You are reading the Adobe Experience Manager 5.6.1 version of Working with WCM.
This documentation is also available for the following versions:
AEM 5.6 CQ 5.5 CQ 5.4 CQ 5.3
Concept of Authoring in WCM
What is Authoring (and Publishing)?
An author in WCM generates the material which will, at some point, be published to your website.
The author works in what is known as the author environment. This provides an easy to use, graphical user interface for creating the content. It is usually located behind a company's firewall that provides full protection and requires the author to login, using an account that has been assigned the appropriate access rights.
Depending on how your instance and your personal access rights are configured you can perform many tasks, including (amongst others):
generate new content on an existing page
edit existing content
create new pages using predefined templates
move, copy or delete pages
activate (or deactivate) pages
participate in workflows that control how changes are managed; for example. enforcing a review before publication
AEM is also adminstered (for a majority of tasks) from the author environment.
When ready, the content is published to the publish environment. For a normal internet site, this is located inside the demilitarized zone; in other words, available to the internet, but no longer under the full protection of your internal network. On the published website visitors can post comments on the individual pages or interact with the forums.
To optimize performance for visitors to your website, the dispatcher implements load balancing and caching.
AEM itself is used to author the AEM documentation.
Together with the Dispatcher it is also used for publishing.
The AEM UIs - Classic and Touch-Optimized
On the author environment the functionality of AEM is made available through two UIs provided by AEM. On the publish environment you design the entire look-and-feel of the interface made available to your users.
A Quick Look at the Author Environment
Authoring and administering are performed through either of the graphical user interfaces provided by the author environment. These are accessible through any modern browser:
The Classic UI
This tried and tested UI has been available from the start. It is primarily designed for use on desktop devices.
The Touch-Optimized UI
The newer UI; designed for touch devices, but fully operational on desktop devices too.
Administration consoles are provided by both user interfaces. They present consistent interfaces for the major AEM functions (WCM, DAM, Worklow, etc.).
Drag and drop
Paragraphs, other components, and digital assets such as images can be positioned on the page simply by dragging and dropping them in the desired location.
Sidekick (Classic UI)
A floating "inspector" window that appears on the editable page. From here new components can be dragged onto the page and page-specific actions can be executed.
Component Browser (Touch-optimized UI)
On the right side of an editable page a sliding browser can be opened; from here components can be dragged onto the page and then edited.
Content Finder (Classic UI)
On the left side of each authorable page, the content finder provides quick access to a range of assets, including digital assets (such as other images, Flash elements and documents), other pages and paragraphs. These items can be dragged to the page; for example to position assets or create links to other pages.
Asset Browser (Touch-optimized UI)
On the left side of an editable page a sliding browser can be opened; from here assets can be dragged onto the page; for example to position assets or create links to other pages.
Text components can be edited directly on the webpage without opening a dialog box or an explicit save action.
Search as you type
Searching for content through the AEM interface presents dynamic matches as you type the query.
Context menu (Classic UI)
Right clicking on most onscreen elements brings up a context menu with appropriate action options.
Quick Actions (Touch-optimized UI)
Holding/hovering on appropriate onscreen elements brings up icons as quick links to appropriate actions.
To show what this actually means, the following provide an introductory look at various aspects of AEM and its two UIs:
Touch-optimized UI - A Console
The Sites console of the touch-optimized UI, showing the navigation rail and action icons, applicable for the selected resource:
Touch-optimized UI - Authoring
Editing a page with the touch-optimized UI, showing the component browser:
Page Authoring with the touch-optimized UI is currently Preview Technology.
It should not be used for production instances.
Classic UI - Authoring
Editing a page with the classic UI. This shows the content finder and the sidekick:
Classic UI - A Console
The Websites console of the classic UI. The structure of your website can be expanded and actions taken on the required element:
An Overview of the Main Consoles
The functionality of Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) is made available through various specialized consoles. The actual naming and/or look-and-feel of these is dependent on which of the two UIs you are using:
The Touch-Optimized UI
The main consoles can be accessed from the navigation tab of the rail (dark column at left hand of window):
The Classic UI
A selection of main consoles is provided. The icon toolbar at the top allows you to navigate to other consoles:
These consoles are also accessible (via links) from the overview provided on the welcome screen:
They can also be accessed from various points within the touch UI; including certain options on the Tools console and the navigation rail:
The following provides an overview of the individual consoles according to their UI (many consoles are available in both UIs, albeit with slightly different names):
(touch / classic)
Provides an overview and direct access (via links) to the main functionality of AEM.
The Projects console gives you direct access to your projects and is also used as the Welcome screen for the touch-optimized UI. Projects are used to group your resources together. Such resources can include sites, assets, mobile site, communities, etc and can be configured to include new projects.
Touch / Classic
Sites / Websites
The Sites/Websites consoles let you create, view and manage websites running on your AEM instance. Through these consoles you can create, copy, move and delete website pages, start workflows, and activate (publish) pages. You can also open a page for editing.
Touch / Classic
The Tools consoles provide access to a number of specialized tools that help you administer your websites, digital assets and other aspects of your content repository.
Touch / Classic
Assets / Digital Assets
These consoles let you import and manage digital assets such as images, videos, documents and audio files. These assets can then be used by any website running on the same AEM nstance.
These consoles allow you to manage and moderate your community forums:
This console gives you access to Media Publisher, an Experience Manager add-on designed for creating media- and publishing-related content.
The Tagging console lets you administer tags. Tags are short names or phrases that you can use to classify and annotate pieces of content making it easier to find and organize them. For further information see Using and Managing Tags.
Touch / Classic
The Users console lets you manage access rights for users and groups. For full details see User Administration and Security.
Note: in the touch-optimized UI this console is available from the Tools console.
A workflow is a defined series of steps that describes the process of completing some task. In many cases a number of people are involved in a task and each person must complete their step before handing off the work to the next person. The Workflow console lets you build workflow models and managing running workflow instances. See Working with Workflows.
Various Help resources can be directly accessed from within AEM:
Depending on your location the Help icon will either open the:
Adobe Help site
The Classic UI
Throughout the classic UI of AEM you can access the help by using this icon:
As seen here in the Sidekick:
On various consoles (e.g. Websites) there is also the Help button:
Organizing your Website
As an author you will need to organize your website within AEM. This involves creating and naming your content pages so that, you can easily find them on the author environment and visitors to your site can easily browse them on the publish environment.
The structure of a website can be thought of as a tree structure that holds your content pages. The names of these content pages are used to form the URLs.
The following extract shows an extract from the Geometrixx site; where, for example, the Triangle page will be accessed:
From any point, you can see the upward branch from the drop-down:
From the Websites console, the tree structure can be expanded in the left pane:
The Websites console lists your pages of content in a tree structure (left hand pane). For ease of navigation, sections of the tree structure can be expanded (+) or collapsed (-) as required:
A single click on the page name (in the left pane) will:
List the child pages in the right pane
Also expand the structure in the left pane.
For performance reasons this action is dependent on the number of children nodes. With a standard installation this method of expansion works when there are 30 or less child nodes.
A double click on the page name (left pane) will also expand the tree, though as the page is opened at the same time this effect is not so obvious.
From here you can also manage your pages using either the toolbar or by opening a page for further actions.
This default value (30) can be changed per console in your application specific configurations of the siteadmin widget:
On the siteadmin node:
Set the value of the property: treeAutoExpandMax
Or globally in the theme:
Set the value of: TREE_AUTOEXPAND_MAX
Multi-language sites are also easy to construct, with the various languages being managed in parallel.
The Website Console provides a list view with the following information about pages.
The title that appears on the page
The name AEM refers to the page
Indicates whether the page has been published and provides the publication date and time
Indicates whether the page has been modified and provides the modification date and time. In order to save any modification, you must activate the page.
Indicates the current status of the page, such as whether the page is part of a workflow or whether a page is currently locked.
Shows the activity on a page in number of hits.
Indicates the template that a page is based on.
Every user has an inbox where they can see the notifications they have received as a result of subscriptions.
To subscribe to notifications:
Open the notification inbox: in the Websites console, click the user button in the top right corner and select Notification Inbox.
You can also hit http://<host>:<port>/libs/wcm/core/content/inbox.html in your browser.
Click Configure... in the top left corner to open the configuration dialog.
Select the notification channel:
Inbox: notifications will be displayed in your AEM inbox.
Email: notifications will be emailed to the email address defined in your user profile.
A few settings need to be configured in order to be notified by email. It is also possible to customize the email template or to add an email template for a new language. Please refer to Configuring Email Notification to configure email notifications in AEM.
Select the page actions for which to be notified:
Activated: when a page has been activated.
Deactivated: when a page has been deactivated.
Deleted (syndication): when a page has been delete-replicated, i.e. when a delete action performed on a page is replicated.
When a page is deleted or moved, a delete action is automatically replicated: the page is deleted on the source instance where the delete action was performed and on the destination instance defined by the replication agents.
Modified: when a page has been modified.
Created: when a page has been created.
Deleted: when a page has been deleted through the page delete action.
Rolled out: when a page has been rolled out.
Define the paths of the pages for which you will be notified:
Click Add to add a new row to the table.
Click the Path table cell and enter the path, e.g. /content/docs.
To be notified for all the pages belonging to the sub-tree, set Exact? to No.
To be only notified for actions on the page defined by the path, set Exact? to Yes.
To allow the rule, set Rule to Allow. If set to Deny, the rule is denied but not removed and can be allowed later.
To remove a definition, select the row by clicking a table cell and click Delete.
Click OK to save the configuration.
If you have chosen to receive notifications in your AEM inbox, your inbox will fill up with notifications. For each notification that you select, you can:
Approve it by clicking Approve: the value in the Read column is set to true.
Delete it by clicking Delete.
Each user can set certain properties for themselves. This is available from the following menu in the top right corner of the Websites console:
Selecting Preferences will open a dialog that allows you to set:
Select the required language from the available list.
Multiple Windows (Default)
Pages will be opened in a new window.
Pages will be opened in the current window.
Select whether you want to have the global editing toolbar shown:
Show when needed (Default)
This toolbar (shown at the top of the browser window when you are editing a page) gives you Copy, Cut, Paste, Delete buttons for using with the paragraph components on that page.
In AEM, a template specifies a type of page.
It defines the structure of a page; including a thumbnail image, and other properties. For example, you may have a separate templates for product pages, sitemaps, and contact information. Templates are comprised of components.
Overview of templates
AEM comes with several templates including a contentpage and home page.
The Geometrixx home page template.
The Geometrixx content page template.
To get a list of all the templates available in the repository, proceed as follows:
In CRXDE Lite, open the Tools menu and click Query.
In the Query tab
As Type, select XPath.
In the Query input field, enter following string: //element(*, cq:Template)
Click Execute. The list is displayed in the result box.
The content page component creates a new page for content according to a template selected by the author.
The title displayed on the resulting web-page.
The label used when naming the page.
A list of templates available for use when generating the new page.
The following example illustrates use of the contentpage component:
To access the search panel, click on the Search tab at the top of the left-hand pane in the site administration console.
The search panel lets you search across all your website pages. It contains fields and widgets for the following:
Fulltext: Search for the specified text
Last modified: Search only those pages that were changed between the specific dates
Template: Search only those pages based on the specified template
Tags: Search only those pages with the specified tags
Execute the search by clicking Search at the bottom of the pane. Click Reset to clear the search criteria.
The row of icons at the bottom of the Sidekick are used to switch modes for working with the pages:
The Sidekick minimizes in certain modes - namely Design and Preview. By clicking on the arrow you can maximize the Sidekick and return to Edit Mode:
This is the default mode and allows you to edit the page, adding or deleting components and making other changes.
In this mode, the sidekick is minimized and you have the possibility to edit the design of the page:
For example, if you click Edit on the Paragraph system you can add, or remove what components are available:
Click the arrow on the sidekick to return to Edit mode.
This mode allows you to preview the page as if it were appearing on your website in its final form. Again the sidekick is minimized.
As in Design mode, click the arrow on the sidekick to return to Edit Mode.
Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) comes with a variety of out-of-the-box components that provide comprehensive functionality for website authors. These components and their usage within the installed "Geometrixx" website are a reference on how to implement and use components.
The following section includes an overview of all default components as well as a description of each component item and examples of what the components look like in AEM.
Working with Components
When working with any components, you can add them either by double-clicking Drag components or assets here or dragging and dropping the component from the sidekick onto the page. Some default components are hidden from view and are usually only added by a developer. The procedure for adding these components is described in Developing Components.
List of available Components
The following components are included in the basic installation within the Geometrixx website. The table lists all components that are available from within the sidekick, when inserting a new component, all the components that are available in Design mode and other components that become available dependent on author. By default, every component available in the sidekick is also available in Design mode (Design of par).
The column Available indicates whether the component is available in:
Sidekick by default on a Geometrixx Content Page
Design mode; either with a dialog for configuration or in the (de)activation list Design of par
the functionality of another component
If someone enables or adds a component, then additional components may become available in the sidekick. For those components, the "Section" column indicates where the components appear in the sidekick once activated.
Adding content to your website is often subject to discussions prior to it actually being published. To aid this, many components directly related to content (as opposed, for example, to layout) can be annotated.
A basic annotation places a colored sticky-note on the page, in this a user can leave comments and/or questions for other authors. In addition to text, annotations also have a sketch feature that allows you to add simple line graphics; these can be useful for highlighting an area of the page, or starting to illustrate a scenario in connection with the annotation text.
The definition of an individual component determines whether annotation is possible, or not, on instances of that component.
Annotations are only visible in Edit mode of the author environment.
They are not visible on a publish environment, nor in the Preview or Design modes on an author environment.
Depending on the paragraph design, annotation is either available as an option on the context menu (usually the right-hand mouse button when over the required paragraph), or as a button on the paragraph edit bar.
In either case select Annotate. A colored sticky-note annotation will be applied to the paragraph, you are immediately in edit mode, allowing you to add text directly:
You can move the annotation to a new position on the page. Click on the top border area, then hold and simultaneously drag the annotation to the new position. This can be anywhere on the page, though it is usually meaningful to keep it connected to the paragraph in some way.
Annotations (including related sketches) are also included in any copy, cut or delete actions carried out on the paragraph to which they are attached; for copy or cut actions, the position of the annotation (and related sketches) retain their position in relation to the originating paragraph.
The size of the annotation can also be increased, or decreased, by dragging the bottom right corner.
For tracking purposes the footer line will indicate the user who created the annotation and the date. Subsequent authors can edit the same annotation (footer will be updated), or create a new annotation for the same paragraph.
Confirmation will be requested when you select to delete the annotation (deleting an annotation also deletes any sketches attached to that annotation).
Deleting a paragraph deletes all the annotations and sketches attached to that paragraph (irrespective of their position on the page as a whole).
Depending on your requirements you can also develop a workflow to send notifications when annotations are added, updated or deleted.
The three icons at top left allow you to minimize the annotation (together with any related sketches), change the color and add sketches.
Sketches are not available in Internet Explorer so:
the icon will not be shown.
existing sketches, created in another browser, will not be shown.
Sketches are a feature of annotations that allow you to create simple line graphics anywhere on the browser window (visible portion):
The cursor will change to a crosswire when you are in sketch mode. You can draw multiple distinct lines.
The sketch line reflects the annotation color and can be either:
the default mode; finish by releasing the mouse button.
hold down ALT and click the start and end points; finish with a double-click.
After you have exited sketch modus, you can click on a sketch line to select that sketch.
Move a sketch by selecting the sketch, then dragging it to the desired position.
A sketch overlays the content. This means that within the 4 corners of the sketch you cannot click on the underlying paragraph; for example, if you need to edit, or access a link. If this becomes an issue (for example, you have a sketch covering a large area of the page) then minimize the appropriate annotation, as this will also minimize all related sketches, giving you access to the underlying area.
To delete an individual sketch - select the required sketch, then press the Delete key (fn-backspace on a MAC).
If you move, or copy, a paragraph then any related annotations and their sketches will also be moved, or copied; their position in relation to the paragraph will remain the same.
If you delete an annotation all sketches attached to that annotation will be deleted too.
The Content Finder
The Content Finder is a quick and easy way to find content within the repository when editing a page.
After you have created an Image paragraph on your page, you can drag an item and drop it into the paragraph.
This tab lists any documents in the repository.
After you have created a Download paragraph on your page, you can drag an item and drop it into the paragraph.
Finding your Movies
This tab lists any movies (for example, Flash items) in the repository.
After you have created an appropriate paragraph (for example, Flash) on your page, you can drag an item and drop it into the paragraph.
This tab lists any products. After you have created an appropriate paragraph (for example, Product) on your page, you can drag an item and drop it into the paragraph.
This tab shows all pages. Double-click any page to open it for editing.
Referencing Paragraphs from other Pages
This tab allows you to search for another page. All paragraphs from that page will be listed. You can then drag a paragraph to your current page, this will create a reference to the original paragraph.
Using the Full Repository View
This tab shows all the resources in the repository.
Any tags and any resources that match the search pattern are listed:
You can also use wildcards for search. Supported wildcards are:
matches a sequence of zero or more characters.
matches a single character.
There's a pseudo property "name" which must be used to perform a wildcard search.
For example, if there is an image avaialable with the name:
the following search patterns will find it (and any other images matching the pattern):
the character matching is not case sensitive.
you can use any number of wildcards in a query.