your journal. Click My Writings and Friends and Calendar, make sure all the links work right. If they don't, go to the layout post and ask your questions. First, definitely make sure your website is defined!
Some good practices to have: Make sure to upload the pictures provided to your own server. Tinypic is good, but does not always suffice. A personal photobucket is always best. Hotlinking is a definite No No. Don't be afraid to fiddle. Save your "working" layout and then change the size of things and stuff. Some layout makers leave instructions (the stuff between /*these*/) telling people what the CSS bits do. If you make something go wonky, just ctrl-z it or start over with your saved working layout. Careful not to save over it! Always credit! Please do, especially if makers ask. It's not really for pride reasons (not ALL of it at least) but mostly so people know where to look for other layouts. Don't be afraid to ask questions!