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How we’ll help you to make cool plug-ins for WebApp

Milo Oostergo

Some weeks ago, we have released the Zarafa WebApp 1.0. It was a very cool experience to work with 15 WebApp co-Zarafians on feedback from many people in the ecosystem. I would like to share some thoughts with you about plug-ins. 

The WebApp is based on the ExtJS javascript framework. This new framework not only provides users with many new features and optimizations, it also facilitates the code deduplication process and enables developers to implement re-usable components.
We are looking forward to leverage the widget options in this framework because it will speed up the development of plugins. Then, a plug-in can be made 5 to 10 times faster compared to the old framework.
Recently I have had numerous contacts with developers who want to build VoIP integrations, social media integrations and other 3rd party integrations. To boost this enthusiasm, we will organize several coding sessions in the upcoming months.

At this moment,the WebApp comes in compiled versions to highly optimize the javascript. This is not really usable for plug-ins because these have to be added before the WebApp is compiled. In our current development sprint, we are implementing a plug-in framework which will enable developers to install and build plug-ins on the standard compiled WebApp version. Plug-ins can be placed in a separate plug-in directory and will be included at loading time. This plug-in directory will not be overwritten in an update, so configuration files are ‘upgrade safe’.

At the same time, the Zarafa development team is working on an update of the WebApp developer guide. This guide will contain much more coding examples to let people hook in their code to the WebApp.

So, keep track of our WebApp project for new releases! Although we have released WebApp 1.0, which is included in ZCP 7.0 packages, we will release a new version every 2 weeks on the WebApp project site. The latest version can be checked out on git.zarafa.com.

In fact, we have now reached the point we have been aiming at when we started the WebApp project. We sincerely hope that you will help us to motivate people with some developer knowledge in your environment to contribute with new plug-ins to the enrichment of our WebApp. 


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