Dear EGroupware users and administrators,
We would like to inform you that the 3rd release candidate of EGroupware 20.1 is available and that the release will be published shortly.
You are welcome to work with the new version even before the release and help us to find the last weak points of 20.1! Especially tests for updating on different platforms and with the different application scenarios are interesting here.
The installation packages for EGroupware 20.1 are available, installation instructions can be found on our EGroupware Wiki.
Please note that installations that are set to “auto update” (depending on the distribution) will be changed to the new release immediately with the release date! If you want to switch to the new release at a later date, you should switch off “auto update”. You will find more detailed information about this soon in our EGroupware Wiki (installation instructions) and the release notes.
Customers of the EGroupware Cloud will NOT be updated automatically as in previous years. The announcement of the change to EGroupware 20.1 will be made via customer information within the next weeks. If you use EGroupware in the Cloud and are interested in a direct conversion, please contact us. We will then switch you over to the new version in advance.
You can send us your feedback and error messages either via the support center (for EPL customer) or via the EGroupware forum (for users of the Community Edition). You can find the EGroupware forum here: help.egroupware.org.
If you have not yet watched our webinar on “smallPART - Video-supported Teaching and Learning” or on “Home-Office Ready”, you should do so now - it’s worth it. We look forward to your participation and to a successful EGroupware 20.1!
Innovations of EGroupware 20.1 in short:
smallPART: Video-supported teaching and learning
Push server with PHP Swoole: See calendar changes and video calls directly
Home office ready functionalities: Were already implemented with the 19.1 because of Corona
General: New functions in some applications
Innovations of EGroupware 20.1 in detail:
smallPART: Video-supported teaching and learning
The tool is the result of a cooperation of working groups from the University of Tübingen and the Technical University of Kaiserslautern. The further development and integration into EGroupware is done in the context of a current cooperation between the TU Kaiserslautern (Prof. Dr. Christoph Thyssen and Arash Tolou) and EGroupware. In the name of the tool smallPART, there are basically two edge cases of the use of videos: on the one hand, the use of didactically prepared video material, which can even contain tasks at individual points in time in the video sequences (Learning Lectures). And on the other hand, the use of didactically largely unprocessed material, which has not been prepared apart from the selection of content specifically for the intended purpose (Process Analysis).
Concrete examples can be found on the small-PART-Website or in PDF (German, translation into English is in progress). With EGroupware 20.1 you can additionally authenticate via Shibboleth (e.g. to connect the EGroupware to any university computer centre) or integrate individual smallPART courses via LTI into other learning platforms (e.g. Moodle).
Push Server with PHP Swoole: See calendar changes and video calls directly
EGroupware as a pure web application in the past only showed changes when the application was reloaded (manually or per 5 minutes interval). With the new push server (permanent websocket connection) new information is integrated into the existing page as soon as an update is necessary - without the user having to reload the page. For example “Receipt of a new e-mail” or a “new appointment” or a “cancellation of a participant”. In the area of status application & video conferencing EGroupware now rings directly instead of about one minute, because that was the update interval in 19.1 for on-site installations. In our cloud hosting we could already use the push notifications for video calls in 19.1. In the course of the coming weeks, all applications will be successively converted to PUSH changes.
Home Office Ready Functionalities
To support users during the Corona crisis, various new functionalities were already implemented on short notice in 19.1, which were originally planned for version 20.1. Here is a small list of the functionalities:
Guacamole for secure use of the office workstation even from your home computer. Of course all applications of the office workstation can be used with very good performance. All data remain on the office workstation (important for GDPR conformity) and no additional programs or connections need to be installed on the home computer.
Status application, chats & video conferencing: simply start a video call from the EGroupware via Jitsi, share your screen or hold a meeting online. At the same time you can also use the Collabora Online Office to keep the minutes of the meeting visible for everyone.
Filemanager, sharing and Collabora Online Office: in addition to the already existing sharing options, there is the possibility of “hidden uploading”. In this case, outsiders can see the tasks or files in the root directory, but the upload of the documents takes place in a hidden folder. So e.g. the teacher can see all homework of the students, but the students only see the homework itself.
With Collabora Online Office you can directly insert all contents of the EGroupware applications into documents using placeholders. No double entries or copy & paste are necessary. For example, you have regular requests that you want to answer in a standardized way - simply create a template, e.g. by e-mail with attachments, and send it to any contact.
Integration of additional applications via OpenID Connect: already implemented in EGroupware and used for Rocket.Chat and Guacamole. But there are many other applications that can be easily integrated into the EGroupware iframe. So the users only need the URL to EGroupware and from there they can reach all “areas” and do their tasks.
General: new functions in some applications
When closing a pop-up window (e.g. composing an email, editing a contact), there is now a query when there are unsaved changes.
In the email application you can specify a BCC address or folder, these are then automatically set when you compose an email.
You can now have suggestions for setting passwords or, for example, create a custom field of the type password. The password is automatically hidden and stored encrypted in the database. As soon as you want to display it, the user password is requested.
The start screen of the EGroupware 20.1 will also change slightly again, if no own picture is used.
The new authentication option via Shibboleth is especially interesting for universities. Alternatively you can connect EGroupware to Moodle or other learning platforms via LTI or OpenID-Connect.
If you have any questions about EGroupware, please feel free to contact our team at any time!
With kind regards from Kaiserslautern
www.egroupware.org | www.facebook.com/EGroupware | help.egroupware.org
Directors: Birgit Becker and Ralf Becker
Registered Jurisdiction: Kaiserslautern
Trade Register Number: HRB Kaiserslautern 3587
VAT-ID: DE 209 675 515