Differences between out-of-the-box and custom themes

You can use the out-of-the-box Theming Tool or create custom themes, but you should understand the differences and upgrade risks between the out-of-the-box and custom themes.

We strongly recommend that you use the out-of-the-box Theming Tool whenever possible due to upgrade risks when using Soy or FreeMarker themes. Alternatively, you can engage our professional service team to help you develop a custom theme if you don't want to do it yourself. Ask your Jive Software account representative about this service. For more information about the Theming Tool, see Theming community.

Out-of-the-box Theming Tool

The application includes an out-of-the-box Theming Tool available to community managers and users with Customize Site permissions. Those users can see the Themes option in their user menu in the upper right corner of the user interface.

The Theming Tool allows you to quickly customize your site with your organization's unique colors, logo, and fonts, or use one of the predefined themes included with Jive. You can also export and import themes to back up, share, and transfer themes to other Jive communities by using the Theming Tool. These themes are upgrade-safe for future versions of the application. For more information, see Using predefined themes, Exporting themes, and Importing themes under Theming community.

Custom themes in Soy or FreeMarker

The application also allows you to develop and deploy your own custom themes by using Soy or FreeMarker. Note that by deploying Soy and FreeMarker themes, you modify the application's underlying page templates. Doing so can make application upgrades extremely time-consuming and resource-intensive. At Jive Software, we have observed that customers who deploy Soy and FreeMarker themes often experience difficult upgrades due their custom themes. For more information, see Developing custom themes.

If you want a custom theme but don't want to develop it yourself, you can have Jive Software's professional services team do it for you. Ask your Jive account representative about this service.