It's been a while since we heard from Laserfiche (news, site), the company that was then busy launching its enterprise content management system Rio.

However, recently Laserfiche announced the availability of  Weblink 8, which they say, will significantly expand Rio by enabling developers to build a portal site without having to bother with any of the tiresome coding usually associated with such projects.

This additional product adds management capabilities to public web portals and should make Rio and WebLink itself an attractive prospect, particularly in the area of web content management and document management.

Targeted Page Search

The principal ability of Weblink 8 you will discover is to give users access to documents by taking them not just to the requested site, but also the requested page with the search terms highlighted.

It is designed to be more accessible to public users who might be unfamiliar with Laserfiche, or the naming conventions of the public organization on which they are carrying out a search.

And part of the new portal feel of Weblink 8 is focused on making searching take a more prominent role over browsing.

This means that instead of landing on a page displaying the repository folder structure, users will now land on a WebLink Welcome page with preconfigured searches and commonly used bookmarks.

Administrators can customize this Welcome page and searching options using a new WebLink Designer.

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WebLink 8 search in WebLink Designer

It also enables users to customize searches themselves producing not only the search results, but also related results, search terms and additional document information displayed as well.

Enhanced Document Viewer

There are a whole range of upgraded features that the company says represents a significant improvement on previous versions, but it is hard to assess that, as there does not appear to be any indication of what previous versions contained.

However, as the focus here appears to be on document search and viewing there are a number of features that should make life easy for the intrepid searcher in the document viewer.

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WebLink 8 Document Viewer

Features include:

  • Tiling which enables the document to load faster and enables users to view part of the document before it is entirely loaded.
  • Continuous scrolling that allows users move through a document without stopping using only the mouse wheel
  • Annotations that can be viewed or hidden in the Image Pane, while new annotations can be added to documents easily
  • A full screen mode that allows users use the entire computer screen to see documents
  • Email abilities that allows users send e-mails that contain a link specific to a document
  • A selection of new toolbar buttons have been added including ‘fit width’, fit page, email, pan mode and zoom mode.

The Document Viewer can also display, or hide , the breadcrumb which will show links to each folder a user navigated through to get to get to their current location.

Other New Features

There are other features that Laserfiche is promoting as brand new with Weblink8:

  • New browser support, including Internet Explorer 6, 7 and 8, Firefox 2 and 3, Safari, Chrome and Opera.
  • WebLink 8 can be viewed from the iPhone and Android mobile devices.
  • A point and click tool for creating search forms, setting up the Welcome page, and customizing the colors and logo for WebLink.
  • Can be crawled by internet search engines, so documents in WebLink can be found the same way users find other pages on the Internet.
  • The updated Administrator’s Utility configures repository connections, watermarks, e-mail, usage statistics, and the location of your temporary files.