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Forums / Set-up & Installation / New to SiteFinity

New to SiteFinity

2 posts, 0 answered
  1. Mike
    Mike avatar
    221 posts
    Registered:
    19 Aug 2008
    20 Aug 2008
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    Afternoon everyone,

    The company I work for is looking heavily into a CMSystem. We have an entire development department; this is why SiteFinity is appealing to us because of its ability to add custom modules etc...

    I have a few questions though. Let me start off by saying that I took a few days to read through the documentation on installation and setup and was a little concerned at how difficult it might be to implement. I eventually just downloaded the Sitefinity_3_2_1616_community.exe and ran the installation, after which it was up and running on my dev machine in minutes. I did not have to do anything else. Although this is a nice surprise, I am a little concerned that I am missing something that I should have done. I have a few questions which I need answered.

    Databases:

    I have created two sites using the built in templates. I selected SQL Express (Which I thought I did not have installed on my machine), put localhost as the server and it did its thing and worked… Wow! As a side note, we do not use SQL Express for our database, we use a large Oracle server that we do not necessarily wish to use to store content or CMS data and I can fairly certainly say that my boss will not allow the CMS to have db_owner rights to this database. So we do not mind a SQL Express DB to be generated for CMS purposes for each site we create. But I have to say I feel a little “out of the loop”, I do not know how the DB was generated or if it is secure or if there is the possibility of intrusion on the DB. Maybe this is because of my lack of knowledge of SQL Server Databases.

    Modules:

    The reason we are looking into a CMS is so that our development department can move away from content modifying/changes and focus on core functionality of our business, which is travel (Like Expedia or the like). We have a travel booking system which consists of a few pages in the process (search -> results -> review booking -> checkout -> confirmation).

    Q) Can modules (or something else) be build that a user can add to the site and will place these set of pages on the site that will allow the web user to go through this process? If not how would we incorporate such functionality? Or would a separate module have to be build for each step in the process and then put together when building the website through the CMS?

    Q) Can these modules connect to our web services which we have in place now? We have heavily protected our connections from our websites to our web services and database and we wish to keep it this way without having to give the CMS any connection information or having and data provider manage this.

    Visual Studio/Development:

    The next step in my research of SiteFinity is to get this working in the development environment. I have downloaded Sitefinity_3_2_1616_community_BlankProject.zip which I briefly read is the base of which new development of a site should be done in Visual Studio. Is this it?

    Q) Is there no Visual Studio extensions that need to be installed? Please forgive me, I have not read extensively on the development aspect of SiteFinity, so again these questions most likely come from my ignorance on the subject. But once we design a new template and modules and controls, then how do we make this available to the CMS admin to build using this template?

    User Permissions:

    Q) Is there a way to provide certain users with only certain aspects of the CMSystem? For example can we give a user the ability to only edit text on a site but not add page or controls, and then give another user the ability to add pages and controls etc… Is there that level of permissions for each site?

    We are just getting started with this but I am sure we all know the red tape that needs to be cut to give control like this to a CMSystem in a company. I am sure we will have many more question on this. I hope that we can get them all answered and get started with this system soon!

    Duncan
  2. Joe
    Joe avatar
    138 posts
    Registered:
    24 Sep 2012
    21 Aug 2008
    Link to this post
    Hi Duncan,

    Thanks for contacting us.

    I can assure you that the SQL Database is secure. We use DAL (Data Access Layer) to generate the tables and operate with the database. We are using the ASP.NET 2.0 provider model, so all the code necessary for CRUD operations (Create, Read, Update and Delete) is already included in these encapsulated providers.This is why set-up is so simple.

    For your modules, I'd recommend building either a intra-site or a pluggable module and we do have templates for both of them. Basically, you would break down your travel booking pages into user controls that would be uploaded to the CMS. Any back end pages, such as a grid that gives an administrator info on travel booking records, would be put inside a user control and used on the admin side. You can easily connect these user controls to web services the same way you usually connect to them. Please see the attached code sample that binds to a web service. You can either place this attachment  inside a user control or just link it to an external page. More tutorials on web services can be found on ASP.NET's website.

    We'd recommend doing all of your development in Visual Studio, since you will get the designer for making modules and user controls. No attachments need to be installed. Sitefinity is just a regular ASP.NET 2.0 databound application. You could use DreamWeaver or any other IDE if you want, but you will not have designer support and that could make custom module creation more difficult. In your IDE, you create a theme and a master page, then upload it to Sitefinity. This video on theming will give you step by step instructions.

    User permissions are very granular with Sitefinity. You can set permissions on the CMS, page and module level. Simply create users and place them in a role. Then, give the role certain permissions. More info can be found under "Users and Roles" in the Sitefinity User Manual.

    I hope that I have clearly answer all of your general functionality questions about the CMS. If you need further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

    Regards,
    Joe
    the Telerik team

    Check out Telerik Trainer, the state of the art learning tool for Telerik products.
2 posts, 0 answered