Why I don’t like Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a tool that lets marketers put code for tracking users/analytics onto a website without having actually change the code of the website. Essentially, Google Tag Manager will inject the code, after the page has loaded. “Tags” in this instance aren’t just #hashtag, but are snippets of code that can record data and send it to third party services.

The advantage of this is that Marketers can put JavaScript code into your production website without needing a developer, and that is genuinely useful to them. However… it’s allowing marketers to put code into your live website! Continue reading “Why I don’t like Google Tag Manager”

Why I don’t like Google Tag Manager

XConnect certificate expiry

So, the SIF install scripts for Sitecore create certificates for securing the XConnect communication. There are 4 certificates involved – 2 “DO_NOT_TRUST_XXX” trusted root certs for signing 2 other certs, and those 2 are a) for the IIS XConnect site binding (as normal with HTTPS), and b) one for the XConnect client.

Unfortunately, these only last for a year… and the process of renewing them isn’t well documented. Continue reading “XConnect certificate expiry”

XConnect certificate expiry

Make Media Browser show a Tree View, rather than List view

Sitecore’s media browser shows an annoying List View, rather than a Tree view by default. This is sad, ‘cos the Tree view is much more intuitive for users – they’re used a having a drive and folders.

Fortunately, you can make Sitecore use this. I think this tip came from Gert Gullentops originally, but I’m not sure. Continue reading “Make Media Browser show a Tree View, rather than List view”

Make Media Browser show a Tree View, rather than List view

Sitecore: System.InvalidOperationException: Ensure definition type did not complete successfully

I started getting this error this morning in my Sitecore logs:

System.InvalidOperationException: Ensure definition type did not complete successfully. StatusCode: 500, ReasonPhrase: ‘Internal Server Error’, Version: 1.1

I noticed this ‘cos analytics stopped working overnight:

What gives? Continue reading “Sitecore: System.InvalidOperationException: Ensure definition type did not complete successfully”

Sitecore: System.InvalidOperationException: Ensure definition type did not complete successfully

Handling IIS Error pages in Sitecore

Sitecore lets you direct errors, such as page not found, to other pages within Sitecore. This is good – it lets you have an error page with all your dynamic content (navigation menus, account details, etc).

You can patch this in with something like:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<configuration xmlns:x="http://www.sitecore.net/xmlconfig/">
<sitecore>
<settings>
<!-- Default: /sitecore/service/notfound.aspx -->
<setting name="ItemNotFoundUrl">
<x:attribute name="value" value="/errors/Item Not Found" />
</setting>
<!-- Default: /sitecore/service/nolayout.aspx -->
<setting name="LayoutNotFoundUrl">
<x:attribute name="value" value="/errors/Item Not Found" />
</setting>
<!-- Default: /sitecore/service/notfound.aspx -->
<setting name="LinkItemNotFoundUrl">
<x:attribute name="value" value="/errors/Item Not Found" />
</setting>
<!-- Default: /sitecore/service/noaccess.aspx -->
<setting name="NoAccessUrl">
<x:attribute name="value" value="/errors/No Access" />
</setting>
<!-- Default: /sitecore/service/error.aspx -->
<setting name="ErrorPage">
<x:attribute name="value" value="/errors/Error" />
</setting>
</settings>
</sitecore>
</configuration>

Great, job done, right?

Nope…  Continue reading “Handling IIS Error pages in Sitecore”

Handling IIS Error pages in Sitecore

Avoiding the IClientApiService

So, I’ve blogged previously about my problems with the IClientApiService on a Content Management (CM) server. See https://andrewwburns.com/2018/08/15/unable-to-resolve-service-for-type-sitecore-emailcampaign-cd-services-iclientapiservice-while-attempting-to-activate/

Well, I asked Sitecore support about it, and they gave a really helpful response:

// This should be injected rather than calling the ServiceLocator
IMessageBus automatedMessageBus = ServiceLocator.ServiceProvider.GetService<IMessageBus>()
AutomatedMessage automatedMessage = new AutomatedMessage()
{
ContactIdentifier = contactIdentifier,
MessageId = emailCampaignId
};
automatedMessageBus.Send(automatedMessage);

Their reasoning for this was:

It is not recommended to add the configuration on CM since:
1) It is not enough to add only the <configurator> section, since it has dependencies on other configuration sections.
2) The CustomServiceConfigurator may change in the next release and the functionality will stop working.

Fair enough, seems sensible, though I’m now slightly at a loss for what the IClientApiService is actually for. I’ve tried the code they’ve send across, and it sends email correctly (and yes, I used DI, rather than a ServiceLocator).

I’ve tested this code locally, and it works nicely; I haven’t yet had a chance to try it on a scaled environment. I also decompiled the relevant assemblies, and yes, behind the IClientApiService implementations it seems to use a MessageBus<AutomatedMessage> object, so this should be equivalent.

Avoiding the IClientApiService

“…is not valid datasource for master or user does not have permissions to access”

I got this error while looking at a customer’s system, and weirdly, all renderings that used datasources had stopped working.

Sadly, I don’t still have the full stack trace, but it turns out the problem was a mis-configured URL for the SOLR service. Sitecore uses content search to find the datasource for a component.

This fact was a new one for me!

I think our URL lacked a /, or /#/. We corrected it, and the error went away – and our datasourced renderings started working again.

I found a reference on StackExchange after the fact.

“…is not valid datasource for master or user does not have permissions to access”

Unable to resolve service for type ‘Sitecore.EmailCampaign.Cd.Services.IClientApiService’ while attempting to activate…

A colleague had this error occur while setting up a production system. Everything had been fine in development, but Dependency Injection seemed to be throwing a wobbly when it tried to load the service we’d written for adding/removing contacts from a subscription list.

Edit: I raised this problem with Sitecore and got a helpful response: https://andrewwburns.com/2018/08/17/avoiding-the-iclientapiservice/

Continue reading “Unable to resolve service for type ‘Sitecore.EmailCampaign.Cd.Services.IClientApiService’ while attempting to activate…”

Unable to resolve service for type ‘Sitecore.EmailCampaign.Cd.Services.IClientApiService’ while attempting to activate…