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Thursday, December 1, 2016 by vera

It’s been a long wait for “Jim’s Tips and Trick no. 3”. The reason for this is partly because Jim has been assigned an additional support role - Baby Support 👶. Congratulations! Another reason is that this episode of Jim’s Tips and Tricks has been thoroughly investigated. Recently, Jim has kept a close eye on the type of questions he’s been getting on support to make sure that this blog post gives you answers to the questions you might be sat with right now.. Or in the near future...

Welcome to the third of Jim's Tips and Tricks. In this blog post I want to guide you through your profile options because often, this is where you find your answers.

On support I’ve recently had questions like: “Where do I find my invoices?”, “I just bought a license, where can I find it?” and “How do we assign employees to our Umbraco TV subscription?”. These are all good questions and the answer is almost always the same: You do can get/find this on your Umbraco.com profile.

But where exactly? That’s what I want to brief you on. I’ll take you through a summary of all the options on your profile on umbraco.com so you know exactly where to go to find your answers:

When you log in to your account on Umbraco.com it looks like this:

 

After logging in you’ll be given access to your profile. The profile view gives you the following options:

 

And let me just briefly summarise what the different options are so you know where exactly to find whatever you might be looking for:


Get support

If you or your company has a support agreement, you will be able to submit a support ticket directly to the Umbraco HQ support team from this option. So if you ever get stuck, this is where to go to help you back on the right track.

If you don’t yet have a support agreement, you can easily sign up for one right here.


Your event reservations

Here you will have an overview of all the Umbraco events that you have signed up for. This could be training courses or Code Garden tickets that you have purchased.

You also have to go to this option if you want to assign tickets/training seats to your colleagues.


Manage licenses

This is an important one! Here you can see the licenses that you have purchased and also configure your new license files and download these. This is where you find your licenses for Umbraco Forms and Umbraco Courier. And if you’ve purchased any additional domains for your existing licenses, this is also where you’d need to go to download these.


Manage subscriptions

This is a relatively new option for you guys. This is where you can update your subscription details, for example, update your credit card details.

If you have an Umbraco Cloud subscription this will also be where you would go to cancel your subscription (which, of course, would be a silly thing to do 😉 ).


Create customer licenses

This option will only be available for Enterprise Support customers or if you are a Gold Partner. This is the place for setting up Forms and Courier licenses to your organization.


Order history

Also an important one as it will bring a smile on your accountant’s lips 😊 . This is where you can find and download all your invoices.


Training and tests

If you have completed one or more training courses, this is where you can take the related tests and get certified. After completing the tests your certification details will automatically be updated on umbraco.com.


Certification status

Get an simple overview of your official Umbraco certifications and your certification status. This is also where you find your certification badge for you to download and show off wherever you please.


Umbraco.tv accounts

If you have a support agreement you also have Umbraco TV accounts available for you and your colleagues. Start exploring and learning different aspects of Umbraco with these step-by-step videos.

To get your hands on your assigned Umbraco TV subscriptions go here, register and start learning Umbraco on your time.


Redeem a voucher

If you have a voucher code you will be able to redeem it here… as it says in the title 😉

 


If you have any questions, now you should know where to find the answers.


I’m joking 😉 of course I’m still here to answer all your questions. Perhaps you need help to either configure or reconfigure an existing license? Or help with something completely else? Please feel free to contact me or any of my awesome support colleagues.


That’s it from me this time. In two weeks time I’ll reveal yet another handy Umbraco tip. 

Want to read my no. 1 and no. 2 Tips and Tricks? You can find it in the Blog Archive at the top left of this page. 


Cheers,

Jim :) 

Friday, November 25, 2016 by Per Ploug

In the past month alone, over 200 certification tests have been passed on umbraco.com by developers attending training around the world. This isn’t just a record number for us, it is also a very positive development which benefits everyone.

To celebrate this amazing milestone in the history of Umbraco Training, we've gathered 4 of the most positive side-effect of this rise in certified developers. Side-effects that benefits you as a certified developer, the company you work for and the market in general.

1. A sign that companies are investing in Umbraco

Every time someone goes on a course there is a price to pay in the form of a course fee, time away from work, hotels etc. When we see numbers rising like this, it tells us that more companies than ever are willing to pay that price, because they get even more value in return. They can see that having certified staff improves quality and leads to more business.

2. A bigger talent pool

We should all celebrate that we get more and more certified developers added to the ecosystem. It means that there are more qualified hands available to do the job efficiently and correctly. One of these recent certified developers could be your next coworker, employee or contractor.


3. Greater certainty for customers

As a customer looking for developers or partners, you now have more options than ever before. The number of Umbraco Gold and certified partners are higher than ever, and the number of certified developers who can assist is also higher than ever.


4. We all get smarter

An ecosystem with a tradition of sharing knowledge and learning, is a strong ecosystem. We believe that by having training, umbraco.tv, festivals, meetups and learning initiatives like the excellent UmbX available is important to keep us growing as individuals and as a community. Staying hungry and staying curious is one of the most important things when working in the creative field of code and web development.

 

A big thanks to everyone who attend our courses. You help us raise the bar, every day, and make a greater cms and community for all of us as well as for the customers who depend on the work we all do. H5YR!   

Want to jump in the Umbraco pool of talent too? Have a look at all our available courses for the rest of 2016 and all of 2017 and start enjoying some of all the pleasant side-effects ;)   

Wednesday, November 23, 2016 by vera

We’ve had people contacting us by phone, email and in person asking when they’d be able to sign-up for the online Bridging Course. Our answer is: NOW! The Bridging Course is for all Umbraco version 4 level 1 certified developers who wants to upgrade to an Umbraco version 7 certification, fast and at a reduced price.


Perhaps you’ve already seen it on umbraco.com. We’ve actually had all the available dates online for a couple of weeks now and we’re already seeing a lot of people signing up - H5YR for wanting to keep your Umbraco Certification up to date!


Sign-up and keep your official Umbraco Certification

If you’re an Umbraco level 1 certified developer on Umbraco v4 you should be aware that your v4 certifications will be obsolete by March 31st 2017. Why? What was best practice in v4 is (thankfully) not what’s best practice today. So while Umbraco is fundamentally the same, a v4 based certification has lost its relevance.


Sign-up and save yourself time and money

Because we are aware that many v4 certified developers value their official Umbraco certification, we have made it easy for you to upgrade your skills and thus keep your official certification. We have made it easier for you by making sure you save both time and money:

  • Time; because this course has been designed to fast-track your learning, teaching you how to successfully migrate Umbraco v4 sites to Umbraco v7

  • Money; by offering you this course at a price that is 900€ less than our regular Fundamentals course.


And because this course is held online you’re saving both time and money by not having to travel to a specific destination to update your certification. Feel free to stay in your pyjamas or take the course from your hammock, whatever makes you comfortable 😉


How does the online Bridging Course work?

We have 3 available start dates for the Bridging Course. Two in a European time zone (GMT+1) and one in a US time zone (EDT). All of the courses will be taught in English and consist of two sessions of four hours each. The course will take place between 10 am - 2 pm over two consecutive days.

After completing the entire course, you will get access to the full Umbraco 7 Fundamentals Tests and Certification by your trainer. When successfully completing the exam you’ll get 100 certification points and be allowed to call yourself an Umbraco Certified Professional.


How do I sign up for the Bridging Course?

It’s quite simple.
You go here and pick the date and time-zone that fits you by clicking on “Register today!”.


Then you’re well on your way to staying up-to-date on your Umbraco skills and keeping your official Umbraco Certification.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016 by Niels Hartvig

Today I experienced a side-effect of the rapid growth here at Umbraco. As I came into the office this morning, Jim and Kim called me over to their desks to share a massive issue that our customers was experiencing; they couldn’t configure the licenses they had bought - the site simply threw an ugly error.

Needless to say that wasn’t good, so I opened up the logs to dive deeper into the problem. Although the reason was quite surprising, it was immediately clear why it had happened. However before I’ll let you know what it was, it’s time to go a bit down memory lane.

 

This was how Per and I looked back when we were working on licensing (photo by Douglas Robar)

A little history lesson

Financing an open source project is insanely difficult and the way we solve it at the Umbraco HQ is a combination of various products. One of them are our add-ons Courier and Forms which are closed source packages for Umbraco that we launched six years ago.

At that time we also needed to find a license tool to create and validate the licenses that people got when they bought the product. We settled on a product called Infralution and it was very easy to setup for us. Maybe a little too easy because we really didn’t dive deep into the many configuration options the tool provided.

One of them was to configure how the internal serial number in licenses was handled. As any purchase of Forms or Courier generated an order in our ERP, we thought it made lots of sense to use that as the internal serial number. After all it would make it easy to associate a license with an order when support was needed and starting from an order number of roughly 1,000 we were confident we’d never run out of numbers to pick from. Little did we know...

It wasn’t supposed to happen

I’ve never made a business plan for Umbraco and I had never imagined it would turn out as big as it has. Thus you’ll often hear me say that "it was never supposed to happen" which also means that many things doesn’t go according to plan. That can be a very good thing.

One of the things that I'd never expected six years ago when we implemented the licensing engine, was that we’d ever generate more than 65,535 orders on our website. Turned out we did. Just like I found out this morning that one of the many configuration options in the Infralution licensing engine, is what type it should use to store the serial number. The default option was a UInt16 - a way in code to specify a number between 0 and - you’ve guessed it - 65,535.

Today we hit a fantastic milestone that wasn’t supposed to happen: Generating more orders than a UInt16 could handle. UInt32.MaxValue* - you’re up next!

* 4.294.967.295. Why not?

Monday, November 14, 2016 by Kris Deminick

We are fanning the flames for 3Chillies as we welcome them as our newest Umbraco Gold Partner (beware, chilli related puns to continue)! Speaking to developer and founder, Paul Spearman at the Umbraco UK Festival, we found out what makes 3Chillies burn and what they are looking forward to from their new partner status.  

3Chillies

3Chillies were founded in 2006 on the intention of being one thing - “technically excellent”, and they stick to this with a refreshing confidence and realism about what they do best. They have been using Umbraco since v4 and find a shared and relatable history with Umbraco HQ, as both companies began as teams of developers. They position themselves as Microsoft specialists in website development on Umbraco and Sitecore, digital apps and business applications. Paul confidently sets 3Chillies apart by the belief that they know they will nail the brief; it is their ability to put themselves in their clients’ shoes that results in their 95% client retention rate. The team make a path from sales and walk it all the way through the project such as actively testing the editor experience and discussing support requests directly with their client to understand it from their position as an end user.

“We really are client centric. When we say it, we truly mean it; at its heart we don't want to give clients a reason to go elsewhere. We truly empathise with our clients.”

Paul says one of the reasons behind their success is that they don’t take a “platform first” approach to their clients, but instead they listen and then pick the best solution based on the needs. It is simply a delightful bonus that invariably, Umbraco is often the one, because it “ticks a lot of the boxes”.

“If they [the client] want a high performing website with a great editorial experience, Umbraco will take them [competitors] on any day of the week.”

3Chillies

So why have 3Chillies decided to turn up the heat and become Gold Partners? Put simply, they wanted “a grown up business relationship with Umbraco”. After so many years of knowing Umbraco but Umbraco not knowing 3Chillies, we are both eager for the opportunity to work together and learn from each other. Of course, the ability to cash in support tickets on particularly gnarly issues, get assistance on an architectural problem, and the potential lead generation from Umbraco HQ are all attractive benefits too! But as Paul puts it, all those tangible rewards ultimately contribute to the greater goal of making better and better client work using Umbraco. The cherry on top would be the “ultimate dream for a developer” - to have some of their own ideas appear in the Umbraco project.

So here’s to sharing in a collaborative two-way relationship and hopefully a few cherries (or chillies)! Thank you and #h5yr to the entire team at 3Chillies!

And how did they come up with the name 3Chillies? Head over to their website to find the answer! Read more in the announcement from the team at 3Chillies on their blog here.

Tempted to become the next Umbraco Gold Partner? Read all about the benefits of the program here.