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Friday, January 20, 2017PrintSubscribe
Configuring SharePoint Web Part

Starting in release 8.5.12.0, Code On Time web applications created with Premium or Unlimited can operate in Software-as-a-Service mode. Give access to your line-of-business web app from SharePoint Online using this mode. User will be authenticated by SharePoint, and logged into the app as a user account with matching identity. If a user account with username equal to the email address of the SharePoint user is not found, then a new user record will be created. The user’s password and password answer will be randomly generated, to ensure that it is impossible to sign in directly without being authenticated by SharePoint. User roles are synchronized with the groups of the SharePoint identity upon every sign in.

Please note that it is highly recommended to deploy your app with SSL – otherwise, browsers must be placed in “low-security” mode in order for the web part to work.

We provide a free add-in for SharePoint, called Data Connector for Cloud On Time. The purpose of this add-in is to allow easy integration of Code On Time and Cloud On Time applications into SharePoint websites.

Installing the Add-In

The first step to configuring the Data Connector for Cloud On Time add-in is to install the app to your SharePoint site.

Navigate to your SharePoint site, and log in. In the top right corner, press the Gear icon and press “Add an app”.

Adding an app to the site.

On the left side of the screen, press “SharePoint Store”.

Adding an app from the SharePoint Store.

In the search box, paste “WA104380704” and press “Enter” on your keyboard. Select the app from the list.

Finding the Data Connector for Cloud On Time app in the SharePoint Store.

Press the “ADD IT” button to install the app to your SharePoint site.

Adding the Data Connector for Cloud On Time app in the SharePoint Store.

Once complete, a confirmation screen will be shown. Press “Return to site”.

The app has been installed.

Finally, press “Trust It” to finish installation.

Trusting the app.

Adding the Web Part to a Page

Once the add-in has been installed, the “Data Connector for Cloud On Time” web part can be added to any page of your site.  The following instructions explain how you can create a new page and connect an existing Code On Time or Cloud On Time application to your SharePoint instance.

Navigate to the home page of the SharePoint site, click the “PAGE” tab of the ribbon at the top of the screen, and select “View All Pages”.

Selecting 'View All Pages' of the SharePoint site.

Next, select “New” on the toolbar, and choose “Wiki Page”.

Adding a new Wiki Page to the site.

Give the page a name and press “Create”.

Giving the wiki page a name.

After pressing “Create”, you will navigate to the new page. On the ribbon at the top of the screen, select the “INSERT” tab and press “App Part”. Pick “Data Connector for Cloud On Time” from the list of parts, and press “Add”.

Inserting the "Data Connector For Cloud On Time" web part to the page.

The web part will be added to the page.

The "Data Connector For Cloud On Time" web part has been added to the page.

Registering The App

The next step is to register the app in order to enable your web application to authenticate users and query user groups. Click on the “REGISTER YOUR APP” link displayed in the default web part contents, or navigate to “https://mysite.sharepoint.com/_layouts/15/AppRegNew.aspx”, making sure to replace the root with your SharePoint site URL.

Press “Generate” next to Client Id and Client Secret fields to generate new values. Enter a title for the app, and specify the app domain. The Redirect URI must be equal to the app domain with the path “appservices/saas/sharepoint” appended to the end.

Specifying the new app registration properties.

Press “Create” to complete the app registration. Make sure to copy the registration details from this screen, as shown below.

Copying the app registration properties.

Next, navigate to your Cloud On Time or Code On Time application, sign in as a user with administrative role, and navigate to your Site Content page. Create a new record with the following properties. The Text property can be composed from the text copied from SharePoint, with the Client Uri added on the next line.

Property Value
Name sharepoint
Path sys/saas
Text

Client Id:
aaaaaaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaa-aaaaaaaaaaaa 
Client Secret:
aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa/aaaaaaaaaaaa= 
Title:
Northwind Demo 
App Domain:
demo.codeontime.com 
Redirect URI:
https://demo.codeontime.com/northwind/appservices/saas/sharepoint
Client Uri:
codeontime.sharepoint.com

Press OK to save the service registration.

It is necessary to associate a system identity to the registration in order to synchronize user roles with their assigned SharePoint groups. Select the row one more time, and press “Add System Identity”.

Adding system identity to the sharepoint registration.

You will be required to sign in and “Trust” the app. Make sure to log in with an administrative SharePoint account. Upon completion, you will be transferred back to the Site Content page, and the SharePoint registration record will be updated with the granted access token.

Configuring the Web Part

Return back to SharePoint and continue configuration of the web part. In the top-right corner of the web part, press the down chevron and select “Edit Web Part”.

Editing the web part properties.

The web part properties window will open. Under “Appearance” section, change Chrome State to “None”. Expand the “Software as a Service” section, and specify the URL of your cloud app in the Cloud property. Optionally specify a Start Page or disable the navigation.

Editing the web part properties.

Press OK to save changes.

Using the Web Part

If the registration has been configured correctly, the Cloud On Time or Code On Time application will load in the web part zone. This application will “talk” directly to your SharePoint instance via OAuth protocol to obtain the user name, email, and groups. The result of this conversation is a prompt displayed to the end user asking to trust the application.

Web part displaying permission request.

If the user presses “Trust It”, then the application will sign the user in with the user’s SharePoint identity, and assign their groups as roles to that user. The user will then be redirected to the start page specified in the web part properties.

The web part navigated to the correct page in SaaS mode, with user and roles automatically created.

Cloud On Time For SharePoint privacy policy can be found here.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017PrintSubscribe
Announcing COT v9

We are pleased to announce that the new year brings about an all-new version of Code On Time, called COT v9. This product will come in three flavors: Code On Time, Cloud On Time, and Cloud On Time Private Edition.

The new version brings a unified development environment directly into your application. Users with development privileges will be able to activate the Project Designer from within the live app. The Project Explorer will be displayed alongside application pages and will synchronize itself with the currently visible content. Changes to the project will be reflected instantly in the presentation. The Project Designer communicates with the backend, implemented differently for every flavor of COT v9.

The “Code On Time” flavor of v9 will interact directly with the application generator that you are familiar with. The app generator will run in a batch mode in response to developer actions. Application code will be created, generated, and modified in the exact same fashion you are used to. Visual Studio IDE will be launched when you need to see a C#/Visual Basic business rule, or would like to see the source code of the project. The source code is stored on your computer. You can use your own version control system. You can work with any supported database engine. You will install COT v9 on your computer. The price for Code On Time edition of v9 will remain the same as the current shipping version of the product. Licenses will continue to be perpetual. Active customers will receive “Code On Time” flavor of v9 as a regular product update.

The “Cloud On Time” flavor of v9 will interact with a hosted version of the application generator. Applications and data are stored in the Microsoft Azure Cloud. A built-in Database Designer will be used to create database tables and views within the live app. Developers will be offered a choice of SQL, JavaScript, and Email business rules. “Cloud On Time” does not require installation, and works on any web-enabled device. A monthly subscription fee is based on the number of developers and the number of records in the database. A free trial will be available.

The “Cloud On Time Private Edition” flavor of v9 will interact with a hosted version of the application generator installed on the customer premises. This product is targeted towards privacy-conscious customers with a need for rapid application development. It will be possible to create business rules with C# or Visual Basic to extend applications. The product will be sold with a perpetual license with 6, 12, or 24 months of updates.

Applications created with COT v9 support code-free integration with Google Apps and popular content management systems, such as SharePoint or DotNetNuke.

Rapidly build universal business apps on any device, and in any environment.

Modal login form with three external login options.

Split view displayed on Suppliers page created with Code On Time.

Context panel with new material icons in application using Touch UI.

Image headers and form action bar in Categories form.

Modal page sliding when opening additional pages.

Modal page with mini sidebar.

Pricing for “Cloud On Time” and “Cloud On Time Private Edition” will be announced soon.

We are estimating that COT v9 will become available in March-April of 2017.

We know that many of you awaiting anxiously for the next product update. Release 8.5.12.0 is expected to arrive very soon, and brings many features of COT v9 into your hands. Please stay tuned.

Monday, January 2, 2017PrintSubscribe
Authenticating Users with Windows Live

Every application requires a list of user accounts that have been granted (or denied) access to the data. In order to maintain membership consistency, every user needs to be associated with a password. Recommended practices for passwords dictate that every password must be unique, contain a long series of mixed alphanumeric characters, and that users should change their passwords regularly. It is likely that many users do not follow these recommended practices, and tend to reuse simple and easy to remember passwords across various systems. This can lead to a security issue if one of the systems becomes compromised – malicious users can then gain access to all systems that share the same password.

In an attempt to solve solutions to the problems mentioned above, authentication can be delegated to a “higher authority”. Application admins can register their app to accept responses from a federated authentication server. When a new user attempts to sign up to the application, they can choose to register an account using their federated account. They will be redirected to the authentication server’s login page, and grant permission for the app to gain access to their email. This information is then used to automatically create an account in the app and sign them in. Therefore, the user simply has to ensure that their account in the federated system is secure.

Applications created with Code On Time can use OAuth 2.0 to register their users. Simply define a resource under the Content Management System (CMS) that lists your client ID, client secret, and redirect URI. A local redirect URI can be defined for testing purposes.

Registering Your App

The first step to enable Windows Live authentication is to register your app.

Navigate to https://apps.dev.microsoft.com. In the top-right corner, press “Add an App”. Enter a name for your app and press “Create Application”.

Adding an application to Windows Live.

Under the “Application Secrets” section, press “Generate New Password”.

Generating a new password for the application.

Make sure to copy the new secret.

Next, press “Add Platform” under the “Platforms” section. Select “Web”.

Adding a platform for the app.

Enter your application URI, with the path “/appservices/saas/windowslive”. Optionally add a local URI for testing purposes.

Adding redirect URI for the app.

Scroll to the bottom of the page, and press “Save”.

Enabling Windows Live Login in the App

The connection needs to be registered in your application. Navigate to the Site Content page of your app, and create a new record with the following settings:

Property Value
File Name windowslive
Path sys/saas
Text

Client Id:
1234567890

Client Secret:
12345mysecret67890

Redirect Uri:  
https://demo.codeontime.com/appservices/saas/windowslive

Local Redirect Uri:
http://localhost:31733/appservices/saas/windowslive

Make sure to change the Text to the correct values for your app.

Logging In with Windows Live

Log out of your app, and press Login to open the login form. The “LOGIN WITH WINDOWS LIVE” action will now be displayed.

The login form now displays a button to "LOGIN WITH WINDOWS LIVE".

Press “LOGIN WITH WINDOWS LIVE”, and you will be redirected to the Windows Live login screen. Once logged in, a permission request will be displayed.

Windows Live displays a permission request - the app is requesting access to the profile's email.

Press “Yes”, and your browser will be redirected back to the app. The app will attempt to sign in with the account matching the returned email. If no account is found, then an account will be created with the email as the username, and a random GUID assigned to the password and password answer.