The Admin's Advent Calendar

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There's a popular Christmas habit at the admin's kingdom: people use an Advent Calendar for sweetening the time until Santa is coming to town. The calendar has 24 little closed doors, one for each day in December until Christmas Eve. You are allowed to open one door per day.

Implementing closed doors here in the community is not a good idea, Atlassian is an open company, no closed doors, not even for fun and not even for the admin and his tales. Since there are no closed doors, the admin will simply add little pieces of content every day to this Advent Calendar article, every single day until Christmas Eve. He hopes you like it as much as opening closed doors on an Advent Calendar. Focus will be set on out-of-the-box functionality of Confluence without any add-on-apps. Although there could be a lot more great snippets using these apps, but anyway... 

And even if you don't celebrate Christmas, the admin hopes, you like it all the same.

 

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Merry Christmas and a happy, peaceful new year to everyone - have an anwesome time with your friends and family, play some board games and enjoy these days. 

I hope you had fun with the Advent Calendar. If you like, drop me a line in the comments. I appreciate your "likes" and feedback. That's the motivation for the admin and his tales.

The admin is going to take a break now until 2018. See you then with more untold tales :-)

24merry-christmas.png

 

 

 

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Today, I will show you a hidden feature of Confluence. Well, today it's a hidden feature, in earlier versions, it was regular functionality. (And if I just haven't found the right button in today's Confluence, shame on me... and please tell me that...)

But I think it is really well hidden and I don't know, if it will be gone in future versions of Confluence. I'm talking about the "Alphabetical View" containing all the pages of a space in an alphabetical order. If you know Confluence for some years, you possibly remember that page.

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It is still there, even in Confluence cloud, but you have to know the exact URL. And this is it: http://<your confluence url>/pages/listpages-alphaview.action?key=<your space key>

It looks a bit old fashioned, but it still works and the people in the admin's kingdom love this view. Maybe someday, there will be a modern version of that page.

One more day...

 

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Did you ever wish, you could put a scrollable panel on a page? Just the content of the panel is scrolling, the page itself is not, so everything on top and underneath the panel stays visible. This might be useful for long tables with a lot of business data or something much more enjoyable like a long Christmas Carol.

All you need is a little bit of CSS magic.

But where should you add this CSS - a global CSS is no good idea, it would manipulate every panel in your space. So we put it on the page itself. For this, of course, you have to implement a user macro, what else ;-). Use the macro to define a fixed size for the panels on a page like that:

The macro has no body. Its template looks like that:

## @param 0:title=Width|type=string|required=true|desc=Width in Pixel (important: add "px" to the value)
## @param 1:title=Height|type=string|required=true|desc=Height in Pixel (important: add "px" to the value)

<style type="text/css">
.panel { width:$param0; height:$param1; overflow: auto; }
</style>

Put that macro on your page, enter values for Width and Height and don't forget the letters "px" after the value. Then put a panel on your page and add a lot of lines into that panel.

After saving the page, you will see a scroll bar right beneath the panel. If you want, change the border and background color of the panel to "white", then you do not even see the surrounding panel anymore.

And this is how this works in real life: 

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(click for a larger view)

2 Days left...

 


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It's almost Christmas. At the admin's kingdom, the confluence dashboard gets decorated. Yes, that's the truth. Every year, a christmas tree, candles, some christmas baubles, Santas, snow, gingerbread men and other things appear and disappear on/from the dashboard. It is quite a lot of work for the admin and you need to have a little bit of experience with graphical things, but people like it and were disappointed, if the dashboard would look the same in December as most of the time of the year (Something similar happens on Easter, Halloween or the Soccer World Championship, or without any reason at all, be creative!)

Maybe it's too late to surprise your people this year, but next Christmas is coming soon :-)

Be careful, don't push it too hard. People still need to work with the dashboard! Can you guess, what's really on our Christmas Dashboard 2017 and what is just a fake for this community?

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Just 3 Days left...

 

 

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This is the third and last part of the PDF Export customizations

For this package again, the admin is using a free app from the marketplace: "Visibility for Confluence", escpecially the macro "show if" coming with this app. - This is an essential part of today's pdf tip and the admin did not reimplement that function, because it is already there for free.
But he's sure, there are also other apps and options for hiding content...

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First customization: Add the name of the version's editor and the version's modification date to the exported pdf

The important information, who edited the Confluence page and when the page was changed, is missing on an exported PDF. But you can add that with another User Macro:

Here's the macro template:

Macro has no Body

## @noparams

#set($user = $userAccessor.getUser($content.lastModifierName))
#set($dateFormatter = $action.getDateFormatter())
Version $content.version created by $user.fullName on $dateFormatter.format($content.lastModificationDate)

Add that macro to your page and hide it with the visibility macro (There's already an Admin's article about about hiding things here) like that:

Put your user macro into the body of a "show-if"-macro (parameter: display = printable). The hidden text should now be invisible on your screen but visible on your PDF (look at the screenshot below).

Second: Add a timestamp to your pdf

The export timestamp is the current date and time, the moment when you start the export. This date has to be determined each time, you are exporting a page (or pages). The following user macro will create the timestamp for you:

MacroName: currentDateTime

Macro has no Body

Template: 

## @noparams

$action.dateFormatter.formatGivenString("dd.MM.yyyy HH:mm:ss", $content.currentDate)

Put your user macro into the body of a "show-if-macro" - then it will only be visible in the printed version of your page.

Here's a screenshot with both macros on a page, just visible when exported or printed:

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The exported pdf will have these lines:

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Btw, if you ask me, what's the relationship between a pdf export and this tiny little bird on today's picture, then I would have to say, ahmm, nothing... It is just a tiny little bird and the bird is sweet :-) - after hours of thinking, I got no idea which symbol would be related to a pdf export as well as Christmas. If you have an idea, write it down in the comments! Maybe next year, I'll get back to your idea.

4 Days left...

 

 

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This is the second part of the PDF export options hints.

Today: Hide content from PDF Export

Sometimes, there is content on your page that you don't want to export. The PDF should include everything but that one paragraph. Implementing this is quite easy. Just use the admin's Swiss army knife and create a - tadaa: User Macro.

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This macro should have a rendered body and the following Template:

## @noparams
<div class="NoPrint">$body</div>

Put all your content that should not be exported or printed into the body of this macro and add the following code to your PDF Stylesheet:

.NoPrint { display: none ; }

That's it, nothing more to do today - tomorrow will be another one.

5 Days left...

 

 

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Do you have the same content on many pages and type that text over and over again? And do you fear that one time, this content has to be changed and you have to change it on 1468 pages?

 

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There's no need for adding the content on each of these 1468 pages. Just use the excerpt macro for this purpose:

  • Create a new boilerplate page
  • Add the Excerpt macro to that page
  • Type the content that you want on these 1468 pages as body into the excerpt macro
  • Use the "Excerpt Include"-macro on these 1468 pages. Include the excerpt from your boilerplate page
  • Now, you can change the text on your boilerplate page and all other pages change their output text immediately.

Unfortunately, there is only one excerpt macro on a page allowed, so if you have more boilerplates, you have to create a new page for every text module. Of course, there is a marketplace app for this problem also, but no advertisement, you have to find it by yourself :-)

6 Days left...

 

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Lazy Sunday #3 - If you still need to buy some Christmas presents, go get them now - It is just one more week.

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And for the rest of you, the ones who don't have to go hunting for the last presents - enjoy this day, don't work, have fun in the snow with your friends and families, and enjoy the most wonderful time of the year.

(P.S.: From now on, I have to remove the first days, because of the size limit for articles... The lost days will be added again later as a new article.)

7 Days left...

 

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There's another macro recommendation in today's package: The Content Report Table - Macro

This macro is great for designing overview pages. E.g. if you put the label "christmas" on all your Christmas pages (the most important pages these days), then you can easily create a dynamic list of all these pages just by using the Content Report Table macro:

16-christmaspages.png8 Days left...

 

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You might guess who the power users in your kingdom's Confluence are. But don't you miss someone? And who is the most active one? If these questions don't let you sleep at night, the admin has got something for you:

Get the list of the most active writers in your Confluence with the "Contributors Summary" or the "Contributors" macro. With these macros, you get the list of contributors based on a page or a space. This is useful for identifying the experts for a certain subject (the ones who wrote the most content on a page or in a space might be experts...).

Maybe you can award a prize to your experts, e.g. "Awesome Author" or "Brilliant Team" or "Most Beautiful Christmas Tree" to motivate them.

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(Btw, what does your favorite christmas tree look like? Tell us in the comments :-) - the admin likes the natural style better than the bling-bling ones...)

But: be careful publishing these contributor's data and giving awards. In some kingdoms you might get into trouble with the worker's representation. The admin speaks from his own experience... Check this first before publishing lists or awarding power users.

9 Days left...

 

 

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Today I'm reneging on the promise not to mention any apps from the marketplace. But this one is a special one, it's from Atlassian, is free, it's magic and you have to know this app.

I'm speaking of the Confluence Source Editor. It is an alternative editor for your Confluence pages. With this editor you can edit the storage format of your Confluence Page. I think, it is the best way for editing macro parameters and fixing strange formatting errors and is a very very helpful tool for every admin. Unfortunately, the app is not available for Cloud.

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If you know a bit of HTML, you should have no problems editing and repairing a page with the Source Editor.

The Source Editor is available here:

https://marketplace.atlassian.com/plugins/com.atlassian.confluence.plugins.editor.confluence-source-editor/server/overview

10 Days left...

 

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Do you know the Chart Macro? It is quite unknown and not often used (at least in the admin's kingdom), but it is doing great work in visualizing data.

OK, it's not interactive, that's true. The data is static and embedded into the Confluence page. But give it a try. If you just need a graphical representation of some data, this is the macro of your choice.

Create Pie Charts, Bar Charts, Line Charts, Area Charts and Gantt Charts with this macro: 

13-barchart.png13-linechart.png13-piechart.png

(These are very special Christmas versions of the charts - this version of the plugin is only available at Santa's marketplace until Christmas Eve)

11 Days left...

 

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You won't believe, how often people ask the admin, whether they can sort pages in Confluence. People who don't ask, often help themselves by adding numbers in front of their page title, so the pages are automatically ordered by these numbers.
But, adding numbers is not only cumbersome, it is not necessary at all. Sorting pages is so easy, once you found the function. I believe, most of you know this already, but as I said, you won't believe...

 

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You find the function "Reorder pages" in the left sidebar under the Space Tools. Klicking on the button opens a tree view of your space where you can order and move your pages by dragging and dropping them in the tree.

12 Days left...

I had to remove days 1 - 11 in order to add new days to this article. 

Here's another article containing the lost dayskugeln.png

13 comments

@Thomas Schlegel This is a really neat Idea!  I love it!  Especially Day 3 :D

Thomas Schlegel Community Champion Dec 04, 2017

Thank you, Kimberly - and have a look the next 20 days :-)

Rachel Wright Community Champion Dec 04, 2017

WOW!  There are not enough likes for this idea!  You are so cool @Thomas Schlegel!  Happy holidays!

Hallo @Thomas Schlegel,

das ist eine richtig gute Idee und kann nur der Community dienen!

Beste Grüße aus Bremen

I love this.  :)

Daniel Eads Community Champion Dec 05, 2017

@Thomas Schlegel you are the coolest!

330627-cat-saying-interesting-4fbd7

Thomas Schlegel Community Champion Dec 05, 2017

@Daniel Eads@Philippe Beaudette@Semi Kefi [demicon GmbH]@Rachel Wright

Thank you so much for your nice comments, I'm so happy, you like it :) 

I like it!    liebe Grüße aus Wien

Thomas Schlegel Community Champion Dec 16, 2017

@Wolfgang Lutz, Dankeschön, viele Grüße und schönes Weihnachtsfest nach Wien!

@Greg, thank you 😊 

Fantastic post.

I am waiting every day for new tricks :)

Will there be a possibility to read ALL posts?

 

BR,

Thomas Schlegel Community Champion Dec 20, 2017

Thank you, @Jiraconfluence Solutionmgm sIT

there is a size restriction for articles, so I have to remove almost every day one of the first days.

I will post the "lost days" next week in a separate article.

Happy Holidays!

OK. I'm glad that they won't get lost :)

 

Happy Holidays!

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