Table of contents
Why Umbraco Packages Matter
Packages enrich the Umbraco CMS.
Like adding spices to a meal, plugins grant additional prowess, enabling a swifter, more efficient, and feature-rich development experience.
Even though Umbraco may not boast as many packages as WordPress, its community is vibrant.
Navigating the Umbraco Package Repository
The number of packages available on Umbraco Marketplace can be daunting.
Yet, finding the right ones can transform your website.
How to find Umbraco add-ins?
To streamline your search, follow these steps:
- Visit the Umbraco Marketplace at https://marketplace.umbraco.com/
- Utilize the search bar to narrow down your options by name or creator.
- For a quick shortcut, don't forget to try "UmbraCare"
With these simple steps, you'll be well on your way to uncovering the perfect packages to enhance your Umbraco experience. 🌟
Dedicated Media Folder: Media section free of chaos
A lifesaver for content editors. Manage, organize, and optimize your media with precision and ease.
🍿Watch the video below to learn how to organize Umbraco files and folders like a Boss👇
📽️ Video URL: https://www.youtube.com/embed/J5Nox333lys
Dedicated Media Folder key features:
📂User-friendly Media folder structure, designed to mirror your content tree.
🖱️Generate an accurate folder with one click!
🌟Revel in a clean, well-organized Media section, free of chaos.
⚡Enhance your back-office efficiency with faster performance and load times.
🚀Upload, find, and manage your files in a snap.
⏳Cut down your content management time by up to 20% thanks to automated operations.
🔍Enjoy a streamlined Media section with no orphaned files.
💰Make significant savings on your storage expenses.
Works with Umbraco v8 and above.
Try the Dedicated Media Folder package now for free - download
uSync: The Developer's Essential
uSync is an open-source package that is well-known to Umbraco developers.
uSync can help you synchronize and deploy Umbraco model changes between various environments.
This plugin is probably one of the most popular Umbraco CMS packages ever.
What is remarkable about this solid package is that during the Umbraco conference called CodeGarden 2015 – Umbracians voted for uSync to win the Umbraco development award.
Deploy your content and model changes between environments with ease
uSync key features:
- Helps with the syncing changes across various environments
- Speeds up development workflow
- Saves model changes to XML files on disk
- Works great with your source system of choice
- Supports all major Umbraco types (Content types, Data types, languages, Macros, Media Types, Member types, Templates, etc.)
- Easy to use Dashboard with options: Import, Export, Report – you can review differences before import.
- Flexible configuration – you can import changes automatically during deployment or trigger import manually configuSync*.config depending on your needs/process
- Easy setup via NuGet repository
- Commercial uSync.Complete provides extra features
The StarterKit: Umbraco Foundation
Need an Umbraco demo site?
The StarterKit is a reliable way to hit the ground running.
The StarterKit is the default starter kit for Umbraco 7/8/9+ that was created initially in 2017.
It was designed to provide developers with a boilerplate structure based on best practices and design patterns learned from working with Umbraco CMS for years.
StarterKit plugin is excellent for anyone who wants to quickly build a sample Umbraco site with predefined pages like Home, Products Catalog, People, About, Blog, Contact, and more.
You can create and publish new content real quickly.
Perfect for beginners or those who need a quick website structure.
Perfect for beginners or those who need a quick website structure.
Starter Kit is a perfect option if you:
- Don’t care if your site looks just like every other site.
- Are just after basic functionality
- Want to learn some coding practices and good naming conventions
- Want to prepare a quick showcase
- Wish to install packages to explore their features
- Works with Umbraco 7 (from 7.6), 8 and 9+
Doc Type Grid Editor: Grid Powerhouse
Doc Type Grid Editor is a back-office extension that significantly simplifies creating grid editors (components) inside Umbraco Grid cells – based on document type definition.
Umbraco’s Grid Editor can be one of the most powerful features-especially if you want to display complex and well-structured content.
DTGE gives Umbraco Grid more power and speeds up the development workflow significantly.
To create a custom grid editor component using DTGE you need to:
- Create document type (ex. Call to Action) with “Is an element type” option selected
- Customize the configuration inside \App_Plugins\DocTypeGridEditor\package.manifest JSON file
For those who work extensively with Umbraco's Grid Editor, this package is transformative.
"name": "Custom Grid component",
"icon": "icon-item-arrangement color-blue",
"allowedDocTypes": [ "callToAction" ],
Doc Type Grid Editor key features and benefits:
- Reduces development time. You can bake new grid editors quickly
- It makes the Umbraco Grid very powerful and allows to put complex content inside Grid cells fast.
- Gives complete control over HTML output
- Easy & intuitive JSON configuration
- Works with Umbraco 7, 8 and 9
Umbraco Azure File System Provider: Cloud Efficiency
Take your media assets and files to the cloud.
The Umbraco Azure File System Provider was created to provide an Azure cloud option for storing media files.
The benefits of this package are that keeping media files in Azure saves space on your website’s hosting and provides faster access to these media files.
Umbraco CMS + Azure blob storage is a perfect combination for websites with data-intensive traffic that run 24/7 without downtime.
Storing files on Azure blob storage will give several benefits:
- Unlimited, fast storage with geo-replication (low latency)
- Flexible billing, low cost
- Reliable and redundant infrastructure
- World-class security, encryption
Umbraco Azure File System Provider key features:
- Keeping media files on the cloud storage
- Flexible configuration, caching
- Works with Umbraco 7, 8 and 9
- Easy to install as NuGet package: Install-Package UmbracoFileSystemProviders.Azure.Media
Getting the package to work with Azure Private Blob storage (recommended for security) can be challenging, but it’s possible.
To learn more, please read the article Setting Umbraco CMS to work with Azure private storage.
SimpleRedirects: Seamless User Journey
Efficiently manage your website's 301 redirects and ensure users always find what they want.
Simple Redirects is an extension that allows you to manage HTTP redirects directly from the Back-office panel, as the name suggests.
SimpleRedirects key features:
- Intuitive and easy-to-use dashboard displaying a redirects list. Supports searching, paging, and CRUD operations.
- Easy configuration via the web.config (cache enabling, cache duration)
- Fast performance thanks to the caching layer
- Works with Umbraco 8 and 9
- Easy to install as NuGet package: Install-Package SimpleRedirects
Media Protect: Secure Your assets
For exclusive media files, Media Protect offers impeccable security, ensuring only authorized users get access.
The Media Protect package was designed to protect media files and folders like Umbraco protects content (documents).
This extension is a perfect choice if you want to limit media files access only to authenticated members.
In other words, users must be logged in to view or download files.
How does the media protect package work?
Once you click on the media file or folder, you can choose one of the protection level options:
- Specific members
- Member groups (roles)
Media protect key features:
- Flexible media files access restriction mechanism
- Restrict access to files/folders for member groups or specific users
- Audit logs viewer for media usage (media details, username, IP, request date) with CSV export option
- Unauthorized users can be redirected to a custom Error or Login page
- User-friendly interface plugged to Umbraco back-office
- Easy to install, the license file should be uploaded to the bin directory
- Works with Umbraco 7, 8, 9
Media Protect is using IAuthenticationProvider abstraction with default ASP.NET Membership API (System.Web.Security), which allows you to swap and use a custom ASP.NET Membership / Role provider.
You can easily switch to Single Sign-on (SSO) authentication, and the media protect package will work.
The Dashboard: At-a-glance Insights
Gain immediate insights into your website’s activities.
It's like having a newsfeed for your content changes.
The Dashboard package was created in 2018 to provide an easy-to-use, intuitive interface for editors to see what’s happening on their website.
The Dashboard package mainly provides basic statistics about content changes so you can know how often your content has been edited or updated, who did it, and when they did it.
The Dashboard key features and benefits:
- Shows recent activities from all users in the back-office
- Shows current user activities in the back office (your recent activity)
- Shows unpublished content
- Displays metrics on Published content nodes, Nodes in the recycle bin, Members on the website, and New members last week
- You can implement custom counters by implementing the IDashboardCounter interface
- Works with Umbraco 7, 8 and 9
Star Rating: Engage and Evaluate
Introduce an interactive dimension to your content.
Rate products, articles, or any content with this versatile tool.
Star Rating is a free package that allows you to add star ratings in Umbraco’s back office.
It uses the popular jquery.raty.js plugin and makes it possible to rate any content in an eye-catching way.
A Star Rating property editor may be an excellent choice for rating news, articles, blog posts, products, restaurants, etc.
The Star Rating key features and benefits:
- It’s easy to create a rating data type
- It uses solid jquery.raty.js plugin
- Several intuitive options: read-only, enable half-star, maximum rating value, the default rating
- It can perfectly improve the work of the editorial office
- Works with Umbraco 8
Key factors to consider before installing the Umbraco package
When choosing a package to install, especially for a CMS like Umbraco, it's crucial to make an informed decision.
Each package can significantly affect the functionality, performance, and security of your website.
Here's a deeper dive into factors you should consider:
📈Number of Package Downloads:
- Downloads on Our Marketplace: Indicates how popular the package is within the Umbraco community. High numbers suggest it's widely accepted and probably well-tested.
- Downloads via NuGet Repository: Shows the developer acceptance rate. A high download count on NuGet suggests that developers trust the package, and it's often included in projects.
- Total Downloads: A combined metric to gauge overall popularity.
- Always check if the package is compatible with your Umbraco version. A package might not be updated to work with the latest CMS updates, which can lead to potential conflicts.
- Rely on feedback from the community. If many people report issues with a specific version, it might be a red flag.
📚Quality of Documentation:
- A well-documented package indicates that the maintainers are dedicated to assisting users in understanding its functionality, how to set it up, and how to troubleshoot common problems.
- Documentation should be clear, comprehensive, and up-to-date. It can include textual instructions, images, video tutorials, and examples.
- Check for an FAQ section, which can be very helpful for resolving common queries.
👥Package Owner/Contributors Activity:
- Monitoring the activity level of the owner or contributors on forums or GitHub provides insights into how active and committed the maintainers are.
- Regular updates, bug fixes, and prompt replies to issues indicate a healthy, well-maintained package.
- The number of contributors can also be a good sign. If many people contribute to a package, the project is likely active, and bugs or improvements are continuously addressed.
Apart from the above, consider the following additional factors:
⭐User Reviews & Ratings:
- Positive reviews can provide insights into user satisfaction, while negative reviews can reveal potential issues or drawbacks.
- Ensure the package doesn't have known vulnerabilities. Sometimes, the community or security researchers report these in the package's issues on GitHub or other platforms.
- Check if the package asks for permissions or access areas of the CMS that are unnecessary for its function.
- Some packages might require additional libraries or packages to work. Ensure you're comfortable adding those dependencies to your project.
🧪Backup and Testing:
- Before installing any package, always back up your site. It's also a good practice to test the package in a staging environment before deploying it to a live site.
By taking the time to research and evaluate these factors, you can ensure that the packages you install will enhance your Umbraco site's functionality without compromising its performance or security.
Wrapping It Up: Your Umbraco, Supercharged!
Umbraco packages can drastically elevate your website's capabilities.
As with all tools, it's crucial to select those that align with your site's needs and objectives.
While popularity can be an indicator, it's vital to prioritize compatibility, quality, and your unique requirements.
🤔 Interested in custom package development or need more insights?
📣 Have an amazing Umbraco extension to showcase? Share it with us!
✉️ Contact us through our form.