Scheduled (Delayed) Publication

Publish/unpublish pages at a future date and time.

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Last reviewed: October 15, 2021

Overview

Your pages can be published and unpublished automatically by the UBCMS at a predetermined date and time. Two methods—Delayed Activation vs Scheduling On/Off Time—each has its pros and cons.

Scheduling Publication

screenshot of Manage Publication button.

Manage Publication button

Overview

The UBCMS allows Publishers to set a future date and time to publish or unpublish a page. (Publisher permissions are required.)

This feature is engaged in the Sites Console, using the Manage Publication tool which appears in the Command Menu when the page is selected.

How to Set Scheduling

From the Sites Console, select a page then click the Manage Publication tool in the Command Menu that displays at the top of the window. During this process, the first screen gives the opportunity to choose Publish or Unpublish, and set Scheduling (with a specific date and time).

Scheduling starts a workflow that cannot be modified, and can only be terminated with assistance. This workflow also publishes the page as it exists now, and will NOT include subsequent changes.

Once it is engaged, the Sites Console notes the existence of the workflow in the Workflow column.

This option is only available to those with Publisher permissions.

screenshot of Manage Publication's Scheduling feature.

Manage Publication's Scheduling feature

Scheduling starts a system workflow that cannot be modified, and can only be terminated with assistance. This also publishes the page as it exists now, and will NOT include subsequent changes.

Considerations

Pros:

  • Always has a visual cue in the Sites Console Workflow column.
  • Easy to set.
  • Can set a publish and also unpublish dates.

Cons:

  • The scheduled event CANNOT be modified and can only be stopped with intervention by the DCT Help Team.
  • Can be overridden by subsequent manual publication, although the scheduled behavior will still occur as planned. There is a risk of competing publication activities.
  • The scheduled publication uses the version from the time the action was set (NOT the current version).
screenshot of Workflow notation in the Sites Console.

Workflow notation in the Sites Console

Scheduling On/Off Time

Overview

Use Scheduling On/Off Time to quickly set a specific date/time range for a page to be displayed on your live website.

This is very handy for a page that is embargoed (cannot be live) UNTIL a specific date/time, or for a page that must be hidden (cannot be live) AFTER a specific date/time. It is not recommended for setting a future date to republish a page that is already live.

Do not equate 'On' with the act of Publication. If the page is live now, but you set a future 'On' time, the UBCMS will UNPUBLISH your page until that date and time are reached. And if the page is not yet published, 'On' will publish it when that time is reached--there is no need to publish it as well.

Be careful when adding these constraints to a page that is already activated, or one that may need to be activated before the On/Off scheduling takes effect normally, as the UBCMS may hide or reveal it unexpectedly on your live site.

This option is available to those with Publisher permissions. For others, it will be grayed out.

Don't Be Surprised

When a published page is provided with a Schedule On Time, the page may immediately disappear from the published site with a '404 error' until the On Time occurs as scheduled.

How to Set Schedule On/Off

  1. Open Properties:
    • In the Sites Console, select the page then click Properties in the Command Menu that displays.
    • In the Edit Console, click the Equalizer button then select Open Properties.
  2. Click the Scheduling tab.
  3. Ignore the Feature Time and be sure to adjust the On/Off Time.
  4. For On/Off Time, specify the date and time for the action.
    • If an On Time is set, the page will not be visible on the live site, even if activated, until the On Time is reached.
    • If an Off Time is set, the page will not be visible on the live site, even if activated, after the Off Time is reached.
  5. Click OK.
Access Scheduling On-Off Time through Page Properties.

Access Scheduling On-Off Time through Page Properties.

Do not set Feature Time by mistake.  Feature On/Off Time relates to "Scheduling" in list components.

Considerations

  • If the On/Off Times are in the future, there is no need to publish or re-publish the page. These settings act as triggers, which publish/unpublish the page when the requested time is reached.
  • If an On/Off Time is set in the past, that trigger action will never occur and you will need to manually publish or unpublish the page or change those times to a future date.
  • For a page that is set to be On at a future date, subsequent manual publication will send page changes to the live site, but will not over-ride the set On Time. The page will be on the live site but hidden from view so the public may not see those changes.
  • If a page is set to be On now, and is then unpublished, the On Time is ignored/overridden and it will be removed from your live site.

Pros:

  • On/Off Time details can be seen and adjusted easily (but the page may need to be republished) unless they are manually removed.
  • On/Off Time details are noted in the Site Console's Published column. Hover to reveal the exact details.
  • On/Off Time details are listed in the Page Report.

Cons:

  • On/Off Time can be confusing and appear to conflict with manual publishing of the page.
  • Setting a future On Time can unexpectedly conceal your page from view in your live site and possibly even in Author (e.g. in lists).
  • Only one On and one Off Time can be set for a page.
screenshot of visual cue provided for Scheduling On / Off Time.

Visual cue for Scheduling On / Off Time

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