Speed and Simplicity with XWiki 5.x

10 Mar 2014 5 min read

Today, we're happy to talk about five top features from the XWiki 5.x cycle. The mission the XWiki Open Source community set for the 5.x cycle was to improve XWiki's usage for new and regular users by working on usability and usage speed. Votes went to making XWiki simpler and faster both from a pure performance point of view and from the user interface point of view, with the final theme being summarized as speed and simplicity

Improved search experience

Having both speed and simplicity in mind, an important component of the 5.x cycle has been improving the search experience. Starting with XWiki 5.1, the default XWiki search is based on Apache Solr. The new search returns more relevant results, faster. Finding content has never been easier. The new search UI is simple and intuitive. Once you've got the results it's very easy to filter them. On the right side you have multiple filters to refine your search. You can apply them with a simple click and the results will be immediately updated.


Creating wikis straight from XWiki Enterprise

A second goal was to make the process of creating multiple wikis as simple as possible. The 5.x cycle introduces the ability to create wikis straight from XWiki Enterprise. With the Workspace Application integrated in XWiki Enterprise, it's now very easy to create new wikis without the need to install additional extensions.
A brand new wizard is now available from the "Add" menu that allows the creation of wikis.




New menu application

Ever wanted to add extra menus to your wiki, but couldn't find a simple way to achieve this? With the new menu application anyone may easily create navigation menus. Menus can be displayed either horizontally as a top bar after the page header, or vertically in a side panel. 




Improved Extension Manager

Advanced XWiki users will be happy to learn the Extension Manager has been improved in the 5.x cycle. The Extensions Manager is a feature that allows you to install, uninstall, upgrade and downgrade XWiki extensions.
The xwiki.org Extensions Repository and the XWiki Public Nexus Maven Repository are supported by default, so all it takes to install the needed extensions is to perform a simple search and install.


Easy Wiki upgrades using the Distribution Wizard

Starting with XWiki 4.2, the Distribution Wizard (also known as DW) was introduced as an experimental feature which helps users migrate their XWiki instances to newer versions without having to manually import the XAR (wiki pages) corresponding to their new version.
The good news is work was continued throughout the 5.x cycle, which means the DW feature is now stable and ready to use. You can upgrade your wikis when running the Distribution Wizard on the main wiki and you can also run the Distribution Wizard on each of your wikis separately. A new last step has been introduced to display all the changes made to the wiki and give the chance to do rollbacks.


Try out XWiki 5.4.4 to learn more

You can download the latest version of XWiki from xwiki.org and read the release notes for the full list of features developed in the 5.x cycle.

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