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Nuance's Plone-Based Intranet Upgrade

April 19, 2013

Nuance's Plone-Based Intranet Upgrade

Nuance Communications, award-winning developers of software including Dragon Dictate, approached Six Feet Up last year to improve the quality of their Plone 3 based intranet as the number of users continued to grow. Six Feet Up architected and implemented a solution which would improve the responsiveness of the Plone-based intranet, move the data to a new server environment better suited to their needs, and serve up files to their users more quickly and reliably.

To continue the performance improvement, this year Six Feet Up assisted Nuance with a migration of their intranet to the latest version of Plone. With Plone 4, there are significant improvements in performance and usability, including a base 50% increase in performance over Plone 3.3.

A few critical usability and performance improvements included:

  • While Plone 4 changed the default text editor from Kupu to TinyMCE, Nuance's user base has grown to prefer CKeditor over both. TinyMCE and CKeditor both have great features, with CKeditor having some advantages in multi-lingual support, source editing, and tables/media handling. Six Feet Up performed an upgrade that migrates all of the users' editor settings into CKeditor and sets it as the default editor.

  • Nuance was using a feature of Plone 3 called "Favorites", which is not supported in Plone 4. Six Feet Up was able to customize Plone 4 to migrate the existing "Favorites" type to "Link" types and keep the "Add to Favorites" feature intact for end users.
  • BLOB storage is a part of Plone 4. Now all the large binary files like images, PDF files, etc. that are uploaded to the intranet are stored in BLOB storage keeping the database size down. This increases performance for Nuance while greatly expanding the capacity of the intranet.
  • Nuance will be able to use the new advanced commenting system built into Plone 4 that provides comment filtering, flagging, and CAPTCHA support.

  • Six Feet Up implemented the new Plone caching system for Nuance. It provides admins with a user interface to manage caching parameters and help optimize site performance. This is critical in any large site, especially an intranet.

Organizations interested in improving their website or intranet are encouraged to contact Carol Ganz, Six Feet Up's Director of Customer Relationships, at +1 (317) 861-5948 x610 for a free consultation.

About Six Feet Up, Inc.:

Founded in 1999, Six Feet Up is a woman-owned company that develops, hosts and supports open source sophisticated web projects, from enterprise content management and collaborative intranets to mobile apps. While the company has reached a leading position in the Plone market, Six Feet Up also leverages high-profile open source software, such as KARL, Pyramid, Django and Sencha Touch. Six Feet Up's clients include top universities and life sciences organizations, growing and distributed teams, as well as Fortune 500 companies. More information is available at

Six Feet Up Contact: Jim Bartek, +1 (317) 861-5948


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