K2 SmartForms 1.0.4 released

K2 just released an update to SmartForms with new features and enhancements.

· Control enhancements – Enhancements including support for date and time selection in the Calendar Control Picker and improved Control binding capabilities.

· Rules enhancements – Updates to existing rule actions including the Navigate to URL and Show Message actions as well as new rule search functionality.

· Designer enhancements – Improvements to the design experience including SmartObject binding enhancements, View settings enhancements and List View filter and search capabilities.

Check out the release notes and download the update here: K2 SmartForms 1.0.4

Become a SmartWizard

K2 have just released 4.6.5 to customers. This version includes a number of new things including a SmartWizard framework.

SmartWizard gives us the ability to declaratively create wizards and add them to process designer tools. Smart Wizard framework makes it easy to put a nice customised UI in front of SmartObjects.

What does this mean for your organisation? The power of SmartObjects is now truly at the hands of your process designers.

You configure wizards that make the job of accessing backend systems much easier and now every process designer can take advantage of your wizard.

You can configure various wizards to achieve various things and you can make that configuration a reusable asset.

We used to code these wizards for our customers – no longer the case. You can do it yourself. You can make adoption of process automation much easier and faster.

Welcome to 4.6.5 – You are now a SmartWizard.

Want to learn more? We are just an email away. (sales@jeylabs.com.au)

You can get the latest K2 update KB1370…

You can get the latest K2 update KB1370 now. Feature Highlights are:

· The ability to run a K2 Designer for SharePoint process designed in one environment in another environment without modification

· Multiple enhancements to K2 Services and SmartObject Services, including filtering

· Support for using different versions of InfoPath forms for different versions of a K2 Designer for SharePoint process

Download it from the Customer Portal.

How are you Managing your IT environments?

Just like most of the Developers out there, I am comfortable with solutions being developed in development environments, tested in test environments and then eventually moved to production for end users.

But, I am seeing this practice challenged more often than less in the recent years. Many customers dont want to have these multiple environments in place for many reasons – effort, cost, etc. I have worked on projects where there was only a single production environment. I have also worked on projects with up to 7 different environments – PoC/Demo, Dev, Test, UAT, Staging, Prod and DR.

The advances in Software and Hardware Virtualisation is helping with creating and managing various environments for development, staging, DR, etc relatively easy and cost effective to some extent. Cloud is seen everywhere these days and it is also making the expectation of having an always on infrastrucutre, cheap and resilient to become a reality in many cases. For those who can use Cloud, it will make creating multiple environments easy.

Regardless of the lesser cost, I also think that high use of Cloud will

Continue reading How are you Managing your IT environments?

1230 rocks

I finished a complete install of a K2 load balanced distributed production clusters integrated with SharePoint farm, a staging and a dev environment update this week. The 1230 installer was awesome.

While everyone is excited about the cool new viewflow (which is really cool) I think the installer team should be congratulated for making my life easier – cheers!! :)

K2 blackpoint and SharePoint Designer based workflows

Recently, my team has been working on a SharePoint project. As part of the brief we also have to fixup a few workflows that are behaving badly. We looked at the problem and it was a list that had couple of SharePoint designer based workflows attached for doing item updates and email notifications based on changes happening to the list items. One might think SPD can do it easily but, oh no, the requirement was to do date based checks on a regular basis along with reacting to the updates made to the list items. This needed time based loop and Date based calculations and other computations.

The guys spent ~two days trying to get this going and finally gave up. I think I can do this with blackpoint in couple of hours. Lesson: Choose the right tool for the right job. Just because it is free, dont kill yourself using it. Hope this is useful. Let me know if you had a similar or better experience with tools.

Accessing process data

We can access completed K2 process instance information through smart objects. All the reports that you get with K2 are built using smart objects. One thing to note with the reporting data is that it is not real time.

The asynchronous nature of a workflow environment means that if you need access to state information in real-time you will need to manage that. One way to do this is to use a custom smart object. My preference is to stick with the K2 provided reporting smart objects.

Here’s a code sample for accessing the smart object data.