Google Sites News

Improved Google Sites Sitemap

posted Mar 29, 2010, 7:15 PM by Brian Johnson

The Google Sites Sitemap has been updated to allow for improved load times.  The improved Sitemap now loads with all page levels collapsed, and only loads sub-pages when that section of the site is expanded.  The image below shows the Sitemap for the Unofficial Google Sites Help after having manually expanded the Step-By-Step Guides section:

Google Sites Survey

posted Mar 12, 2010, 8:01 PM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Mar 29, 2010, 7:15 PM ]

With the March, 2010 release, Google Sites displays a link to a "Google Sites User Feedback Survey" in the header of all Google Sites websites.  This link appears randomly for visitors who are logged in with a Google or Google Apps account, and cannot be managed by site Administrators.

Google Translator, Preview PDFs and Page Templates Location

posted Dec 19, 2009, 8:15 AM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Dec 19, 2009, 8:20 AM ]

New Google Sites features as of December 17, 2009:
  • Translate a site you visit that's not in your default language for Google Sites. This could be used by international co-workers to view the project site of a remote office if that project site is in the local language of that office.
  • PDF files attached to pages and file cabinets can now be previewed with the Google Docs viewer so no need to download the file.
  • You can now set a default location in your site for page templates.

How to access what's new:
  • If you visit a site that's not in your chosen language for Sites, there is now a 'Translate' link at the bottom right of the page which will translate the site for you using Google Translate.
  • For a PDF file in Sites, clicking on 'View' instead of 'Download' now previews that PDF in Google Docs viewer.
  • When saving or modifying a page template, choose 'Default location' to specify a location in your site structure. If a page is then created using this template, then the default location will be what you've specified

Page Templates

posted Oct 7, 2009, 7:20 PM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Oct 7, 2009, 7:23 PM ]

Google has released a new feature for Google Sites:  Page Templates.  For more information on working with Page Templates, please see the following articles:

Page Creator (GPC) Migration

posted Aug 25, 2009, 7:17 AM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Aug 25, 2009, 7:34 AM ]

The migration from Google Page Creator (GPC) to Google Sites has officially begun. 

As of August 24, 2009, the GPC to Sites migration and the subsequent shutdown of the GPC service has begun.  The first batch of GPC accounts has been migrated to Sites, and the remaining accounts will be migrated over the next 2 - 3 weeks. 

If you experience any issues with your account as it is migrated to the Sites service, I would recommend that you bring your concerns to the Google Sites User Forum.  (Be sure to search for similar issues before starting a new thread!)

Google Sites Updates: August 2009

posted Aug 22, 2009, 10:57 AM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Aug 27, 2009, 7:31 PM ]

On August 27, 2009, Google released the following notable updates and bug fixes to the Google Sites service:


  • Recent Announcements
    - The Recent Announcements gadget has been enhanced to allow for the following configuration options:
    • Show a thumbnail of the first image in the post
    • Show more lines of the post, including the full post content.
    • Showing full post content + 1 post enables "<thing> of the day" functionality.
    • Add introductory text above the first announcement.
  • Third Party Gadgets - Gadgets that are added through the Insert >> More Gadgets menu option can now be configured to take up 100% of the available width.  Then can also be given titles and borders.
  • Site Search
    - The built-in site search feature is now fully customizable.  Site Owners can configure search for their sites using the following options:
    • Search across multiple sites (not just the current site)
    • Search across the entire Apps domain (useful for intranets)
    • Search using a Custom Search Engine
    • Search using a Google Search Appliance (or specific GSA front end).
    • Remove the search option from the site.
  • Site Copy - Site owners now have the ability to quickly copy sitesCopying may occur in the following scenarios:
    • Copy site from an Apps domain  to another site in the same Apps domain
    • Copy site from an Apps domain to another site in a different Apps domain
    • Copy site from an Apps domain to another non-Apps site
    • Copy site from a non-Apps site to another non-Apps site
    • Copy site from a non-Apps site to another site in an Apps domain
  • Format
    Menu - Two new text formatting options have been added to the Format menu for use while editing pages:
    • Code
    • Blockquote Code

Notable Fixes

  • Sidebar issue with textboxes - Fixed the error on saving some sidebars with textboxes
  • PDF files - Changed PDF viewing back to being viewable instead of forcing downloads.
  • SWF files - Fixed Flash SWF files being hosted and served on Sites through gadgets.
  • Files with spaces in the name - Fixed the issue of file names being truncated when downloading files with spaces in their name.
  • <pre> tag - Fixed the <pre> tag inserting extra linebreaks after saving in editor.

>> Read the official Google announcement from the Google Sites User Forum.

Google Sites Updates: July 29, 2009

posted Jul 27, 2009, 8:56 PM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Jul 30, 2009, 4:51 AM ]

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The most recent Google Sites release includes the following notable enhancements and bug fixes:


  • A new "Embed Gadget" has been added to the Featured gadgets section.  This gadget can be used to embed objects that would otherwise be stripped by the Google Sites editor. (It is my understanding that this gadget will auto-wrap iframes, object tags, and embeding tags, but <script> tags are still not supported.)  The addition of this gadget paves the way to a future that may not require the use of custom gadgets.  To access this gadget, select Insert >> More Gadgets >> Featured while editing a page.

  • Even better than the addition of the "Embed Gadget" is that the Google Sites HTML editor will now automatically enclose many embedded objects in the "Embed Gadget" or an IFRAME gadget.
  • Google Sites now allowing for uploading .html and .js files.
  • Selecting Insert >> Calendar now provides the option to pick an existing calendar, rather than requiring you to know the URL.

  • The built-in Navigation gadget now supports external links when used in manual mode.  (Manual mode requires that you remove the check in the box next to Automatically organize my navigation.)  Previously you could only select pages from within your site's hierarchy.

Bug Fixes

  • The various issues that occurred when copying text into Sites from MS Word has been resolved.
  • The issue with version comparisons has been resolved.
  • Embedding presentations is once again possible, as the issue has been resolved.

Google Sites Updates: July 15, 2009

posted Jul 17, 2009, 1:44 PM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Jul 20, 2009, 2:12 PM ]

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The following notable updates and bug fixes were recently rolled into production for Google Sites:
  • Google Sites now supports the use of a custom favicon.
  • Various errors when using the editor (including session timeouts) were generating the <blank> is editing your page lock message.  This has been resolved.
  • Nested bulleted lists were not functioning properly.  This has been resolved.
  • Header logos were being truncated if too wide.  This has been resolved.
  • The link color was not getting updated when changed unless there was a hard refresh on the site.  This has been resolved.
  • When using the Google Chrome or Safari browsers, the HTML editor had a significant delay.  This has been resolved.
  • When using Google Chrome, the calendar in the countdown widget would not display.  This has been resolved.
  • In some instances, a user could remove the last owner of a site. This has been addressed, and should no longer be possible.

Google Maps Now Integrated with Google Sites

posted Jul 9, 2009, 1:33 PM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Jul 9, 2009, 5:42 PM ]


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Google Maps is now fully integrated with Google Sites.  Learn more about this update by following the Embedding Google Maps article on this site.

  >>  Official Google Announcement

Issue with "Simply White" Theme Resolved

posted Jul 9, 2009, 10:02 AM by Brian Johnson   [ updated Jul 9, 2009, 10:13 AM ]

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The previous issue with the Simply White theme in Google Sites has been resolved.  The Simply White theme has been removed and replaced with a similar theme now called Blank Slate.  As a result of this change, all sites should now be able to display AdSense ad block impressions.

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