eXo Platform 4.1 released: real-time collaboration, add-ons and more
Overall, the main theme of eXo Platform 4.1 is real-time collaboration. While eXo Platform is already doing a great job at letting people engage and share, real-time communication is becoming essential to efficient collaboration workflows. With eXo Platform 4.1, you will enjoy three new features: notifications, chat and video calls.
Besides some much appreciated user experience improvements, eXo Platform 4.1 is introducing a new way to package and manage features, apps, integrations and customizations called add-ons.
Let’s go on a tour of the noteworthy changes in this new version.
You can now receive an email when your activity stream is updated:
Since we didn’t want to add to your already full mailbox, we added a preferences screen to let you decide what you want to receive instantly and what should go in a daily or weekly summary email:
The chat application provides instant messaging, chat rooms and great integration with other eXo Platform features, such as spaces, documents, wiki, calendar and answers:
Our diligent readers and community members already know that this app has been around for a while, but this new version look more native. We have revised the instant notifications and there is a very cute mini chat pop-up:
The chat application comes as an optional add-on and is now fully supported as part of an enterprise subscription.
Instant messaging is great, but sometimes speaking to the person face to face is faster and more efficient. The Video Calls add-on allows you to do just that. You can call anybody you see on the intranet with the new Call button, which appears when you move you mouse over any user photo:
When you have the chat application deployed, you can even create group calls from chat rooms:
The Video Calls is a paid add-on exclusively available to subscribed customers.
We’ve made it easier to create and edit events with a simple trick: suggesting the end date. All new events will have an end time preset to 1 hour after the start time. Also when you change the start time, we suggest an end date by preserving the duration:
Recurring events have also been improved to offer more options when you edit or remove a single instance of a series. You can now apply the change to a single event, all events or all the following events of the series:
A Better Editing Experience
We have upgraded our WYSIWYG editor to CKEditor 4. It’s very elegant and fits well with the eXo look and feel. But more importantly, it will offer a smoother and more pleasant editing experience for forums, answers and content management apps:
This new component allowed us to provide an improved UI for the inline edit feature. Now the edit controls will appear as a floating bar on top of the content:
Goodbye extension installer, hello add-ons manager. We have defined a very simple packaging format for extensions (as simple as zip) and we replaced the extension installer script by a more advanced one. The add-ons manager script can do a wider range of things:
- list compatible add-ons
- list installed add-ons
- install and uninstall an add-on
- update an add-on to the latest version
With more and more add-ons showing up in the add-ons center, it was becoming tricky to keep track of versions and compatibility. Fear no more, the add-ons manager knows which version is compatible with YOUR version of eXo Platform and will not let you install something incompatible.
So we have packaged some existing extensions as add-ons, such as ide, acme, cmis and crash, and new ones were added for chat and video calls. You can expect to see more add-ons from us when it make sense to make a feature optional rather than built in.
Get it Now!
There are more things to discover in this release, but for further details I recommend that you read the full release notes.
eXo Platform 4.1 is already being shipped to eXo subscribed customers and it is available as a free download to anyone. Get it from: https://community.exoplatform.com/downloads
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