Alfresco sends SharePoint integration open source

Alfresco Software is contributing to the Apache Software Foundation an open source integration, named Chemistry Parts. The integration connects Microsoft SharePoint to virtually any enterprise content management (ECM) system, including Alfresco, using the open standard CMIS (Content Management Interoperability Services) from OASIS. The integration is contributed by Alfresco to the Apache Chemistry project, which is an open source implementation of CMIS.

Chemistry Parts is based on a configurable framework and Microsoft SharePoint Web Parts provided as an open source CMIS client implementation. Using Chemistry Parts, developers can quickly and easily create their own content solutions that connect to multiple content repositories and are accessible from Microsoft SharePoint. 

Implemented using simple, lightweight HTML5 JavaScript, developers create new solutions through configuration alone.  Applications such as document libraries, records management, imaging applications and process applications can integrate with SharePoint yet have the scalability and compliance found in Alfresco or another ECM platform.

Alfresco has worked with Armedia, an Atlanta-based services company specialising in content solutions, to create the SharePoint integration.   

Jim Nasr, CEO of Armedia said, “We have seen a lot of demand for this type of integration with our US Federal customers. The widespread use of SharePoint in the government and the availability of this framework provide an opportunity to solve some real content problems that have not been addressed. We are proud to have worked with Alfresco on making this framework available as open source.”  

Alan Pelz-Sharpe, Research Director at 451 Research, commented, “There is almost never one content management system in medium-to-large enterprises, but the majority have some sort of implementation of SharePoint. There is clearly a need for SharePoint and ECM to coexist and cooperate. An open source and open standards approach could be a promising way for that coexistence to work.”

CMIS was created as an open standard and proposed to OASIS in 2008 by IBM, EMC, Microsoft, SAP, OpenText and Alfresco. Considered the “SQL of Content Management”, the standard defines application programming interfaces (APIs) that can query, update and manage content in repositories such as IBM FileNet, EMC Documentum, Microsoft SharePoint and Alfresco.  CMIS is the content integration standard of choice of companies like IBM and SAP.

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