The difference between Feed Display and Syndication in Joomla

If you're just starting out using Joomla, some concepts can be a bit confusing.

For instance, what is the difference between the Feed Display module and the Syndication module? What do I use them for?


The two modules are in fact very different, but they both have to do with news feeds, or web feeds as they sometimes are called.

This is the definition of a web feed, according to Wikipedia:

A web feed (or news feed) is a data format used for providing users with frequently updated content. Content distributors syndicate a web feed, thereby allowing users to subscribe to it. Making a collection of web feeds accessible in one spot is known as aggregation, which is performed by an Internet aggregator. A web feed is also sometimes referred to as a syndicated feed.

Syndication (mod_syndicate)

The Joomla definition of the Syndication module is:

Smart Syndication Module that creates a Syndicated Feed for the page where the Module is displayed.

This means that if you assign this module to a module position in your template, the user can subscribe to an RSS feed of the page content. Obviously, it makes most sense to use this on a blog layout.

When you activate syndication for a page, the RSS icon will appear in the address bar of most modern browsers. The user can click on the icon and be directed to your feed. For instance, the RSS feed URL for my front page is:

You can choose between RSS or Atom feeds. Which one you use is up to you, most browsers and readers support both.

Feed Display (mod_feed)

The Joomla definition of the Feed Display module is:

This Module allows the displaying of a syndicated feed.

As you can see, this is a way of displaying the results from a web feed on your own site. This means that you can display the latest news etc from another pageon your own page. You can decide how many items to show (the feed may have a limited number of items already), if you want to show the feed description and image, and a few more settings you can play with.

These are the settings for the Feed Display module:

  • Feed url
    The complete URL to the web feed
  • RTL feed
    If the feed is presented in a language which is displayed from right to left, apply this setting.
  • Feed Title
    Check "Yes" of you want to display the title of the feed itself above the items
  • Feed Description
    Check "Yes" of you want to display the descriptive text from the feed itself above the items
  • Feed Image
    Some feed have an image you can display alongside the title and description, or alone.
  • Items
    Enter the number of items to display from the feed
  • Item Description
    If you want to include part of each item, check "Yes"
  • Word Count
    Enter a number to control how much text will be included in the item description.

I hope you now have a better understanding of the difference between these two Joomla modules and the use of them.


Read 22229 times Originally published on Monday, 06 July 2009 00:00
Last modified on Wednesday, 13 May 2015 23:16
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