Kelsey Martens
Kelsey Martens

Director of Software Operations

Posted on Feb 15, 2016

Calendar 2 for ExpressionEngine 3

Today we are very excited to announce our next major release for ExpressionEngine 3, Calendar 2!

Calendar 2 is more than just a conversion to ExpressionEngine 3. Calendar has been fully rebuilt from scratch.

While Calendar 1.x was wildly popular and received lots of positive feedback, there were several architectural limitations with it that hindered it's ability to be better, especially as ExpressionEngine evolved over the years. With news of the upcoming ExpressionEngine 3 on its way, we knew we absolutely needed to address this issue. We didn't have any interest in frankensteining our way out of this one either.

Instead, we decided to create a brand new calendar add-on experience. We looked at the things that Calendar 1.x did right, what was available to us now, what we wanted Calendar to be, and then rebuilt Calendar as if it was a brand new add-on. The downside of this is that Calendar 2.x does not (currently anyway) contain all of the same features that Calendar 1.x does. The upside of this is that we believe that Calendar 2.x will be significantly easier to use for you and your clients. We also believe that your implementation(s) of Calendar 2.x will be much faster with less head scratching. And we did our very best to make the documentation very clear and contain as much information and screenshots as possible, without being vague about anything.

Without further ado, here are the highlights in the Calendar 2 release:

  • Calendar field is now a full fieldtype that can be used in any channel and as many times as you wish.
  • Added full support for EE Multiple Site Manager (MSM).
  • Overhauled the Calendar fieldtype interface in publish page to be much more intuitive for you and your clients to use. Some controls are also customizable.
  • Improved permission control interactions per calendar per member group. Users without access can still access entries, but see a disabled Calendar fieldtype.
  • Built a brand new Calendar module control panel experience. You can now view your events and recurrences with a day, week or month view interface, making events and their recurrences easier to find. This can also be used as a helper when troubleshooting potential template issues on the front end.
  • Added built in calendar color coding and automated creation of lightened version for use with backgrounds, etc.
  • Overhauled all of the template tags to be much more intuitive to understand and implement.
  • Calendar template tags are much more efficient and will perform better under heavier loads, so you should notice some performance gains over Calendar 1.x.
  • Overhauled the demo templates included with Calendar to be more modern, and show calendar colors in action.
  • Removed timezone settings and localization of events. For example, events that start at 6pm will always display as 6pm regardless of where you are, what your account settings or site settings are, who entered them, Daylight Davings Time, etc. This may be seen as a disadvantage by some, but we believe for most, this will eliminate lots of potential headaches.
  • Added a Low Events 1.5+ migration path.

Please review the change log to see all updates, additions and changes.

IMPORTANT: Calendar 1.x upgrade path

And lastly, all existing Calendar 1.x users looking to upgrade are likely wondering what happens now. As mentioned earlier, Calendar 2.x can do most of the same things Calendar 1.x can do, and more, but some Calendar 1.x features and options are no longer available. The template tag names, syntax, variables, etc have also changed. However, we built a migration utility to help with this process. The migration utility will essentially do 2 things: convert your Calendar 1.x calendar channel entries into Calendar 2.x style calendars, and convert your Calendar 1.x event data into Calendar 2.x event data. We have also created an extensive guide to help you understand the changes and properly prepare your site for the transition.

Some Important Information about our EE3 releases

We have decided that all EE3 converted add-ons will ONLY work with ExpressionEngine 3+ (if you've been around long enough, you'll remember that we managed to have a single code base work for both EE1 and EE2 back when EE2 was released). The EE2 versions of our add-ons will remain "feature-frozen", except for critical and security fixes. An EE2 compatible version will be available inside of the EE3 compatible download package. We know that many customers will have to wait until there is enough critical mass of third party add-on availability before they can begin using EE3 in the real world, so for the next 6-12 months, a new purchase or upgrade of EE3 compatible add-ons will also include an EE2 compatible version. You can use the EE2 compatible version until you're ready to upgrade to ExpressionEngine 3.x.

Due to the large amount of time involved with updating and testing our add-ons for EE3 compatibility, there will be an upgrade fee associated with each. Calendar in particular is $59.95 to upgrade. Buying upgrades can be done in your Account area. Customers that purchased a Solspace add-on up to 3 months before release of the EE3 compatible version will receive an automatic free upgrade. Calendar 1.x customers from the past 3 months have already received this.

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