Sitecore announces 2016 MVPs

It’s that time of year again: Sitecore has announced the 2016 MVPS! I was again honoured to see my name on the list for the third year in a row. You can see the full list of 2016 MVPs on the Sitecore MVP site.

My outward reaction when reading the email may have been calm and professional, but inside I was more like this:

kermit-excited

With a third season on the MVP list ahead of me, I need to find a way to take things to another level. This past year I tackled my goal of having more of a speaking presence and had the chance to do an xDB webinar and also present at the Toronto Sitecore User Group, SUGCON in New Orleans, and at DevOps East in Orlando. I definitely learned things about myself and our great technical community during these trips and I look forward to having a chance to do some more presentations this year.

However, doing a repeat of last year isn’t really stepping things up a level. Instead, I have a few things I’d like to try to achieve this coming year. For one, last year I wasn’t able to create a new marketplace contribution. I was able to provide some updates to the authenticated preview module, but this year I want to actually come up with something new and provide some value.

Also, I’d like to experiment a little bit more with some video content, though maybe not always with a musical slant as was done recently.

Six of my colleagues at nonlinear also received this prestigious award, including the only MVPs in Brazil! If you are interested in reading more, below are some of the releases that Claire and the rest of our team put together. Congratulations team!

Where are the roles in my TDS update package?

Team Development for Sitecore (TDS) supports the ability to manage your Sitecore roles within your TDS projects in Visual Studio. This ensures that important roles defined for things like workflow or other security needs can be deployed to all your environments.

Recently, I was building my packages for deployment to production and was going through the generated .update package and could not find my roles. No folders for roles, no files for roles… WHERE ARE MY ROLES?

Hedgehog support to the rescue!

I reached out to the fine folks at Hedgehog for some help and heard back the same day. Apparently, the standard Sitecore Update package format doesn’t support roles, so when Hedgehog added the support they did some sneaky things to make magic happen. The roles have actually been added into post deployment steps, and you can find the role definitions inside the file /_Dev/DeployedItems.xml.

The XML looks something like this:

<Role Name="sitecore\Keystone Multisite Manager">
<![CDATA[LS0tLXJvbGUtLS0tDQpuYW1lOiBzaXRlY29yZVxLZXlzdG9uZSBNdWx0aXNpdGUgTWFuYWdlcg0KDQo=]]>
</Role>

This obfuscated CDATA content contains all the things you need to define the role in Sitecore. Pretty nifty!