22 December 2020 / Last updated: 06 Jan 2021

Introducing the new balenaCloud sidebar

During balena's Release Party 3, our team designed and deployed a new sidebar on balenaCloud in less than eight hours. This includes improvement of the menu experience and innovative breadcrumbs. Thanks to every teammate who contributed to redesign the sidebar.

Better navigation for better fleet management

We’ve been looking to update the balenaCloud dashboard menu for some time to make it more functional and useful as we introduce new features, such as the recently released tooling for organizations.
The new navigation design accommodates that and more, allowing you to navigate easily and be more productive.
The left-hand navigation bar has been widened slightly and condensed for a consistent look as you work. The existing top-level “Applications” and “Organizations” buttons remain, but you’ll see a new expandable tree structure as you drill down to applications and organization features.
Instead of navigation elements across the top of any particular view, shown at right from the previous navigation, you’ll now see the breadcrumb represented in the side menu. As you click through to an application, you’ll see its name in the navigation along with familiar buttons for reviewing application-wide variables, members and location. We’ve added new “Dependent Applications” and “Notifications” menu items for features under development.
Click through to a device, and you’ll see in the menu its name and type and sub-menus for familiar summary, variable, configuration, action, diagnostics and location information. The left-hand navigation remains in place with the current tab tracking your view context, making it easier to keep track of where you are.
The collapsible maintains a similar look and feel when you navigate through your organization structure. When you drill down into a specific org, you’ll see it listed in the side menu along with sub-menus for applications, members, teams and billing. The tab context follows each view.
In addition to the standard browser layout, we’ve added functionality to collapse the entire left-side navigation menu and optimized it for mobile devices.

Next steps

We’re continuing to refine the new navigation, so you’ll see some minor changes in the coming days. In the meantime, let us know what you think about the improvements and share your thoughts in the balena forums.

What’s a Release Party?

The balena team gets together every once in a while to sprint on releasing a new feature. To make it more interesting and to involve our community, we stream it live during an event we call a Release Party. It’s a testament and spotlight on how well we work together as a fully remote, international team and a way to celebrate with our community.
You can watch a recording of the release party here. Check out what we created during our first Release Party and the second Release Party as well.
by John Tonello(Former) Technical Marketing Lead