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Thursday, May 30, 2019PrintSubscribe
VS 2019, Multi File Upload, Command Line Mode
Code On Time release 8.7.11.0 brings support for Visual Studio 2019, Multi-File Upload in Touch UI applications, and new command line options that allow creating apps with automated scripts.

Start using Visual Studio 2019 with your projects. The new development environment is fully integrated in the app generator. If you do have an existing project and want to migrate to the latest tools from Microsoft, then select the app on the start page of the generator and choose Open option. File Explorer will show the project files. Either delete the file with *.sln extension and regenerate your app or right-click the solution file, open it with Visual Studio 2019, select the solution file item in Solution Explorer, and press Ctrl+S.

Multi-file Upload is now available in Touch UI if you add Upload action to a compatible data controller. End users of your app will be able to choose multiple files to upload. The app will create a database record for each file, have the file submitted to the server, and persist it to the first BLOB field.


Command Line support is now available in the app generator.

Enter the following in the command line to generate a database app that works on mobile devices and in the web browser:

codeontime -Generate "c:\apps\myapp3" -DbConnection "Data Source=;Initial Catalog=northwind-cmd;Integrated Security=True;" -run

Build mobile and web database apps in seconds in command line. Use generated apps to validate your ideas, prototype data input forms, enter sample data, and much more. Apps built with Code On Time are metadata-driven. Create you own customization tools to invoke codeontime.exe in command line mode. The upcoming Code On Time v9 will be using command line mode extensively since the entire development environment is incorporated directly in the apps.


The following features and fixes also included in this release:
  • (Model Builder) All words in field labels are capitalized when a model is created.
  • (Touch UI) Optimized packaging of JSON properties of FieldValue object instances to minimize footprint for offline/disconnected logging.
  • (Client Library) Values of static Check Box List are correctly displayed when more than one item is selected.
  • (Framework) Blob adapter configuration is not included in the JSON controller descriptor.
  • (Touch UI) Selection of files in BLOB input will make the input focused.
  • (Framework) New TemporaryFileStream class is used for temporary storage of BLOB content.
  • (Touch UI) Method $app.confim support chained alternative execution of code with promises when confirmation is canceled.
  • (Offline Sync) Concurrent uploading of BLOBs is implemented with optional reconciliation of failed to upload blobs.
  • (Offline Sync) End user can opt to sync without data refresh. The option will remain selected until data refresh is explicitly requested. This makes possible working offline and only uploading changes to the server.
  • (Framework) Batch Editing of many-to-many fields works correctly when the primary key field is explicitly included in the view.
  • (Framework) Batch Editing will not erase values of many-to-many fields that are not selected in the Batch Edit form.
  • (Framework) Surveys accept inline functions and non-string values as "Visible When" and "Read Only When" expressions in questions and topics.
  • (Framework) Signature prompt is vertically aligned to the middle.
  • (Touch UI) Download icon is not displayed anymore next to "DOWNLOAD" button.
  • (Offline Sync) Added support for signatures.
  • (Touch UI) Placing $none in "Notify" property of action will prevent notification from being displayed.
  • (ODP) Completed implementation of thumbnail production on the client.
  • (Model Builder) New implementation of multi-level construction of Copy property of lookups for both 1-to-Many and 1-to-1 relationships.
  • (Classic) Implementation of BLOB uploading is now moved to Offline Data Processor.
  • (Framework) Download cookie is set on the server only when specified in the request.
  • (Framework) Azure Blob Adapter now uses HTTPS by default.
  • (Touch UI) Fixed signature resizing.
  • (Model Builder) "Enter" key in the property of the last field will post changes and re-select the same field property.
  • (Localization) Italian localization contributed by Massimo Ciurleo.
  • (ODP) Signatures in child data views are fully supported in transactional mode (when odp is enabled).
  • (Project Wizard) New "Addons" section in Features.
  • (Framework) Filter expression in the model will not cause errors when advanced search is executed.
  • (Framework) Default transaction scope is "sequence",
  • (Offline Sync) If transaction scope is "sequence" then ODP-assigned sequence is overridden with an offline sequence number. If transaction scope is explicitly set to "all", then the sequence is assigned to 0 for all transactions in the log.
  • (Touch UI) Button "driving directions" correctly composes Google Maps query based on fields tagged as map-latitude and map-longitude.
  • (Client Library)  Failed blob will be abandoned since there is not much that the user can do. The row was either inserted or updated already. The blob was rejected by the server. Abandoning of blob eliminates infinite loop of submission.
  • (Framework) A registration record for on-demand fields with blank "On Demand Handler" is not generated in Blob.generated.cs(vb) to prevent duplicate "empty" handlers when more than one such field is defined.
  • (Classic) Rich Text editor correctly sets the value produced in custom editors.
  • (Classic UI) Data views correctly synchronize with the inserted record.
  • (Touch UI) Forced notifications without text will not cause an empty alert displayed when ui.notification.enabled = false.
  • (Framework) Generated data access object has a unique name to prevent clashing with parameters created from access control rules.
  • (Framework) New property ApplicationServices.DisplayName returns application name. The value is derived either from the default app name or from the value stored in appName property in ~/touch-settings.json.
  • (Framework) Method ApplicationServices.ValidateBlobAccess ensures that user can access the row that contains the BLOB field. The field must also be accessible to the user. Otherwise access to blob is denied.
  • (Touch UI) Context menu options for child data views that were defined in their own containers are not displayed anymore. Use fields of DataView type to display child data instead. Previously visible context options have caused exceptions at runtime.
  • (Framework) Method NodeSetCollection.SetTag correctly sets tags for both data fields and views in both singular and chained calls.
  • (Touch UI) Inline editing in child data views will not cause identity fields to be marked as "Modified" and allow entering rows without errors
  • (Touch UI) Refactored panel opening and closing.
Our next goal is to release Offline Data Processor and Offline Sync in update 8.9.0.0 due out by the end of June 2019. We are skipping 8.8.0.0 release numbering since both features are being released together. Cloud On Time for Android will be out in July 2019. The new roadmap has been prepared and will be unveiled soon!


Wednesday, May 29, 2019PrintSubscribe
Multi File Upload
Code On Time release 8.7.11.0 introduces Multi-File Upload. End users can select multiple files and submit them for upload at once to create multiple database records. Application framework automatically inserts a table row for each file, uploads the file, and persists the data either to the database or to an external storage system.

Here is how it works:

1) Start upload.



2. Select multiple files.


3. Preview the selection and tap Submit.


4. Multiple database records are created for each file and associated with a parent if needed.



The feature is activated when the Upload action is executed by the data controller. A built-in form is displayed to allow selecting multiple files for upload.  User submits the form and the framework starts processing files one by one. For each file an Insert action is executed through the same data controller. By default, the view createForm1 is used to figure a list of data fields for Insert. An alternative view can be specified in Command Argument of Insert action.  Special fields are detected to store File Name, Content Type, and Length of the file. For child data views, the master field values are also included. If insert is successful, then the physical file is uploaded to the server and stored in the first on-demand field of Byte[] type. Failure to insert a record or to upload a file will interrupt the processing. The data view is refreshed when processing of all files has been completed.

Consider the following database schema that allows associating documents with the supplier records.



Table Docs defines three explicit fields to maintain information about the files: FileName, ContentType, and Length. The physical data will be stored outside of the database and processed with File System Blob adapter.

Start Code On Time and create an app with two data models - Suppliers and Docs. Next, start Project Designer and begin defining the new field with the name Data and type Byte[] in Docs controller. Mark the field as On Demand. Enter DocID in Source Fields and DocsData in On Demand Handler. Choose Thumbnail in On Demand Style drop down to have a file preview in the app. Save the new field and drag it to createForm1, editForm1, and grid1 in the Docs controller.



Select Docs data controller and enter the following in the Blob Adapter Config property:

Field: Data
Storage-System: File 
Path-Template: C:\app\DocsFileData\{DocID}-{FileName}
File-Name-Field: FileName
Content-Type-Field: ContentType
Length-Field: Length

Make sure that the specified folder C:\app\DocsFileData does exist on your device. Application will use the primary key of the Docs record and the file name to create physical copies of the files submitted to the virtual on-demand Data field.

Add a new action with command name set to Upload to action group Docs / Actions / ag3 .



Proceed to drag Docs controller onto Suppliers controller or copy Docs and paste onto Suppliers. This will create a new field with type DataView and name Docs in the fields of Suppliers controller. Drag the new field to editForm1 view in the same controller.




Run the application and select a supplier.



Select Upload action and choose multiple files to upload.



Tap submit and see the corresponding records appear in the app.


The entire process take a few seconds. User can choose individual records to add comment. There is also an alternative it to create one record at a time if a more deliberative data input mode is desired.



Multi-file upload significantly improves ease-of-use for document management applications.


Monday, March 23, 2015PrintSubscribe
Charts, Drag & Drop Upload, Signature Capturing, Integrated Content Management System, Workflow Register, Single Page Applications, Dynamic Access Control List

Code On Time release 8.5.0.0 includes a monumental collection of enhancements and features.

The release highlights are presented below. Detailed tutorials dedicated to individual features will be published over this week. The roadmap for 2015/2016 with detailed release notes will also become available this week. We are looking forward to your input.

“Charts” View Style for Touch UI

Touch UI applications now supports a new presentation view style called “Charts”. The feature works automatically and can be configured at design time. Here is a sample of charts created for Orders data controller in the Northwind sample.

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Learn about Charts view style now!

“List” View Style for Touch UI

We have reworked “Cards” and “List” view styles for Touch UI. Touch-enabled devices will default to “List” view, while the “Grid” view is the default option for desktop users. The new “List” view style displays items of uneven height with every single field presented to the users. Text of field values will wrap to the next line.

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View style “Cards” offers multi-column presentation of items. All items have the same height.  The text of “long” values does not wrap. Only a subset of fields may be visible within a card.

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Grid view style offers the most compact presentation of data.

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“Charts” view style provides an insight into the current data set.

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Drag & Drop File Upload

Drag & Drop file upload is now supported in both Desktop and Touch UI. File upload preview is also integrated.

First, the user taps or clicks on the drop box to show the file upload prompt. The user may also drag the files into the drop area directly from the file system.

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A preview of the files is displayed directly in the form prior to upload.

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The drop box provides visual feedback when files are dragged over.

image

Progress indicator is displayed at the top of the drop box while the files are being sent to the server.

The relevant FileName, DataContentType, and Length data fields will updated when the user drags or drops the file.

End users can capture images directly from camera or mobile operating system on touch-enabled devices.

Signature Capturing

If you have a binary field in a table then you can configure the field to capture signatures for Touch and Desktop UI. Just set On Demand Display Style to “Signature” to have it activated.

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End users can use touch gestures or pointer devices to draw a signature. The signature is uploaded as PNG file with white background directly to the database.

Single Page Applications

A new single-page application implementation based on HTML is now supported for Azure Factory, Mobile Factory, Web App Factory, and Web Site Factory projects.

Create a new project with default settings to see it in action. There are no *.aspx files in the project, just the HTML files. Here is the sample markup of the Customers page in the sample Northwind web app.

<!DOCTYPE html >
<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml">
  <head>
    <title>Customers</title>
    <meta name="description" content="This page allows customers management." />
  </head>
  <body>
    <div data-flow="row">
      <div id="view1" data-controller="Customers" data-view="grid1" 
data-show-in-summary="true"></div> </div> <div data-flow="row"> <div data-activator="Tab|Orders"> <div id="view2" data-controller="Orders" data-view="grid1" data-filter-source="view1"
data-filter-fields="CustomerID" data-page-size="5" data-auto-hide="container"
data-show-modal-forms="true"> </div> </div> <div data-activator="Tab|Customer Demo"> <div id="view3" data-controller="CustomerCustomerDemo" data-view="grid1"
data-filter-source="view1" data-filter-fields="CustomerID" data-page-size="5"
data-auto-hide="container" data-show-modal-forms="true"> </div> </div> <div data-activator="Tab|Order Details"> <div id="view4" data-controller="OrderDetails" data-view="grid1"
data-filter-source="view1"
data-filter-fields="OrderCustomerID" data-page-size="5" data-auto-hide="container"
data-show-modal-forms="true"> </div> </div> </div> </body> </html>

Integrated Content Management System

Applications generated with SPA page implementation can include an integrated content management system that turns your app in a highly customizable solution. Just create the table called SiteContent  shown below and have it included in your project (SITE_CONTENT and site_content variations are also supported).

CREATE TABLE [dbo].[SiteContent](
    [SiteContentID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL PRIMARY KEY,
    [FileName] [nvarchar](100) NOT NULL,
    [Path] [nvarchar](100) NULL,
    [ContentType] [nvarchar](150) NOT NULL,
    [Length] [int] NULL,
    [Data] [image] NULL,
    [Text] [ntext] NULL,
    [Roles] [nvarchar](50) NULL,
    [Users] [nvarchar](50) NULL
) 

Generate your app, navigate to ~/pages/site-content and upload images, html pages, data controllers, or any other content. Specify the path to the files and they will become available to the authorized users. Hook up content to your static navigation system with the help of dynamic sitemaps.

The sitemap sys/sitemaps/employee-directory will merge with the default sitemap to create new navigation options in the default app.

+ Home

++ One More Level

+++Employee Directory
~/hr/directory
description: Directory of company employees.

image

Create a sitemap with the name sys/sitemaps/main to replace the default navigation system of your app.

Integrated CMS is supported in both Desktop and Touch UI.

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Dynamic Access Control List

Premium and Unlimited edition users can take advantage of Dynamic Access Control List. Create access rules in the integrated CMS with the path sys/dacl. Application framework will locate files stored in the CMS and apply rules to all matching SELECT statements composed at runtime. You can also store access control rules as text files in the ~/dacl folder of your application.

This sample set of rules will affect all data controllers of the Northwind sample that have CustomerID field in the views.

Field: CustomerID
Roles: Users
Role-Exceptions: Administrators
 
[CustomerID] in ('ANTON', 'ANATR')
 
Field:       CustomerID
Controller:  Customers
Users:       user
 
[Country]='USA' and [ContactTitle]='Owner'
 
Field:       CustomerID
Role-Exceptions: Administrators
 
select CustomerID from Customers
where Country='UK' and City='London'

The picture below shows the effect of the rules on the Customers data controller.

image

Learn more about access control rules that can be written in code.

Dynamic Controller Customization

Integrated CMS can also store customizations of data controllers.

For example, file sys/controllers/hr/Employees.Alter.Directory will turn Employees data controller in a phone directory when defined as follows:

when-tagged("employee-directory");

select-views("editForm1", "createForm1").delete();

when-user-interface("Touch").select-view("grid1")
    .create-data-field("Photo")
    .create-data-field("HomePhone")
    .create-data-field("Extension").set-header-text("Ext");

select-view("grid1")
    .set-access("Public")
    .select-data-fields("LastName", "FirstName", "Extension", "HomePhone", "Photo")
    .use()
    .set-columns("20");

select-actions("CHANGE", "Select", "EXPORT")
    .delete();

This is how the new phone directory will look.

image

It is not possible to edit any data on this page. Only a small subset of actions is visible.

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Workflow Register

Workflow Register uses the integrated content management system to define workflows as a collection of resources. For example, the workflow sys/workflows/hr can be defined as the following collection.

hr/directory
sys/controllers/hr/Employees.Alter.Directory
sys/sitemaps/employee-directory

It provides access to page hr/directory, activates a customization for controller Employees, and adds employee-directory sitemap to the application sitemap.

The workflow can be assigned to anonymous users by creating the entry “sys/register/roles/?” with the text “hr”  in the site content.

Consolidated Client Library Files

The script library has been consolidated. The scripts have been renamed.

  • daf.js <- Web.DataView.js
  • daf-resources.js <- Web.DataViewResources.js + Web.MembershipResources.js
  • daf-membership.js <- Web.Membership.js + Web.MemershipManager.js
  • daf-menu.js <- Web.Menu.js
  • daf-extensions.js <- Web.DatViewExtensions.js
  • touch.js <- Web.Mobile.js

Pages Can Be Generated “First Time Only”

Pages of the project can be based on templates and be configured to generate “First Time Only” similar to user controls.

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