My top 5 out-of-the-box Confluence macros

Confluence is a web-based corporate Wiki, developed by Atlassian. It is useful as a team work space, and for other forms of collaborations. In this article, I discuss the five out-of-the-box Confluence macros I use the most.

1. Code Block Macro

The code block macro is useful for displaying code snippets on your Confluence page.

If you write for developers, you will need loads of code samples or terminal commands in your documentation to demonstrate how it works. This is where the Code Block macro comes in.

With this macro, you can easily display those samples with the right formatting.

The best part about it is that you can select the appropriate programming language for syntax highlighting.

The macro It supports over 20 programming and scripting languages, including YAMl, JavaScript, Python, Bash, and PowerShell. It has several customisations including line numbers, title, and collapsibility.

You can also choose themes to improve the look and feel of your documentation. My favourite theme for Code Block would be Midnight theme.

Read more about Code Block macro.

2. Content Report Table Macro

The Content Report Table is one of my absolute favourites.  It is useful for displaying content from other pages.

To do this, you’d need to add a label(s) to the original content, and then add this label in the Content Report Table page. In so doing, the content displays automatically on the content report page.

Just as the name implies, it brings together contents (or pages having the same label) together. from several pages

I find this useful when I need to bring similar pages scattered across different spaces to the same page together on the same page.

Using the macro parameters such as; labels, spaces, and maximum number of pages, you can customise what is displayed on the page. Content Report Table macro helps you access several pages across several spaces on a single page.

Read more about the Content Report Table macro.

3. Fixed, Panel and Table of Content Macros

Fixed, Panel and Table of Contents are three different macros that can be used individually or together. However, I enjoy using them together, especially when writing long Confluence pages.

These combined macros help to keep the Table of contents in view, when you scroll down a long Confluence page. By keeping the Table of content in view, you can click on it to go anywhere within the page, without having to scroll back up every time you need to access it.

When used separately, the Fixed macro is useful for sticking an item to a page, so that when you scroll it scrolls with the page.

To use these macros, it is advisable to use a 2-column page layout, with a right sidebar. Then add the Fixed, Panel and Table of Contents macros.

Read more about Panel and Table of Contents macros.

4. Children Display

Children Display macro can be used to automatically display pages created under a specified page.

I find this macro useful because it eliminates the need to add a child page to a parent page manually. By using the Children Display macro, you can easily set the parameters for the children page once and for all, every subsequent child page inherits those parameters.

When you set up the parameters, you can indicate Heading style, depth of descendants (tell Confluence how deep it should go), excerpts from the children page, sorting method, among others.

Basically, when you create a new page under a parent page, the child page(s) automatically appear under the parent page and inherit all the settings you’ve applied to the macro.

Read more about Children Display macro.

5. Page Properties Report Macro

Page Properties Report macro helps to display properties of pages that contain a specific label. These are displayed in tabular form.

You can enhance the results further by:

  • Adding an optional Page properties ID
  • Deciding what columns to show
  • Adding a Title column heading
  • Applying Sort method and so on.

The macro also allows you to filter results by showing specific columns from pages created by or contributed to by a specific person. You can also show pages by last modified date. This helps, in a way, to keep track of pages that may need to be reviewed soon. There are many other filters and options that can be explored.

Page Properties Report macro is often used with the Page Properties macro to display a summary of pages that contain specific label(s).

Read more about Page Properties Report and Page Properties macros.

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