Upgrading to Neatline 2.0

At a glance

What’s new

Neatline 2.0, which was released on July 2, 2013, is a major update to the project that includes a large number of improvements to the existing feature-set and adds a number of new features designed to make it easier to create larger and more complex exhibits. Some of the highlights in the new version:

What’s different

Some of these changes entailed some pretty significant changes to the core codebase. All of the core features from the 1.x releases are preserved in 2.0, and most exhibits will behave exactly the same after upgrading to 2.0. In a handful of places, though, we made changes that will slightly alter the visual appearance of certain types of exhibits. We also made some changes to how Neatline is distributed and installed that we think will make the project more maintainable and reliable. Here are the important changes:


Upgrade Neatline to 2.0

Upgrading to Neatline 2.0 is just the same as upgrading any other Omeka plugin:

  1. Always start by backing up your database in the unlikely event that something goes wrong during the upgrade. As an extra precaution, since the migration to 2.0 makes some pretty significant changes to the underlying data, Neatline actually spawns off archived copies of the original Neatline tables, in case you want to revert back to a previous version.

  2. Delete the old /Neatline directory under /plugins in your Omeka installation.

  3. Download the most recent version of Neatline, unpack the .zip archive, and move it into /plugins.

  4. In the Omeka administrative interface, click on the Plugins link on the top navigation bar and find the listing for Neatline. With the code for the new version in place, you should see a notification saying “You have a new version of Neatline. Please Upgrade!”.

  5. Click the Upgrade button.

  6. Important: After starting the upgrade, you’ll immediately see a success message saying that “The Neatline plugin was successfully upgraded!”. At this point, Neatline 2.0 is fully installed and ready for use, but it may take up to 20-30 seconds before the old exhibits are visible under the “Neatline” tab.

Behind the scenes, Neatline actually spins up a “background process” - a special, long-running program that does the work of actually converting all of the old content to the new, 2.0 format - that can take a bit longer than the average web request. Depending on the how many exhibits and records you had in the old installation, this could take anywhere from just a couple seconds up to around a minute.

Install NeatlineWaypoints and NeatlineSimile (optional)

Once the core Neatline plugin is upgraded to 2.0, you’ll have access to everything except the timeline and item-browser viewports, which are now broken away into two new “sub-plugins” called NeatlineSimile and NeatlineWaypoints that are installed alongside Neatline and extend the core feature set. Install them just like any other Omeka plugin:

  1. Download the most recent verisons of NeatlineWaypoints and NeatlineSimile, unpack the .zip archives, and move the NeatlineWaypoints and NeatlineSimile folders into /plugins.

  2. Go to the Plugins pane in the Omeka administrative interface and find the listings for the two new plugins. Click the Install button for each.

  3. Once the sub-plugins are installed, the old “activation” settings for each of the old exhibits (eg, which exhibits have the timeline enabled, which have the item browser, which don’t, etc.) will automatically be re-applied.

Getting Started

Working with Exhibits

Working with Neatline Plugins

Working with Neatline Stylesheets

Working with the Neatline Editor


Text Tab

Map Tab

Style Tab

  • Editing Groups
  • Editing Colors
  • Editing Opacities
  • Editing Dimensions
  • Editing Dates
  • Editing Imagery
  • Editing Visibility