Posts Tagged ‘Asset’

Some times, we need to modify the Fatwire Flex Content Definitions, that have been already created.

Say for example, there are thousands of Flex Assets, created using a Flex Content Definition. I would wish to remove / add few attributes to the content definition. I’ve done it.

Now, how the new attributes will reflect in the existing thousands of assets?

Simple answer: Just edit and save the assets. The new attributes will be reflected in the existing assets as well.

This is okay, if there are assets in tens, or around that. But, there will be thousands of assets, in reality. We can’t go and edit all the assets which are there in the system, as it is a lot of time taking process.

So, what to do now?

We can load all the assets through code, and use the tags like asset:load, asset:canedit, asset:save, etc to perform our job.

Here is a sample code, which loads and edits the asset, adding a value for the DESCRIPTION field.

//Checkout the asset. This is optional. But, suggestible to be used.

< asset : checkout type=”<%=ics.GetVar(“c”)%>” objectid='<%=ics.GetVar(“cid”)%>’>


//Load the asset.

< asset : load name=”SampleAsset” type='<%=ics.GetVar(“cid”)%>’ objectid='<%=ics.GetVar(“cid”)%>’ editable=”true”  >

//Scatter the asset’s attributes.

<asset:scatter name=”SampleAsset” prefix=”Sample“/>

//Set the new value

< ics:setvar name=”Sample:description” value=”THIS IS NEW DESCRIPTION” />

//Gather all the variables
<asset:gather name=”SampleAsset” prefix=”Sample” />

//Save the asset to the database
<asset:save name=”SampleAsset” />

//Checkin the asset.
<asset:checkin name=”SampleAsset” />

Now, INSPECT the assets from the Admin UI. You will find them updated.

When to Use the Flex Asset Model in Fatwire?

Flex assets means FLEXIBLE ASSETS. Meaning, that we can add fields at any moment to the asset. You can update your site at any time, adding new fields, without disturbing the existing content.

FLEX ASSET MODEL has been the favorite model for the developers who concentrate on developing WEB EXPERIENCE MANAGEMENT applications. The Flex model helps in achieving the website’s goal of targeting the audience/visitors, and hence improving the overall business by the websites. The Flex Asset Model is the choice of developers, when the data has the following characteristics:

  • MANY ATTRIBUTES:  The assets have very large number of attributes, like some hundreds of attributes.
  • NEEDS HIERARCHY:  The assets need to inherit attributes from their parents.
  • UNPREDICTED ATTRIBUTES: This means that we know that we cannot predict what attributes might be necessary in the future.
  • NAVIGATION: Visitors browse your site by navigating through “drill-down” searches that are based on the attribute values of your data.
  • ENGAGE: You want to use Engage.

If implemented correctly, the Flex asset model yields major benefits for the business through websites.

But, to build a Flex asset model, a lot of complex work needs to be done. The following needs to be kept in mind, while choosing this Flex asset model.

  • COMPLEX DATABASE: The underlying database structure of flex assets is pretty complex.
  • SLOW RATE: Asset creation is slower that Basic assets.
  • SEARCH: Searching attributes requires complex code.


Though BASIC ASSETS are not meant to be changed after creation, sometimes, we may require to UPDATE the existing BASIC ASSETS that we have created earlier in FATWIRE CONTENT SERVER. This may be due to the requirement for changing the naming conventions, update existing attributes of the asset type, remove existing attributes, add new attributes to the asset type, etc.

This updating of the basic asset should be done with care, so that, the existing assets will not be affected.  If you need to update the basic assets, you need to follow the below guidelines:

  1. Open the CONTENT SERVER EXPLORER, and open the ASSETTYPE table. This table contains the ASSETTYPEs that are created in the Fatwire Content Server (Both System and User defined).
  2. Open the appropriate ASSET DESCRIPTOR FILE (ADF), by double-clicking on the file in the “URLDESCRIPTOR” field of the table.
  3. Update the ADF. Save it. Save the Content Server Explorer’s Table. You can do a SAVE ALL.
  4. Run any scripts, that need to update the database (if required). In most of the cases, there is no need (Atleast, in my case).
  5. Register the Assets from the Fatwire’s Advanced Interface (ADMIN -> ASSET TYPES -> APPROPRIATE ASSET ).

That’s it.. The UPDATE OF BASIC ASSETS has been completed.

If you see any weird messages in the existing assets, make sure that you have executed the above procedure properly.

The term PAGE constitutes a very important concept in FATWIRE.

There are a few terminologies in Fatwire related to Page, such as PAGE, PAGELET , PAGE NAME, PAGE ASSET.

Really… they are confusing. At least, I’m very much confused with these terminologies in the beginning. We will discuss the basic differences between these terminologies, so that we will get some clear cut idea, and we will know when to use which term.

1. PAGELET: A Pagelet is the result of an HTTP request. It is a piece of a rendered page. Its one among several pagelets that are rendered and displayed in a browser window. It has an associated element file, and that element has logic to generate this Pagelet.  A pagelet can be cached in the Content Server and Satellite Server page caches.

2. PAGE:  A Page is nothing but the result of an HTTP request. It is the one which is displayed in a browser window. Sometimes, a page is created by compiling several pagelets into one final, displayed or rendered page. It has an associated element file, and that element has logic to generate this page. A page can be cached in the Content Server and Satellite Server  page caches.

3. PAGE NAME: This is the complete name given to the page. For example, if Full is the name of a page, and if its type is Article , and if it is in the site Sample, the following will be the PAGE NAME : Sample/Article/Full.

4. PAGE ASSET: A page asset is the one which simply act as containers for the actual content. These containers are arranged in the SITEPLAN tab of the TREE to facilitate the ease of navigation.You associate other content and other assets with these PAGE ASSETS and then you publish them.