Group-Based Homepages - 2023.3.4 and Later

Alation Cloud Service Applies to Alation Cloud Service instances of Alation

Customer Managed Applies to customer-managed instances of Alation

Applies to version 2023.3.4 and later

Overview

The customizable homepage feature enables admins to customize the appearance and content of the Alation homepage. For example, you can add your company’s branding, change the search banner, add custom links, and provide object previews. By customizing the homepage, you can highlight unique catalog content for specific user types and make it easier to discover catalog information. This facilitates broader adoption of the Alation catalog.

In 2023.3.4 and newer, you can create unique homepages for different user groups in your organization. For example, a user group representing a business unit or organization can have its own dedicated homepage. When a user logs into Alation, they will see the homepage their user group is assigned to.

To customize the Alation homepage, you must be a Server Admin or Catalog Admin.

Multiple Homepages

If a user belongs to multiple groups that each have a custom homepage, that user will have multiple homepages available to them. The way this is handled depends on the version of Alation and how Alation is configured.

Alation Version 2023.3.5 and Later

By default, you as an admin can control which homepage users will see. Users with access to multiple homepages will see the homepage that has been most recently edited. To change which homepage users see, go to the Custom Homepages dashboard and make a change to the homepage you want them to see. The easiest way to do this is to quickly disable and re-enable that homepage. See Work with Homepages below for help enabling and editing homepages.

The Custom Homepages dashboard is sorted first by enabled state and then by last updated, so you can tell which dashboard will take precedence based on their order on the dashboard.

You can enable users to choose their own homepage by setting the alation_conf parameter alation.feature_flags.homepage. enable_admin_assigned_homepage to false. For help with alation_conf, see Using alation_conf.

Alation Version 2023.3.4

Users can choose which homepage to see. Admins don’t have the ability to control this. See the Homepage topic for more information on choosing homepage preferences. See Migrate from Role-Based Homepages below for an important note about upgrading to 2023.3.4.

Customization Options

You can make the following changes to a custom homepage:

  • Customize the search banner

    • Change the banner size

    • Change the background color or background image

    • Change the logo

    • Change the headline text and color

  • Edit the links in the Quick Links section

  • Add new content sections to the bottom of the homepage, including:

    • Custom link lists

    • Object previews

    • Alation Analytics V2 Leaderboard

Note

You can also add an alert banner to the homepage. You can only set one alert, and it appears on all homepages. See Add Alert Banners to the Homepage for more information.

Work with Homepages

You can use the Custom Homepages dashboard to create, edit, enable, disable, duplicate, and delete homepages. You must be a Server Admin or Catalog Admin to work with custom homepages.

The Alation Default Homepage will always be available on the dashboard. It can’t be disabled, edited, or deleted. All users that aren’t assigned to a homepage will see the Alation Default Homepage.

On a new instance of Alation, all users will be assigned to the Alation Default Homepage to start off. You can create new homepages and assign user groups to them as desired.

To work with homepages:

  1. Click on the Settings gear icon in the top right corner.

    ../../_images/TopNavigationBar_Gear.png
  2. Catalog Admins: A dropdown menu appears. Click Customize Homepage.
    Server Admins: The Admin Settings page appears. Under the Catalog Admin section, click Customize Homepage.
  3. The Custom Homepages dashboard appears.

    ../../_images/CustomHomepagesDashboard_GroupBased.png

    Note

    Dashboard Sort Order

    The dashboard is sorted first by the enabled state, with enabled dashboards at the top. Then it’s sorted by the last updated date, with more recently updated dashboards at the top. You will see your homepages resort themselves as you update them or change their enabled status.

    Note

    The Created With column indicates how a homepage was last modified. Homepages edited using the graphical user interface in the new user experience will say GUI in the Created With column. Homepages edited in the classic editor with JSON files will say JSON. Homepages that haven’t been edited since the 2023.3.4 release will say Legacy.

  4. You can now take one of the following actions to manage your homepages.

Create a New Homepage

To create a new homepage from scratch, click the + New Homepage button. Alation will create a new homepage and immediately open the homepage editor. See Edit a Homepage’s Details below for help editing.

You can also start a new homepage by duplicating an existing homepage. See Duplicate a Homepage below.

Enable or Disable a Homepage

In the Enable column, click the toggle button for the homepage you want to enable or disable.

When you enable a homepage, you’ll see a confirmation message. Click Enable to proceed with enabling the homepage.

If you enable a homepage for a user group that’s already assigned to another homepage, you’ll see a message asking if you want to change the group’s assignment.

  • Click Overwrite Assignments and Enable to proceed with changing their assignment. The group will be unassigned from their prior homepage and reassigned to the homepage you’re enabling.

  • Click Cancel to stop enabling the homepage. The homepage will not be enabled, and the group assignments will not change.

Note

Homepages with no group assignments can’t be enabled.

Note

The Alation Default Homepage can’t be disabled.

Edit a Homepage

Click the Edit button to make changes to a homepage. The homepage editor will open. See Edit a Homepage’s Details below for help editing each part of the homepage.

Note

The Alation Default Homepage can’t be edited.

Preview a Homepage

You can click the Preview button to see a preview of what the homepage looks like.

When the preview opens, you’ll see a banner at the top of the screen to remind you that you’re looking at a preview. While in preview mode you can navigate around in Alation to see what any given page looks like.

To enable or disable the homepage from preview mode, click the Enable Homepage toggle. See Enable or Disable a Homepage above for details on enabling a homepage.

Click Close Preview at the top of the screen when you’re done looking at the preview. You’ll be returned to the Custom Homepages dashboard.

Duplicate a Homepage

To make a copy of an existing homepage, click the three dots on the far right, then select Duplicate.

../../_images/CustomHomepagesDashboard_More_Duplicate.png

Alation will make a copy and immediately open the homepage editor so you can start editing the new copy. See Edit a Homepage for details on how to edit each part of the homepage.

To go back to the Custom Homepages dashboard, click Homepages in the breadcrumbs menu near the top of the page.

Download a Homepage’s JSON File

Your custom homepage’s quick links, custom link lists, and object previews are defined by a JSON file. You can modify which links and previews appear on your homepage by downloading and editing the JSON file.

Important

Modifying the JSON file can become complex, so use this option with caution.

To download the file, click the three dots on the far right, then select Download Active JSON File. The file will immediately download to your computer.

../../_images/CustomHomepagesDashboard_More_DownloadActiveJsonFile.png

You can edit the file and then upload it to any of your custom homepages. See Custom Content and Quick Links for help with this process.

Delete a Homepage

To delete a homepage, click the three dots on the far right, then select Delete Homepage.

../../_images/CustomHomepagesDashboard_More_DeleteHomepage.png

A confirmation message will appear. Click Delete Homepage to confirm. The homepage will be deleted immediately. Users that were assigned to the deleted homepage will default to seeing the Alation Default Homepage.

Note

The Alation Default Homepage can’t be deleted.

Edit a Homepage’s Details

The following sections provide the details of customizing each part of a homepage. Your changes are saved automatically as you edit.

Title

Each homepage has its own title. The title is shown on the Custom Homepages dashboard to help identify each dashboard. Untitled homepages will be listed as “Untitled Homepage [#]”. The title is not shown to catalog users when visiting the homepage itself.

Audience Settings

Starting in 2023.3.4, each homepage can be assigned to one or more user groups. ​​When a user logs into Alation, they will see the homepage their user group is assigned to. If they are a member of multiple user groups with different homepages, they will be able to choose which homepage to use and can freely switch between their available homepages. See the Homepage topic for more information.

Click the Select Groups dropdown menu and select the user groups you want to assign to this homepage. You must select at least one group before you can enable the homepage.

If the homepage is currently enabled and you select a group that’s already assigned to another homepage, you’ll see a message asking if you want to change the group’s assignment.

  • Click Overwrite Assignments to proceed with changing their assignment. The group will be unassigned from their prior homepage and reassigned to this homepage.

  • Click Cancel to leave its existing assignment as is. The group will not be assigned to this homepage.

If you remove all groups from the homepage, the Enable Homepage toggle will automatically become disabled. You must assign at least one group to a homepage before you can enable it.

Preview

While you’re editing the homepage, click Preview in the top right corner to see a preview of what the homepage will look like. This is superior to the preview shown next to the Search Banner section of the homepage editor because it shows the entire homepage, not just the search banner.

When the preview opens, you’ll see a banner at the top of the screen to remind you that you’re looking at a preview. While in preview mode you can navigate around in Alation to see what any given page looks like.

To enable or disable the homepage from preview mode, click the Enable Homepage toggle. See Enable Homepage below for details on enabling a homepage.

Click Close Preview at the top of the screen when you’re done looking at the preview. You’ll be returned to the homepage editor screen.

Enable Homepage

Click the Enable Homepage toggle in the top right corner to enable (or disable) the homepage. You must select at least one user group under Audience Settings before you can enable the homepage.

When you enable a homepage, you’ll see a confirmation message. Click Enable to proceed with enabling the homepage.

If you enable a homepage for a user group that’s already assigned to another homepage, you’ll see a message asking if you want to change the group’s assignment.

  • Click Overwrite Assignments and Enable to proceed with changing their assignment. The group will be unassigned from their prior homepage and reassigned to the homepage you’re enabling.

  • Click Cancel to stop enabling the homepage. The homepage will not be enabled, and the group assignments will not change.

Note

Homepages with no group assignments can’t be enabled.

Search Banner

The search banner is the topmost section of the homepage. You can customize the following features of the search banner:

  • Size (large, medium, or small)

  • Background (color or image)

  • Logo

  • Headline (text and color)

When changing the search banner settings, a preview is available on the right side of the page.

Size

Under the Search Banner section, find the Size heading, then select the desired size. The preview to the right will update to show the effects of your choice.

  • Large—This is the default. It includes the logo, headline, and search box centered on a large banner. The logo is 60 px in height.

  • Medium—The logo is 40 px in height and appears in the top left corner. The banner is shorter.

  • Small—The logo is 40 px in height and appears in the top left corner. The logo will be the one chosen on the Branding page. The banner and headline are removed. The search box appears in the top toolbar like it does on regular catalog pages.

    Note

    When you select the small banner, the Background, Logo, and Headline sections of the homepage editor disappear. They aren’t relevant for the small banner.

Background

If you have chosen the medium or large search banner, you can find the Background heading under the Search Banner section of the homepage editor.

Select whether you want to use your theme color or an image.

  • Theme Color—This will use the theme color you have defined on the Branding page. See Add Your Company’s Branding for help changing the theme color.

  • Image (Upload)—If you select this, a dotted rectangle will appear. Drag and drop an image into the rectangle, or click inside the rectangle to select an image from your hard drive.

    Note

    The image must be in JPEG, JPG, or PNG format and must be at least 1200 x 350 pixels in size. The maximum file size is 5 MB.

    The new banner image will appear on the homepage as soon as it’s finished uploading. Users may have to refresh their screen to see the new image.

Note

If you have chosen the small search banner, this setting will not be present.

Headline

If you have chosen the medium or large search banner, you can find the Headline heading under the Search Banner section of the homepage editor.

To change the headline text, hover over the current headline text and click the Edit icon.

To change the headline color, hover over the hex code and click the Edit icon. Be sure to choose a color that provides good contrast against your chosen background.

Note

If you have chosen the small search banner, this setting will not be present.

Migrate from Role-Based Homepages

If you’re upgrading Alation to 2023.3.4 or later and currently have role-based homepages, each role-based homepage will automatically be converted to a corresponding group-based homepage.

Note

Each Alation role has a corresponding built-in user group. If desired, you can continue to have role-based homepages using the built-in user groups.

Migrating to 2023.3.5 and Later

When migrating to 2023.3.5, users only have one homepage available by default—their previous role-based homepage that’s been migrated to a group-based homepage. If admins add more group-based homepages, users that have access to multiple homepages will only see the one that was most recently changed. Admins can enable the ability for users to see multiple homepages. See Multiple Homepages for help enabling this feature.

See the Homepage topic for more on switching between homepages and choosing preferred homepages.

Migrating to 2023.3.4

When migrating to 2023.3.4, users will have two homepages available—their previous role-based homepage that’s been migrated to a group-based homepage, and the Alation Default Homepage. Users can switch between these homepages at will. Their group-based homepage will be their preferred homepage to start, but they can choose another preferred homepage.

See the Homepage topic for more on switching between homepages and choosing preferred homepages.

Important

There is a known issue in 2023.3.4 in which the migration mistakenly assigns the Alation Default Homepage as the preferred homepage for some users. This has been fixed in 2023.3.5.