Written by: Jeannette McNamara, Director, Product Management
The custom Community Search widget (English only) is being retired on September 7th as part of the 20.23.09 Release. The widget was available to most new customers from the 20.18.09 release until the 20.22.12 release as part of their initial deployment to allow quick, accessible access to the community. With the change to a new and improved community, the decision was made to retire the widget as the custom widget only supports access to the legacy community.
About the Community Widget
The Community widget was an English-only custom widget that provided an access point to the legacy Community and was made available to most new customers between September 2018 and December 2022 as part of their default homepage. The widget included the following features:
- A call to attention statement, which included linked text stating What is the Community, which launched the legacy Community site.
- A form that allowed questions to be captured within the widget, and upon Search, would pass the query over to the Community website (launched in a new tab within the browser), to facilitate search results.
The custom widget content appeared via custom widget with an iFrame, which loaded a D2L-managed page containing Brightspace Community information. Customers could not modify the D2L-managed content shown within the iFrame, however they did have some control over the display of the custom widget.
The custom widget was made available at the organizational level and may have appeared with the following names within your custom widget list: Brightspace Community Sample Widget or Brightspace Community Widget. As this was a custom widget, it is also possible that it was re-named for your organization specifically.
Replacement strategy and options
The decision was made to not replace the custom widget as the new Community has a different launch process and underlying technology.
Replacement options for the Brightspace Community Search custom widget include the following:
- Use the system ‘Brightspace Help’ navigation link recently updated in 20.23.05 to point to the new Community. This link is available in all supported languages and is a great option for customers with multiple language packs.
- Update the custom widget with your own content to help direct your users to the new Community.
- Customers who subscribe to End User Support packages can consider using the Brightspace Virtual Assistant, which provides improved, AI-powered search options of the content in the new Community and more.
Customers interested in a new widget options can suggest their idea in the Product Idea Exchange.
20.23.06: Communication about the intent to retire the legacy Brightspace Community Search custom widget was published in the Release Notes Announcements. In order to provide time to review, plan replacement options and/or perform recommended actions, the widget will continue to function as a custom search widget until the planned end of life date.
20.23.09 September 7th: The widget will no longer function after the 20.23.09 GA date (September 7th, 2023). The content loaded by the widget will be removed on this date - and if the custom widget is still used in homepages or accessed, it will return a browser page not found error (404).
- Administrators should update widget code or remove the widget by this date.
- Users seeing this error after September 7th should report it to their Administrators.
Administrators or Instructors with homepage management permissions are advised to remove the widget from homepages and update any homepage descriptions, delete the widget, or update the custom widget content to your own information before the D2L-managed community access widget content is removed.
This widget is not being removed by D2L because it is a custom widget. Customers must directly remove it from their homepages.
TIP: For new customers who received the Brightspace Community Search widget at the Organization level, you can access the widget via Homepage management. Customers who have added it to more homepages at the same level that the widget exists, can remove the widget by deleting it. Shared widgets will automatically be removed from homepages when deleted.
Administrators using the Homepage description may need to review homepages where the Community Search widget was used, to update the description.
Widgets remaining after the end of life date will return a 404 page not found error. Users with access to the Brightspace Community Search widget after the end of life date should remove the widget from homepages if enabled, or contact their Administrator.