Ask The Experts: Micro Focus Vibe and Filr [39]

Welcome to this edition of questions and answers for Micro Focus Vibe and Filr.  If you wish to ask me any questions then please email them to qanda@open-horizons.net.

Filr 3.3 is due for release in a few weeks’ time, and as there are a number of new features in the product I thought that in this issue we can cover some subjects where I have questions that will be resolved in 3.3.  Like the upgrades to 3.1 and 3.2 the upgrade to 3.3 will be through the update channel.

If you wish to add an enhancement to the ideas portal, or vote on an existing idea, then visit ideas.microfocus.com/mfi/novell-filr.  This is where the product team looks to decide which features to add to future releases of the product.

Q: My department runs the IT infrastructure for two separate schools: is there a way that we can have different branding for each school?

A: The new version of Filr supports Multi Tenancy: This allows you to set up totally different Zones for different host names on the same Filr infrastructure.  This means that, depending on the URL used to access the server (see figure 1), different sites will be accessed, each site can have its own branding, users and net folders!   This is something that will be useful for organisations that have multiple entities or it will be perfect for partners who wish to host Filr for multiple customers.

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Figure 1: Listing Zones in the Filr Administration Console

When you first login to a zone you will need to use the default admin user and password; it is a new Filr site after all!  Then just set it up as a new site, each zone has a different LDAP, and Net Folder configuration and all the other settings in the administration console, including custom branding.

Q: Vibe has an add-in for Microsoft Office that allows you to access documents directly from within Word and other Office applications.  Can we have similar functionality in Filr?

A: With Filr 3.3 there is an Office plugin.  This extends the functionality of the Outlook plugin we had in 3.2 and adds it to additional Office applications.  First it adds a new tool bar to the interface which has options to open and save documents in Filr, and also it updates the share menu (see figure 2) with a new Filr option.

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Figure 2: The share menu - now with the new Filr option

Selecting this option adds a new side bar that allows you to share a document from within the application itself (see figure 3).

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Figure 3: The sharing options

Q: Our organisation uses Windows, Macs and Linux workstations.  We have desktop clients for Mac and Windows but when are we going to see a Linux client?

A:  The Linux desktop client has, for some time, been top of the list of requests on the Ideas portal.  With 3.3 we have a finally have a release of one. This can be downloaded from the standard ‘Download Filr Desktop App’ menu.  The client integrates with the Gnome desktop (see figure 4). It is not quite the files on demand client that is available for Windows and Mac, more like the 1.2 client where whole directories are synchronised rather than individual files.  There are plans to bring it up to the same level as the files on demand client, we see on the other operating systems, but for the moment I think we have a good solution.

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Figure 4: The Linux desktop client

Q: Is there a way I can get external users to upload a file into Filr?

A: You can of course share a folder with an eternal user and give them contributor rights, however that means that they can see what is in that folder and delete files from it.  In Filr 3.3 there is an additional way to enable users to upload a file., you can send them a request file link (see figure 5).

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Figure 5: sending a Request file link

This will send an email to the designated user and clicking on the link prompts the user to upload a file (See figure 6).  This will upload the file with a name <email address>-<file name> into the folder.

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Figure 6: Uploading a file on a Request File link

I believe that the majority of these features will be in the Advanced edition though the Linux client should be in the Standard edition.

 

This article was first published in Open Horizons Magazine, Issue 39, 2017/4, p35-36.

 

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