Frequently Asked Questions

These are just a few of the more frequently asked questions from designers and developers who are getting started with cmScribe. We're adding more as we get more feedback. If you have a question not listed here, please use the Contact Us form to ask.

Can I use Tweet/Like/Share buttons and widgets on my site?

Yes! What's great about cmScribe is that you can easily add 3rd party code to any area of your site: pages, templates and even content prototypes! You're not limited to a specific set of social features with only the options that we provide. Here are just a few of the more popular social features that you can add to your cmScribe site within minutes:

Each of those services will give you a small code snippet that you can easily paste into any area of your site. We recommend using a Layout panel and checking the box to "lock" the content into source mode, but you can just as easily add it to any Content panel or even within a Content Prototype itself (Expert mode only).

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Answered on 03/09/2011
Can I get FTP access to my site?

Yes, when your site is created (if you are the site owner) you will receive an email containing your FTP username/password which gives you access to a folder called "SiteData" in the root of your website. Any files that you upload will be located at:

You can upload files (images, css, javascript) needed for building your Templates in the SiteData folder itself or you can create your own sub-folders. Note that cmScribe also uses the SiteData folder to store uploads and other files so if you want to keep your files separate you should definitely create your own folders.

If you are working on a site created by someone else, contact the site owner to get the FTP info.

When a site is first installed, the SiteData folder will be empty, but cmScribe will also use this folder to store everything that is uploaded through the Media Library. The following folders will be automatically generated to store Media Library files:

/SiteData/images - JPG, GIF and PNG files
/SiteData/docs - PDF, DOC, DOCX, TXT, JS, CSS, ZIP
/SiteData/flash - SWF, FLV

If you create folders with any of these names, cmScribe will use them rather than creating a separate folder. All files uploaded through the Media Library are stored in a set of uniquely named folders based on the filename and a hash of the file itself, so you don't have to worry about cmScribe overwriting anything that you upload manually. For example if you upload an image named "button.png" it will be located at a URL like this:

If you want to keep all your files separate from the Media Library uploads, simply create your own folder(s), making sure not to use any of the folder names used by cmScribe.

Answered on 01/24/2011
How can I use video in cmScribe?

You can use Flash Video (flv) and MPEG-4 files that are encoded with the h264 video codec (.mp4, .m4v, .f4v, .mov) with the Media – Video panel. Simply add the panel to any page/template and upload your video and it will be displayed using the version 5.7 of the JW Player.

The JW Player has both Flash and HTML5 versions which will be used automatically depending on the browser/device.

Note: Only MP4 files will work in both versions of the player (and across all devices). If you use FLV files they will only work on devices that support Flash.

Currently, you can upload other video formats, such as Windows Media (.wmv) but they will not work with the Media – Video panel. You can embed them directly in the HTML for users that have the necessary plugins to view them or you can link directly to the uploaded files.

Answered on 01/28/2011
Can I use jQuery plugins in cmScribe?

Yes. Since we use jQuery in cmScribe itself it's already included. All you need to do is add your jQuery plugins. There are a couple of ways you can do that:

  1. Link to the Javascript (js) file on your site or an external server.
    1. Click on Admin->Scripts
    2. Click Link Existing JS File
    3. Give your script a name, usually the name of the plugin
    4. Add the path to your .js file
      • If you uploaded the file to your site, choose "on this website" and add the path, omitting the leading slash ("SiteData/js/file.js" rather than "/SiteData/js/file.js").
      • If you're using a file on a remote server, choose "elsewhere on the web" and add the full URL to the file.
  2. Copy and paste the javascript into a cmScribe Script.
    1. Click on Admin->Scripts
    2. Click Add New Script
    3. Give your script a name, usually the name of the plugin
    4. Copy and paste the javascript into the JS field and Save.

In both cases, once the Script is added you will need to include it in a Template or Page.

  1. Edit the Template (or switch to Manage Mode on the Page) where you want to include the script.
  2. Click Scripts in the toolbar
  3. Drag your script to the Active Scripts area on the right.
  4. Click Save on the Scripts dialog.
  5. Save the Template/Page
Answered on 02/14/2011
Does cmScribe cache pages for speed?

cmScribe does caching at the database access layer. All the necessary data for the pages gets cached for both logged in and not-logged-in visitors to the site.

More technically accurate would be to say, that since everything in cmScribe is contained within a database, cmScribe doesn't actually cache “pages” at all, it caches the database data used by the code that produces the pages.

If you are expecting a high load on a site, we recommend adding time and budget for load testing to ensure your hardware, connection speed and the software can manage the load accordingly. We can successfully address load issues programmatically and/or via hardware/connectivity.

So far, every performance issue we've had has been solvable by enhancing the caching at the database-access layer. We could include adding caching at the page-layer if that turned out to be necessary for performance on a particular site.

Answered on 03/11/2011
What is cinnApps?

cinnApps, part of cmScribe, is a Rapid Application Development (RAD) toolset for building web-based applications with no programming.

Now, technical project managers or designer/developers (i.e. non-programmers/non-database architects) can build complex relational database applications on the fly using a GUI toolset. The code produced through this toolset lives within the core codebase and thus produces complex web-based applications that DO NOT require customization to the software.

This gives cmScribe several keyadvantages:

  • Nohassle upgrades – we can guarantee how much a software upgrade will cost, and
  • No/low code maintenance cost for even complex web-based applications.
Answered on 07/15/2011
Can you describe what user roles are available and what the limitations are on approval processes?

cmScribe includes these roles "out-of-the-box":

  1. Content Editor – The Content Editor role has permission to edit all content. Additionally, a Content Editor can be allowed to approve, reject, or version-control content (roll back content). This function is most often used within an organization that needs to separate web page editing from higher-level functions, such as page creation and deletion.
  2. Content Manager – The Content Manager role has permission to edit all content, approve content, roll back content, add, move, and delete pages, and build page elements (user forms, etc.).
  3. User Manager – The User Manager role can do everything a Content Manager can do, plus add or delete users and assign users to certain roles, as well as creating new groups with specific roles.

If using our Commerce package, Store and Order Manager roles are also included.

Roles can be permissioned to the page level, and in many cases, to the panel level (elements on a page).

Once an Editor or Content Manager has made a change that has not been approved, it is listed on a “Pending Report” and an email notification of the pending change can be sent to the responsible “approver.” The Pending Report is an Administrative feature available to Content and User Managers or specially-created roles. An Approved Content Report (Audit Trail) is also available to quickly determine when changes were approved and by whom.

Answered on 07/15/2011
What Search Engine Optimization (SEO) features does cmScribe have?

Unless your website is a .gov or another high-authority site, what you do off-site is critical to your website’s SEO strategy. With that being said, you also want to ensure that you’ve covered all the bases with your on-site optimization and aren’t fighting your CMS along the way.

Compliant, well-written HTML is search-friendly HTML. cmScribe is programmatically compliant with WCAG and Section 508 of the Americans with Disabilities Act, allowing for proper indexing of your site by search engines. It also allows you to assign short, “clean,” search-friendly URLs to any page. You can also adjust URL naming, page titles, title tags, and navigation to be different if required. Though somewhat depreciated as a tactic, they are nevertheless important for organic returned results, and cmScribe allows you to quickly and easily add meta tags and descriptions to any page.

Answered on 07/15/2011
What are cmScribe’s advanced search features?

The contents of the website are searchable through the  index catalog that is created for each website.  This enables advanced search cababilities to be used to find any files that have been uploaded to the site as well as any content that is native to the site.

The search can be expanded to include eCommerce products within cmScribe and PDF/document files (using Windows Indexing Service) and data built using our Web Application Building Toolset (cinnApps). Data-driven sets of records built using cinnApps can be searched by almost any field included in the data set. The information can also be pulled out by filtering out by data type, category, or name.

Answered on 07/15/2011
Can cmScribe easily produce content formatted for mobile phones?

cmScribe produces pages that are natively viewable on a smart phone (given the use of HTML5). Any page can also be set to detect that access is coming from a mobile phone and redirect from that page to another page that has been built to be mobile-friendly. So, an entire mobile-friendly set of pages can be built using cmScribe’s mobile-friendly panel/module.

Answered on 07/15/2011
How do I integrate product security with my security framework? Does cmScribe integrate with active directory authentication?

Yes, cmScribe integrates with active directory authentication. cmScribe has a pluggable framework for adding Single Sign-On (SSO) mechanisms, and using this, it has native support for authenticating users against Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP).

Answered on 07/15/2011
What is the granularity of cmScribe’s security?

Page level and widget level (on most widgets).

Answered on 07/15/2011
Does cmScribe offer commercial support services?

Yes, NetReach Technologies, LLC, the developers of cmScribe, offer training, 24/7 support, implementation, consulting, and customization services.

Answered on 07/15/2011
Describe the support options for cmScribe including times available for technical support personnel.

Support is provided on a typical 9-5 EST scenario. Maintenance Contracts are offered in blocks of pre-paid hours at a discounted rate. The software also includes a failsafe feature that “calls” the development team 24/7 if something malfunctions. Our team typically responds right away to resolve the issue or contact the hosting provider and or/client.

Answered on 07/15/2011
What is cmScribe’s technical platform?

The following is cmScribe’s technical platform:

  • Operating systems versions – Windows Server 2008, standard and above
  • Web server and version – IIS 7.5
  • .NET Framework versions supported - .NET Framework 4.0
  • SQL Server versions supported – SQL Server 2005, 2008, 2008 R2
  • User interface technologies used – cmScribe uses ASP.NET Ajax and jQuery technologies. Websites can be built using any other technologies that you may want to use, including Flash, Silverlight, etc.
  • Browser versions supported – All browser versions for viewing; Admin and editing of content is currently supported in Firefox 3.5+, Internet Explorer 7+, Safari 5+, Chrome
  • HTML version used – HTML 5
  • CSS version used – CSS3
Answered on 07/15/2011
Can cmScribe be load-balanced across multiple servers?

The bulk of the load is on the database, which can be load-balanced. However, cmScribe itself cannot be load-balanced in its current location. We typically mirror the web server to ensure guaranteed up time.

Answered on 07/15/2011
Describe backup/restore procedures.

There are no built-in backup/restore features. We recommend setting up an SQL server maintenance plan for database backups (we do a nightly transaction log backup and a full weekly backup). A similar plan can be put in place for backing up files on the web server.

Answered on 07/15/2011
What systems are available for maintaining fault tolerance?

You can run an active/passive hot spare. Since cmScribe is built on the Microsoft platform, it takes full advantage of everything Microsoft has to offer in the way of fault tolerance.

Answered on 07/15/2011
How is the system architected to preserve customizations when cmScribe is upgraded?

Customizations are done within their own module within a development project in Visual Studio. Connection to existing modules outside the custom module is done through hooks in the core elements (panels). In order to upgrade a project with a custom module, the latest version of the software is merged with the development project. The custom code is not changed. An installer can then be created and run on the web server to upgrade the website, leaving the custom code untouched.

Answered on 07/15/2011
How are upgrades done in cmScribe, especially if it has been customized?

cmScribe’s development team uses Microsoft’s .NET Framework, which has been widely adopted, has a large development user base, and a proven track record in the most demanding business environments. In the past, creating an architecture that would allow third-party plug-ins and customization was difficult, which caused many developers to create workarounds to solve business needs. The .NET Framework allows for interoperability with other data sources, applications, systems, and programming languages. Our developers have been able to leverage the .NET Framework and C# to create a plug-in architecture of their own. Thus, customizations can be made outside of the codebase. This gives us many advantages, not the least of which allows for no hassle upgrades and no/low cost maintenance for even complex custom web applications (when using our own Web Application Building Toolset, cinnApps).

Answered on 07/15/2011
How can I customize or add new features to the product?

You can add new features to cmScribe through the following:

  1. Software Developer Kit (SDK) – cmScribe has allowed for code extensions for many years and we are currently  orking on a formal SDK. An SDK allows for third-party plug-ins and customizations to the code. Our developers used their own “plug-in” architecture for several years and tired of the custom code maintenance when it came time to upgrade customers. They then developed a set of relational databased building tools with a Graphical User Interface (GUI), which a non-programmer can use to build sophisticated web applications. This speeds up the implementation of new features and eliminates the need for code maintenance. It also negates the need for a typical SDK (see cinnApps information below). Having a formal background in programming makes creating and using these tools much easier.
  2. Web Application Building Toolset (cinnApps) – cmScribe allows complete flexibility for business logic customizations through this toolset. Customizations are made outside of the underlying code base, allowing for upgrades without compiling, which eliminates code maintenance costs. Network specialists are able to provide seamless, hassle-free upgrades to the software without disrupting the system’s customized operations at any time. This combines the cost efficiencies of off-the-shelf software with the functional advantages of a custom programmed application all delivered on a Rapid Application Development (RAD) schedule.
Answered on 07/15/2011
What methods can be used to integrate cmScribe with my own applications?

cmScribe has the ability to access external databases for display, searching, filtering, etc. using its Web Application Building Toolset (cinnApps). It is possible to code web services but there is no built-in solution. Data from applications built with cinnApps can be exported as Comma-Separated Values (CSV) or Excel.

Answered on 07/15/2011
How can I add a custom widget?

You can create your own custom widgets using our Web Application Building Toolset (cinnApps), by writing your own custom plug-ins or by adding JavaScript into the Scripts library that can be used on global or specific templates or pages.

Answered on 07/15/2011

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