Blog Post

Couchbase Documentation Updates

MC Brown Published

In the TechPubs team we are totally committed to getting our users the information they need to get the best out of Couchbase Server and the related client libraries and products. Here's a quick update as to what we've been doing and what we are still working on.

We've been working away for the last few months trying to get as much information and material out as quickly as we can, while trying to make sure it's the best quality content and information we can provide. 

Comments, Suggestions, Requests? 

Before we leap into the details, please be aware that you can always get in touch with the TechPubs team to make comments, suggestions, or request new features. If you have a request or feature on a specific page of one of the manuals, please use the Disqus Comments to let us know what needs to be done. We try to fix those comments as soon as we can. If you have a longer or more generic suggestion, please email us at editors@couchbase.com. 

Ops Guide Improvements

We've spent the bulk of our time trying to improve the information and content in our main Couchbase Server manuals to get updated and improved information on a variety of topics. Here's a quick list of what we've done recently:

Updated Rebalance section

A completely rewritten and updated rebalancing section now covers expanding your cluster, shrinking it back, the rebalance process, how to monitor the progress and what's going on behind the scenes so that you can get a better idea of everything going on both before you rebalance and during the rebalance operation. The rebalance is one of the most critical parts of the Couchbase Server operations, and a better understanding and step-by-step instructions now show you what to look out for and how to perform this most critical of tasks.

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-1.8/couchbase-admin-tasks-addremove.html

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-2.0/couchbase-admin-tasks-addremove.html

Updated Failover section

Handling and dealing with any kind of failover scenario in your Couchbase Cluster is critical to keeping the health and performance of your cluster in check. We've updated this section with more information about what a failover is, how to spot, monitor and handle the situation, and how to get your cluster back into the ideal performance state through a rebalance so that your cluster is back up and running again. 

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-1.8/couchbase-admin-tasks-failover.html

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-2.0/couchbase-admin-tasks-failover.html

Views

We've expanded the Views chapter with loads more information on writing views, performing queries, and numerous examples of writing both map and reduce functions within your views to get the the information you need out of the cluster. Look out for a more detailed examination of all the view docs improvements in a future blog post.

 

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-2.0/couchbase-views.html

Cleaned Up REST API

The REST API material needed a good clean up just to make the content and structure more navigable. We've completed the first phase of cleaning up this material to make it easier to use. Separately, behind the scenes, we are working on a much bigger, and much more substantial update that will add much more detail to each REST API call, including errors, query arguments, and content to make that information a key reference to the REST API administration. 

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-1.8/couchbase-admin-restapi.html

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-2.0/couchbase-admin-restapi.html

Developer Content

Karen Zeller joined the team in May this year and she has been doing some excellent work on improving the developer materials, including improvements across all of the SDK documentation for Java, Ruby, .NET, Python and PHP. Some of this is less obvious behind the scenes work to improve the quality and content for the detail tables that we produce for each of the API calls. Other material is more significant; we now have better examples and background information in most of our SDKs and we're working to get that information expanded and improved over the coming months. 

You can view our SDK materials on the main docs page:

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/

Also, for those interested, we have an overarching API guide which provides an excellent overview reference to the list of operations and how they are exposed in all of the different client libraries. For example, if you look at the page for set you can see how set is exposed in each library. We're working on adding a link there to the corresponding SDK documentation to make it a complete guide. Meanwhile, for this people considering building their own client library in their favourite language, look here for the core information and how other languages expose the different ops.

http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-api-reference-1.1/couchbase-protocol.html

Works in Progress 

With all this progress we are not remotely planning on resting on respective laurels. 

Updated Introduction and Architecture 

Working on the Couchbase Server book for O'Reilly (get your copy here) we found there was a lack of background detail on Couchbase Server and some of the key components and facets of the product that people need to understand better so that they can get the best out of Couchbase Server. We're working on updating and improving the intro and architecture materials so that that information is in place and able to be referenced elsewhere. 

Updated Deployment and Cloud Deployment 

We updated our Couchbase Server AMIs and added new documentation to the manual (http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-1.8/couchbase-deployment-ec2.html), but we're going to be adding and expanding that information and material to cover the best practice on using and deploying Couchbase Server in the cloud. As part of that update, we'll also improve the general deployment advice and information. 

Developer Guide

Karen has also been working on building and writing a background developer guide which will sit and work with the client library documentation to provide background information and common patterns that can be used and applied regardless of the language you are using with Couchbase Server. We're still working on this content to make it the best it can be, but look out for an announcement on this material soon. 

Developing with Couchbase Server Book

After completing the main Getting started guide, the work on the developer book has already started. The focus of this guide is purely on writing applications that use Couchbase Server, including migrating your existing ones. If you have suggestions or requests, please let us know. 

Translations

Our Japanese partners have been working on our manuals. We have the Couchbase Server 1.8 manual available (http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-manual-1.8-ja/index.html) and we recently released the Java SDK in Japanese (http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-sdk-java-1.0-ja/index.html) too. Look for more translations coming soon.

RSS Feed

We have an RSS feed that tracks (and reports) all the recent changes in the documentation, including details of major changes and improvements available (http://www.couchbase.com/docs/couchbase-docs.rss)

Questions? 

If you have any questions or comments, leave them here, in our Docs comment system, or write to us on editors@couchbase.com!