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  Asked By: Callie    Date: Mar 12    Category: Sharepoint    Views: 1806

Is there anyone out there using CorasWorks in their environment? If
so, what are your thoughts about it? What are the pros? cons? Have you
had their training class? Is it worth the investment?

We are investigating implementing this solution just to get us on our
feet quickly until we can develop the skill set necessary to do the
modifications in house. Any and all thoughts are welcome.



11 Answers Found

Answer #1    Answered By: Angarika Shroff     Answered On: Mar 12

we are using Corasworks products. So far, the product has been stable and
our users like the look/feel that the suite provides out of the box. Pros and
cons vary with the problem you are trying to solve. A pro is the tab/view
functionality and the ability to rollup lists dynamically. The major con is the
extra effort it takes to figure out how to use the tool; rollups take quite a
bit of time and can be broken relatively easily. Another con is ghosted pages;
the templates are ghosted out of the box, which means extra work if you need to
modify the design of the portal globally.

In a nutshell, if you are looking for a tool to help you get started then
Corasworks is a good purchase.

Answer #2    Answered By: Micheal Knight     Answered On: Mar 12

I feel that their support leaves a lot to be desired.

For example, I have a roll up that has a field for calculated
currency. In the originating lists, the calcuations work great (
$750,000 X .90 equals $675,000.00). In the roll up, the result is
675000.000000000. Yes, I know that the math is right, but it is not
pretty and the execs aren't happy with the end result.

I contacted CorasWorks and was provided with the answer "it is a
known issue". That was it. No estimated time that a fix might be
released, no work around, nothing.

Maybe my standards a set  high, but I was really expecting some sort
of assurance that someday my problem would be resolved.

Answer #3    Answered By: Lesley Tate     Answered On: Mar 12

I concur on the support issue. I do like the power and ease of the
webparts and have even used several of their site templates. Support
does call back quickly  and will jump right onto a WebEx to help work
through an issue with setup or the like, but support for true "bugs"
is a bit weak.

Their last major release had a serious issue with sorting in all the
rollups and after proving to them that the problem was real and
waiting as they duplicated it and as the next level of supervision
also duplicated it, they told me they would let me know as soon as
it was fixed. Follow-up calls and e-mails finally led to the
realization that it wasn't going to be fast. I got an e-mail when
they released the semi-annual version that the sorting issue had
been fixed in this release. I had to move ahead with the site months
ago and had to use these webparts due to some required functionality
that the previous version lacked so now if it is truly corrected I
have around 40 webparts to replace and reconfigure.

Answer #4    Answered By: Chris Daniel     Answered On: Mar 12

Anyone interested in Coras Works in Baltimore/DC might want to know that the BaltoMSDN group is having them present for the monthly meeting for September.

Here is the web site of the BaltoMSDN group, a local Baltimore Microsoft User Group:

Answer #5    Answered By: Lynn Mann     Answered On: Mar 12

Coras Works also does one day get up to speed sessions that happen at
key cities all over North America. Check out their website for details.

Answer #6    Answered By: Damini Dande     Answered On: Mar 12

I like CorasWorks simply because it provide functionality that SharePoint

The roll-ups are great for gathering information from a lot of sites. That
leads to creating sites from templates and having the roll-ups find them
dynamically. An example is when we implement a new program, we create a
standard site and all of the roll-ups reflect the new site. It allows for very
quick customization using roll-ups and javascript to make any displays that I

The Workplace Navigation is very useful, allowing "up to" and downward
navigation which SharePoint does not. This also has cascading menus (with
auto-sizing tabs) which came out in the latest release and my users love it.

The other feature I like is Email Notification which allows for custom messages
to be sent based on values in columns. I have not yet gotten into the Actions
features, but they allow actions on groups of items.

I don't like that the roll-ups cannot be modified to change the column list.
You have to start over.

You must take the training... it's well worth  it. They know their stuff and you
get a nice manual with the class. Otherwise, you have to get their online docs,
which I don't care for.

Answer #7    Answered By: Addison Peck     Answered On: Mar 12

I was working with the Developer Workspace last
year and it's great. The rollups are powerful and the wizard will let you roll
up practically anything. You have a fair amount of control over display without
a lot of effort.

Basically if you don't want to spend $10k on development (2 devs for 2 weeks
say) you can spend the same and get the full meal deal from them, which will
give you support/maintenence and a product that has been tested and proven.
Maybe you'll end up with more flexibility if you RYO, but it comes at a cost.

Answer #8    Answered By: Lalit Bhattacharya     Answered On: Mar 12

I gotta go along with what these guys are saying. CorasWorks is,
undoubtably one of the greatest 'add-ons' for Sharepoint. Their
stuff is SO functional and add such a great element to the Sharpoint
package, you'll wonder what the hell Microsoft was thinking by NOT
figuring this stuff out and packaging this with SP...then again,
we're talking MS.

Anyway, just wanted to add my 2 cents. Also, I agree, take the
training if you can...I didn't get to, my company figured I could
learn it on my own. Hmm...guess who's no longer there!

Answer #9    Answered By: Gwendolyn Acosta     Answered On: Mar 12

CorasWorks is partnered with MS.

CW comes out with updates every 6 months or so. MS updates SP every 3 years or
so. It is understood by both that CW will add features inbetween MS releases
and that MS will incorporate some of those features into their next SP release.

CW can sort of do whatever they want whenever they want and try things out. Big
ole MS then will decide which are the best features for them and use them going
forward. So when the next SP release comes out, you'll probably see a lot of CW
in there .

Answer #10    Answered By: Kyle Hernandez     Answered On: Mar 12

There are pros  and cons. The pros have been listed and I would add
to them that what makes CW great (the company) is that it is a Fast
Innovation company, meaning they stay just enough ahead of the
Microsoft curve to provide innovation to what MS puts out (even
though you can expect some of these CW features to be incorporated
in later releases of MS WSS/SPS versions). The training  is
excellent, support is excellent, and if you attend the traning in
Reston, please take the entire five day course...not just the 3
days. What's nice too is that CW doesn't modify
SharePoint...therefore there aren't any issues around upgrades, etc.

Cons of this suite of web parts are all related to how large your
enterprise is, whether you know FrontPage and need it to modify what
CW gives you (ghosting vs. unghosting), what is enabled and what is
not, as well as how you deploy the parts, and what sort of training
you give developers/admins around Corasworks. You get a lot, but
there are performance, technical, and training issues to consider
because of that.

Answer #11    Answered By: Kedar Phule     Answered On: Mar 12

I've been using CorasWorks for almost 2 years now and the things you can do
beyond simple SharePoint are amazing! It lets you build business solutions on
SharePoint faster, easier and more cost-effectively.

You can use Roll-ups to gather data from multiple sites and display them on a
single site, use Site Navigation to easily navigate throughout the Site
Collection, Email Notification to let people know when things are assigned to
them, hooks for custom output and dashboards, and Lots more.

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