A-Z glossary of PageSeeder concepts


The glossary contains a useful list of concepts and definitions used by PageSeeder.

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Action icons
Action icons are shortcuts that change depending on context and perspective. Hovering the cursor over an action icon will display it's function.
A particular role with elevated permission to configure a PageSeeder server.
Ant task
Apache Ant tasks perform actions in a publish script.
Is a default folder in every group and it is also a verb that describes a feature of the system. The archive folder is created by the system as soon as the first document is archived. How the feature works is easier to understand with some background.
is a human-readable name provided when a comment is posted by someone that does not have an account on a PageSeeder server. This happens when a group is open to the general public, as opposed to the PageSeeder public. When someone that is not a member, posts a comment using an API call such as Service: /comments/forurl [POST], they can be prompted for a name. This would be the @name attribute on the <author> element. 
When editing a document, there is an autosave feature that stores the current draft version of the fragment every five minutes. A message appears at the bottom of the edit window whenever a draft is saved.


Requires backing up both the file system and the database. The following folder can be excluded as it contains only temporary files:
Bastille is a Java library which extends Berlioz to better integrate with PageSeeder and provide common functionalities for websites.
Batch (or "bulk") processing
There are two ways to batch process PageSeeder documents through the user interface. One is using the search results and the other is to configure a publish task to run at the folder level. 
Berlioz is an open source Java library, written by the PageSeeder team to provide a simple developer framework that uses URI template notation to allocate services and XSLT for serving XML to the web as HTML. Although Berlioz can be used to serve any type of XML, it comes with native support for processing PageSeeder Markup Language (PSML) and includes the following infrastructure:
Block label
In PSML, a block label associates semantics to a block of text.
Block XRef
A type of cross reference which references content that should appear as a standalone element.
Blocks are a class of object in the user interface used to display information related to the page. They are handled by the Layout manager.    
Essentially these are named configurations of blocks, which are the interface components arranged vertically on the left side of the screen.
Open source Java library that simplifies the task of accessing the PageSeeder service API from external application.
the standard file object for the Ant API. See Using Ant for further information.


There are multiple levels at which PageSeeder utilizes caching to improve performance. This entry is specifically oriented to HTTP caching.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
The Layout manager CSS is divided into a number of common CSS files plus page specific and block specific CSS files as described below.
CK Editor
The native editing library in PageSeeder is CK Editor. For further information see editor config.
A fundamental capability of PageSeeder, comments are a class of XLink that can be attached to different locations in the data or system. Because commenting is so integral to PageSeeder's architecture, understanding how they work can help to explain the broader concepts.
Comment format (Markdown)
Comments posted by email or via the user interface are stored in plain text but they will be automatically formatted in the user interface so that they are more readable.
Comment ID
PageSeeder generates a unique ID for every comment. This ID is a useful reference when tasks are significant to external systems such as software code. This allows PageSeeder to function as an issue tracker such as Jira or Bugzilla.
Common group
A group with the following restrictions:
Component document
Are the building blocks that are linked together in a references document.
Content labels
Content labels are a class of label used to describe information inside PageSeeder documents. The two types of content labels: block label and inline label are analogous to the idea of paragraph and character styles in publishing or word processing systems, or to the HTML elements of <div> and <span>.
Content security policy
The Content Security Policy (CSP) is a W3C recommendation designed to prevent cross-site scripting, clickjacking and code injection attacks by making Web servers declare what content can be trusted. It is supported by most current browsers.
There are four contexts in the interface: server, project, group and document. They are exposed in the horizontal navigation menu and are used for configuring user interface components such as pages.
see Duplicate.
Cross reference
Occasionally referred to as XRefs in the PageSeeder user interface, cross references have two primary functions:
Cross Reference Label
A label attached to a cross reference.


Daily Digest
Daily digest is a method of notification , allowing the member to keep up to date with the latest comments and discussion related to a group.
Date and time
Correctly understanding where the date and time are sourced and applied is important for getting the most out of PageSeeder. The orderly processing of edits or comments is critical to efficient collaboration but it isn't always straightforward with globally distributed group members.
Date picker
Common interface components such as a date picker can be added to PSML documents using a <properties-fragment>.
Default document types
PageSeeder comes preconfigured with two document types:
Default Group Setup
These are the settings used to initalize a group. They include the folder structure (documents, image, attachments and more) and files like the home page and quick links.
'Deleting' in general, is something that is not encouraged in PageSeeder. This is because PageSeeder's architecture relies heavily on cross references and most things are connected. Deleting a document may have the unintended consequence of making a comment impossible to access. Because of this, the archive function is always encouraged over deleting.
Developer License
The developer license for PageSeeder allows developers to create unlimited projects, groups and members as long as they access PageSeeder via localhost or *.localhost only. This license is configured by setting the product key to 'dev' and web site address to 'localhost' or '[x].localhost'.
Developer perspective
Selecting the developer perspective exposes the developer tab, the developer action icons and the performance block. It can be selected by hovering the cursor over the perspective icon.
Developer Tools
There is both a developer tab and a developer perspective in PageSeeder. As the names suggest, both these options expose tools that help develop or support PageSeeder applications.
DITA is an XML standard for documentation and processing from OASIS. It shares some of the same architectural concepts as PageSeeder.
PageSeeder terminology defines a document as anything that has a URI ID / URIID and is not a URL. This includes the following:
Document history
Document history refers to the previously saved versions of a PageSeeder document that are able to be viewed by a member.
Document ID (DocID)
The PageSeeder server allows any document – XML or binary – to be assigned a server-wide, unique, permanent identifier. This value is commonly referred to as the DocID and it has the same use case for both developers and end-users. That is, the DocID is an alternative method to folder path and filename for locating a document, like a primary key.
Document Label
Labels can be added to a PageSeeder document by the following:
Document metadata
A set of properties that can be attached to a document based on its document type or media type.
Document processor
Bound to specific data formats by MIME type, the document processors help to resolve XLinks to source documents.
Document status
is a way of associating a group member with a document, a task and a date. The primary objective of the document status is to formalize lifecycle stages such as creation, review and release. Using the collaboration and reporting tools of PageSeeder, the document status can eliminate much of the overheads and inaccuracies associated with managing document lifecycles using spreadsheets and email.
Document template
A pre-configured structure and semantics defined as part of a document type.
Document title
Refers to a property of a document. All PageSeeder documents, regardless of their media type or content have a document title.
Document type
In PageSeeder, a document type can be compared to a 'template' in Word or FrameMaker. Document types are used to customize aspects of the content such as:
One of the metadata containers for a PSML document (the other is fragmentinfo). See the metadata element reference for further detail.
See Microsoft Word docx format.
In the document context, the download option allows any document to be saved locally in its native format.
The overheads of managing duplicated data are well known and in general, duplication is something to be avoided. Many of the requirements that have traditionally required data to be duplicated can be met through standard PageSeeder functionality such as  cross references (xrefs), shared documents and labels. These include the following:


Edit note
An edit note is a particular type of XLink (a note) attached to a specific change in a fragment (an edit).
Edit note label
Edit note labels are attached to a note made on a document edit.
Editing ― Batch
PageSeeder provides the infrastructure necessary to support batch or bulk editing. Effectively this process can be thought of as re-uploading PSML (PageSeeder Markup Language) files. Therefore batch editing can support use cases such as:
Like preview, download and publish, export is simply a meaningful name for publish scripts that use PageSeeder's batch API . PageSeeder comes with default publish scripts that export to the following formats:
External URL
Also known as URL or external URI, it is an object that stores the location of a resource outside PageSeeder and a first class citizen in the system. They can be the target of cross-references, labelled and searched just like normal documents and fragments.


Faceted navigation
Faceted navigation is a methodology for organizing information to optimize navigation by values in the data.
File system
PageSeeder relies on the file system to store documents and binary files.
Whether it is a normal binary file such as .ZIP or an Office document or a PageSeeder document, any file viewed in PageSeeder has both a filename and document title. However, because these files are physically stored on the file system of the host server, they must not have names that violate the naming rules of the host operating system. 
FOConfig is a simple language expressed in XML that enables non-developers to control the layout of the PDF documents generated by PageSeeder. Designed to require technical skills comparable to editing Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), FOConfig is fundamentally a code generator for Apache FOP.
As a term, 'folder' can be used in multiple contexts including the following:
Folders and files
Files and folders in PageSeeder can be used in multiple contexts. For general explanations, see the glossary entries for document or folder.
For further information about the creation and editing of electronic forms or fielded data in PageSeeder, see PSML document template, PSML properties editor or the tutorial on How to configure a custom properties editor.
Documents in PageSeeder are composed of fragments.
Fragment identifier
A unique identifier for a fragment within a document. The fragment ID provides developers with a more precise mechanism for updating documents that have been created outside PageSeeder.
Fragment label
A label which applies to a fragment.
Fragment template
part of the document template.


A generator is a server-side component written in Java which produces an XML response from a content request. Berlioz libraries provide a number of built-in generators for common use cases.
A key PageSeeder concept, the group restricts access to content such as documents and comments to a member.
Group config
Group config includes the  group name, description, welcome message, advanced options and group properties. They are available when the group is first created or can be accessed at any time by a manager of the group.
Group config – Advanced options
These settings can be found on the Advanced Options tab of the Group config page located under the Admin tab. For more information about the API, see Service: edit-group.
Group folder
Is an object that acts as a container for URIs in a group. All documents and folders belong to at least one group folder. Each group folder contains its own tree of documents and folders. 
Group owner
Is the person or organization responsible for managing a group. From Version 4.9, the group owner is visible via the List All Groups page (Fig. 1). It is also visible when the Advanced options tab on the Group config page is expanded (Fig. 2).
Group properties
Accessed by selecting 'Group config' on the admin menu, these are values that control various aspects of group behavior, such as whether returned email messages should be forwarded to a nominated address. While these same values can be set at the project level, the rules of inheritance and overrides can prove confusing for new users.


In PageSeeder, a host is one of the attributes of group folder and URI. It must be a valid host name as defined by RFC 3986.
A key component in PageSeeder, HTML is used to provide an editing interface for PSML (PageSeeder Markup Language) XML documents.
HTTP servlet
An HTTP servlet is server-side component that receives and responds to requests from clients to perform a particular task or simply retrieve data over HTTP.


Image shell
An implementation technique that uses a document as a wrapper for one or more images plus any associated metadata such as credits and captions. During editing, the image shell is referenced using a normal cross reference, however, when the document is published the contents can be processed differently, depending on the output format.
Index XML
The index XML is the XML format used by the PageSeeder Index Engine as a source.
Inline label
Inline labels associate custom style or semantics to running pieces of content in a block of text.


Java is the language used to write much of the core of the PageSeeder application and the generators for any Berlioz application.
Java API
see Bridge.
A servlet engine and HTTP server where most Berlioz applications are deployed.


Labels are a convenient mechanism for adding semantics to PageSeeder artifacts. They are divided in two broad categories:
Layout analyzer
The Layout analyzer is a developer tool provided in the developer perspective. It allows developers to quickly identify where the Layout manager has been customized. This is particularly useful when trying to understand the consequences to the user interface of an upgrade to the PageSeeder server.
Layout manager
The Layout Manager is a framework that generates the PageSeeder user interface. For developers with a working knowledge of XML and XSLT, the Layout Manager is a straightforward way to customize aspects of the UI.
Layout Manager config.xml
A file that controls the PageSeeder user interface. The interface for a project can be customized by overriding this file in the following path:
Layout tree
See Developer tools: Layout tree.
In PageSeeder terminology, 'list' should be interpreted as the generic description for ordered (<nlist>) or unordered (<list>) items (<item>) in a document, not as the programming term for a type of data structure.
Loading zone
The loading zone is a temporary location in the file system where files are stored before being uploaded into PageSeeder.
PageSeeder provides several types of logs for developers and administrators to assess the health of their system and diagnose problems.


A particular role with permission to configure a PageSeeder group.
A simple, lightweight language for formatting text. PageSeeder 5.8 supports Markdown in comments and 5.9 supports it in both comments and document properties.
The groups that a user is a member of, determines the content they can see. The role attached to each specific group membership, determines the functionality the user has. Membership and role for any group is unrelated to what it may be on any other group.
Member – add/remove
Previous or pending members of a group are visible when a user with a role of manager or higher views the member list.
Member – registration
The process of joining a member to a group.
The breadth of objects and processes incorporated into PageSeeder mean some terms require qualification. 'Document' , 'properties' and metadata are all such terms.
Microsoft Excel
Microsoft Word docx format
Support for converting PSML documents to docx and docx to PSML is a standard feature of PageSeeder. Available under the export action icon on the Document -> Browse page, there is a standard conversion that will process any PSML document without modification.
PageSeeder uses the MIME type of a document as a trigger to invoke document processors that have specific capabilities to process data formats such as XML or PDF.
Is a particular role that moderates comments.


Name-value pair
A common data structure in computing, they are natively supported in PageSeeder. For further information see property and PSML properties editor.
Refers to a section of the layout manager that configures the order and names of the menu options.
Navigation bar
Allows members to navigate quickly through different PageSeeder pages. The navigation bar changes depending on context.
Notifications are generated by the PageSeeder server and never stored. This is in contrast to comments and tasks which are created by members and stored in the group to which they are posted.
Numbered headings
A numbered heading is a <heading> element in PSML which will be preceded by a automatically generated number when published.
Numbered paragraphs
A significant amount of development effort has been invested to ensure that even the most complex numbering schemes can be supported in PageSeeder. In many cases this is achievable with less effort than using Microsoft Word or similar applications and produces superior results. However, the issue of numbering can span the entire document lifecycle, which makes it hard to cover in a single article.


Object labels
With no predetermined semantics, a label can be used for any purpose. The most fundamental difference for PageSeeder is whether the label is attached to an object, or part of the content. Native objects that support labels include document, fragment, comment, task,  version or cross reference.
Object model
One of PageSeeder's main design strengths is how quick and easy it can be to import, edit and publish complex XML documents. The reason for this is PageSeeder's object model (see document) and how it is used to represent XML data in an easily editable, generic form.
The omnibox is the search box that appears to the right of the group name in the navigation and can be used to search any PageSeeder item within that group.
Open XML
See Microsoft Word docx format.
out-of-band data
Is an option on the upload service that will record the new data as an edit instead of simply replacing the existing document.


A key concept of PageSeeder's Layout manager, pages are a configuration of content and blocks.
PageSeeder Ant API
It is a common requirement for publishing jobs to process numerous files. Because of this, the PageSeeder API is callable from the powerful batch processing environment, Apache ANT.
PageSeeder design objectives
PageSeeder approach to XML publishing workflows is completely different than that of conventional applications. Because PageSeeder was conceived and implemented as a web-based platform, it was designed for a different set of constraints and infrastructure than desktop applications.
PageSeeder file system
Directly interacting with the file system is not advised! Use the programming or user interfaces to move files in or out of PageSeeder.
PageSeeder server
Is a somewhat ambiguous term. It can be the conceptual term for the overall PageSeeder solution or it can refer to the main software component of the system (and counterpart to the Publish Engine).
Passwords are required for all users to authenticate or access private groups.
PDF documents
Natively, PageSeeder will store, index, search and display PDF documents. PDF format can also be created from PSML documents using FOConfig. By extracting images and text from PDF files, PageSeeder can also build and publish 'flipbooks'.
Performance block
Performance details of every processing step in the user interface can only be viewed via the performance block, which is visible on every page when using developer perspective.
Personal group
A personal group is a reserved PageSeeder group used as a private space for PageSeeder members to receive messages and store personal documents.
Perspective – lab
Lab perspective displays features that are experimental or still under consideration for inclusion in PageSeeder. It can be selected by hovering over the perspective icon.
Perspective – standard
Standard perspective is the default perspective for end user, day-to-day use of PageSeeder. It can be selected by hovering the cursor over the perspective icon.
In earlier versions of PageSeeder, perspectives were known as style views. The change was due to the ambiguity of the word 'style' in publishing, however 'style views' persist in parts of the source code. The purpose of perspectives is to show or hide information in the user interface. This allows users to focus on specific aspects of the system and can improve productivity.
Allows developers to add a lightweight preview to the editing environment. Can be enabled by clicking 'Preview' on the navigation bar when in the document context.
Fundamentally, a PageSeeder project provides the following two functions:
Project and Group names
Only use lowercase alpha characters plus hyphen (-), tilde (~) or underscore (_) in your project or group names. 
Another PageSeeder term with multiple contexts, like 'document' and 'metadata'. 
PSML (PageSeeder Markup Language)
PSML refers to the latest PageSeeder document format as a replacement for the PSXML (PageSeeder Standard XML) format. It is also known as the Universal format because either creating or publishing document collections can be done using a single format.
is a specialized PSML editor that only edits cross-references (XRefs).  It is used by the references document and can be invoked through the PSML document template.
The conventional meaning for 'public' refers to an external, often anonymous, community. In PageSeeder, 'public' means anyone NOT in the same group. 
Public API Support
Indicates the level of support of an HTTP servlet that is part of the public API for a particular usage.
See references document type article.
A term used to describe batch processing documents into non-PageSeeder formats such as PDF, docx or arbitrary XML formats.
Publish action
<action> elements are specified in the publish config, they include:
Publish Engine
Is a key component of the PageSeeder solution. Designed to be physically separated from the PageSeeder server, the Publish Engine allows CPU-intensive tasks, such as document composition or transformation, to be distributed. This protects the user interface code from having to share the host server with demanding, but less time sensitive, processes.
Publish Engine API
see PageSeeder Ant API.
Publish script
An Apache Ant build file (build.xml) that calls the Ant API through Ant tasks so they can be processed by the Publish Engine.
Publish task
An alternate, ambiguous and non-preferred term that refers to an Ant task.
 see Publish Engine.


Read only – section or document
Prevents a document or section from being edited through the standard PageSeeder user interface. This is especially useful for content that is being maintained externally  but integrated with PageSeeder content for publishing. An example of this class of content are comments that are maintained in source code.
references document type
PageSeeder comes pre-configured with two document types. default is a simple, general-purpose document structure for use in many different circumstances. The other type, references, is more specialized. It has been designed to represent a book structure, with front matter, a table of contents and then a collection of documents.
Reverse cross reference
A reverse cross reference (or reverse XRef) corresponds to the link going from a target document back to the source document in a bidirectional link.
The role determines the permissions of a member in a PageSeeder group.


Scheduled jobs
A Publish script can be scheduled to run at set times using the scheduler.
Is an ISO standard with powerful validation capabilities and configurable error messages. Further information about the standard is available via the Schematron Wikipedia page.
Built on the Apache Lucene technology, PageSeeder offers end users and developers several interfaces to find and retrieve content using the Search capability.
Search facets
Representing documents in PSML starts with defining the sections. These act as containers for fragments, which in turn, hold the actual marked-up text, graphics and more.
Section ID
Section table
This feature is deprecated from PSML (PageSeeder Markup Language). It has been replaced with <properties-fragment>.
Section title
A section title is stored outside the editable area of a section. It is displayed but cannot be removed or altered using the standard editing interface. This can be a useful way of building documents that are composed of specifically defined, or ordered, sections.
Server message
A server message is a global message that an administrator can enter in the administrator console for display on all pages on the server. It is generally used to notify ALL users currently logged into that particular PageSeeder server of a server wide event, such as an imminent upgrade or restart.
Shared document
A document viewable by more than one group.
Significant date
Significant date has been removed as of PageSeeder 5.8.
Site prefix
Is the prefix assigned to PageSeeder URLs. The value of the site prefix is stored in the template properties.
Standard format
Also known as PS Standard or PS XML, this format was defined by PageSeeder's Standard schema. This was the original document format for PageSeeder but is no longer supported. 
Is a value that can be assigned to a document using a workflow. The status values are configurable in the group properties.
Style owner
A legacy developer term that continues to be used in several locations in PageSeeder code and configuration files. Although the role of the style owner has evolved over the life of PageSeeder, the easiest way to understand the current use of the term is to equate it with the PageSeeder project.
Style view
Also known as perspectives, allow users to choose from a number of customized user interfaces. Style views can be changed using the perspective icon (cube) at the top left of any screen.
Is a project below another project or sub-project.
A 'subscription' group essentially allows the members of one group to be added to a new group as easily as adding a single new member.  The members of the subgroup can inherit the same roles and preferences as they have in the original group or they can override those properties.


Table of contents (ToC)
<toc> is a placeholder element for the generation of a Table of contents.
Is a comment with configurable metadata such as:
Task status
Is the status of the last comment in a task.
Template folder
The template folder is a container for most of PageSeeder's customizable code.
A summary page that lists the customizations for a project. The toolbox is accessible from the developer tab menu option in the developer perspective.
A transclusion is type of cross reference which is resolved directly so that the referenced content (a document or part of a document) is included into the source document.


Universal format
The universal format refers to a collection of PageSeeder files when outside PageSeeder. It consists of a file organization and uses PSML as a representation for PageSeeder documents and their metadata.
Although URIs are a key building block of PageSeeder's XLink architecture, no particular knowledge is required by end users or developers.
Is PageSeeder's internal identifier as opposed to the document ID, which is designed to be an external identifier.
URI pattern
A URI pattern (or URL pattern) is simple URL-like notation to match URLs. They are used by the layout manager, the PageSeeder services and Berlioz to identify the user interface to render or service to invoke from a URL.


See schematron or validating documents.
A version is a snapshot of a single document. It must have a name which can be a number, date or free text (e.g. 1.1, 2014-08-19, Final Draft) and may have a text note and/or labels. Only local content is included in the snapshot not transclusions. Multiple documents may be versioned at the same time with the same name but the version on each document only applies to that document.


Refers to the folder structure below the Web application server including the woconfig folder.
Weborganic folder
The weborganic folder is where PageSeeder stores the application-level styles, scripts and images to be served over the web. Where a project has been customized, the equivalent material is stored in the woconfig folder.
Woconfig folder
The woconfig folder is a container for most of PageSeeder's customizable styles and scripts.
A workflow is a special type of task that uses document status values (e.g. Initiated, In Progress, Complete, Approved, Terminated). There can only be one workflow per document and the status of the document is the workflow status. It can have a current priority, due date and assigned to like other tasks and can use comment labels. Workflows can be created on multiple documents at the same time (using batch processing) but they are independent from each other.


A representation of the PageSeeder content available through the developer perspective.
The XFormat is a comprehensive XML representation of both PageSeeder's interface and content prior to processing through the layout manager. It is a temporary view that is assembled then transformed into HTML for display by the browser.
XLinks are a key component in the PageSeeder architecture. Sometimes their role is obvious (cross references), and sometimes it is less obvious (a new document).
XSD files
There are a number of schema files that are useful for validating different aspects of PageSeeder. Both the files and documentation are available via Schemas.