Friday, 1 December 2017

Hybrid Content Management(HCM) & AEM

Hybrid Content Management system integrates cloud storage, content management services and/or features with on-premises content management software for store, share and manage enterprise content. Some of the decision factors which involved for selection of Hybrid Content Management are cost, mobility and new features.

Importance of Hybrid Content Management
Some of the recent data analyst group study revealed that within few years, majority of enterprises will manage the content using a hybrid storage model. This showcases the importance of new Hybrid AEM designs.

Cloud file sharing is one of the factor that can drive hybrid CMS demand with AEM. Enterprise file sync and share services (EFSS) examples are Box, Dropbox, Citrix ShareFile, Office 365, G Suite.

Majority of companies are moving to a cost effective cloud based system, but factors of security are still a concern and some of the federal data laws asks for an on-premise storage(compliance, performance related, and security restrictions). Hybrid approach of synchronizing such existing on-premises storage with new EFSS services is ideal in this case, this shows the importance of Hybrid Content Management system.

Some of the laws which asks for a secure data system:
Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX), the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other compliances.

Hybrid cloud services(HCS)
Hybrid cloud services, a bridge between on-premise storage infrastructure and the cloud of choice, allowing customers to scale cloud storage as needed, use a blend of private and public clouds, and maintain control of their data with simple management tools. New AEM designs asks for this type of service integrations.

Example for HCS system: NetApp's Data ONTAP - storage operating system, can be used to connect Amazon S3 or EVS storage.

When we migrate the applications or data to a new system , common set of problem arises such as disruption of business operations, data loss and transitioning users to new processes.

When platforms are synchronized, content is automatically populated in the new system. Through Synchronization, users can still securely collaborate with external parties and across multiple devices. Synchronization helps to sync EFSS services to their existing platforms while preserving past investments and keeping their IT infrastructure intact.

Think before you act

There are some factors to be considered before we sync up AEM with hybrid systems. Our design should be based on the out come of below considerations.

1) Ensure  bi-directional sync : When you plug AEM into a hybrid system, ensure a bi-directional sync, this confirms both platforms are up-to-date.

2) Define an inter-operability :
Consider synchronization of user permissions, document versioning and metadata across systems so that the connection is seamless, secure and transparent to end-users.

3) Think Investments done & reduce cost :
Organization might have done huge investments on the existing system already. So consider this while defining the hybrid approach. Based on usage, sync only their most used active content, while keeping old data and archived information within premise & decommission aging servers.

4) Study the system
Do an impact study on the existing system and their rules like metadata, permission, user accounts management etc. Based on the study define the new hybrid approach.


Let us know through the comment section

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Ensuring the delivery & maintenance of an effective customer experience application through AEM

An effectively built AEM application can improve the revenue of a site remarkably. Some times it is seen that sites are delivered once, and not much improvements done later on or abandoned completely.

Right team mix for improving the application
Combining Targeting team and analytic team, an AEM site performance can be improved. The data/insight can be converted to make the site more powerful. To do this we have to have a vision for the improvement.

Digital Strategy/Vision

Ensuring effective targeted results, personalized experiences can be a good way to define the strategy. A right mix of various teams like service, sales and then enabling them for digital activation & engagement found most helpful in various scenarios. You need to be Agile - Think big, start small, acting fast.

How do we create a world class digital application? How do we mix the things in right blend?

1. Aim of maximizing search efficiency utilizing the tools like test & targeting -  for a better user search and engagement.
2. Commercial focus - Study the trend and incorporate in to the application.
3. Cross channel integration - Integrate with all possible channels.
5. Customer focus - Utilize test & target to improve content/ right content, improve application context.
6. Data & insights driven - Run your tests based on data for different campaign, different segments, different audience, different device, location on different device.
7. Continuous improvement - Continuous testing in 'multiple onsite location with various experiences'; possibly an in person testing. Try out various campaigns, promotions etc.
8. Optimize - Engage users(internal, external) in surveys and capture the data for further improvements - optimize.
8. Geo-location Consideration - serve the user based on his Geo, language and right content.
9. Use tool based improvement : machine based learning, automation etc

There are some ways to achieve continuous improvement and optimization.

Targeting -

  • On various Geo location, languages
  • On various device types
  • Various products like desktop app, mobile app,promotions etc.
  • Search - combine the test and target approach

Testing -

  • Creative - Effective UI testing
  • Promotion & offers - Geo location/ user specific based validations
  • Layouts - on desktop, mobile etc.
  • Segments - User segments
  • CTA's - Each and every CTA's

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Dispatcher - Some points to remember

  • Dispatcher is a caching and load balancing tool for AEM.
  • Dispatcher acts as a firewall and helps to protect site from vulnerable attack.
  • Dispatcher is used in conjunction with a standard web server.

Why Caching & when caching does not work?
Any site performs well when it is served from a cache. Except dynamic data, everything else is recommended to be cached. There are cases where the caching does not work. For eg, get() request, when query parameters are available or no extension, response.setHeader("Dispatcher", "no-cache"), authentication header/cookie or any other cases where the dispatcher rules are not satisfied.

Better ways of serving dynamic content?
While AEM site implementation, the main aim would be caching all site content. When there are content to be served dynamically, we have to serve them through RESTFul service (Page Layout is still cached).

Dispatcher Vs CDN
CDN (Content Delivery Network) is globally distributed and serves request across balanced regions. But AEM Dispatcher resides with AEM and not globally distributed.

Cache invalidation from dispatcher

Below mentioned methods are common in invalidating cache from dispatcher.

From authoring

A replication agent is configured on the AEM author instance, which sends a cache invalidation request to Dispatcher when a new page is published. This invalidates the cache from authoring environment.

From publishing

In this scenario the publishing environment sends a cache invalidation request to Dispatcher when a published page is received.


There are cases when dispatcher cache needs to be invalidated without activation of a page. Such cases we can issue an HTTP request to the dispatcher. The HTTP request delete specific files from the Dispatcher cache.

Read More

Steps to implement any search technology
AEM Dispatcher, why it  is needed?
AEM Desktop App
Figure out the best search technology or tool
Steps to implement search in Solr
Quality of Search - fine tuning search implementation


HTL Intro
HTL Syntax
HTL Options
HTL Variables
HTL Literals
HTL Operators

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) Desktop App installation

AEM Desktop app maps the AEM Assets to a network directory. This helps to view the AEM assets in Windows/Mac Explorer/Finder. The assets can also be edited using various image-editing apps. All changes are reflected immediately in AEM Assets and gets synced quickly.

Which version of OS supported by AEM Desktop App?
At present the Windows(Version 7 and 10) and MacOSX(10.10 or later)

Where to get installer?
Go to helpx.adobe site and access the path 'experience-manager/kb/download-companion-app.html'. Select the version which you are interested and download the app.

I am using previous version of AEM. Can I use the desktop app with older version of AEM?
AEM 6.3 supports the app directly without any service pack installations. Refer the download section for the service pack required for older version (6.2,6.1)

How does the desktop app sync the data?
AEM Desktop app saves files first in local system. Later, the upload to AEM Server happens on back end. This ensures that user is not interrupted on bigger uploads and all versions are maintained intact. There is also option to monitor the upload process using Desktop App upload monitoring dialog.

Installation steps
  • Download the installer.
  • Double click on .msi file (for Windows OS)

Follow the on screen instructions. (Change the drive in case if you want to install the app in other drive)

Connecting AEM Desktop App with AEM Instance
Select the AEM Desktop app from start
Enter the Connection root - your AEM Instance url > Enter 'Go'

Enter the user credentials, Sign In

On task bar we can see the AEM icon, clicking on this will give us options to work with AEM Desktop app


  • To see the assets of connected host, click on 'Explore Assets'
  • To see any upload status, click on 'Show back ground upload queue status'
  • We can also forget, disconnect current connection.
  • Configuration includes , connect on application start & Launch application on startup.
  • Advanced options provides log info , clear cache.

Debug AEM Desktop App installer issues

There are cases where the app will not launch after installation.

1) Ensure other apps are not running in the same port. Close any such applications.
2) Ensure the bit locker in unlocked if you are using it.

Read More

Steps to implement any search technology
AEM Dispatcher, why it  is needed?
AEM Desktop App
Figure out the best search technology or tool
Steps to implement search in Solr
Quality of Search - fine tuning search implementation

Friday, 30 June 2017

Step by step tutorial on Creating Experience Fragments in AEM

In my previous blog, I have explained the basics of Experience Fragments in AEM. Here I will walk you through the process of creating an Experience Fragment and authoring it to a page. Remember Experience Fragments can be authored on third party systems too, for the demo I am using a test AEM page.


After loggin into AEM, click on 'Experience Fragments' , then from create button click on the 'Experience Fragment'. The folder option aloows us to categorise the Experience Fragments.

Once created, start filling out the details in properties section and 'First Variant'  as shown below.

On the 'First Variant' section select the template for the Experience Fragment. HTML fragment which I am going to select is a default provided by AEM.

Now select the created Experience Fragment, and click on edit option.

We will have authoring page opened for the Experience Fragment. We can author assets, components and variations for a fragment.

In assets section, I have authored an image ( We.Retail instore image).

In variations, we can click on 'create' to authore variations.

Start filling the variations. The template can be any default Experience Fragment template.

Below given various menu options on the Experience Fragment authoring.

Once done with Experience Fragment creation, we will go ahead and author the fragment on a page. For this I have created a test page.
On this page, author an Experience Fragment as a component('Drag COmponents here').

Once this is done we can see the Experience Fragment is rendered on the test page as shown below.

Click me to watch The YouTube demo video

Thursday, 29 June 2017

AEM Experience Fragment Basics

What is an experience fragment?
An 'Experience Fragment' is a collection of components with its own content and layout.

  • Each Experience Fragment is based on a template which gives a structure.
  • Each experience fragment has one/many components with its own layout.
  • Each experience itself makes sense.
  • Created with intention of reuse, re ordered, resized.
  • Experience Fragments works on Caas model, with each fragment can be created with multiple variations.

Scenarios when an AEM Experience Fragment to be used?
There are times when we need to replicate same type of page section in other pages. 'Experience Fragments' can help us saving time in this case. Also cases like AEM is used as headless CMS, where AEM to be just used as content storage, not for delivery. In this case AEM Experience Fragment will be available for a third party rendering system for consuming.

Cases when we need multiple version of content, Experience Fragments are a good option.

Additional notes:

Experience Fragments allow to manage sections of experiences that can easily be reused and distributed. They are template based and allow live copy relationship. At present AEM 6.3 supports Experience fragments to html5 web templates, Pinterest and Facebook templates. Custom templates can be created if required.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

How to create a Content Fragment? step by step tutorial

Content Fragment helps to author content without creating a Page. Content Fragments are useful in displaying content across channels like web pages, mobile apps or campaigns.

What are all, a Content Fragment can hold?

Content Fragment has well defined content structure, which can hold text segments and references to assets, likes images, videos etc.

Related contents
AEM Leading to head less CMS?
AEM Content Fragment output as JSON
AEM 6.3 Content Fragments Basics
How to create a Content Fragment? step by step tutorial
Create & Access the content fragment programmatically

Creating Content Fragments

To start with , go to Assets > Files > Click on Create , Content Fragment

Select the template as shown(Default Simple Fragment Template). We can either have our new templates created based on the content requirement or use the default one.

In 'Properties' section fill up the basic details of this fragment.

Advanced section will have an auto populated name. We can edit it in case we need our custom property/url here.

Click on 'Create' will show you the success message as shown below. On clicking 'Done' will show the new Content Fragment.

The created Content Fragment can be downloaded as shown below. The downloaded fragment can have all related information selected while creation. Unzipping the fragment displays the folder contents.

Unzipped file will have a metadata file with all information.

There are many options for a Content Fragment once created. The header bar will have options like download, checkout, edit, manage tags, adding collections publish, un-publish etc.

Edit options for a content fragment is quiet flexible, through which we can update the textual content, inserting other assets, uploading content from a document etc. We can see a live update of content with word count, character count etc during content entry.

On selecting and editing the dialog gives 'Create variation' option. Through which we can create different version of content based on our requirement. These variations are used across different channels.

Clicking the 'folder' icon provides us the option to add collection to this content fragment.

On clicking 'metadata' section helps to update the metadata associate with the fragment.

Once all updates are done, save the content fragment to ensure all changes are submitted to crx. The new content fragment created can be found at path '/content/dam'.

YouTube demo videos for Content Fragments:
         AEM 6.3 Content Fragments Basics
         Content Fragments AEM
         View Content fragment output in aem