[Hub] Distinguish unset from unused features

In the Hub, go to My Websites and look at the sequence of icons for each site. A site may show a grey icon, like for Backups or SEO or Reports, because we aren't running Snapshot, a managed backup, or SmartCrawl. For some sites this is a conscious decision. For others, like new sites, it's a good indicator that we still need to take some action on a site. The problem is that the same icon is used to convey two possible conditions.

When I look at my sites, I don't want to see one of these grey icons and have to look at the domain name and think everytime about whether I forgot something or whether a conscious decision was made to not use a feature. I'd like all of the icons to tell me something valuable: Green is fine. Yellow means something needs attention. Red indicates and error. And grey should only mean I haven't yet made a decision about using a feature.

I'm requesting a new setting for each feature that doesn't already have it: A toggle for Enabled/Disabled. Disabled features will show a different icon, perhaps blue, or the same grey with a slash through it. With this we can look at the entire My Websites dashboard and see immediately exactly what needs action, and not.

When I open a site that isn't running backups (like a site on my PC that's running in a Local By Flywheel VM) I don't want a banner telling me "Hey, you're not running backups, click here to get started!" No, I know I don't want to run backups, I want to disable that. If I enable it and I have not configured the backups, THEN, sure, give me a big warning.

This concept has precedent. In a RDBMS we initialize fields with null to indicate no value has been set. Applications will then often set such a field to an empty string to explicitly indicate the field has been set and the value is intentionally "nothing". This is very different from the concept that the field has not been set. We do the same with nullable numerics, where we don't initialize to zero. Over time we've learned that when we do init to zero, we may have no idea if that was a value set by a user or if the field has simply not been provided. Defaulting to zero may not be valid or desirable.

Thanks for consideration of this enhancement.

  • Adam Czajczyk
    • Support Gorilla

    Hi Tony G

    I hope you’re doing well today!

    Thank you for this extensive feedback also!

    I see the point and that absolutely makes sense – there’s a huge difference between “not working” (e.g. failed connection between The Hub and the site so no managed backups), “not used” (e.g. Snapshot installed and activated but not configured/used at all) and “not used on purpose” (because you consciously decided not to use managed backups).

    Especially with complex sites and/or a large number of sites connected to The Hub such a differentiation in “visual indication” would be great.

    I passed that over to our Hub team but I’d also say that it might worth waiting a bit more for Hub 2.0 because of two important reasons:

    – there’s gonna be quite a lot of improvement there

    – and a “makeover” would be quite huge so we might need to “re-evaluate” improvements/new features to “fit in” better but there’ll also be much more “room” for improvements as afar as I’m aware thanks to the ‘architecture behind” :slight_smile:

    Best regards,

    Adam

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