Control Meta-Data and Build a Custom UI with the New GroupDocs.Annotation for Java Library Version 1.7.0

GroupDocs.Annotation for Java icon

GroupDocs.Annotation for Java is a lightweight library that allows end users to annotate PDF and Microsoft Office documents, raster images, AutoCAD drawings and 50+ types of files without the need to install the software that the documents or images were created in. A convenient web UI allows users to view, annotate, redact, comment on and share documents from any web-enabled device.

Recently we’ve released a new GroupDocs.Annotation for Java library – version 1.7.0. We’ve greatly enhanced the metadata storage APIs, revealed the public document manipulation API and made a couple of other useful tweaks. In this post I’d like to discuss these updates in more detail.You can seamlessly integrate GroupDocs.Annotation for Java into your own web, desktop or mobile application to enhance your users’ document collaboration experience. The underlying APIs allow you to customize the web UI that comes with the library, or build your own desktop or mobile interface from scratch.

Store Metadata in any DB or File Format

In the previous version of the library we introduced support for databases. We quickly realized that this was not enough and completely redesigned the library to provide developers with a more flexible and manageable solution. To this end, we’ve re-implemented the existing functionality in an OOP manner. Now, you can store annotations, user comments, profile details, etc. in JSON and XML formats. Also, the list of supported databases now includes the following: MSSQL, MySQL, SQLite and PostgreSQL. Please find more details on how to work with DBs and store files meta-data in the documentation.

Build Mobile, Desktop or Server Applications

Following the GroupDocs.Viewer for Java library, the AnnotationHandler API is now also extended with pure methods that do not require HTTP requests and response objects. The methods allow developers to build any kind of user interaction, be it a web, desktop or mobile UI. Now you can even process documents in the background as part of your Java server application. Similarly to the HTTP handler methods, here is a list of new, context-independent ones that are available in the AnnotationHandler class:

For the full signatures and detailed info on these methods, please refer to the JavaDoc that comes with the library in a JAR package.

Other Improvements

Along with new features, we also improved the existing functionality a bit. For example, you can now configure the underline and strikeout tools’ color by overloading new configuration methods:

Other fixes and improvements have been made to the front-end and exporting functionality. Please check the full list of updates on the GroupDocs.Annotation for Java library download page. For more information on the library, please visit its homepage.

Seamlessly Build an ASP.NET Document Viewer to Display Over 50 Types of Documents, Including PDF, Microsoft Word and Excel

GroupDocs.Viewer for .NETGroupDocs.Viewer for .NET is a web-oriented middleware designed to display over 50 different document types in a browser. It is a client-server library that converts documents into an HTML-compatible format and then renders them in a browser just as a regular web-page. As a result, you don’t have to install any third-party software or browser plugins on the client. Documents can be viewed from any modern web-browser, including IE8+, Chrome, FireFox, Opera, Safari 5+ and their mobile versions.

Recently, we created a sample that demonstrates a basic ASP.NET document viewer implementation based on the GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET library. It also shows the core difference between two rendering modes available in GroupDocs.Viewer: image- and HTML-based. This can help you choose the right document rendering mode, depending on your specific requirements.

The sample itself is a standard ASP.NET WebForms C# project that was created using Microsoft Visual Studio 2012. It contains two example documents (in PDF and Excel formats), but you can upload an unlimited number of your own documents in different formats to test the viewer.

For more information on the viewer and supported file formats, please see this page, while the sample project along with its description can be grabbed from the sample gallery.

GroupDocs customer newsletter November 2014

GroupDocs logo Monthly Newsletter
November, 2014
Automate document assembly
with GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET
GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET provides a comprehensive toolkit, complete with UI, for working with document assembly. It speeds up document assembly and automation. Your users can add form fields to existing document templates (contracts, NDAs, applications, any range of documents) and send them to recipients to fill in. Merging template and recipient data, GroupDocs automatically generates a custom document that looks just like the original template.
Product News
Navigate Annotations Easily in GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET
GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET makes it easy to collaborate on documents. When many people get involved it can be difficult to navigate all the annotations. To help, GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET has introduced tooltips for annotations so that users quickly can see what an annotation is about. We've also added tab-based annotation navigation to make it easy to move between annotations.
New Field Types Coming Soon to GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET
GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET allows your users to work with Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF templates. GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET already supports a range of sophisticated field types for Microsoft Word templates and we're adding these to PDF files too. You can expect to see list box, combo box and radio button fields available for PDF documents soon.
New Features in GroupDocs.Viewer for Java 2.5.0
As well as reduced memory consumption and performance, the latest release of GroupDocs.Viewer for Java adds a public API so the library can be used without the user interface. Other new features are Polish and Russian localization, support for Microsoft Azure storage and the ability to control the cache size. It also allows you to pre-load pages server-side to speed up rendering the first time a document is accessed.
From The Library
Avatars Help Users Recognize Each Other When Collaborating
GroupDocs.Annotation for Java now supports avatars to allow users to recognize each other when working together. This article shows how to implement them and introduces a couple of other new features. Read the blog post.
Store Annotations in a Database with GroupDocs.Annotation for Java
A recent feature introduced into GroupDocs.Annotation for Java is the ability to store annotation data within a database. This allows you to streamline your annotation apps in whatever way you wish. We've written an article that explains how. Read the article.
How Can We Help You?
Do you have ideas for what you'd like to see us do in the coming months? Take a minute to tell us.
Product Releases And Updates
GroupDocs.Total for .NET – The latest version of our .NET libraries. GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET 1.0.6 – Adds date/time fields to the Microsoft Word template editor and a number of other enhancements.
GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET 2.4.0 – Adds the ability to log exceptions and operations and adds a number of other features that makes the library easier to use. GroupDocs.Viewer for Java 2.5.0 – Supports Microsoft Azure storage, allows you to control the cache size and contains a number of fixes.
GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET 1.7.0 – Adds tab-based annotation navigation, a way to override collaborator permissions and other improvements. GroupDocs.Annotation for Java 1.7.0 – Improves support for JSON and XML, adds support for PostgreSQL, and fixes a couple of issues.
Integrations and New Cloud API Examples

GroupDocs.Viewer for Java Library Version 2.5.0 – A Universal Document Viewer for Your Web, Mobile & Desktop Apps

GroupDocs.Viewer for JavaIn this post I'm going to introduce new features that became available with version 2.5.0 of the Java document viewer library from GroupDocs.

GroupDocs.Viewer for Java is a lightweight document viewer library that supports more than 50 file formats, including Microsoft Office documents, PDFs, images, OpenDocument files, emails and others. Initially, the library was geared towards integration into web apps and websites. Starting from this release, we overcame the boundaries of the “web” prefix and made the viewer available for any type of applications, including desktop and mobile ones! As well as this change, we improved the core engine and the web UI that comes with the library. Check all the new stuff in detail below:

Open API

This is probably the most remarkable feature in this release. With an open API for the user interface, you can now build custom applications based on the viewer, irrespective of the platform you work with. In other words, GroupDocs.Viewer for Java can now be smoothly integrated into any web, mobile or desktop app. The new methods don’t require HTTP requests and responses. They are enclosed in the ViewerHandler and you can use them to manage the document view:

  • getImageUrls(Image image) – Get thumbnails and other image files
  • getPrintableHtml(PrintDocument doc) – Get the print document in HTML
  • loadFileBrowserTreeData(FileBrowserTreeData treeData) – Load a tree of files from the base directory
  • viewDocument(ViewDocument viewDocument) – Generate a list of images/pages

Cache Control

To help you better maintain your project’s storage space limitations, we’ve implemented the cache size control feature which allows you to set the upper boundary of the cache volume. GroupDocs.Viewer for Java maintains this by removing the oldest data from cache when its size grows beyond the limit. This can be configured with the following method:

GroupDocs.Viewer for Java uses it to get the cache size limit in megabytes.

Microsoft Azure Storage Support

In this release we also implemented an out-of-the-box connector for the Microsoft Azure storage provider. It is represented as a custom input data handler:

You can use it as any other custom InputDataHandler. Initialize the AzureInputDataHandler instance with the Azure account credentials and GroupDocs.Viewer configuration:

Then apply it to the ViewerHandler on the initialization stage:

Or you can set it later in the application using the InputDataHandler's static method:

Page Preloading

By default, GroupDocs.Viewer for Java loads only pages that a user is currently viewing. All subsequent pages of the document are retrieved only when the user scrolls down to them. This behavior is called “lazy-loading” and aims to meet bandwidth limitations. In this release we’ve added the possibility to specify the number of pages that should be preloaded, so that when a user navigates to them they are quickly retrieved from the cache. You can now set pages to be fully loaded on the front-end at the start before they even appear in the viewport.

The number of pre-loaded pages is controlled with the same method as for the background caching:

Tabbed Rendering of Excel Spreadsheets

Microsoft Excel, ODS and other documents that have several sheets are now rendered with tab controls that allow end users to quickly switch between spreadsheets, just like in native applications.

New Localizations

The UI is now available in English, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Furthermore, the localization functionality is fully adapted to the UTF-8 standard, to make it easy to customize the UI with any additional languages.

The new version of the GroupDocs.Viewer for Java library is available for download from our downloads archive. Also, please feel free to download our samples to explore the Java version of the document viewer quickly. For more detailed installation and usage instructions, please see the documentation wiki.

GroupDocs.Signature for .NET 1.5.0 released

GroupDocs.Signature for .NET LibraryWe're pleased to announce the release of GroupDocs.Signature for .NET 1.5.0. This release of our e-signature library for .NET focuses on improving existing functionality and fixing issues. To that end, this release includes 19 fixes. GroupDocs.Signature is a convenient e-signature library that allows developers to add legally binding digital signature features to their applications. To help you get started quickly, it even comes with a fully customizable user interface.


We're adding a document preparation viewer to the user interface. This release includes features for adding fields to the Prepare viewer, as well as features that let you move, edit, update and save fields.

Fixes in this release

This release resolves a couple of JavaScript errors that occurred when attempting to confirm a signature, and saving fields after adding several (Internet Explorer 9 only). We've also fixed a number of display issues, such as text alignment in signed documents, CSS issues, thumbnails not displaying, and the signature tooltip not being displayed to end users. Other interface issues that we have corrected include the border of check boxes not being displayed when they should be, fields that could not be resized, issues with copied fields and the previous/next filed buttons not working.

Download now

Download GroupDocs.Signature for .NET 1.5.0 from the download section today. If you need assistance, or come across issues, go to the GroupDocs.Signature forum.

GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET 1.5.0 released

The GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET library logoWe are pleased to announce the release of GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET 1.5.0. This version has a new installer and End User License Agreement as well as new features and fixes. We recommend that you download and update the library as soon as you can.

Faster development

This release introduces new Convert methods that accept absolute input and output paths so you can bypass the path initialization methods. The library has fast and powerful conversion features, but with this new feature writing the code is faster too.

The previous release of the library had a couple of interface issues. These are now fixed.

Download the GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET library

Download GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET 1.5.0 from the download section today.

To learn more about using the library, read the GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET documentation. If you need assistance, or come across an issue, go to the GroupDocs.Conversion forum.

Integrate GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET Into Your GetSimple CMS Seamlessly

GroupDocs.Viewer for .NETWe’re pleased to inform GetSimple developers that the .NET version of GroupDocs.Viewer can be seamlessly integrated into their websites thanks to a plugin we released a few weeks ago. With this plugin installed, you can embed and display over 50 types of documents and images on any page within your website. To name a few, supported formats include: PDF and Microsoft Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, Visio diagrams and CAD drawings.

Unlike the cloud-based version, GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET is a downloadable library that can be installed on your own server. It allows you to store documents locally and host content behind your firewalls. The library is designed to be easy to integrate into any ASP.NET app or website and comes with an embeddable web UI.

The plugin is absolutely free and can be downloaded from the official GetSimple marketplace. Please note that the plugin requires the GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET library to be installed first. You can download a free evaluation copy of the library from this page.

For more detail on the .NET/ASP.NET version of the viewer, please see this page.

Save Annotations in a DB and Set User Avatars in the GroupDocs.Annotation for Java Library

Today, I’d like to present several great enhancements that we’ve implemented in the GroupDocs.Annotation for Java library version 1.6.0:

User Avatars

Remote collaboration in groups is much more engaging and productive when we can see each other (or at least put a face to each other). In this release we’ve implemented functionality that allows users to use personal avatars when annotating documents in a group.

The avatar functionality can be easily configured through the library’s API. The {{AnnotationHandler}} has two new methods for handling user icons:

The array used in these methods contains a binary picture that can be set for each user. For example, you can check if an avatar is already set, and if not, load one:

Save Annotations in a DB

In this release we’ve added the capability to configure how you store annotation metadata. The ORMLite persistence framework is now used to support a huge variety of storage providers. You can still use good old local file storage but if you need more consistency you can now easily integrate GroupDocs.Annotation with your application’s database, be it a MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, PostgreSQL, or other supported DB. For more detail on this feature, please see this page.

New Annotation Objects

GroupDocs.Annotation for Java version 1.6.0 has two new annotation tools:

  • Ruler - allows users to measure the distance between specified points in pixels.
  • Underline tool - allows users to underline selected text.

Besides, we’ve improved support for native PDF and Word annotations and added the capability to export annotated Word documents to a final .doc/.docx file with the Word’s “Track Changes” feature active.

Print Preview

One more enhancement that you may be interested in is the ability to generate a document print preview when users try to print the annotated document. The print preview displays documents with annotations added.

To see a full list of changes and download the GroupDocs.Annotation for Java library version 1.6.0, please visit our download archive. For more information on the library please visit its homepage and documentation. We also encourage you to use the code examples that we’ve prepared to help you explore the library’s functionality quickly.

Zero-Footprint, Cross-Platform Java PDF Viewer for Your Apps

Java PDF Viewer Library - GroupDocsGroupDocs.Viewer for Java is a lightweight library that allows developers to display PDF (as well as Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and over 50 other types of documents) within their Java apps. The Java PDF viewer provides cross-platform compatibility, allowing end users to view PDF documents from any web-enabled device, including mobiles and tablets.

The viewer works with all modern browsers: IE8+, Chrome, FireFox, Safari 5+, Opera and their mobile versions. There is no need to install anything on the client side. Users can view PDFs without having to install Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Fast & Clear PDF Rendering

Depending on the chosen rendering mode, the viewer rasterizes PDFs to images or converts them to pure HTML+CSS+SVG. When rasterizing documents, the library extracts text and renders it on a separate layer on top of background images. As a result, both modes provide high-fidelity font rendering - texts look sharp regardless of the zoom factor.

The Java PDF viewer library can load remote documents via URLs, from streams and files located on your storage. To load documents faster, the library cashes PDFs on the server side when they are loaded (viewed by a user) for the first time. There is also an AOT (ahead-of-time) caching option that allows you to force the library to add any specified PDF to cache before it has even been displayed to users.

Convenient User Interface

We’ve packaged our Java PDF viewer with an out-of-the-box web UI that helps end users to easily navigate PDFs in a web-browser. You can adjust the UI's look and feel by tweaking CSS or completely customize its functionality by complementing the JavaScript front-end. The demo below gives an idea of how the UI can be customized to match your app or website requirements. The embedded PDF document you see in the demo represents the default look and functionality of the UI, while the demo viewer itself is slightly tweaked with our CSS:

In addition to that, the library provides a choice between English, Spanish, Portuguese, Norwegian and Russian UI localizations.

Keep Your PDFs Safe

The GroupDocs.Viewer for Java library comes as downloadable JAR that can be deployed on your own server and behind your firewalls. All your PDFs are processed locally and hosted on your server, which ensures complete control over documents’ security. If you don’t want users to copy the contents of displayed PDFs, the printing, downloading and text copying options can be restricted or removed from the UI at all. And for an additional layer of security, the library allows you to add watermarks over the displayed PDF documents.

Try the Viewer for Free

Please feel free to download an evaluation copy of the library or contact sales for a 30-day fully functional trial. To help you explore the library quickly, we’ve prepared a bunch of code samples along with detailed documentation. We are always happy to help you resolve use-cases of any complexity, so feel free to contact our support team for help. For more details on the Java PDF viewer library, please see this page.

Spotlight on GroupDocs.Comparison for Cloud API – GroupDocs October 2014

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Monthly Newsletter
October, 2014
Need quick and easy online comparison features?
GroupDocs.Comparison for Cloud API is a REST API that lets developers add comparison features to their applications quickly. It offers fast comparison between documents and displays differences with an intuitive redline view. Changes can be accepted or rejected, and the combined document can be downloaded for convenient offline editing, while integrating with your application's business logic.
Product News
 GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET Library 

  • Added the ability to rotate the orientation of pages for PDF and image files.
  • Added support for configuring watermark text when viewing documents using the HTML-based viewing engine.
  • Russian localization.

 GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET Library

  • Allow access to print view options when printing.
  • Navigate annotations using a tab-based view.
  • Increased UI usability including quick annotation selection, and numerous bug fixes.
  • Improved annotation print view compatibility with Internet Explorer.
  • Various updates and fixes to improve annotation handling.

 GroupDocs.Annotation for Java Library

  • User avatar which shows picture of the reviewer associated with comments now available.
  • New UI tools added for PDF files: ruler, underline.
  • More tools now export to Word files: area, point, typewriter, watermark, underline, strikeout, text and resource redaction.
  • Print preview dialog now shows added annotations.
  • Added abstract database connector so developers can use any database.
  • Various updates and fixes to improve annotation handling and display.

 GroupDocs.Signature for .NET Library

  • Quick configuration of database providers when initializing signature. Supported providers are JSON and MSSQL.
  • Unified syntax for single and multiple signers to simplify development.
  • Increased responsiveness since signing of the document is now switched to a parallel task.
  • Fixed various issues related to placing the signature onto the document being signed.

 GroupDocs.Signature for Cloud Library

  • Added new image stamp field type to field preparation and execution for envelopes and forms.
  • Envelope owners can now allow users to drag/move fields when signing.

 GroupDocs.Comparison for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • Improved detection of subscript and superscript when comparing Microsoft Word files.
  • Improved detection of bold, italic and underline formatting when comparing Microsoft Word files.
  • Improved performance by 40% for Word-based document comparison.

 GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • Implementing custom trial limitation for each document type: Microsoft Word, Excel, Visio, PowerPoint, Project, PDF, email, image, and HTML.
  • Preparation of Conversion platform for resizing and re-flowing content for viewing on a specific device.

 GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET Library

  • Added new feature to get template editor fields via C# or JS.
  • The new Template Editor which allows fields manipulation of template fields using a rich UI.
  • The Template Editor supports 3 different types of fields: TextBox, Image, CheckBox.

 GroupDocs.Assembly for Cloud App

  • The Template Editor can now create an assembly template from any Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat PDF file.
  • The Template Editor supports text, image and checkbox fields.
  • The Questionnaire Builder introduces date/time and multiline fields.
Coming Soon
 GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET Library 

  • View Microsoft Project documents directly, without conversion to PDF.
  • Improved support for logging exceptions and operations within the library.
  • New option to adjust scrolling speed on mobile devices.
  • New feature for intercepting document processing events.

 GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET Library

  • Add tooltips for annotation comments for quick and easy reading.
  • Allow annotations to be resized.
  • Per character selection for text based annotations.

 GroupDocs.Signature for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • New feature to allow GroupDocs.Signature for .NET to function correctly even if it's not set up in the root folder of the integrating application website.
  • Add support for working with documents as streams when using GroupDocs.Signature for .NET.
  • New feature to set a predefined image value for the Stamp field type.
  • New option to support auto resize for the Stamp field type.

 GroupDocs.Comparison for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • Native comparison of Adobe Acrobat PDF files.
  • Further improvements to the Microsoft Word comparison algorithms.

 GroupDocs.Conversion for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • New feature that re-flows/converts a documents for a specific device resolution.

 GroupDocs.Assembly for .NET Library and Cloud App

  • New design for the Template Editor, where the UI is easier to use and more flexible.
  • Support for new field types in the Template Editor for PDF templates: ListBox, ComboBox, RadioButtonList.
  • Enhanced support in the Template Editor for editing Word templates (UI feature).
From The Library
Managing User Rights with the GroupDocs.Annotation for Java Library
GroupDocs.Annotation for Java allows you to set user access rights to control who can view, annotate, download, export and delete documents. Read more.
Loading Documents from Streams with GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET
Documents are increasingly stored in databases, not as static files on disc. To access them, you have to work with byte streams. We've written an article that explains how to use GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET with streams. Read the article.
How Can We Help You?
Do you have ideas for what you'd like to see us do in the coming months? Take a minute to tell us.
Integrations and New Cloud API Samples
Product Releases And Updates
GroupDocs.Total for .NET – The latest versions of our .NET libraries. GroupDocs.Comparison for .NET 2.1.0 – Several performance enhancements and fixes.
GroupDocs.Viewer for .NET 2.3.0 – Russian localization, page rotation and more. GroupDocs.Viewer for Java 2.4.0 – Several performance enhancements and fixes.
GroupDocs.Annotation for .NET 1.6.0 – Navigate annotations as tabs, and other new features. GroupDocs.Annotation for Java 1.6.0 – Various new annotation tools added.

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