It was Christmas time, you were out getting ready for the holiday or end-of-year parties, and you might have missed some of the new features of SP15.
So I wanted to take a few minutes to outline some of the new capabilities. In subsequent weblogs over the next 2 weeks, we will take a more-detailed look at some of the individual features, providing code samples or examples of how to use them.
In SP14, the main new features were the ones for implementing an external-facing portal: Navigation and Framework tag libraries, light framework page, short (hashed) URLs, quick links and navigation cache.
In SP15, we focus more on content creation and reporting. Here they are:
Content Reports from the Support Platform: This is technically not even a portal feature, but is of use to portal administrations.
The Support Platform — a separate J2EE application that enables you to run “plug-ins” (Java programs) — is designed for conducting tests or creating reports of your SAP NetWeaver Application Server — Java system.
The Support Platform was officially released in SP13, and in SP15 comes with a set of nine portal reports. For example, one report enables you to display all portal objects that were changed in a specific folder during a specified time period. Another shows broken delta links, while another shows content that has not been assigned to a role.
Namespaces: The portal provides a mechanism for controlling what namespace (also known as object ID prefixes) an administrator can use when creating or modifying an object.
Generally, the field is a simple textbox, and the administrator can type in any namespace. You can turn the feature on and, instead, the portal displays a dropdown list of the valid namespaces for this administrator. The list can be based on the current administrator or the location of the object in the Portal Catalog.
XML Content and Actions (also known as Generic Creator): Always popular, this feature enables you to automate the creation of content, even thousands of portal objects in complex hierarchies, by simply uploading an XML file.
What’s new in SP15? You can now create an XML file based on existing content, and create the same content elsewhere in the same portal. Or you can use this exported XML as a template for creating new objects.
The tool also has some additional handlers for creating new types of objects, or for performing new actions, such as creating system aliases or launching another script from the current script. Though they were added in SP13, you might not be aware of them.
Portal Activity Report: A few tweaks to this feature make it much easier to set up and use. You no longer have to deploy the aggregation application — it is integrated into the data collection service, which is now started automatically.
There are new reports, many having to do with portal users and the content they visited. And the user interface for creating a Portal Activity Report iView has been reorganized and streamlined.
iView Tray Color: This might be the prettiest of the features. You can now assign a type (called a Family) to an iView, and then assign a color to each family so that the color of each iView tray reflects the type of iView.
For example, you can assign blue to Global content and red to National content. Any iView assigned to the Global family is displayed with a blue iView tray and any iView assigned to the National family is displayed with a red iView tray.
This is supported with the creation of two new tags in the Layout tag library.
For more information about the SP15 features, see the release notes.
Over the next two weeks, I will describe in greater detail several of the above features.