Tricking Tridion Into Unpublishing Content From Dead Targets

The duplicate binary error on Tridion one is a common and often annoying issue. If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of running across it, Chris Summers discusses it at length here. Today I found a new (to me) twist on the issue.

We were trying to replace some old binaries, but kept getting this error. The reason was that even though we had unpublished the old binaries, Tridion was still showing them as published to a number of old, out of service publication targets. Unfortunately, the HTTPS upload URLs for these targets were shut down long ago, meaning Tridion could never successfully unpublish our binaries from these targets. Or could it?

Since the servers these targets point to no longer exist, it wasn’t important that Tridion actually remove the files, only that it thought it had. To trick Tridion into believing this we temporarily replaced the HTTPS upload URL with our current working URL (where the files were already unpublished) and added our current target type to each target. Now all we had to do was unpublish our binaries again and voila, Where Used shows Tridion has no references to binaries on old targets and we have no more duplicate binary error.

Of course, with new versions of Tridion the old publishing targets will no longer pose a problem thanks to the ability to decommission a publishing target, discussed by Bart Koopman here. For those still working with older versions this simple trick may be useful for when you need to unpublish from a dead publishing target.

Get JSON data from the SDL Tridion Reference Implementation

The MVPs got to grips with the SDL Tridion Reference implementation (TRI ) while on the yearly retreat in Portugal a couple of weeks back. In between getting people up and running with this new SDL Tridion product, I knocked up a Controller implementation to pull content/data as JSON from the web application.

Continue reading

Distributed “Tridion-less” Tridion Development

About five years ago I wrote a blog entitled the “The Fifth SDL Tridion Environment” in which I explored the need for additional development environments. SDL solved my frustration in part, by creating the MVP program, which carries the great benefit of a special MVP license for Tridion. The license can be used for personal research etc., but not on customer or partner projects. So fast forwarding to 2014, independent Tridion developers are in much the same boat of needing to use a customer’s license installed on a customer’s server.

A lot has changed since 2009, and I am now on a project where we have a globally distributed army of developers (many of which have no knowledge of Tridion or any other CMS) working on a Tridion project from their own machines without the need to buy additional licenses or provide training to each developer. SDL may not like this idea (sorry SDL), but the approach I am about to share has drastically increased the productivity of our team, and has removed many of the ‘barriers to entry’ that so many of SDL’s customers and prospects have complained about in the past. I really believe that this is a model that could significantly increase the acceptance of Tridion to the broader developer community. Continue reading

Tridion Reference Implementation Patterns 1: Routing & Controller Basics

One of the goals of the SDL Tridion Reference Implementation (TRI) is to provide an example web application for which ASP.NET MVC application developers can develop functionality without deep understanding of the underlying CMS. A key difference between a ‘classic’ MVC app and a CMS managed one is how URLs are managed and the impact this has on routing requests to controllers. In this article I dig into the mechanism used in the TRI to explain how it fits together.

Continue reading

Quick DD4T tip : combine ‘static’ images and images handled with the BinaryDistributionModule

In a DD4T website, you can serve images from the broker using the BinaryDistributionModule. This is a module that intercepts requests for any images, and then queries the broker for published images, and serves them (I will talk about this more in-depth in a future post).

However, this might give some problems if you also have static images.

Continue reading

Introducing: The SDL Tridion Reference Implementation

tri-logoReleased last week – the first step on a path to lower the barriers (time, cost, knowledge, lack of standardization) of implementing SDL Tridion. In this post I aim to give a short introduction, by highlighting what you should and should not expect from the Reference Implementation.

Continue reading

DD4T and SDL SmartTarget 2014 Integration

There are a number of steps required to install SmartTarget and all the required pieces, including FredHopper and the new SmartTarget CD Webservice Extension. That’s right; Tridion’s OData Webservice now comes with a SmartTarget extension to grab your Promotions’ items… I digress. In this article I am going to assume that you’ve done your homework and read the SDL Live Content documentation regarding the necessary moving parts, wiring and plumbing, and have it all installed. (If you’re looking for an introduction to SmartTarget 2014, have a look at John Winter’s article: A look at SmartTarget 2014). So here we’ll just jump right into answering the question of how to integrate DD4T.NET with SmartTarget 2014 and I will share an MVC HTML Helper Extension class providing us with control to render SmartTarget’s Promotion Items in your DD4T-driven MVC.NET application.

Continue reading

Remote Debugging in Visual Studio Made Easy(ish)

"Object reference not set to an instance of an object?!!"

“Object reference not set to an instance of an object?!!”

I love Tridion. There’s a strange elegance to the way she operates, and when I resolve an issue or learn something new there’s no sweeter feeling. But oftentimes sometimes our Tridion can be a cruel mistress – or mister, as you fancy. We configure, install, develop, and implement on her all day long, and just when it seems we understand each other she delivers a sharp slap to remind us that she’s in charge. Saucy. Continue reading

A look at SmartTarget 2014

SmartTarget-interface-Find-ItemI’ve been banging on about SmartTarget for a couple of years now, it’s a pretty cool tool and you can do some great things with it. But, there’s an bothersome element of the last version in that to access it, you would have to leave SDL Tridion interface and open up a separate tool called the ‘Business Manager’.  The Business Manager is simple enough to use, not being a part of, or looking like SDL Tridion interface makes the experience of the whole thing seemed a little odd.

Continue reading