GeoCat has been involved in many significant projects delivering Spatial Data Infrastructure solutions worldwide based on GeoNetwork opensource software. We provide consultancy services to agencies like the United Nations, CGIAR, Rijkswaterstaat, multiple National Mapping Agencies, Environment Canada and the European Environment Agency (EEA). The following projects are examples of work we do at GeoCat.
We’re delighted to share the next Feature release of GeoNetwork and GeoServer Enterprise, named 2020.5. The release was scheduled to arrive in spring 2020. Unfortunately the release has been delayed by various factors, amongst others the Covid crisis. In this announcement we’ll highlight some of the new features, allowing you to prepare for the migration.
With a combined release of the GeoCat Enterprise products, GeoCat aims to provide a smooth migration path. The products are tested in conjunction on common use cases.
An important new feature of the software is the plugin system. In previous iterations we prepared various ‘flavours’ of the software having subsets of available plugins included. In the current version you are invited to deploy any of the available plugins in your installation of the core product. Plugins have their own lifecycle, which allows us to speed up or slow down the release cycle of certain plugins, without any impact on the core product. For you as a customer it provides more flexibility on the plugins installed on various deployments.
Another new aspect is that the documentation of the enterprise products is now directly available at https://geocat.net/docs.
The new version of GeoNetwork has an improved workflow mechanism. At GeoCat we are very delighted that it finally arrives in the core product. We’ve been experimenting with this functionality at various customers for quite some time. The workflow introduces a “draft space” in which modified records live before being approved and replacing the production copy.
Since the end of 2019 the Dutch schema plugins for datasets v1.3 and service v1.2 are officially deprecated to be used by Geonovum. Considering the recommendation from Geonovum “to prevent archived metadata requiring an update to be conformant to the 2.0 profile, metadata needs to be updated to the 2.0 profile only in case new metadata is created or existing metadata is updated”, we recommend to keep the previous schema’s in your implementation. But we also recommend to disable the templates linking to those schema’s. Please note that we also offer a mechanism to migrate records in the catalogue to a 2.0 profile, from the editor of the previous version.
Includes update of OpenLayers
The 2020.5 upgrade includes an update to the latest version of OpenLayers. This is a major change of the code, which we have been thoroughly testing in recent months. Especially the support for ESRI services has been improved and the visualisation on mobile devices.
A nice feature we want to highlight is the improved OWS harvester. The OWS harvester now facilitates the creation of records (based on a configurable template) for each layer in an OWS (WMS/WFS/WCS) service. The records created can be updated via the GeoNetwork editor. In next runs of the harvest, the harvester will only update selected fields in the record, so the manual improvements in the editor are persisted.
A node is a subset of the catalogue records advertised at a dedicated endpoint. The multinode functionality in GeoNetwork has been seriously refactured. Setting up new nodes previously required to create and modify xml files in the config section. In the new version nodes can be created via de admin interface. For each node a custom layout can be configured. Virtual CSW is now a part of multinode.
Other new features on this release are:
- A user feedback mechanism enables users to add questions and comments to any record.
- Metadata history is logged, so you can follow a trail of who has made specific modifications on the record, and even go back to any moment in history.
- A basket is introduced in which users can store their favourite records or search results for later reuse.
- ISO19115-1:2018 is now one of the default schema plugins.
New in the 2020.5 release of GeoServer Enterprise is the introduction of a resource browser plugin. With the resource browser you can remove, update or upload config files to your GeoServer configuration folder. Catering for advanced customisation such as feature info templates, or bug fixing in case of errors. The resource browser is also operational in case you use database persistence for the configuration.
Other new features on this release are:
- Mapbox style is now an official plugin for GeoServer. It means you can style your layers using MapBox Style syntax.
- A new tab to set up specific authorisations is added to every layer, layer group and workspace configuration page.
- A date of last modification is added to each configurable field, including an option to filter on modification data.
This release of Enterprise products does not include a GeoCat Bridge release. The edition for ArcGIS Pro is in full preparation, but it is too early to release it. The edition for QGIS and ArcMap had no release scheduled.
Let us know if you have questions
We hope you will enjoy the 2020 spring release as much as we do. Let us know if you have any questions or notice any challenges around this upgrade. The release (and plugins) are available for download from https://nexus.geocat.net/browse/enterprise. If your organisation does not have a login for this repository yet, contact us at email@example.com.
Jose Garcia and Jody Garnett
Product Managers of GeoNetwork Enterprise, GeoCat Bridge and GeoServer Enterprise
GeoCat was contracted to implement a metadata catalogue based on GeoNetwork opensource for the National GeoRegistry of The Netherlands. A main goal for the metadata catalogue was to develop a new user interface more usable and flexible, an easy to use metadata editor, Introduce GeoDCAT-ap and crawling capabilities by search engines.
GeoCat Bridge is a key part of our Neftex Earth Model publishing workflow, enabling us to easily replicate the geological symbols used to style our ArcGIS produced content said Alex Rushfort of Neftex Now we can deliver Web Map Services to our international oil industry clients through GeoServer, retaining the familiar appearance of our desktop GIS data products.
GeoCat has developed the metadata catalogue portal for the Flemish Geographical Information Agency (AGIV) in a consortium with GIM.
Several improvements and new functions have been added to the GeoNetwork opensource based catalog to further refine support for INSPIRE, improve the metadata publishing workflow and support horizontal scaling of multiple catalog instances.
GeoCat is contracted by the German Federal Agency for Cartography and Geodesy, BKG, to implement several enhancements to GeoNetwork opensource for the German INSPIRE Spatial Data Infrastructure GDI.
One of the goals is to create a module for metadata content analysis to will allow metadata editors to determine the quality of the metadata in order to improve it.
GeoCat is contracted by Environment Canada to implement a metadata catalogue based on GeoNetwork opensource. A main goal for the metadata catalogue is to be compliant with web accessible rules.
In the context of the project many other features have been implemented. For example the support for the SensorML metadata profile, an enhanced workflow module that offers several levels of verification and approval before a metadata is published, enhanced filters with facets for the metadata search results, et cetera.
GeoCat has implemented the metadata catalogue based on GeoNetwork opensource for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.
The metadata catalogue contains new features like the integration of data files uploaded as online resources with an FME Server, a reporting module and a module to allow massive updates of metadata content.
GeoCat has contributed to the development of the SwissTopo geographic catalogue. geocat.ch is the metadata catalogue for Switzerland’s geodata. Federal, cantonal and municipal offices as well as private firms use geocat.ch to publish metadata for their own geodata.
GeoCat worked in a consortium with CamptoCamp (Swiss) and BRGM (France) on the implementation. GeoCat focussed on the support of complex metadata editing, including functionality to prevent public access to sensitive metadata fragments within the metadata, a custom Swiss catalogue interface, upgrade to a JS Widgets based user interface and general technical support to the project.
The geocat.ch portal can be found at http://www.geocat.ch
GeoCat is contracted by a consortium of the cadastre agencies of Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Scotland to develop the core of their respective National geo-registries. GeoCat works on ensuring the compliance of the software with the INSPIRE directive for metadata. The security layer and web mapping interface are further developed as part of this project which is running since the start of 2010.
GeoCat has implemented the ebRIM registry interface with the basic and ISO extension packages for the European Space Agency project ERGO. The project fits within the broader Heterogeneous Mission Accessibility Test bed (HMA-T) that works towards harmonized access to all earth observation data collected by the ESA member states at the distributed ground segments. The registry is implemented as a component of the GeoNetwork open source project and transparently publishes metadata published in GeoNetwork through the registry. The ebRIM software source code can be found here
GeoCat Bridge is the long awaited product that promises to fill the gap between our open – and closed source hybrid geospatial frameworks said Thijs van Menen from Rijkswaterstaat (The Netherlands) Specific knowledge on how to make services is no longer needed. Finally we can fulfill the needs of our staff by providing them with a tool to make services by themselves in an easy way