AnsweredAssumed Answered

Alfresco is not production ready

Question asked by unknown-user on Feb 25, 2009
Latest reply on May 5, 2009 by krithika123
I have just spent a day evaluating Alfresco, but unfortunately have had a very bad experience with it.  I'm sharing a subset of the issues I've had here, in case someone can shed some light on why nothing works out of the box for me, when other people claim it is a stable, robust enterprise ready platform.

I installed from Alfresco-Labs-3c-Mini-Setup.exe on a WinXP box, using JDK1.6.0_03, without open office.

Problem 1 - Installation doesn't install JAXB jars into endorsed directory

After installing, I started the alfresco server and attempted to access the web client.  It came up with an error page, and I saw in the tomcat console window that there is a problem loading the JAXB jars.  I had to manually copy them into the Alfresco\tomcat\common\endorsed directory to get it working properly.  There is no mention of this in any installation documentation, and I don't see why it couldn't have been done as part of the installation procedure.  Can anyone explain why it doesn't work out of the box?

Problem 2 - Some boot scripts don't work if Alfresco is installed into a path containing spaces, such as under C:\Program Files

The install goes without a hitch, but when starting the alfresco server there is an error reported in the tomcat console saying it can't find a script called "C:\Program".  I had to uninstall and re-install in a directory with no spaces.  Again this shows the lack of maturity of the product.

Problem 3 - CIFS access results in permanent 100% CPU usage by alfresco server

As soon as I attempt to access my files via CIFS, the server process jumps to 100% CPU usage and stays there.  The CIFS server seems to work fine, although the whole system is then very slow.  It is also then impossible to shut down the server gracefully, it just reports a multitude of different exceptions and never shuts down.  This is the main functionality I was interested in, so from this bug alone I am convinced that Alfresco is not production ready and useless to me.

Problem 4 - Built-in WYSIWYG web content editor is useless

It doesn't allow the use of CSS classes at all, doesn't allow relative links, or links to other documents in the Alfresco repository.  It doesn't allow me to insert a picture from the local hard disk.  Overall very basic and useless.  I then did a bit of research to see whether there were any plug-ins that provide a better user experience, which led me to…

Problem 5 - Web Studio doesn't work

I followed the Web Studio Green Energy tutorial, but when I got to the part where I'm meant to start editing, I click to expand the web content panel and click to expand the Web Site node but there is nothing there.  I look in the tomcat console and the following error is in there:
==> macro serialize [on line 5, column 1 in org/alfresco/webframework/avm-metadata.get.html.ftl]
in user-directive serialize [on line 2, column 9 in org/alfresco/webframework/avm-metadata.get.html.ftl]
Java backtrace for programmers:
freemarker.template.TemplateException: Error executing macro: serialize
required parameter: object is not specified.
at freemarker.core.Macro$Context.sanityCheck(

I experienced quite a few other bugs, internal server errors etc, and each time there was an error it seems it is impossible to shut down the server gracefully.

Can anyone explain why I have had such a bad experience?  Is it something simple like the JDK version I'm using, or the fact that I installed it without open office?  If so, why isn't it documented?

I have built a web CMS platform that would integrate wonderfully with Alfresco's document management functionality, if only Alfresco worked properly.  It would be great if I could get it working reliably, but the sheer number of problems I've experienced indicates it would be a very steep uphill battle.  Please someone prove me wrong!