Enabling Comments and Ratings for Guestbook Entries

Adding Asset Features to Your UI

Step 5 of 5

The asset framework lets users comment on and rate assets. As with tags, categories, and related assets, you must update the user interface to expose these features. Good application design requires that you have a View page where users can rate and comment on assets. Follow these steps to enable comments and ratings on guestbook entries:

  1. Create a new file called view_entry.jsp in your guestbook-web module project’s /guestbookwebportlet folder.

  2. Add a Java scriptlet to the file you just created. In this scriptlet, use an entryId request attribute to get an entry object. For security reasons, convert this object to an escaped model as discussed in the earlier step Creating JSPs for Displaying Custom Assets in the Asset Publisher:

    <%@ include file="../init.jsp"%>
      long entryId = ParamUtil.getLong(renderRequest, "entryId");
      long guestbookId = ParamUtil.getLong(renderRequest, "guestbookId");
      Entry entry = null;
      if (entryId > 0) {
        entry = EntryLocalServiceUtil.getEntry(entryId);
        entryId = entry.getEntryId();
      entry = EntryLocalServiceUtil.getEntry(entryId);
      entry = entry.toEscapedModel();
      AssetEntry assetEntry = 
  3. Next, update the breadcrumb entry with the current entry’s name:

    String currentURL = PortalUtil.getCurrentURL(request);
    PortalUtil.addPortletBreadcrumbEntry(request, entry.getMessage(),
  4. At the end of the scriptlet, add the names of the current entry’s existing asset tags as keywords to the portal page. These tag names appear in a <meta content="[tag names here]" lang="en-US" name="keywords" /> element in your portal page’s <head> section. These keywords can help search engines find and index your page:

      PortalUtil.setPageSubtitle(entry.getMessage(), request);
      PortalUtil.setPageDescription(entry.getMessage(), request);
      List<AssetTag> assetTags = 
      PortalUtil.setPageKeywords(ListUtil.toString(assetTags, "name"), 
  5. After the scriptlet, specify the URLs for the page and back link:

    <liferay-portlet:renderURL varImpl="viewEntryURL">
      <portlet:param name="mvcPath"
        value="/guestbookwebportlet/view_entry.jsp" />
      <portlet:param name="entryId" value="<%=String.valueOf(entryId)%>" />
    <liferay-portlet:renderURL varImpl="viewURL">
      <portlet:param name="mvcPath"
        value="/guestbookwebportlet/view.jsp" />
    <liferay-ui:header backURL="<%=viewURL.toString()%>"
  6. Next, define the page’s main content. Display the guestbook’s name, and the entry’s name and message with the <dl>, <dt>, and <dd> tags:


    This is the same way you defined the page’s main content in /guestbookwebportlet/full_content.jsp.

  7. Next, use a <liferay-ui:panel-container> tag to create a panel container. Inside this tag, use a <liferay-ui:panel> tag to create a panel to display the comments and ratings components:

    <liferay-ui:panel-container extended="<%=false%>"
      id="guestbookCollaborationPanelContainer" persistState="<%=true%>">
      <liferay-ui:panel collapsible="<%=true%>" extended="<%=true%>"
        id="guestbookCollaborationPanel" persistState="<%=true%>"
  8. Add the ratings component with the <liferay-ui:ratings> tag:

    <liferay-ui:ratings className="<%=Entry.class.getName()%>"
      classPK="<%=entry.getEntryId()%>" type="stars" />
    <br />
  9. Next you need to add a scriptlet to retrieve the comments discussion object:

    <% Discussion discussion = 
    scopeGroupId, Entry.class.getName(), 
    entry.getEntryId(), new ServiceContextFunction(request));
  10. Below that add the tag for tracking the number of comments:

    <c:if test=“<%= discussion != null %>”>

    <liferay-ui:message arguments=“<%= discussion.getDiscussionCommentsCount() %>” key=‘<%= (discussion.getDiscussionCommentsCount() == 1) ? “x-comment” : “x-comments” %>’ />

  11. Create the liferay-comment:discussion tag, which creates the comments form, Reply button, and retrieves the discussion content. It also handles the form action of posting the comment without requiring you to create a portlet action URL.

        className="<%= Entry.class.getName() %>"
        classPK="<%= entry.getEntryId() %>"
        discussion="<%= discussion %>"
        redirect="<%= currentURL %>"
        userId="<%= entry.getUserId() %>"
  12. To restrict comments and ratings access to logged-in users, wrap the whole panel container in a <c:if> tag that tests the expression themeDisplay.isSignedIn():

    <c:if test="<%= themeDisplay.isSignedIn() %>">
        ... your panel container ...

    Make sure you add the closing </c:if> tag after the closing </liferay-ui:panel-container> tag.

Next, you’ll update the guestbook actions to use the new view.

Updating the Entry Actions JSP

Your view_entry.jsp page is currently orphaned. Fix this by adding the View option to the Actions Menu. Open the /guestbookwebportlet/entry_actions.jsp and find the following line:


Add the following lines below it:

<portlet:renderURL var="viewEntryURL">
  <portlet:param name="entryId"
    value="<%= String.valueOf(entry.getEntryId()) %>" />
  <portlet:param name="mvcPath"
    value="/guestbookwebportlet/view_entry.jsp" />

<liferay-ui:icon message="View" url="<%= viewEntryURL.toString() %>" />

Here, you create a URL that points to view_entry.jsp. Test this link by selecting the View option in a guestbook entry’s Actions Menu. Then test your comments and ratings.

Excellent! You’ve asset-enabled the guestbook and guestbook entry entities and enabled tags, categories, and related assets for both entities. You’ve also enabled comments and ratings for guestbook entry entities! Great job!

Figure 1: Now you can see comments, rating, and the full range of asset features.

Figure 1: Now you can see comments, rating, and the full range of asset features.

Your next task is to generate web services. This makes it possible to write other clients (such as mobile applications) for the Guestbook application.

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