GuildPortal Dev Blog

Updates from Aaron Lewis, GuildPortal Code Monkey

Posted 10/10/2012 9:59 AM by Aaron Lewis. 664767 reads. Share:

Many enhancements have been incrementally rolled out since the last release announcement. I'll summarize what's been going on, minus a lot of the minor bug fixes:
  • New Feature Promotion Letters. Whenever a member is promoted to a higher level, you can replace the default system-sent mail with your own custom one, and you can have a unique letter for every level. For example, you can have a different letter sent when someone is promoted to member versus when someone is promoted to officer or council. Get started with promotion letters in Control Panel General Promotion letters or Guild Bar Admin Member Management Promotion Letters.
  • Enhancement New World of Warcraft roster with in-game WoW Guild Achievements. Configuration-free, fast sorting and filtering, more frequently updated, real thumbnails of your characters.. Stay tuned, more new stuff for WoW is on the way.
  • Enhancement WYSIWYG editor file selection/uploading. The editor tool for selecting an image has been revamped to function much like the file manager in the Control Panel. However, you now have additional buttons: one to add media (sound, video, etc) and another to add Flash content. All three tools allow for direct upload while editing your content.
  • New Feature User uploads from WYSIWYG Editor. Previously, there was no way for members to upload images or any other media for use in their forum posts. Now, they have access to the three tools mentioned above, but all of their uploads are stored in a special sub-directory off the guild root with the format /MemberUploads/memberid. That is their root directory, and they can create sub-directories, drag-and-drop copy files, and directly edit images (add text, skew, rotate, crop, etc). They cannot, however, see the guild root folder or navigate to the root of other guild member folders.
  • Enhancement Page Footer. The old page footer had a pretty low limit on the number of characters it allowed. This limitation has been eased up, and you may now also specify a background gradient fade and the top edge color and size for the footer area. If you want a solid color instead of a gradient, just select the same color for both the start and end colors. Control Panel Style Tools Page Footer or Guild Bar Admin Site Customization Footer.
  • Css For those who use custom CSS, the class for the new footer area is gp5-footer.
  • Enhancement 8 new GuildWars 2 themes have been added.
  • Maint Some of you may have noticed the new error reporting form you are taken to when you encounter a run-time error. Many of you who have, have filled out the "what were you doing when the error happened" field, and I just wanted to drop a quick "thank ya" for doing so. The details you provide, along with the actual error details, are both put together to automatically create a new support ticket, which is assigned directly to -- waaaaaaaait for it -- development. Anyway, it makes getting to the cause of a problem much easier and has resulted in many hotfixes over the past month! Oh, and to the individual who typed in "I was sleeping".. lol
Finally, a bunch of bugs were fixed.

Posted 8/31/2012 2:15 PM by Aaron Lewis. 274565 reads. Share:

The following went down during this release cycle (some of the more urgent items were deployed as hotfixes):
  • Enhancement You can now customize the names of the access levels (Public, Associate, Member, Council, Officer, SuperAdmin). They appear in the forums and other places. From any guild page, click the Admin item on the Guild Bar, hover over Member Management, and then select Custom Level Names. You can also get there from Member Management in the Control Panel.
  • Enhancement The paging while reading posts has been enhanced a little.
  • Css A div has been added that wraps around quotes (previously, the quote titles and bodies were all on their own). The class name is quoteWrapper.
  • Css Widget and forum category headers now stretch their background images vertically to match the height of the container. This was done to remove the need to regenerate your images/gradients whenever you changed the font size or the padding.
  • Css The ForumCategoryHeader class had rules with !important in them, making it difficult for those who dig into CSS to customize it. The !important directives have been removed.
  • Bug When mod authors update their mods, the "details" will now save properly.
  • Bug The edit dialog for voice server status widgets has been set back to the correct one.
  • Bug For IE users, the voting poll results were sometimes not displaying. Fixed.
  • Enhancement Auto-suggest has been added to the public GuildPortal page search (along the top). It'll make it easier for people to find your guild more quickly -- it displays things like your game, server, and even more detail if they hover over / select it via arrow keys.
  • Enhancement Tooltips from GuildHead have been incorporated and will now automatically work on any GuildWars2 site.
  • Bug The new, less-intrusive widget admin "thingy" (technical term) was sometimes making IE go into convulsive fits, playing with its mind, attempting to get it to give up the location of the rebel bases. I told it that IE does not know the location of the rebel bases, so now it's all better.
  • Enhancement Member admin tools have been added to the Guild Bar.
  • Enhancement The shout box was displaying uglier than a dirty monkey at a fancy dinner party. Well, I've never been to a fancy dinner party, but I imagine a dirty monkey would look pretty ugly at one. Anyway, it's been cleaned up (pretty much to spec with what Pinstripesc suggested). Thanks!
  • Bug The ability to disable paging, and to select page size when it's enabled, has been restored to the admin member editor grid. Now if too many of you guilds with over 1000 members disable paging and refresh the grid a whole bunch, I'm going to know about it and I'm going to do something really mean. I'm not sure what  yet, but you're not going to like it one bit!
  • Maint Some enhanced debugging tools have been added, so it'll make problem resolution faster and all that.
Thanks for choosing GuildPortal! We am u!

Posted 8/9/2012 10:02 AM by Aaron Lewis. 36727 reads. Share:

There will probably be a few unscheduled pushes today as I finish ruthlessly crushing the problem that was causing the "Service Unavailable" errors over the past couple days. I was up all last night (no pity, I was well-dosed with caffeine!) tweaking and narrowing down.

While I'm pretty sure I hit the problem -- it looked like an infinite loop in the page you see when you click on someone's name -- I'm going to continue monitoring it today and seeing what else I can do to further optimize things, to make better use of the processing power and memory of the web and database servers.

By pushing the hotfixes, I'm also moving some feature enhancements to production that weren't going to be released until Friday. Not a bit deal, and none of them is ground-breaking. One of them is a context menu that pops up when you click on a member link (like in the who's online box or the last poster column in the forum display), which provides a much easier way to view their info, start a private chat, send mail, visit their site, and so on. Little things like that.

Sorry for the service interruptions, thanks for your patience, and as always, thank you for choosing GuildPortal!