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Umbraco 8.4 Release

Data Type Tracking, Property Actions and 180 H5YRs! 🙏

Rune 1 (2)
Written by Rune Strand

It’s here! Umbraco 8.4 and it contains a bunch of great features and many fixes and tweaks to the Umbraco backoffice. It’s truly a collaborative release as the majority of the work has been done by the amazing community thanks to their fantastic - even record-breaking- efforts during Hacktoberfest 🙌

Overview

  • What’s new in Umbraco 8.4
    • Data Type Tracking
    • Property Actions
  • Community Contributions
  • How to get your hands on Umbraco 8.4

What’s new in Umbraco 8.4

In this release, you’ll find a couple of handy features that really help increase the productivity of both developers and editors. You’ll also find no less than 180 improvements made by the Umbraco community, all to improve your Umbraco experience - H5YR! 🎉

But more on those great contributions later. First up, let’s dive into some of the features I’ve mentioned in previous Product Updates, that’s now become “real” features for you to take advantage of; Data Type Tracking and Property Actions.    

Data Type Tracking

This new feature adds to new tools to help you keep track of the Data Types used in your Umbraco installations. 

New Info app on Data Types

We’ve added an Info app to Data Types similar to what we have on content and media items. The Info app is where you can now find the property type alias and ID for the Data Type and, very importantly, the brand new overview of where the Data Type is used.

 

The overview also contains links to the types where a Data Type is used, making it quick and easy to inspect and adjust your setup. 

Data Types - to delete or not to delete. That’s now a much simpler question. 

The second feature we’ve added for Data Type tracking is a more constructive warning when you attempt to delete a Data Type. Previously you would just receive a generic warning stating that deleting a Data Type might lead to lost content. That is a little bit hard to act on, so now you’ll receive a warning letting you know if the Data Type is used and where, so you can make an educated decision on whether it can be deleted or not.

Property Actions

With 8.4 we’re introducing a new concept called Property Actions. This will, as the name suggests, make it possible to add actions to a property on a node. The easiest way to explain this is by showing the first Property Action that is available with this version - the ability to copy an entire Nested Content property. This handy feature helps editors who need to repeat similar blocks of content by giving them the ability to completely copy a whole Nested Content item and pasting it on another content item, after which edits can be made on the pasted item. 

How to Copy Nested Content Property

You will now see an ellipsis (3 small dots) next to a property based on the Nested Content property editor. By clicking this you’ll expand the Property Actions menu and you’ll be able to copy the items in the property and add them to another property based on Nested Content (with matching Element Types allowed).

Being able to copy these items is a great feature and will help editors work faster. But we also think it’ll be a treat for package developers. By being able to wrap a generic Property Actions convention, it’s now possible for package developers to implement this for custom property editors. We’ll have documentation for this feature within the next couple of weeks.   

Better backoffice search

You’ll also find that search in the backoffice has gotten some TLC. It is now possible to search entities by GUID (Globally Unique Identifier). This works for the following:

  • Content
  • Media
  • Members
  • Templates
  • Content Types
  • Media Types
  • Data Types

This new search function will be really helpful when debugging, i.e. if you have an error in a log file that contains a GUID, you can now easily find the entity using the backoffice search.

It’s also possible to search Media Items based on the filename. Why is that great? Well, In older Umbraco versions you would only be able to search on the media item name, which may have some of the file names in it, but Umbraco has cleaned it up for you. Now, if you need to find that one item with a very specific filename, you can search on exactly that.

Media Library optimization

You might have encountered an Umbraco installation where a lot of Media Items have been dumped in the same folder or even in the root of the Media Library. This can be quite hard on performance as all the items are listed including thumbnails. The Media Library has now been optimised to handle large amounts of items, as it will now only request thumbnails for the items in the viewport. This should provide a good performance bump and even make it possible to open folders that would previously crash the browser due to the amount of request generated.

Community Contributions

We celebrated Hacktoberfest again this year at Umbraco, where we motivate everyone to contribute to their favorite CMS. This year’s Hacktoberfest has been a huge success! For the CMS alone we have received 357 new pull requests in October alone - that’s more than double the amount we got last year! 🎉😅

For Umbraco 8.4 we’ve been able to merge 180 of those Hacktober pull requests in a very wide variety of categories. To give you an idea:

  • 23 accessibility updates by BatJan, kjac, MMasey, Matthew-Wise, RachBreeze and zersiax

  • Many small UI and UX updates to make it easier to view and navigate the backoffice
    • Including a clean up of the Examine and Published Cache Status dashboards by PoornimaNayar

  • Localization updates to make it easier to translate parts of the backoffice using the translation files

  • More Infinite Editing for list view configurations, templates, Examine search results, members, partial views and macro parameters, thanks to skttl, bjarnef and kjac.

For this release we are also welcoming 30 brand new contributors who’ve not only created their first-ever pull request for Umbraco CMS - but also got it merged in! Hopefully not their last one 😉 Amazing job done by the following people 👏

DannerrQ

kieronbos

rickread

gargarchit

Krnlsoft

robmaas

harithu467

netaddicts

rosrosros

harry-gordon

nfJakobsen

SandipPalit

hkooikerspeak

nfvind

sidhyatikku

jamesgeorge007

PiotrKlys

SinithH

JohJohan

pmstyle123

tonzsm

John-Blair

rasolo

V0lk3n

Kerl1310

rbottema

webdokkeren

kewbish

Regicollis

zersiax

 

How to get your hands Umbraco 8.4

As always, starting today, all new version 8 Umbraco Cloud projects will be running 8.4. For all our Umbraco Cloud customers with existing projects, this upgrade is only 2 minutes away:

We’ve wrapped it all up for you, so all you have to do now is follow these steps:

  • Add a Development Environment to your project, if you do not already have one (Add a Development environment by clicking “Manage Environments” in the project view)

  • Make sure you also restore the content to the Development Environment from your Live.

  • When the Development Environment is all set up and you’ve made sure you don’t have any pending changes on the Development Environment - you are all ready to upgrade to Umbraco 8.x!

  • It's as easy as clicking a button - like, literally clicking the "Upgrade Available" button on the Development Environment. The auto-upgrader will take care of everything from here! 🚀

  • Once it's done, check the Development Environment to make sure everything is looking right.

  • When that's confirmed, you are ready to deploy the upgrade to the next environment - Live or Staging, and start taking full advantage of all the new features.

Non-Cloud and release notes:

As always, installation and release notes can be found on Our: https://our.umbraco.com/contribute/releases/840

This release is also available from Nuget: https://www.nuget.org/packages/UmbracoCms/8.4.0

 

 

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