Archive | August, 2010

Introducing Additive Security

27 Aug

As paid users know, PBworks has a very flexible security system.  Using custom page- or folder-level security, you can specify exactly who can view or edit a page, down to the individual user.

However, until now, there has been one downside to applying Custom Security settings.  These security settings have been exclusive.  That is, once you specified Custom Security, only those people you explicitly added would have access to the page or folder.

This is fine for many uses, but it is difficult when you want to expose a particular page to a particular user without affecting how other people access the page.

Here’s an example: Let’s say I’m working on a new case study.  When I’ve written the content, I want the customer who is the subject of the case study, Jane, to be able to review the page and make her edits.

Under the classic Custom Security system, I could set up Jane as a page-level only user and then add her to the case study page.  However, this would also prevent any non-admins from viewing the case study, cutting off folks like Alexis and Sam from the PR team.  To maintain Alexis and Sam’s access, I’d either have to explicitly add them as users, or make them workspace administrators.

Adding them as users under Custom Security is a hassle, and making them administrators may not necessarily be appropriate or viable.

Enter Additive Security.  Now, when you set up Custom Security on a page or folder, you can add Jane as a user without changing anyone else’s ability to access the page.

Plus, you can always use “Who can see this?” to see an explicit list of everyone who has access to the page or folder.

Additive Security makes it even easier to use PBworks to collaborate with people outside your organization.  For more details and illustrated instructions, check out our user manual:

IE6 Support Going Away November 15, 2010

25 Aug

Dearly Beloved, we are gathered here today not to praise IE6 but to bury it.

Microsoft released Internet Explorer 6 on August 27, 2001, almost exactly nine years ago. Since then, it has been superceded by not just one but two separate versions, and IE9 is near release. IE6 has at least 23 unpatched, serious security holes in it – Microsoft has no plans to correct any of these and these holes may have resulted in serious security breaches at Google reported in early 2010.

Furthermore, IE6’s old age means it lacks support for many of the features that make it easy to develop powerful and sophisticated web applications – this means that when we release a new version (which we do twice a week) we need to do extra work to get PBworks to function correctly with IE6. Now that IE6 usage is finally (well) below 5% of our userbase, we’ve decided to formally retire our support on November 15, 2010.

On September 15, 2010, all IE6 users visiting our site will receive an in-product message alerting them that they have two months to upgrade to a more modern browser. We strongly recommend Google Chrome 5+, Safari 5, or Firefox 3.6 for cool features like drag and drop file uploading, although we do also support IE7 and IE8. Opera users – yes, we make a best effort to work well!

On November 15, 2010, all IE6 users will be redirected to our mobile site; this will ensure that they are still able to consistently and correctly access their data but to use our more advanced technology, users will need to upgrade per the above.