It was a long time coming, but it’s finally here, Zenbu for ExpressionEngine 4 is now available!
This is a nearly complete rewrite of the addon, the previous versions having accumulated much baggage that needed to be dropped. Some highlights:
- No more sidebar!: The sidebar was taking up a lot of visual space for what, saved searches and accessing settings? This is now tucked in the top right of the main Zenbu area.
- Stay on Zenbu’s main page: Leaving the main Zenbu entry listing to change a display setting or manage saved searches, then going back to the main Zenbu entry listing was an annoyance to both some users and myself. Modals now handle these sections, avoiding you a trip away from your listing.
- Built on modern(er) tools: can you believe that a lot of the original interface was powered by lengthy, complex jQuery scripts? Zenbu’s search and display features depend a lot on data and states, and therefore most of the interface was rebuilt using the more modern framework Vue.js (with a sprinkle of jQuery). Laravel Mix is used to bundle and streamline the final assets needed to power Zenbu’s interface.
- Zenbu filter memory now also remembers the page you were on: filtering entries, editing an entry form and returning to Zenbu with the previous search filters has been available for a long time, but remembering the page you were on when you left to edit that entry wasn’t. Now it is.
- Using EE’s native methods: Instead of directly querying the database for searches, which was the strategy used up until now, Zenbu now uses ExpressionEngine’s model and collection handling in its core search functionality. That (should) translate to more reliable code if a future version of EE brings modifications to its database structure.
Of course, given this is the very first version of a rebuilt-from-scratch addon, everything may not be perfect. There
may be will be bugs. Some features you really liked may not have made it to this version. For example:
- Copy to Member Group(s) (display settings and saved searches)
- Permissions to copy to Member Group(s)
“Zenbu doesn’t work with [your favorite 3rd-party addon here]”
Unfortunately, third-party fieldtypes are not yet supported (unless it’s of the simple variety, i.e. with data stored in
exp_channel_data, eg. WYSIWYGs, fields containing strings of text, numbers, etc). Support will come and developers will get the documentation needed to add support for Zenbu in their addons.
About third-party fieldtypes, it’s unfortunately impossible for me to add support for all third-party fieldtypes out in the EE ecosystem. As it has been for many years now, developers of your 3rd-party addons will have to add support for Zenbu, in particular for addons that rely on their own database tables to pull data from. Need support for a specific fieldtype but the original developer won’t do it (or won’t do it soon)? I’m open to contract work to add third-party field support for you. Let’s talk.
If you have an old license of Zenbu, enter it as a coupon code on checkout and get 50% off your purchase of Zenbu for EE4. If your code doesn’t work, contact me with your license number and we’ll work things out.
I used to bundle the last version of Zenbu for EE2 in the Zenbu for EE3 package, for those who needed a copy to prepare themselves for the EE3 jump. Unfortunately that caused confusion for some users so I am not planning to do a similar exercise here. If you are looking for a version of Zenbu for EE2 or EE3, let me know along with your license number and I’ll take care of getting you a copy.
A lot of work has been put into what is one of the more complex addons in the ExpressionEngine world. Thank you for your patience while getting this ready, I know the wait hasn’t been easy.