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Highlights in FilterZen 2.6

We've just pushed out FilterZen 2.6, which introduces outstanding support for the Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) 2007 Enterprise Edition Business Data Catalog (BDC). So what's new in this release, among from a number of small performance and usability improvements and some impressive bug fixes?

Custom Filter Types!

We've finalized and tested our API to let developers easily create custom or business-specific filter types (in any .NET language, of course) and integrate them into the mature and stable FilterZen infrastructure — without having to re-invent the wheel writing yet another Full-Fledged Connectable Filter Provider Web Part. Documentation for that API is a bit sparse at present, but expect a tutorial highlighting the basics of developing your own FilterZen filter type very shortly.

Business Data (BDC) Filters

Create a Business Data Catalog (BDC) filter to send filters based on any data stored in any data sources integrated into your MOSS Business Data Catalog. Whether you let users pick an entity instance to use in interactive mode, or specify the record to use directly, the filter value being sent is always the current, live value from the specified data source.

A much better BDC Item Builder Web Part

The FilterZen BDC Business Data Item Builder Web Part initially serves the same purpose as the built-in Business Data Item Builder Web Part provided by Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) 2007 Enterprise Edition: to obtain the ID of a Business Data Catalog (BDC) entity instance and broadcast that instance to compatible Web Parts. However, the FilterZen BDC Business Data Item Builder Web Part goes way beyond the built-in equivalent Web Part in many ways.