Alfresco Community 3.4.a

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What's New in this Release

Add-ons (external deliverables to 3.4.a)

DocLib Portlet

The DocLib Portlet surfaces DM capabilities in portals via a Share based Document Library Portlet.

Web Quick Start

The Web Quick Start is a sample application built on the Alfresco platform. It provides an end-to-end WCM example with an authoring and publishing environment using Alfresco Share and a web application built using Spring MVC, Spring Surf, and OpenCMIS. The web site is delivered dynamically using Alfresco as a CMIS runtime.

The primary design goals of the Web Quick Start are to illustrate the power of the Alfresco platform in an easy-to-install package and to provide developers with a strong starting point for their Alfresco implementations. Both of these goals are fundamentally aimed at getting both business people and developers up and running with the Alfresco WCM platform in as short a time as possible. The Alfresco core product has not been changed in any way, just extended by plugging in content model, behaviours, and workflows using the many standard hooks provided by the Alfresco product.

Content Authoring

Alfresco Web Editor (AWE) Enhancements

Content creation and deletion

Additions to the AWE allow for new content to be created and for current content items to be deleted. The create process provides an additional marker icon that allows the user to effectivley "create another piece of content like this one". This provides a simple mechanism for non-technical users to create new content without the complexity of setting an attach point and content type.

AWE Freemarker support

The Web Quick Start provides an example of using the AWE with FreeMarker templates.

Share Enhancements

Redesigned and Extensible Header

The Share header bar has been redesigned to provide improved usability, better localization support and configuration based customization.

Advanced Search

New advanced search capabilities offer search forms for end users and extensive customization options for developers.

  • End users can search based on custom document types, aspects, and their properties.
  • Developers can define custom search screens for application-specfic searching using Forms

Advanced Workflow

Comprehensive workflow capabilities including:

  • Start workflows with/without attachments
  • Multiple task attachments
  • New Inbox Dashlet
    • Start Workflow, filter tasks by priority, due dates, personal & pooled tasks, and view & edit tasks actions
  • My Tasks Page Component
    • Filter tasks based on due dates, priorities, or assignee
    • Edit, view task, and workflow actions
    • Paging
  • View/Edit Tasks Details Pages
    • Due dates
    • Manage attachments
    • Progress status
    • Voting
    • Priorities
    • Parallel/Serial tasks
  • Workflow Details Page
    • Current task owner, due date, and status
  • Task History
    • Actioned by, outcome, event date/times, and comment history
  • Workflow Management - Workflows I've Started
    • Filter tasks based on due dates, when started, priorities, and workflow type
    • View and cancel workflows

Please see Custom Share Workflow UI for more details on the implemention and customization options.

User Status

  • Share your status with other users....what are you working on now?
    • User status information viewable by other users via users profile, site members lists and more.

Improved Options for Site Visibility

You can control which users can see public Sites to support an Extranet use case. For example, allowing public sites to be visible to employees but not external users. Refer to Site_Service_3.4 for more details.

Site create permissions

By default, any user can create Share Sites. It is possible to control who has permission to create sites by changing the permissions applied to the sites folder. Refer to Limiting site creation permissions for more detail

Replication Job Management

A new Share administration console component for creating and managing replication jobs including the transfer payload (folders and documents to transfer), repository server to transfer to (transfer target) and replication schedule.

See Replication for more details.

Forms Enhancements

Several enhancements have been made to the Forms Engine, including new controls, an enhanced association picker and new set templates. Refer to the Forms What's New section for more details.

Repository

Hibernate Removal

Since the first version of Alfresco, Hibernate has been used to provide the object-relational mapping and data access layer against the underlying relational database. Hibernate proved invaluable in enabling us to rapidly build the early versions of Alfresco.

As the size of Alfresco deployments has grown, it has become more important for Alfresco to control the interaction between the application and the underlying database to ensure this is optimized for our use cases. Alfresco started making use of Apache iBatis in 2008 and has gradually moved away from using Hibernate; in 3.4 the change has been completed. The approach provides us with a much greater level of control over the data access layer so we can ensure it continues to scale and support the very large repositories and enterprise deployments that Alfresco is increasingly seeing.

IMPORTANT
Developers are isolated from the implementation details of the data access layer. These changes do not affect the existing APIs, query capabilities or other features. There is no need to migrate existing customizations or extensions that use public Alfresco APIs.


Replication

The Replication Service is a new service introduced into Alfresco 3.4 to control Replication Jobs. Replication Jobs determine what needs to be replicated and when and then calls the Transfer Service introduced in Alfresco 3.3 to allow spaces (folders) and content to be automatically copied between distinct Alfresco repositories. Replication Jobs can be triggered according to a schedule, on-demand, or by actions.

Content replication is designed to assist geographically distributed deployments where performance may be affected by network latency or bandwidth limitations.

For content consumers replication provides:

  • Fast access by serving content from local servers
  • High availability - removes the single point of failure

For network administrators replication provides:

  • Reduced network overhead

By default, replicated content is read-only on the target repository. This ensures the integrity of the content is not compromised by uncontrolled updates. A option is provided in the Alfresco Share user interface for users to navigate to the content's source repository to make any updates.

For more detail, please visit Replication Service or Replication REST API details page.

Rating Service

A Rating Service has been added to the repository services. This service provides built-in content rating schemes and supports 3rd party developers in defining new schemes. It enables users to apply and retrieve various rating data to content. The Java Foundation API, the JavaScript API and the REST API for this service have been implemented. However UI extensions in Share have not yet been added. Please see Rating Service Wiki page for details.

Read Performance

Enhanced read permission evaluation performance in the form of a new method on the PermissionService called hasReadPermission. This is particularly beneficial for large results sets.

Release Notes

Please refer to Release Notes for more details.

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