That’s right – we finally got it out the door! (huge cheers from around the room erupt as developers across in the Atlassian offices crack open a beer)
The first “public beta release”:http://www.atlassian.com/software/confluence of Confluence is now “online”:http://www.atlassian.com/software/confluence
And as any public beta should, there’s an “online demonstration”:http://confluence.atlassian.com that you can try and break! (hopefully it’s not too easy ;))
There are now WAR/EAR and Standalone releases – so please let us know your results testing the application in different application servers and with different databases.
_NOTE_: For anyone upgrading from A3 – the database structure has changed quite a bit, so I recommend creating a new installation rather than upgrading your old one. We’ve migrated our internal A3 data to B1 without _too_ much hassle, I’ll post a guide to the database changes required on Monday. ICQ/email me over the weekend if you can’t wait until then.
h3. NEW FEATURES
* It’s soooo much faster as we’ve implemented caching at multiple levels – trust me, it now _flies_ in development. Here’s hoping it flies for you too. (For those with a development bent, turn on profiling via the URL to see a beautiful profiling stack trace on stdout)
* The last login date is now tracked, pages and spaces changed since your last login are highlighted in green (as these are presumably pages you want to view), you can see a diff of the currently viewed page against the date you last logged in and there are various related reports of spaces/pages changed since your last login.
* Parent/child page hierarchies have been implemented. You can specify the parent for any pages and the ancestry is reflected in the breadcrumbs list. The full hierarchy is shown (including the current page’s position) on the Page Information screen, and there is a related {children} macro to show the children in various different types of trees (see the Notation Guide for details)
* Search has been completely overhauled – search now works across pages, comments and space descriptions and the results now display descriptions with highlighted search terms (this is really cool!)
* Page renaming and link refactoring now works across comments, space descriptions and pages – neat!
* The Notation Guide has been significantly improved with more useful examples, a list of the available macros and a tabbed interface. Also the edit/create pages now have a ‘quick notation guide’ to the most commonly used operations
* There is a new ‘Create Comment’ permission – so that you can make spaces which are publicly viewable/commentable, but not editable.
* The UI of the ‘create link’ and ‘external link’ links within a rendered page have been improved with subtle icons
* Page comments now have a sexy icon of their own, and can be shown/hidden at will. You can also permalink to any given comment and comments are fully indexed.
* Undefined and orphaned pages reports have been tightened significantly so that they now report truly undefined/orphaned pages
* You can create a list of URLs ignored from external referrers – this is useful where your server is known by multiple IP / domain name combinations, or you want to ignore all internal referrers (Admin / General configuration)
* {color} macro to colour blocks of text
* Logging in to Confluence now takes you to your intended destination, not the Dashboard
* There is an option to choose whether the default link for a space goes to the space homepage or the space summary (people internally and externally seem to be divided about which it should go to – so you can choose for yourselves)
* You can now edit and add SMTP servers through the web interface
* The administration interface has been completely overhauled and tightened
* Added a Mail Queue administration page
* Added a View System Information page
* Added a pretty error page, and the ability to submit bug reports (including exports) directly to us
* The permissions viewing and editing pages have been greatly simplified and improved across the application
* Confluence now has a licensing system, so you will need a license key to evaluate (these can be generated online as with JIRA).
* Image embedding can now include parameters (such as height, width, alignment etc) – see the Notation Guide for details.
* https:// links are now treated just like ftp:// and http:// external links
* Various rendering bugs have been fixed.
* Many other minor fixes, improvements and performance tweaks
Wow – there was a lot there. I’m sure I’ve forgotten things, but the best way (as always) to experience it is to play with it for yourselves!
We can’t wait for your feedback on this release – enjoy!
Again, “available here”:http://www.atlassian.com/software/confluence/.
Many great thanks to Ara, Armond, Dave, Ross and Charles (the Confluence development team), to Scott, Jeff, Anton, Keith and Owen (the JIRA development team who constantly tell us to ‘just get it out there – stop adding stuff!’) and to the rest of the staff and everyone else who has tested Alpha 3 – thank you for your bug reports.
Go at it – let the ‘war of words’ begin! 🙂

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