OpenPaaS’ Newsletter — October 2018
…Upgrade successfully completed…
New versions of both OpenPaaS and LinShare have been released recently, respectively 1.2 and 2.2. In OpenPaaS’ case, its website has been overhauled, and we invite you to take a peek at it. Throughout this newsletter, recent software changes will be introduced and a special attention will be dedicated to presenting LinShare, its history, and where it is heading to. But as a start, let’s talk about OpenPaaS, which has recently reached a new milestone.
OpenPaaS, our open collaborative platform, has hit version 1.2, also known as Botein. Botein, which also goes by the name Delta Arietis, is a star located in the northern constellation of Aries. Its name derives from Al Bīrūnī’s Al Buṭayn, which roughly translates to “The Belly”.
What Botein does introduce? Botein further increases OpenPaaS’ modularity, provides minor fixes in the core and its modules: in many respects, it can be considered a maintenance release, meant to further increase OpenPaaS’ stability, especially in a clustered environment like Kubernetes, that we are primarily targeting for our deployments. Botein’s release notes are now available on our website.
Speaking of which, in coordination with our in-house digital agency, a new website has been created, which will be easier to modify and will allow faster iterations. Please tell us in the comment section what you think of it!
OpenPaaS is a collaborative platform made out of many elements, software and technologies. It provides businesses more than the sum of its parts. But what does parts are? As you probably already know, LinShare, a standalone solution, is now integrated into OpenPaaS, as a module.
What does LinShare do, where it comes from and how can it help your business?
LinShare is an easy-to-use file sharing server that does what it names entails: it allows the sharing of large files across networks using a simple web application, which is especially useful when those files are too big to be attached to emails, or when you want to share information with external correspondents. Traceability, through auditing and monitoring, is paramount to this solution, which makes it a perfect fit for any business or institutional environments. Just like OpenPaaS, this Open Source solution is proudly maintained by LINAGORA.
That sounds great, but where does LinShare come from?
Perhaps like every great applications out there, LinShare was created as an answer to a demonstrable need expressed by an identified customer, in this case the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM). In 2008, the said institute wanted to adopt a new application to securely share large files. LINAGORA successfully won the call for bids and started just thereafter to develop a solution from scratch. After only one year of intense development, LinShare 0.6 was released in 2009 and published under an Open Source license.
Three years after, in 2012, the software hit version 1.0.0. This version introduced many functionalities: shared folders, allowing multiple files to be shared at once; file request, to let an external contact upload files in a dedicated space.
A few years after, in 2017, LinShare 2.0 was released. The user interface has been entirely revamped to match more closely current trends: a brand new interface has been shaped from the ground-up, which allows users to access files from any devices, in a responsive way.
Together with version 2.1, those are some of the features that were introduced: an upload queue, to let you upload multiple files in a sequence; the preview ability, to see what the content of a file looks like before you download it; a personal space, to offer you a dedicated space for your own personal files; support for OpenStack Swift, to leverage this public cloud’s service; guest accounts support, to let administrators create accounts for guest users; and finally, a personal activity log, to get a fully detailed view of all your past activities.
Just a few weeks ago, at the beginning of October this month, LinShare reached version 2.2, adding a few pages in its already impressive changelog.
AdNovum, a Swiss company working in High-End and Security Engineering, funded some of those changes, which are now available for everyone using LinShare. Without further due, let’s introduce those features:
- Theming. Now, you can personalize LinShare, so that it matches more closely your company’s corporate identity. There is more information here and even a guide for creating your own theme there.
- A new role. Now, there is a new role, the contributor, siting between the reader and the writer. Writer’s privileges have been revamped. In sum, more granularity have been added when it comes to permission. More information is available here.
- Group synchronization with LDAP. Groups created in an LDAP directory will be automatically synchronized with LinShare. Further information can be found there.
- JSON Web Token (JWT) authentication. Thanks to JWT, a backend feature, server-to-server authentication will be made more simple! Do you want to use it yourself? If so, head over to the documentation.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have file versionning in LinShare, so that you could keep a complete history of any file, and roll back in case a mistake was done? Or to be able to create a set that would include many shared folders, so that you could better mimic how a company is organized, and let information be shared more easily?
File versionning and bigger organizational units are big features the LinShare team is actually working on.