Diagnosing wierd widget installation issue

I had a customer report a widget (plugin) installation issue to me. They had clients being unable to install a widget (and hence a plugin) from an update site on our servers (external to their network). The error was reported as below:

Unable to access "http://<host>/site.xml".
Contains: Error parsing site stream. [White spaces are
   required between publicId and systemId.]

The issue turned out to be caused by a firewall issue and hence wrongly reported in the log. The issue was solved by relocating the update site to the customers network.

Developing an Eclipse plug-in from start to finish

Ryan Baxter from IBM who I had the honor of co-presenting with at Lotusphere just published a new article on the appdev wiki titled Developing an Eclipse plug-in from start to finish. The article takes you step-by-step through building a nice plugin and uses the Eclipse WindowBuilder (GUI editor) for taking the hassle out of building the UI.

A very nice Friday read.

March Lotus Technical Information and Education (LTIE) community meeting

If you’re interested in plugin development and the recently published RedWiki on plugin development for Lotus Notes, Sametime and Symphony (easy url is http://bit.ly/pluginredwiki) be sure to join us for the March March Lotus Technical Information and Education (LTIE) community meeting. The conference call will be on 22 March at 10am Central Time (10am Eastern, 3pm CET).

For more info head over to the Lotus Technical Information and Education wiki on Lotus Greenhouse (look under “When we meet” at the bottom of the page).

Bob Balfe: plugin_customization.ini and Eclipse preferences

Bob has, once again, written a very nice post on his blog. This time it’s on plugin preferences and how the plugin_customization.ini file fits in and where Eclipse preferences are stored. As this is common cause of concern and questions from plugin developers and admins I wanted to point to the post.

Bob Balfe: plugin_customization.ini and Eclipse preferences

How to extend Notes 8: New version of the demo application

I just posted an update to the demo application for my Extending Notes 8 series of posts. The demo application is discussed in more detail in my previous post (How to extend Notes 8: LiveText demo application). The issue was that I had a button to create a demo e-mail in the UI which made the plugin depend on the Notes Java UI API which was added in Notes 8.5.1 and hence meant that the demo application wasn’t installable on previous Notes versions… 😦

To remedy that I built an new version where the button using the offending API is added from an Eclipse plugin fragment and using a custom extension point (if you’re running Notes 8.5.1+). More on that approach at a later date. For now you may install the new version using the updated widget descriptor (extension.xml) (simply drag the link to your MyWidgets sidebar plugin).

If you do an update – which there’s absolutely no reason to if it already works for you – the only way to tell is by verifying that the version number at the bottom of the sidebar application is changed to 1.0.1.

That’s all for this post. All the posts in the series may be found under the extending_notes8 tag.

How to extend Notes 8: LiveText demo application

The day before yesterday I posted the first summary post in my Extending Notes 8 series with a complete end-to-end approach to dynamically adding LiveTex recognizers. As part of that post I uploaded a demo application (plugin) but I didn’t add a screenshot so I thought I’d remedy that.

As you can see the plugin has a small welcome text and two buttons. You’ll also see a textbox to hold any exception (not that I’m expecting any) that might be raised as part of adding the recognizer and content type. You may use the two buttons to easily create a demo e-mail for use with the added LiveText stuff. The left button creates the e-mail in the UI (using the new handy Java UI classes) and the right one simply sends the e-mail to you in the backend. The latter is very handy for testing as the e-mail needs to be in read mode for the LiveText sub-system to kick in.

I’ve put a compiled version of the plugin on my update site and tthe plugin may be installed by dragging this extension.xml file to your MyWidgets sidebar panel (policy permitting).

That’s all for this post. All the posts in the series may be found under the extending_notes8 tag.