Sitecore Blog: Getting to Know Sitecore

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Replacing the Collection Database in Sitecore XP

By Adam Conn, May 20, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

The Sitecore Experience Platform (XP) is a lot more interesting when the Experience Database (xDB) is populated with data. You can use the experience profile, experience analytics, path analyzer and a number of other tools.

Of course, when you install Sitecore XP for the first time your xDB is going to be empty. If you're fortunate enough to find someone with a collection database that you can use, you need to get that database connected.

This post explains how to connect a collection database to an existing Sitecore server and to ensure that Sitecore processes the data in that database.

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Tags: Sitecore 8, xDB

Federated Experience Manager for Sitecore 7.x Update Released | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, March 03, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

Federated Experience Manager (FXM) allows you to add personalization and tracking to non-Sitecore websites and applications. It is available as a module for Sitecore 7.x. It is included in the Sitecore Experience Platform starting with Sitecore 8.

In this post I am happy to announce an update to FXM for Sitecore 7.x.

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Tags: API, Integration, Sitecore 7, Sitecore 7.2, Web Analytics, Relevancy

Introducing NuGet Server for Sitecore | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, February 20, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

This post introduces a new Sitecore module that allows you to run a NuGet server on your Sitecore server. It also dynamically generates NuGet packages that make it easier for Sitecore developers to add assembly references.

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Tags: API

Sitecore Integration Documentation | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, February 11, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

I've always been impressed by how vibrant the Sitecore developer community is. Seriously useful information is shared on a daily basis. Subscribing to the Sitecore blogs feed, monitoring Twitter and reading Stackoverflow are all good ways to keep up on community activity.

There's another resource that I recommend you check out: the Sitecore Community Docs site. This site is a combination of link aggregation and original content.

I just added a bunch of content that are of interest to people integrating Sitecore with other systems, or people extending Sitecore. Read on for information on what specifically I've added.

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Tags: API, Architecture

Introducing Salesforce Connect for Sitecore | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, February 04, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Comments (1)

I am pleased to announce the release of Salesforce Connect 1.0, a new module that integrates with the Sitecore Experience Platform. This module was developed by Sitecore and is being released as a Shared Source module. Read on for more details.

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Tags: API, CRM, Sitecore 8, xDB

Working with IDs in Sitecore xDB | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, January 21, 2015 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

MongoDB is used to collect data in the Sitecore Experience Database (xDB). MongoDB is not a difficult tool to use, but there are a few things that a newbie may struggle with. This post covers one of those: IDs and GUIDs.

Working with IDs and GUIDs requires an understanding of how they're stored in MongoDB. In addition to explaining this, this post also aims to provide some helpful tips to get you working with these values quickly and easily.

Spoiler alert: This post will explain why you will never get any results when you run the following query on MongoDB:


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Tags: API, Sitecore 8, xDB

Sitecore 8 and Sitecore Instance Manager | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, December 19, 2014 | Permalink | Rating:  | Comments (1)

Today Sitecore 8 was released. There is so much cool stuff packed in this release. The Sitecore community was rightfully excited to get their hands on it. But before you can use it you must install it.

I am a big fan of the Sitecore Instance Manager (also known as SIM). If you need to install, backup or recover Sitecore instances regularly, this is a terrific time-saving tool.

If you are using SIM and you've downloaded "ZIP archive of the Sitecore site root" from - AND you didn't read the note that was helpfully included on the download page - you may notice that SIM isn't picking up Sitecore 8, even after you click the "Sites & Products" button in SIM.

As the helpful note explains, you must rename the zip file to Sitecore 8.0 rev. After you do that you may need to click the "Sites & Products" button in SIM before Sitecore 8 shows up.

Tags: Sitecore 8

LINQPad Driver for Sitecore 1.9 | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, December 16, 2014 | Permalink | Rating:  | Leave a comment

LINQPad and Sitecore

Sitecore 8 is coming soon.  Really soon. So it's time to update tools to be sure you can hit the ground running with Sitecore 8.

LINQPad Driver for Sitecore 1.9 adds support for Sitecore 8. Read on for details on what changed and for a download link.

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Tags: API, Sitecore 8, Sitecore 7.2, Sitecore 7

Introducing Sitecore xDB Ingestion Manager

By Adam Conn, November 07, 2014 | Permalink | Rating:  | Comments (2)

Prior to Sitecore 7.5 we had DMS, which is a useful tool for collecting information about engagement on web sites. Sure, it can be used in non-web scenarios (like email), but in those cases you need to live within the limits of a system designed for the web world.

Sitecore 7.5 introduces the Experience Database (xDB). At first glance it may look a lot like DMS, but a closer look reveals it is very different. It is designed to be flexible and extensible in ways DMS never was. You can extend the default data model to store anything you want.

For people who deal with integration on a daily basis, this is huge. Now we can work with data on its own terms.

Getting data into xDB is not difficult. If you are only interested in connecting one or two specific systems to your xDB, you can integrate the data in a matter of hours.

But if you are a partner who works with many different customers who have many different systems, you probably want some sort of framework to facilitate the process. Or if you're need to integrate external data but you're not a Sitecore expert, you might appreciate some guidance on how to get data into xDB.

That is what the xDB Integration Manager is. It is a framework that allows you to focus on the code to read data from an external data source and to populate xDB with that data.

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Tags: API, Analytics, Integration, Sitecore 8, xDB

Rebuilding the Sitecore Analytics Index | Adam Conn | Sitecore Blog

By Adam Conn, November 01, 2014 | Permalink | Rating:  | Comments (1)

My last post ended with a question that you'll probably ask after you understand how the analytics index is populated: how is it rebuilt?

Why would you want to do this? The obvious answer is "if the index gets corrupted". But I think the more useful, everyday answer is "it allows you to add data directly to the analytics database and have that data indexed". 

(You would only want to do for certain types of testing or educational purposes. There are reasons why you shouldn't add production data directly to the analytics database in this way. I will cover bulk data loading into the analytics database at some point in the future.)

This post explains how to rebuild the analytics index manually.

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Tags: API, Sitecore 8, Web Analytics, Analytics