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DotNetNuke 7 with Active Directory and SharePoint Lists

by Anand Narayanaswamy on Dec 12, 2012 |

DotNetNuke 7 provides support for active directory authentication and includes a SharePoint connector which enables fast and secure publishing of SharePoint documents to websites, intranets and extranets. It also includes a brand new intuitive control panel and now provides support for SharePoint Lists.

The DotNetNuke 7 professional and enterprise editions now ships with an auto save feature which provides the ability to automatically save the content in the background. This will enable users to recover the content in the event of a browser crash.

DotNetNuke 7 includes drag and drop modules, cross site module sharing, actions menu instead of manage button as in previous version, a new data access layer named DAL2 which includes micro-ORM and support for ASP.NET Razor in addition to a brand new simplified installer.

In an exclusive interview to InfoQ, Richard Dumas, Senior Director of Product Marketing, DotNetNuke Corp shares his views about the features included with the recent release.

InfoQ: What difference can DotNetNuke 7 make in the development of websites?

There are a number of features that differentiate DotNetNuke 7.0 for website development which ultimately enable a broad range of users to be more productive:

Web content editors

A rich text editor with a new auto-save and recover feature prevents editors from losing their work. It also enables them to easily track content changes and compare versions of both rich text and HTML content. DNN 7.0 allows modules to be shared between multiple DotNetNuke websites for greater consistency and ease of maintenance.

Enterprises

DNN 7.0 makes it easier for enterprise users to log in to their DotNetNuke sites with new support for Active Directory authentication. It also now enables bi-directional support for popular Microsoft SharePoint Lists, which are used widely by businesses to improve operations, promote team project collaborations, keep employees up to date on current business projects and tasks, manage employees more effectively, and improve business productivity.

Developers

Web developers can build and expose secure web services through the DNN Services Framework, which is now based on Microsoft’s web API. Data access has been simplified through the introduction of a micro-ORM, allowing simpler and more elegant database interactions with less code.

ASP.NET Razor is now optimized for developing dynamic extensions, combining code and content in a fluid and expressive manner. The included jQuery, jQueryUI and Knockout.js libraries make it even easier for developers to consume Web services and create modern, interactive client-side applications.

The newest release has graduated to ASP.NET 4.0 as its baseline platform requirement but is also fully compatible with latest generation Microsoft technology including Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, IIS8, ASP.NET 4.5, Visual Studio 2012 and SQL Server 2012.

Designers

An overhauled Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) foundation makes it easier for designers to create beautiful and engaging websites, enabling improved cross-browser compatibility, extending standards compliance and increasing site performance. Additionally, DNN 7.0 includes standard form patterns that designers can reuse or extend to build frequently used user interface elements.

InfoQ: How is DNN 7 different from previous versions?

DotNetNuke 7.0 provides a revamped UI/UX that makes it easier for content editors to build and manage websites. It also provides a suite of new features that improve productivity through a drag and drop and an updated rich text editor that includes auto-save and version comparison features.
It  improves enterprise integration with an active directory authentication provider and by adding support for SharePoint List to our SharePoint Connector. This latest version provides our most advanced development framework with a web serves framework built on Microsoft's Web API.

InfoQ: What kind of opportunity does DotNetNuke provide to ASP.NET developers?

DotNetNuke provides a robust and powerful web development framework for ASP.NET developers. We provide support for the most recent versions of ASP.NET, and enable developers to embrace both Web Forms and WebAPI development methods.

The development framework greatly reduces the amount of code required to build applications by providing support for tasks like Security, Authentication, Installation and Upgrades. Developers can also distribute applications commercially on the DotNetNuke store where thousands of modules and skins are for sale.

InfoQ: What is the need for DotNetNuke when there are open source platforms like DotNetBlogEngine, Joomla and WordPress available?

DotNetNuke (DNN) is the most widely deployed content management platform and web development framework for Microsoft .NET. Organizations that have standardized on Microsoft technologies and have Microsoft development skills often prefer DNN over open source CMS offerings like Joomla and Wordpress which are built on the LAMP technology stack. These organizations also need a full featured Web CMS that provides features beyond blogging.

InfoQ: Can DotNetNuke run on MySQL backend?

DNN support Microsoft SQL Server out of the box. Third party providers for other databases are available and developers can create their own providers.

InfoQ: Do you provide any modules to convert an existing WordPress site to DotNetNuke 7.0?

We do not provide modules that translate Wordpress blogs/sites to DNN.

InfoQ: Do you provide free express version of DotNetNuke?

The Community Edition is a free, open source and complete version.

InfoQ: Can DotNetNuke handle huge community sites without any performance issues?

Yes. The DotNetNuke open source community comprised of one million members runs on DotNetNuke.com

InfoQ: Do you provide training resources for customers?

We provide unlimited online technical support including phone based support. We also maintain an active blog, publish tutorials, wiki including a dedicated video portal created by our product team members. You can also refer to books published by various publishers such as Wrox, Apress and Packt Publishing.

InfoQ: Do you feel that the current pricing structure of DotNetNuke and its modules will be suitable for end users who are tight in budget?

Yes. DotNetNuke is a very affordable offering. The Community Edition is completely free and the Professional Edition with includes unlimited technical support and a suite of addition features is licensed on a subscription basis for only $3000/ year.

InfoQ: Is it possible to integrate third party component controls such as from Telerik, DevExpress?

Yes. The DNN Professional Edition includes a Telerik RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX Developer License and makes it easy for developers to use third-party components of their choice.

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