On June 30 Colligo held a live webinar entitled “Supercharge Your SharePoint Deployment With The New Colligo Contributor 4.0”. Our VP of Development, Dave Foster, gave an extensive demo, which seemed to be very well received judging from the comments. You can view a replay of the webinar, request additional information, and sign up for a free trial of Contributor 4,0 at the webinar resource center.
Colligo Contributor 4.0 is scheduled for release the week of July 13th, 2009. For a list of features, please read the press release.
The webinar spawned a lot of interesting questions. Unfortunately, due to the overwhelming number that attendees posted, we were not able to answer all of them live. So, below are the answers to those questions that didn’t get answered. Please feel free to post comments with additional questions and we will answer them here.
Q: Can you provide some information on how release 4 integrates with SharePoint calendars with custom fields?
A: Like SharePoint libraries and lists, Calendar lists can be synchronized into Contributor’s local cache. Contributor displays Calendars as a line oriented item list and not in a calendar or tabular format. As with other lists Contributor will synchronize the full list definition including any additional fields which have been configured.
Q: Is it also possible to add a File not just a link directly from SharePoint to an email to external recipients?
A: The standard interfaces provided in Contributor enable a simple drag and drop of a file from the Contributor interface into a draft email. This can be attached as a regular file. A new feature in R4 in the Outlook Addin product is the ability to manage attachments. This feature gives an additional method to simply browse to a file in the local cache and add it as either as a file or URL into a draft email. The Colligo Attachment Rules engine, which is used to determine if the attachments must be sent as SharePoint links, uses maximum combined attachment size to limit attachments. This rule engine is an open interface and, using the Contributor SDK, can be customized to any business logic an organization requires including examining the recipient list to determine if there are external addresses.
Q: Does the Explorer interface support CTRL+C and CTRL+V functionality?
A: The File Manager in R4 does not currently support these keyboard commands but we are investigating this feature for future releases.
Q: Does Colligo 4.0 work with Infopath Forms we have developed and does it synchronize them to the server?
A: Yes, Colligo Contributor has support for InfoPath forms, including offline access to form templates. There may be, however, conditions and restrictions which need to be managed depending on your forms and configuration.
Q: Will it be possible to add cascading listboxes (linked listboxes) in the metadata dialog?
A: The standard metadata editor does not support cascading listboxes, however, a custom metadata editor can be developed using the Contributor SDK. Design implications regarding the source of the list data, offline availability, etc. should be considered and further information is available through our developer support program and on our support site.
Q: Does Colligo support default views based on folder content types?
A: Colligo currently supports library and list default views.
Q: Does Colligo support folder level customized “New” buttons?
A: Colligo currently supports the default library “New” button and displays all of the available content types.
Q: Will Colligo 4.0 be a free upgrade or will there be any upgrade cost for existing/recent 3.2 users?
A: That depends on whether your maintenance and support is current. If so, you will likely receive a free upgrade. Colligo will be offering a number of upgrade programs for existing customers which will be announced shortly. Contact your Colligo Sales representative (or email firstname.lastname@example.org) for further information.
Q: In what areas are Colligo v4 stronger than the upcoming Groove-feature in SP-2010?
Q: How do you differentiate yourself from the upcoming SharePoint Workspace release?
Q: With the repositioning of Groove as the ‘Sharepoint Workspace’, how will Colligo provide value above and beyond the features of the ‘new Groove’?
A: Unfortunately at this time, until the features of Office and SharePoint 2010 are finalized and made publicly available, we are unable to give a detailed response. However we can say that as a Microsoft Gold Certified partner, Colligo is working closely with the Office and SharePoint teams to ensure we provide features that enhance Office and SharePoint 2010.
Q: Can you schedule times where Colligo will go into a specific mailbox and move all e-mails in that mailbox to a specific folder in SharePoint?
A: The Colligo Outlook Addin will upload to SharePoint any emails deposited in one of its managed folders. Outlook or Exchange rules can be used to move emails into these Colligo managed outlook folders. Colligo will then move all emails in that folder to the corresponding SharePoint folder, automatically extracting email metadata and, using the Contributor default folder level metadata feature, additional fields can be set.
Q: Is the drag and drop option available in the standard version of Colligo Contributor (Not Pro)?
A: Yes, folder level drag and drop will be available in each of the Client, Outlook Addin and File manager interfaces.
Q: Are there any limitations with large SharePoint sites syncing with Colligo?
A: Contributor does not impose any limitations on the amount of content that can be synchronized to a users PC, however, there are a number of factors which will impact user experience including available resources (disk, network, etc.), site complexity (number of libraries, lists, folders and items) and content volatility (size of each item, its metadata and frequency of update). All of these will affect performance and may be different in each installation.
Q: Does the 4.0 version allow you to display sub-sites under the parent site?
A: Colligo R4 is based on connections at a single site level. Each site or sub-site has to be individually connected.
Q: When will this new version be available?
A: Colligo R4 is scheduled to be available during the week of July 13th. Upgrade information for existing customers will be available at that time.
Q: Is it possible to add an https SharePoint URL as a link?
A: Yes, Contributor uses the same links as it accessing the SharePoint site for synchronization. If the site is accessed through https then that link protocol prefix will be specified in the URL.
Q: Does Colligo offer any client side encryption?
A: Yes, Colligo Contributor supports the use of Windows Encrypting File System (EFS). In addition, all file based content is stored in native Windows file format in an open directory structure enabling other security technologies to be deployed.
Q: Does Colligo Contributor also work with other servers besides Sharepoint (e.g. Alfresco Share that supports the same server program interfaces and thus should be transparent for Colligo)?
A: Colligo has not performed an integration and verification with this particular product or other non-SharePoint services. We will certainly add this to the list of potential features we may offer in future releases.
Q: Does the SharePoint attachment management system work if the recipient of the email is external to the SharePoint system?
A: The Colligo attachment manager facilitates the uploading of attachments to SharePoint sites. Out-of-the-box, it does not discriminate between internal and external email addresses. However, the attachment manager includes a rules engine which can be customized to match enterprise policies on how attachments should be handled. The treatment of an attachment when there is an external recipient is one of the considerations which can be incorporated into that business logic.