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Open-source FotoWare plugin for Sitecore CMS is Available

By Mariana Mehedyniuk on January 27, 2021

Xenario GmbH, a certified FotoWare partner in Germany, presents an open-source plugin for Sitecore CMS. It is one of the world’s leading CMS providers that is used by more than 5,200 brands worldwide.

The FotoWare plugin was developed together with German energy provider GASAG Gruppe, that has been using FotoWare DAM for 3 years to manage their marketing related digital assets.

The plugin enables users to import images from their FotoWare DAM directly into their Sitecore media library. It is now shared publicly on GitHub and Reddit.

The features include:

  • Selecting and importing single images along with related metadata

  • Image editing (Crop, Resize, Add Filters) with FotoWare tools before importing to Sitecore

  • Synchronizing imported data with FotoWare

We caught up with Mattheo Brajko from GASAG Gruppe to learn more about how the plugin has helped them, and the importance of synchronizing your CMS and DAM.

© Cover graphic by GASAG Gruppe

Why did you decide to create this plugin?

FotoWare was used as a stand-alone solution in GASAG Gruppe before the plugin was developed.

FotoWare served as a central storage and management tool for photos and other media files, but it worked separately from the Sitecore CMS. Exporting files from FotoWare to Sitecore required a great deal of manual work.

It was taking a lot of time to download the image and then reupload it to Sitecore, including the transfer of maintained metadata. Moreover, there was also a risk that data may be transferred incorrectly, incompletely, or later become out of date.

So, we decided to fully integrate FotoWare into the website ecosystem of GASAG Gruppe. In this way, we get access to a database that is always up-to-date. Ultimately, it will make every day work easier for the editors and save costs.

gasag-gruppe-picture-for-blog-1

Why have you decided to make the plugin open source?

When developing our products, we rely on many open-source solutions and benefit from the community. So, we wanted to give something back.

Other customers who use the Sitecore CMS and FotoWare can also use this solution to optimize their work. Moreover, because the plugin is open source, everyone can contribute to its development. This is something we and other users can only benefit from.

What was Xenario’s role in the development of this plugin?

Xenario GmbH was our technical contact throughout the entire project. We benefited from Xenario`s extensive FotoWare experience on every stage of the development.

It started with a briefing of the technical possibilities, discussing best practices for the integration using the FotoWare API, and technical support during development.

LEARN MORE: Xenario GmbH, FotoWare Reseller in Germany

In your opinion, who will benefit from using this plugin the most?

For now, these are our editors. They can fully concentrate on their work and do not worry about the media transfer between FotoWare and Sitecore.

But GASAG Gruppe benefits from this solution as a company too. It is yet another step towards our digital transformation process.

How do you see the future development of this plugin?

First and foremost, we want to ensure that connectivity between the latest versions of Sitecore and FotoWare is always guaranteed. So, we are in close contact with our editors. If there are requests for additional functions, we will consider and implement them.

Currently, there are no precise plans for future functionalities. But plugin users can submit requests via our Github repository or contribute to the development themselves.

gasag demo

© Short plugin demo, by Mattheo Brajko and Christopher Huemmer

In your opinion, why is it important to connect CMS with DAM system?

CMS and a DAM are not mutually exclusive systems. They rather benefit from being used at the same time and in the same network.

CMS, such as Sitecore, are often quite weak when it comes to management of digital assets, the numbers of which are growing year by year. By combining CMS and DAM systems, such as FotoWare, each system can be used exactly for the area it covers best.

The DAM system will cover all functions related to a digital asset management, such as storing and sharing. At the same time, CMS will help to create content, using these digital assets.

Where to learn more about the plugin?

For requirements and step-by-step Installation Guide, visit the GitHub page.

Please note: while FotoWare works with all file types, such as documents and videos, the current version of the plugin supports images only.