Thursday, 18 November 2010
It's been a little over a week since the WebCMS was upgraded to the very latest version (Squiz MySource Matrix 3.28.5). Whilst we had some initial issues to resolve on Tuesday (9th) and Wednesday (10th) we happy to report that all issues have been resolved and the upgrade project is now complete.
One of the issues we face when upgrading the Production WebCMS is that we are not afforded the luxury of having a significant outage like many of our other primary systems do, rather we need to perform the upgrades in-situ and keep the ECU Website operational. It was this requirement that caused us so many issues last week and consequently led to the extra day delay in restoring authoring access and a significantly slower website over the two day period. Having never performed an upgrade on the WebCMS infrastructure before, all three parties (Corporate Web Team, ITSC, and Squiz) certainly developed a comprehensive list of lessons learnt which we apply in the future.
This version of the WebCMS engine brings many exciting new improvements. The biggest ones we are excited about are:
Easy Edit Suite
The Easy Edit Suite is aimed at non technical or occasional editors who don’t need the massive power and flexibility of the Administration Interface which is intended for the "power" users. Squiz.com.au
We feel that many authors are going to appreciate the fresh new look and ease of use this new editing interface brings. We will start developing a customised training package for this new interface in the new year but we expect that most people will not need it. Squiz has developed a comprehensive and easy to use online manual to support the new EES interface which we believe will be enough. You can view the online manual on the Squiz website.
We encourage all web authors to give the Easy Edit Suite a go. We would prefer you have a 'play', ie creating dummy pages, practice editing, deleting, linking, uploading new files, in the WebCMS QA (http://wwwdev.ecu.edu.au) environment. Simply start by navigating to a page that you have authoring access to in the QA environment and append '/_edit' to the URL in the same way you would append '/_admin' if accessing the administrative back-end. We've even added a bright red bar to the QA environment to make them easier to tell apart.
Once you are confident in using the Easy Edit Suite you can use it in the live website right now. Simply append '/_edit' to any standard page you have rights to edit. We will be training the CMO account assistants next week some time so that they will be able to assist their clients with any questions.
Many authors have already noticed and reported significant performance improvements in both the front-end and back-end performance of the WebCMS. Slow performance has been a long standing issue with the WebCMS that the Corporate Web Team and ITSC have been working on and we still have some way to go. We took the upgrade opportunity to apply some improvements which have helped in both areas.
Authors are now able to add a new 'DIV' and delete existing ones whilst editing in safe-edit mode. Many authors were frustrated in the past by this lack of functionality.
Improvements have been made to the HIPO. Authors will now see more incremental progress when trying to acquire locks on large assets, or publishing content.
If you have any questions or issues please direct them to the Web Business Manager.