Knowledge Base

Product Terms (Glossary)

Last Modified:
24 Feb 2020
User Level:

The following is a list of product terms used in TERMINALFOUR.


The Base HREF forms the Channel's published URL and is used for linking between Microsites and Channels. It should be the absolute URL to the site.

  • If the published Channel is, the Base HREF would be
  • If the published Channel is, the Base HREF would be

Learn more about Channels and Base HREF


Since Sections are organized in a folder-like hierarchy, a Child Section is placed inside a Parent Section. A Branch includes both the Parent and Child Sections. When we publish content, we can decide to publish just a selected Section or the entire Branch.  Mirror all or part of the Site Structure, we are applying those actions to the selected Branch rather than just the Section.

Learn more about Branches and Sections


Categories are folders which organize the contents of your Media Library. Child Categories can be created inside Categories to provide even more refined management of your Media Items. As well as a useful organizational tool, Categories can also restrict access to Media Items.

Learn more about the Media Library


A Channel determines where your Content publishes to and how it will be presented. For instance, the same Content could be published to two Channels – a webpage and a PDF. While the Content may be the same, the destination, format and appearance would be different for each of the Channels.

Learn more about Channels

Content Element

A Content Element is an individual form field, such as a text input box, drop-down list or a check-box, that a user can input and edit. This is the basic building block of content. For example, if you were to create a news article for your website, you might add the article's title text into a Content Element named 'Article Title'. 

Learn more about Content Types

Content Item

A Content Item is a populated instance of a Content Type. For example, a "News Article" Content Type might require an article title, article body and an image. A news Content Item would correspond to a single article that has some or all of these elements:

  • Content Item
    • Content Type
      • Article Title (Content Element): It's snowing! 
      • Article Body (Content Element): It really is snowing...
      • Image (Content Element): snow.jpg

Learn more about Content.

Content Layout

The Content Layout determines how Content will be presented when it is published. A single Content Type can have more than one Content Layout associated with it. This is useful if, for instance, we require Content to be published on multiple websites or in different formats.

For example, we might want a news article to be published on our website and within an RSS feed. In this case, we can create an HTML Content Layout for how the article appears on the website and one for the RSS feed. While the same Content will be published in both, the structure and appearance will be different.

Content Layouts do not have to include all Content Type elements used in the Content Layout; we could just use the title of the news article and its image but omit the main body text.

Learn more about Content Types

Content Owner

A Content Owner can be specified for the Content Items in a Section or Branch or an individual Content Item. A Content Owner will receive a notification when the Content Item they own requires a review or has expired. More granular Content Owner notifications can be specified in a Workflow.

Learn more about Content Owners

Content Type

A Content Type is the structure of a Content Item. For example, a Content Type for news articles would require an article title, article body text and an image. In TERMINALFOUR, each of these elements would be called a Content Type Element and together they would form a Content Type we could call "News Article".

Learn more about Content Types.

Data Object

A Data Object refers to content that originates outside of TERMINALFOUR but which can be incorporated into a published site. External data sources include databases, RSS feeds or CSV files.

Learn more about Data Objects

Direct Edit

Direct Edit allows users to edit the content on a webpage exactly as it appears when published on the site. This lets users see their changes in context and is especially useful for those users who may not be familiar with the TERMINALFOUR interface. Direct Edit makes content editing as easy as editing a Word document.

Learn more about Direct Edit

External Content Syncer

The External Content Syncer is used to import and update Content from an external data source such as a database or a CSV File. External content elements can be mapped to the Content Type Elements in a particular Content Type.

Regular Content Syncing can be scheduled or triggered manually. Once synced with TERMINALFOUR, the Content can then be edited (although changes will not be made to the external data)

Learn more about the External Content Syncer


Fulltext is a method of linking two Content Layouts of the same Content Type together. This is typically used when linking from a single listed item to a page with more detail on the item. The first Content Layout may feature just a "Title" Content Element while the second may feature more Content Items. 

Learn more about fulltext

Group Management

Access Rights determine what Users can view and modify in TERMINALFOUR and are granted to individual Users or multiple users at once with Groups. A benefit of using Groups is that a System Administrator can define its Access Rights and all users added to that Group will inherit them. This makes it unnecessary to define Access Rights on a per-user basis.

Learn more about Access Rights


When more than one language has been set up in TERMINALFOUR, users can switch the languages using the Languages drop-down button in the Header of the interface. When a language is selected, the user will see a duplicate of the Site Structure highlighting all Sections that require translation.

Learn more about Languages


A List is a group of predefined items that, when used in a Content Type, allows a user to select one or more of them as an option. For example, if you wanted your news articles to be categorized as 'Sport', 'Weather' and 'Current Affairs', you would create a List with these three labels and add it to a 'News Article' Content Type. When a new article is created, the user will select one (or more) of the categories. News Articles can then be filtered so the Weather News pages will only list news articles that have the category 'Weather'.

Learn more about Lists

Media Content Layout

A Media Content Layout is a Content Layout that is associated with the Media System Content Type. With the Media Content Layout you can determine how a Media Item will be formatted when it is published.

Learn more about Media Content Type and Layouts

Media Item

A Media Item can be an image, multimedia, document (e.g., PDF or MS Office file) or a web development file such as JavaScript or stylesheets that are uploaded to the Media Library. Media Items can be used on pages in a single or on multiple sites. If a Media Item is modified in the Media Library, all published instances of it will be updated.

Learn more about Media


If you manage a large website, you might want parts of it to publish differently to the rest of the site. For example, while content may not be updated regularly for the majority of your site, areas such as 'Latest News' will be published on a faster schedule. Since publishing entire large sites can take time, a Microsite can be created that will publish just the 'Latest News' Section.

Learn more about Microsites

Navigation Objects

Depending on the Navigation Object you have selected, it will perform one of two functions:

  • create link menus such as main navigation, breadcrumbs and sitemaps to orient users on your site
  • aggregate content from across one or more Branches of a site

Navigation Objects can be used in Page Layouts, Content Layouts or Content Types.

Learn more about Navigation Objects


A Package can be used to migrate system assets to or from different TERMINALFOUR instances. Packages can be created from specific Channels, Branches, Groups or Media and, once created, can be accessed via the TERMINALFOUR interface or downloaded as a zip file.

Learn more about Packages

Page Layout

Page Layouts provide a consistent structure and style to multiple pages on your website. When creating a Page Layout for an HTML page you add custom Header code (the head element and opening body tag so might contain the logo image, meta tags, links to stylesheets, etc.) and the Footer code (footer element, closing body and HTML tags so might contain the copyright notice, footer links and links to JavaScript). When the Page Layout is modified, all pages that use it will be updated.

For example, if you remove the logo from the Header code in the Page Layout, this change will be reflected on all pages that use this Page Layout.

Learn more about Page Layouts

Programmable Layouts

Programmable Layouts are used with Content Type Layouts and Page Layouts to extend their dynamic capability beyond T4 Tags and are written with server-side JavaScript which executes on Publish.

Using a Programmable Layout you can output Content or adapt layouts with conditional logic. For example, you may want all pages to display your logo apart from those in a specific Section where a different logo might be used. A Programmable Layout could be used to determine the Section that the Page Layout is used in and display the specified logo.

Learn more about Programmable Layouts


When a Section is published, all Content is output in the style and to the location specified by the Channel.

For example, when I publish a news article, the location (e.g. web server) and the layout of the Content will already be configured in the Channel.

Learn more about Publishing


Sections correspond to the pages and directories in a website and, like a website folder structure, are arranged hierarchically (folders inside folders). Each Section is made up of Content (inside Content Types) and a Page Layout. When published, a Section will output a webpage.

For example, a website might be made up of a Root Section and two Child Sections, – 'News' and 'Services'. Each Section corresponds to a page on the published website:


Learn more about Sections

T4 Tags

T4 Tags are content placeholders that you add to your markup. They are populated with content on publish. T4 Tags are very versatile, so, in addition to content, they can also output Media Library items, Navigation Objects, Channel information and Section metadata.

Like HTML markup, attributes can be added to T4 Tags to refine the format of the published content.

Learn more about T4 Tags

Transfer to Live

A Channel can publish to a server other than the CMS server using Transfer to Live. Transfers can be scheduled or manually triggered and can be configured using FTP, FTPS, SFTP or SCP.

Learn more about Transfer to Live


A User is anyone who is authenticated within TERMINALFOUR and, depending on the privileges granted by their Role, can view, edit and create content. When a new User is created, they are assigned a unique username and password within TERMINALFOUR.

Single sign-on through directory services such as LDAP, SAML, Kerberos and CAS is also supported.

Each User has a Role which determines what they can do:

  • Visitor
    • can authenticate to view restricted content, e.g., staff intranet
  • Contributor
    • add, edit and delete content
  • Moderator
    • same as Contributor, but can also Approve and Publish
  • Power User
    • same as Moderator, but can also create Page and Content Layouts, Content Types, Navigation Objects and assign and create new users
  • Administrator
    • same as Power User, but can also configure the system and manage publishing

Learn more about User Management


Workflows define the approval process associated with content. A Workflow can be created to be accessible only by particular groups. This enables different sections within the same organization to use their own workflows without interfering with each other.

Learn more about Workflows

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