Review
Sitefinity 8.0

Mar 02

I love the release progress of Sitefinity. Regular internal builds if you are looking for a fix before the next release and a steady march of new features. Sitefinity 8 is in beta and due out soon with all the 'What's new webinars' scheduled. A previous release, 7.2, had me impressed and ho-umm'd at the same time. When the 8.0 feature list came out I was interested to see if it would have me rushing to upgrade.

With 7.2 I was impressed and ho-hummed by the release. The new features I thought were pretty cool and great selling points for the product. But I had an issue in that not one of my clients would be interested as they are all small business and standard license holders and just aren't big enough to warrant the new stuff. I upgraded them all when 7.3 came out but more because I like to keep everyone up to date.

Sitefinity 8.0 Beta

The main new features in 8.0 apply if you are running a multi-site environment. (Not me). Taxonomies and Site Sync per Site which I am glad to see. There is also the offical release of Pages Precompilation Tool for all licenses which looks handy. I tried it but it didn't work for me in the earlier release but I suspect it was my environment. But the thing that I am looking forward to the most in this release is the progression of 'Feather', the new MVC style widgets for Sitefinity. For me these look great and I will be really thrilled when they have gone through and implemented all the current widgets.

Note that Feather is on its own release cycle and path and you can update to the latest each week.

There are, of course, a range of bug fixes which are great to see addressed.

But overall for me it’s another release where I will only be upgrading out of due course. No need for me to rush. This doesn't make me disappointed with the release. I think that they are addressing some big asks from those bigger clients. The Simplified Custom Membership Provider is an important one for some I imagine.

What Would Rock My Boat

So what would get me all excited? For me, if I could choose, there are two major ones.

Official support for Azure Websites, or more important, the ability to use an external caching service such as Azure Redis.

I think if they implemented this then running on Azure websites would be solved. Currently the cache is in memory meaning I am spending a lot of resources on caching the same data on every single box in a scaled\load balanced environment. Even on a single box I would rather use the memory cache of a external provider so I can crank up the cache store rather than worry about the memory limits on my IIS box.

Review and improve the Ecommerce module.

This hasn't been improved for an age now. Every time I do use it there is always a "how do I do that?" moment. I would love to see improvements here. I do think the feather widgets will improve the front end experience but I would love to see a review and call for suggestions on what needs to happen on this module.


Darrin Robertson - Sitefinity Developer

Thanks for reading and feel free to comment
Darrin Robertson


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