In the recent month I have been using the new Sitecore Rocks plugin for Visual Studio. And I must admit that I am very impressed.
Hooking into your Sitecore project can be a but more tricky, because in order to use all the cool features of Sitecore Rocks, you need to use the Hard Rock Web Service, which needs to be installed in your website. If you have physical access to the site, it’s no problem. If not, you need to copy the files manually.
Once you are up and running, you are able to browse Sitecore from the Sitecore Explorer:
Right click the website and select “Manage” to get a list of all Sites, Pipelines, Temp files, Caches, Lucene Indexes (including ability to browse and search the index = very cool!), statistics and validation:
Or how about the real-time Log Viewer: Right click the web site and select the log viewer. It will show you the latest log file, updating the view each 10 seconds:
But one of the features I use the most is the ability to copy xml from one website and paste it into another. Sitecore Rocks can display more than one site at a time. So instead of the tedious task of creating packages of content when moving from development to test servers, I simply open the development server, copy the items as XML, open the test server, and paste the items to the appropriate place. Fast and effective:
Here are some more Rocks! resources:
- Sitecore Rocks Blog
- Youtube Video
- Another Youtube Video
- Youtube Video on how to install Sitecore Rocks
- The John West Blog on Sitecore Rocks is also very good
- CMSWire Article on Sitecore Rocks
- John West article on how to use the built in Query Syntax
You can also follo the Sitecore Rocks Development on Twitter: