Plugin html email
I am starting this page so i can slowly start to document what we have done for this plugin or functionality addition (if you can call HTML emails that) ;)
The plugin is not ready for production environments yet, but I needed to start the page, because time is limited, and this plugin is complicated (not really but to explain how it works is)
| This is a draft article (or section) and is a work-in-progress.|
HTML emails plugin
As we all know, SiT! by design send emails in 'text' format, and throughout the 2/3 years of our company using and improving SiT!, the request for HTML emails have often been noted and discussed. Myself and some others amongst the dev team were in agreement that is was not that great to have HTML emailing in SiT! and we moved the request to a lower priority.
Lately it has become imperative that we could do HTML emails, due to the increasing number of Support teams, and the complexities of some of their responses: Plain text emails was not going to cut it. Thus we decided to go on this long and winding path to find a solution ...
We defined some key points:
- The user needs to have the choice whether he wants to use this feature or not
- The plugin needs to be transparent, thus not affecting the normal tracker behaviour
- Because of different systems (OS and email), a copy of the email needs to be saved on the SiT! server (same server)
We had a few options to choose from:
- Re-make the entire email page (incident_email.php) to be an HTML mail client
- Use a 3rd party created HTML email script instead of the SiT! email script
- Use the user's "normal" email client on his machine
After analysing all the options, we eventually came to the conclusion that if we could use the 3rd options above, it would be the most desirable to our goals.
About the plugin
The plugin does the following things:
- Emails are save in .eml format on the local HDD (/attachments/emails) in .eml format.
- In the incident_details page, in each update header we add a link "Open original". When you click this link the original email on the HDD (see above will be downloaded and opened in your default email client.
- To complete the loop, thus bringing the update from you into SiT! (your reply to the email you just opened in your mail client), we need to send a copy of the email back to the SiT! installation, and this update is then imported into the incident as normal. During this part it is important to write some sort of script (we used a VBA script for Outlook), to verify that a copy of the email is sent back to the SiT! incident.
The above is achieved with multiple plugins:
- Email saved to HDD (plugin=local_save_email)
- Link to open original email (plugin=idu_extended_actions)
- Ensure the returning update (only the engineer response) is put back into SiT! (plugin=html_return_update)
A customer send an email to us ....
The support guy opens the original (from the SiT! server) and reads it ...
He clicks reply, to answer the customer ....
The answer is re-imported into the incident ...