At the beginning of 2016, IBM when live with a new User Interface for IBM Bluemix to help streamline workflows more effectively. I was quite impressed at the amount of detail that went into it. I can’t help but feel that IBM’s partnership with Apple is playing a positive role, as the new UI is night and day from typical IBM sites.
At the same time though, it was a bit confusing as to how one accesses their Dashboard or the Bluemix Catalog for that matter. This article offers some quick tips on how and where to find these.
Switching between Classic and New IBM Bluemix Dashboard
First thing’s first. When logging into IBM Bluemix, you’ll first arrive at the Classic Dashboard. On the Top left of the page, you’ll now see a link called “Try the new Bluemix“. Clicking on this will reload the web page, presenting you with a completely new and modernised look and feel.
To switch back is as easy as clicking on “Go to Classic Experience” on the top of the page towards the right.
So now that you know how to switch between the classic and new user interface, next is how to navigate.
Working with the Dashboard/Console Page
The Dashboard page (now referred to as the Console page) is where you’ll find all your running instances and services on Bluemix. This page now has a more modern look and feel and categorises your running instances/services using icons. I must admit that at the moment it’s difficult to know which category to enter. The icons currently don’t show how many instances/services are active (I’ll be submitting feedback to IBM about this).
The best is to click on the “All Categories” icon. This will take you to a listing of all your active runtimes and services.
Should you be on a different page in Bluemix, like the Catalog, and want to navigate back to your Dashboard, there’s a menu item called “Console” on the top of the page towards the left.
Browsing the Catalog
This was quite misleading at first. In the Classic Bluemix user interface, you easily navigated to the Catalog by clicking the “Catalog” menu item on the top of the page. In the new user interface, you need to click on the “Create” icon.
While I don’t mind the create icon and feel it’s becoming a best practice for online portals, it is quite misleading. My first impression was that I needed to create a runtime/instance/service just in order to peruse the Catalog. This is not the case just to be clear. the Create icon merely takes you to the Catalog page.
From the Catalog page, it’s more or less the same as before. You have your categories on the left and a search bar on top. Some quick changes I noticed is that the Categories on the left no longer drill down into a 2nd Tier. Also, the search bar on top now has a filter option, allowing you to filter between IBM, 3rd Party, Community and Beta packages.
There’s a number of new additions as well as changes to other areas of IBM Bluemix, but I wanted to focus on the core items that seemed misleading for those new to the UI.
In closing, I really enjoy the new look and feel. I feel it’s even a bit more responsive compared to the Classic view. It took a short while to get used to the new UI and I did find myself switching back to the Classic view in the beginning more often than not, but now I’m pretty much set on the new UI and hopefully after this post you will be to.