Mass Metadata Updates with Folders

With the release of WebCenter Content PS5, a new folder architecture called 'Framework Folders' was introduced.  This is meant to replace the folder architecture of 'Folders_g'.  While the concepts of a folder structure and access to those folders through Desktop Integration Suite remain the same, the underlying architecture of the component has been completely rewritten.  One of the main goals of the new folders is to scale better at large volumes and remove the limitations of 1000 content items or sub-folders within a folder.  Along with the new architecture, it has a new look and a few additional features have been added.  One of those features are Query Folders.  These are folders that are populated simply by a query rather then literally putting items within the folders.  This is something that the Library has provided, but it always took an administrator to define them through the Web Layout Editor.  Now users can quickly define query folders anywhere within the standard folder hierarchy.  

Within these new Query Folders is the very handy ability to do metadata updates.  It's similar to the Propagate feature in Folders_g, but there are some key differences that make this very flexible and much more powerful.

  • It's used within regular folders and Query Folders.  So the content you're updating doesn't all have to be in the same folder...or a folder at all.  
  • The user decides what metadata to propagate.  In Folders_g, the system administrator controls which fields will be propagated using a single administration page.  In Framework Folders, the user decides at that time which fields they want to update.
  • You set the value you want on the propagation screen.  In Folders_g, it used the metadata defined on the parent folder to propagate.  With Framework Folders, you supply the new metadata value when you select the fields you want to update.  It does not have to be defined on the parent folder.

Because of these differences, I think the new propagate method is much more useful.  Instead of always having to rely on Archiver or a custom spreadsheet, you can quickly do mass metadata updates right within folders.  

Here are the basic steps to perform propagation.

  1. First create a folder for the propagation.  You can use a regular folder, but a Query Folder will work as well.



  2. Go into the folder to get the results.  

    Query Folder Result

  3. In the Edit menu, select 'Propagate'.

    Propagate Menu

  4. Select the check-box next to the field to update and enter the new value  Click the Propagate button.

    Propagate Window

  5. Once complete, a dialog will appear showing it is complete


What's also nice is that the process happens asynchronously in the background which means you can browse to other pages and do other things while it is still working.  You aren't stuck on the page waiting for it to complete.  In addition, you can add a configuration flag to the server to turn on a status indicator icon.  Set 'FldEnableInProcessIndicator=1' and it will show a working icon as its doing the propagation.

Propagate Indicator

There is a caveat when using the propagation on a Query Folder.   While a propagation on a regular folder will update all of the items within that folder, a Query Folder propagation will only update the first 50 items.  So you may need to run it multiple times depending on the size...and have the query exclude the items as they get updated.

One extra note...Framework Folders is offered as the default folder architecture in the PS5 release of WebCenter Content.  But if you are using WebCenter Content integrated with another product that makes use of folders (WebCenter Portal/Spaces, Fusion Applications, Primavera, etc), you'll need to continue using Folders_g until they are updated to use the new folders.



I have Content Server running with Framework folders enabled.

Having already created a parent folder with metadata applied im trying to propogate meta data to documents within this parent folder.

So when I try to propogate metadata values (using Edit > Propogate) to new content (documents) saved into the parent folder I find that I'm presented with a Content Fields page (profile) with all fields blank.
I expected the content fileds in this profile to be prepopulated with metadata already applied at the parent folder.

Is this correct? Or is there a setting to default values set at parent level?

Posted by guest on December 05, 2012 at 11:20 AM CST #

Yes, this is correct behavior. The purpose of setting default metadata on a parent folder is for NEW content going into this folder to have this metadata applied. The propagation mechanism is independent from these defaults and is meant to allow you to set any field's value to propagate. You can choose those fields you are trying to set a default for, but it doesn't have to be. It's up to the user doing the propagation to decide...which in my opinion makes it much more flexible.


Posted by Kyle Hatlestad on December 07, 2012 at 10:46 AM CST #

We have Webcenter Customer Portal Implementation and We are using some out of box Document Service taskflow with Folder_g component enabled on also faced the issue when we reached 1000 folder which we fixed by putting work around of create new sub root folder after 999. However , We have migrated to and I read about Framework folders which remove issue with Contribution folder , I also read bout migration utility. But I was surprised to read the it is not supported with Webcenter spaces , My question whether it is supported with webcenter portal or not and even if it is supported ,is it good idea to migrate ti framework folder.

Posted by guest on February 20, 2013 at 10:58 AM CST #

As of now (11g PS5 -, WebCenter Portal/Spaces only support Folder_g, so that must be the folder architecture to use. I'm hoping future releases of WebCenter Portal will begin to support the FrameworkFolders architecture.


Posted by Kyle Hatlestad on February 20, 2013 at 11:28 AM CST #

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Kyle Hatlestad is a Solution Architect in the WebCenter Architecture group (A-Team) who works with WebCenter Content and other products in the WebCenter & Fusion Middleware portfolios. The WebCenter A-Team blog can be found at: ateam_webcenter/


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