Sitecore Page Editor Tips and tricks – component datasource versions

Out of the box, Sitecore does nothing if a components datasouce doesn’t exist or if there aren’t any versions in the current language. This means that you will have to handle this your self.
Well I thought that it would be nice to let the rules engine in Sitecore handle this.

My plan was to create a global conditional rendering rule that would check the following criterias:

  • Is the Rendering Item of the current rendering configured with a Datasource Template?
  • If not, ignore the following statements and display the rendering!
  • Does the rendering have any datasource set?
  • Does the datasource exist?
  • If the datasource item is a media item, the next statement should be ignored and the rendering displayed.
  • Does it have any versions in the current language?

If it would fail on any of these statement, the rendering should be hidden. Since there weren’t any existing condition which did this, I had to build it my self. Things said and done and the result was this:

public class HasItemVersionForDatasource : OperatorCondition
      where T : ConditionalRenderingsRuleContext
        protected override bool Execute(T ruleContext)
            var renderingItem = ruleContext.Item.Database.GetItem(ruleContext.Reference.RenderingID);
            var dsLocation = renderingItem.Fields["Datasource Location"].Value;
            var dsTemplate = renderingItem.Fields["Datasource Template"].Value;
            if ((dsLocation.Length > 0 || dsTemplate.Length > 0) && string.IsNullOrEmpty(ruleContext.Reference.Settings.DataSource)) return false;
            else if (string.IsNullOrEmpty(ruleContext.Reference.Settings.DataSource)) return true;

            var datasourceitem = ruleContext.Item.Database.GetItem(ruleContext.Reference.Settings.DataSource);
            return datasourceitem.Paths.IsMediaItem || datasourceitem.Versions.Count > 0;

This condition was added to Sitecore and enabled for the Conditional Rendering Rules. Since the condition doesn’t take any parameters you can write anything you like, I went with “where the renderings datasource has item version”.
A new rule at /sitecore/system/Settings/Rules/Conditional Renderings/Global Rules was created using the new condition looking like this:


With this now set up, all renderings with a datasource which doesn’t have any version in the current language will be hidden. And in the Page Editor they will be visible as grey blocks like this:


That’s it, pretty usefull right? 😀 Now you’ll be relieved from performing null-checks and so on in each component. And also you will get a clear indication in the Page Editor that there are components that aren’t translated.

Note that this only handles guid and path based datasources and not query based datasources. However it could surely be extended.

I will follow up with some additional post regarding Page Editor tips and tricks 😀


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