Sitecore 6.2 was released last night in probably the quietest release Sitecore has done in a long time. Why am I saying it was a quiet release? Well I had no idea it was coming and only found out after reading John West’s blog and finding a reference to the new version hidden in one of his posts. Normally I should get an email from Sitecore about new releases, but nothing.
So I’m doing my part for the publicising of Sitecore 6.2. I don’t normally post to tell you all about a release you probably already know about, but seeing as though I had no idea about 6.2 being released I’m assuming a lot of you haven’t heard yet either.
Anyway reading through the release notes for 6.2 I am filled with excitement. Some of the features I got a sneak peek at during an MVP only preview of Everest earlier this year. Let me point out a few here.
Word field type: Sitecore 6.2 includes a brand new field type; the word field. This field uses an Active X control to allow the user to use Word 2007 to edit text fields. This means users who are familiar with word can continue to use it. One caveat of this is of course that you’ll be lumped with Word’s awful HTML generation. So if you really don’t care about compliancy, then go for it :) .
WebDAV for drag and drop support of uploading media files: Sitecore 6.2 adds support for webDAV which allows users to drag media files straight from their desktop into the IE window and have those files uploaded into the media library. No more clicking around dialogs, just drag your files onto the Sitecore window.
Zipped icon files: When copying or zipping a Sitecore install folder, what takes the most time? The icon files of course. Sitecore has included since version 5 a very comprehensive library of icon files, all in different resolutions to really provide a good looking UI. Each icon file is only small, but there are so many of them. And the number of files is what slows down those zip and copy operations. From memory a standard install of Sitecore 6.1 contained about 24,000 files. The standard install of Sitecore 6.2 contains only 7,500 files. This should really help when moving Sitecore installs around.
Index folder default location: This is a little trick I leant from Mark Cassidy. Previously in a default Sitecore install the index folder would exist below the web root. Problem was that at times when packages were being installed or publishes being run with the index updates running crazy IIS would restart the application due to too much file activity (or something like that). So to solve this issue you can add a setting named “indexFolder” which provides the location of the index folder. With the indexes outside the webroot the index updates no longer affect the stability of the IIS application. Well, Sitecore 6.2 by default has added this setting into web.config and moved the index folder below the data folder.
And of course there are a heap of other updates, enhancements and bug fixes. Just be careful about the breaking chances in the API (mostly to do with the analytics API, check the release notes).