For the LiveTiles Page Designer for SharePoint product, we are making changes to the architecture of the product to incorporate the SharePoint Modern Framework, also known as SPFx. Below, we will be going over some frequently asked questions around SPFx and what it means for the product.
Page Designer Version 5 Intro Video
Page Designer Version 5 Technical Details Video
Why should I update?
Version 5 Classic supports the SharePoint Modern Framework (SPFx), which will allow you to use custom Modern web parts on the LiveTiles Page Designer canvas. Along with this support, there are will also be updates to the UI. As Version 5 Classic progresses, there will also be features that are unique to Version 5 Classic.
Do I have to update?
While we do not require you to update to Version 5 Classic, it is still highly recommended since there will be unique features in Version 5 Classic, and as Microsoft continues down the Modern path, Version 4 Classic may lose support over time.
How do I update to Version 5 Classic?
The update to Version 5 Classic is managed by anyone in the LiveTiles Owners group. Upon first time use, a modal will appear giving information on the migration from Version 4 Classic to Version 5 Classic. If the Update Later button is selected, then a button can be clicked to upgrade on the landing page, end user page, and designer page.
Will updating affect any of my current LiveTiles pages?
No, after you update to Version 5, your current pages will remain on Version 4 until they have been saved. Pages will then be updated to Version 5 once they are saved.
How long will the update process take?
The update process only takes about 2-3 minutes.
Can anyone update or is it restricted to a certain permission level?
Only LiveTiles Owners can perform the upgrade to Version 5 Classic.
Will I need to do anything after I am on Version 5 Classic?
This will be dependent on the content in your site collection. If your pages use custom code, some of that custom code may need to be updated in order to appropriately work with Version 5 Classic. More information on Custom Code will be available in the next section.
Will this break any of my templates, styles, saved tiles, or sections?
There is a possibility that depending on what kind of custom code is used, there is a chance that custom code will need to be modified in order to have the content work appropriately. Specifically, custom code that uses jQuery or RequireJS is at risk.
My pages have a large amount of custom code. Will this affect my pages after I update?
No, once the update has occurred, pages will remain on Version 4 Classic until they are saved. Saving will update them to Version 5 Classic. Custom code that uses jQuery or RequireJS has a chance that the code will need to be updated, otherwise it may not load correctly.
Will I have to rewrite all the custom code myself?
Yes, custom code that conflicts with Version 5 Classic will need to be rewritten. For support on custom code conflicts, an extensive article has been written here: http://help.livetiles.nyc/en/articles/2993103-custom-code-in-livetiles-page-designer. If you run into any other issues, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I know what content is at risk?
Before migrating to Version 5 Classic, a tool will be available that will scan your Recent Pages, Templates, Saved Sections, and Saved Tiles for custom code that would potentially conflict with the SPFx changes. The scan can be run from the Landing Page, under the Manage drop down, or through the upgrade process. Once the scan is ran, results will be available in the Landing Page under the Manage tab.
Will this happen again with another big update?
No, this is a one-time occurrence based on the back-end changes that are being implemented by Version 5.
V5 Classic Benefits
What other benefits do I get with V5 Classic?
As we progress Version 5, there will be updates and features that are unique to Version 5. While Version 4 will still be supported, the changes in Version 5 will mean that some features aren’t cross-compatible with Version 4. Right away, Version 5 will allow the use of custom Modern web parts on the Page Designer canvas using the Add Web Part Tile, along with UI changes. Version 5 will be a continual progress towards aligning with Modern support.
How do I add Custom Modern Web Parts after the update?
When using the Add Web Part Tile in Version 5, the web part picker will show any custom modern web parts. These web parts will still need to be configured from the end user view.
How do Classic Web Parts interact with Modern SharePoint?
Modern SharePoint does not support the use of classic web parts, only SPFx modern web parts. V5 Classic will be able to utilize both classic and custom SPFx modern web parts.
What is the difference now from V4-V5? We were always able to use web parts in LiveTiles, what makes V5 different?
While it is true that web parts were able to be used in V4, the type of web part is the differentiation. In V4, only classic web parts were able to be used in the Add Web Part Tile. V5 introduces an architecture change to allow the use of custom SPFx modern web parts. V4 primarily uses instances of RequireJS and jQuery, while V5 converts to using Webpack, which is what allows custom SPFx modern web parts. Prior to V5, if a custom modern web part was included on the canvas, it would cause a break.
How will this work for on premises or hybrid environments?
Instances of SharePoint 2013 do not support SPFx, but instances of SharePoint 2016 and 2019 support it. Refer to https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/dev/spfx/sharepoint-framework-overview for additional information on Microsoft's support for SPFx.
This is understood as the first release of V5? What can we expect in part two?
Part two will introduce V5 Modern. This will essentially make V5 come in two flavors: V5 Classic for the Classic SharePoint experience, and V5 Modern for Modern SharePoint. With V5 Modern, we are leveraging the LiveTiles Page Designer product as a single part app page. Conceptually, the LiveTiles Page Designer experience is a full-page web part itself. V5 Modern initially won’t support custom code or web parts. Web part support with our page model will be especially tricky, since Microsoft doesn’t have a formal way to support web parts within web parts. We will continually be working to improve V5 Modern after the first release, though, to support custom code and work towards finding ways to implement web parts within our single part app page model. V5 Modern will initially allow full control over your branding of a page in Modern, though. Both versions of V5, Classic and Modern, will continue expanding functionality and support.
Will anything on my page be affected with the update?
V5 Classic pages won't be affected by the update for V5 Modern. V5 Modern is a stand alone product using the .sppkg app file, while V5 classic is still using the .app file. A benefit to the .sppkg file for Modern is the ability to install in Modern SharePoint without having to enable custom scripting.