Azure AI Search feature, Lombiq Walkthroughs for Orchard Core - This week in Orchard (02/02/2024)

Gábor Domonkos's avatar
This week in Orchard, Shape, Azure AI Search feature, Search, Pager

Use PagerAsync and PagerSlimAsync instead of using the dynamic New, new Azure AI Search feature and a demo about our Walkthroughs module for Orchard Core! Let's see the details!

Orchard Core updates

Use PagerAsync and PagerSlimAsync instead of using dynamic New

Since we have nice extensions for the pager, it is better to use them to reduce the dynamic calls in the code. It's faster to use these PagerAsync and PagerSlimAsync extension methods instead of having dynamic calls to render the Pager and the PagerSlim shapes.

Use PagerAsync and PagerSlimAsync instead of using dynamic New

Azure AI Search feature

Azure AI Search, an AI-powered information retrieval platform, helps developers build rich search experiences and generative AI apps that combine large language models with enterprise data. Implement search functionality for any mobile or search application within your organization or as part of the software as a service (SaaS) apps. And from now on, Orchard Core supports Azure AI Search! Let's see how you can utilize this feature!

First of all, you need to enable the Azure AI Search feature under Configuration -> Features. But before enabling the service, you'll need to configure the connection to the server. By default, you can navigate to Configurations -> Settings -> Azure AI Search and provide the Azure Search AI service info.

Now, we can create a new index for the Article content type (that is a predefined content type created by the Blog recipe). When creating, resetting, or rebuilding an index, we trigger a job in the background that will upload all existing content items to the Azure AI Search index so the data will become searchable shortly after the action. You can create an Azure AI Search Index under Search -> Indexing -> Azure AI Indices.

Create Azure AI Search Index

In this demo, we enabled the Search module to enable frontend search. Then, we used the previously created articles index as the default search index. Head to Search -> Settings -> Azure AI Search and select the articles index. Make sure that the default search provider is the Azure AI Search in the Content tab.

Setting the articles as the default search index

If you head back to the default search form URL (~/search) and type something in it to search for the predefined article content item, you will get back the article content item. If you navigate to the Microsoft Azure portal to check out your search service, you will find that the articles index has one document, and the field names are coming from Orchard Core.

Azure Portal articles index fields

It was just a quick demonstration of this feature, head to the documentation page of Orchard Core to learn more about it!


Lombiq Walkthroughs for Orchard Core

This demo is about the Orchard Core Walkthroughs module for teaching Orchard Core fundamentals by guiding the user in step-by-step guides. This walkthrough covers key Orchard Core features, such as content management, user roles, and theme selection, and points users to further learning resources.

Now it's time to try out this feature and see it in action! The easiest way is to clone Lombiq's Open-Source Orchard Core Extensions solution. This Orchard Core Visual Studio solution contains most of Lombiq's open-source Orchard modules and themes, as well as related utilities and libraries, containing the Lombiq Walkthroughs module too.

So, let's run this solution and enable the Lombiq Walkthroughs feature under Configuration -> Features. Now, if you head back to the site's homepage, you will see the first welcoming modal. The module uses shepherd.js, for the walkthroughs, and these modals are rendered by this library. Let's see it in action!

Lombiq Walkthroughs for Orchard Core

As always, if you prefer videos, you can head to YouTube for a recording!

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If you are interested in more news about Orchard and the details of the topics above, don't forget to check out the recording of this Orchard meeting!

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