The Authoring Connector contains both client and server components. A high-level architecture of the Authoring Connector components is shown in Figure 7-2.
Figure 7-2. Authoring Connector components
The client component is a Word add-on called offcon.dll. The add-on provides additional Word menu options (Figure 7-3) that launch the publishing wizard. When the Authoring Connector client component is installed, the Send to MCMS drop-down menu is added to the File menu. It includes the following options:
Figure 7-3. Additional File menu options in Word XP
The client component needs to be installed on each computer that will use the Authoring Connector; Word XP has to be installed on client computers before installation of the Authoring Connector client component.
NOTE: The server requires no additional configuration; all software components are installed by default.
If the Macro Security in Word XP is set to High, when Word XP is launched for the first time after the Authoring Connector has been installed, it may give a security warning regarding potential macro viruses (Figure 7-4). To prevent the warning from appearing again, in the warning dialog box click the "Always trust macros from this source" check box, and then click the Enable Macros button. Word adds the Microsoft Corporation certificate to the list of trusted sources (Figure 7-5) and will not display the warning again.
Figure 7-4. Word XP security warning
Figure 7-5. Trusted sources for macros in Word XP
NOTE: To review the list of trusted sources for macros in Word XP, select Tools > Options > Security tab, click the Macro Security button, and choose the Trusted Sources tab.
On the server side, the Authoring Connector user interface is contained in the ASP.NET page OC.aspx; this page is essentially a collection of ASP.NET Web forms. The client component communicates with the server component over HTTP; therefore, HTTP connectivity is required between the client and the server. If the OC.aspx file is not available or has been secured on the server, then the Authoring Connector will not be able to submit content.
NOTE: The URL pointing to OC.aspx can be modified within the wizard. We will discuss that in the next section in this chapter.
The OC.aspx file is located in the folder <installation point>\Server\IIS_CMS\OfficeWizard. On a CMS site, this folder by default is mapped to the virtual directory /MCMS/CMS/OfficeWizard. The same folder contains the file PublishingTasks.xml, which provides a list of Authoring Connector publishing tasks displayed in the wizard. This file can be modified by a site administrator; we will look into how to do it later in this chapter.
The Authoring Connector Wizard interacts with the OC.aspx file, which in turn interacts with the Publishing API. Upon completion of the wizard, the Authoring Connector creates a new posting and then copies the content from the Word document into the available placeholders defined in the target template.
There are two types of placeholders that a template designer may use within a template specifically for Word content: OfficeHtmlPlaceholder and OfficeAttachmentPlaceholder. In our example in Figure 7-1, the inline abstract text is inserted into the OfficeHtmlPlaceholder, and the full Word document is inserted as an attachment into the OfficeAttachmentPlaceholder.
It is worth mentioning that authors can submit Word content using any template, and into any channel to which they have rights, even if the templates are not designated as Word authoring templates and may not contain OfficeHtmlPlaceholder and/or OfficeAttachmentPlaceholder. In such cases, content is inserted into the first available HtmlPlaceholder, and the source document is uploaded into the first AttachmentPlaceholder. We will focus on how the content is inserted into the placeholders later in this chapter
In the original Word document, the Authoring Connector creates two additional custom properties, as follows:
These document properties allow the Authoring Connector to find the posting that corresponds to where the document content was last submitted for publishing. The next time the author opens the document, the option of updating an existing posting becomes available. The Authoring Connector updates the existing posting by copying content from Word XP into the available placeholders.
NOTE: There is no interaction between the Authoring Connector and the template .aspx file. When content is created using the Authoring Connector, the template .aspx file is not run; therefore, any custom code in the template file is not executed.