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Multi browser project: What is going on?

Written by Robin den Buurman on . Posted in Exact Synergy

It has been a while since we wrote about our multi browser project for Exact Synergy Enterprise. A lot has been done in the meantime; let me explain what we did so far.

What is our goal?

Our goal is to support Google Chrome, Apple’s Safari, Mozilla Firefox and of course Microsoft Internet explorer. Looking at one of the statistics provider hitslink.com, the market share of the Microsoft Internet explorer has dropped below the 60% of all internet users. Firefox has over 22% of the total internet users and Chrome currently has over 8% market share.

Exact Synergy Enterprise consists out of 1500+ pages which all have been developed using Microsoft technology and based on Microsoft Internet Explorer compatibility. Next to the pages we also have many controls, style sheets and other possible HTML and script containing items; all of which should eventually be compliant with the mentioned four browsers.

New functionality

As you probably read on this product blog this is not the only project that is running. The new features (created with new pages and controls) we develop compliant with the 4 web browsers from the start. Take a look for example at the new User Interface and Mobile. You will be able to use them with all four browsers.

How and what?

The multi browser project can be split in two parts. The first part includes making all our controls which are used within web pages compliant to the four mentioned browsers. This part, the foundation, is completed for 75%. However, this part will not guarantee full compliancy for all features since features within the page itself are overlooked that way.

# Page Table
1  Portal.aspx
2  Home.aspx
3  Menu.aspx
4  MenuCustomize.aspx
5  menucustomizeworkflow.aspx
6  HRMResourceCard.aspx
7  WflRequests.aspx
8  WflRequest.aspx
9  HRMResourceSearch.aspx
10  WflRequestTypes.aspx

This is where part two comes in the picture which is used to make each individual page compliant to the four different browsers. In this approach only the priority of the page within the project is important because eventually we should validate, test and update each individual page. The priority of each page has been determined and mostly corresponds with the usage frequency of that page by our customers.

To get an idea, this table shows the top 10 of most frequently used pages. This represents roughly 6% of the daily tasks done via Exact Synergy Enterprise by our customers.

Alright, nice but tell me what has been done!

From your point of view you are probably much more interested in the results so far. As of product update 244 you should be able to use IE, Chrome, Safari or Firefox to:

  1. Create and edit documents using the new document editor.
  2. Create and edit workflow.
  3. View Microsoft SQL Server Reports.
  4. Other small pages and functionality has been made compliant.

But…

As you might have guessed this project is not finished. In fact, the major part of what we did has been done “under the hood” (controls) to prepare ourselves and the product to take on the individual pages and functionality. In product update 245 we have started the second part of the project in parallel with the first part.

In the upcoming releases you will see that more and more of your daily tasks can be performed using any of the four browsers. I will keep informing you on them using this product blog.

Feedback is highly appreciated!

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Comments (16)

  • Gert

    |

    Very good to see that other browsers will be supported more and more. It’s easy to say that this should have been done years ago, but the important thing is: its’s being done now :)

    Reply

  • Jurgen de Jong

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    Robin,

    I think you’re doing a great job.

    Does this eventually mean Synergy isn’t going to use any inline style in the .apsx pages anymore in the future.

    By the way. 244 Synergy seems to use 2 stylesheets. The div productmenu08 seems to locate directly to exact.css instead of the chosen stylesheet, therefore any modification made to any stylesheet doesn’t result in an fully restyled environment, but you will always see the exact.css productmenu08….and that’s blue

    Reply

    • Robin den Buurman

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      Hi Jurgen,
      Eventually that is the goal, yes but I got a picture from our engineers that there is still a long way to go. We also entered a bug for the style sheet issue, it doesnt seem right.

      Reply

  • Anthony

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    What about iPad it’s a restricted version of Safari?

    I have all 4 browsers on my laptop & and an iPad.
    Customers ask about support for the various browsers, my biggest problem is you only create New Accounts in Internet Explorer, not in Safari, Firefox or Chrome.

    The others just say – “Wait a Moment…”

    This one of the most basic CRM functionality, create a new Lead / Suspect / Prospect.

    Can we get this on the list?

    Reply

    • Robin den Buurman

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      Hi Anthony,
      Currently we do not focus explicitly on iPad Safari however we will keep our eyes out to see the developments in that area. I do expect that the restricted version of iPad upholding the Safari standards meaning it should also work when Exact Synergy Enterprise is ready for Safari although some minor changes for the iPad might be needed.

      Everything is on the list, the location within the list is what really matters. The main account functionality is within the top 30 pages meaning they will be addressed soon.

      Reply

  • Anthony

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    The iPad has been the top mobility device, now that Dell, Samsung and many others are releasing large format (4-10″) android based devices we will be seeing the same issues, that Safari has, but with Firefox.

    Reply

  • Robin den Buurman

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    Hi Anthony,

    We understand. However mobile devices will be addressed by our mobile solutions(s). They are not targetted explicity by the multibrowser project.

    Reply

  • Robert Klein

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    Sales people want to view SSRS reports on the iPad. Many sales teams in certain industries are adding iPads to their arsenal for a quick way to present materials to prospects, and customers. So far, they do not foresee the iPad replacing their laptops, or smartphones.

    Reply

  • Aimee

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    You can subscribe to SSRS reports in Synergy and have them emailed to you in html or .pdf and serveral other formats. In this way they can easily be read on the ipad, no?

    Reply

  • Matthew

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    Great work Robert,

    Question : IE 9.0 – Where are we with the adoption / support of this new browser? It is extremely fast, but I have seen some problems with Synergy already.

    Support for iPad: We cannot afford to miss the boat on this, along with other new tablet devices. The market is telling us very loudly what we must adopt!

    Reply

  • Brad Boston

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    Robin, Any recent updates? Have a client who is using safari daily and he likes it. One problem he has is when you modifies is preferences he looses his menus (left and top) and has to go back to IE to fix it.

    Reply

  • Robin den Buurman

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    Hi Brad,
    In Product Update 245 we addressed the preferences menu (among other things). I cannot tell if this solves your clients issue but there is a good chance. You might want to check out:

    http://flash.exact.com/exademy/ese-245/MultiBrowser.htm

    and try 245 on this issue. Please remember that we still not officially support multi browser for the complete Exact Synergy Enterprise product and that there is a risk involved in allowing your clients to do so.

    Reply

  • Stephan ten Kate

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    Is it also possible in the near future that Synergy classic (so not enterprise) will also have multi browser support?

    I too had the idea to let it run on my iPad, but Synergy and Safari is not really a good combination it turns out.

    I’m looking forward to your reply.

    Reply

    • Robin den Buurman

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      Hi Stephan,
      No sorry, there are no plans to do the same for Synergy Classic.

      Regards,
      Robin

      Reply

  • Stephan ten Kate

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    Hello Robin,

    Thanks for your reply.
    That’s a shame, then we have to live with some limitations or decide to upgrade to synergy enterprise.

    Reply

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