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Liferay Administration Guide

Liferay Administration Guide

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Published by Rakesh Km

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Published by: Rakesh Km on Sep 04, 2010
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Communities are ideal workspaces for teams to collaborate on common projects.
They provide an isolated area where a group of people can place all of their data per-
taining to a particular topic, and many organizations have used them for this pur-
pose. It is a far better way to share data than using email and a shared folder on a net-

90

Using the Control Panel

Configuration

work. Instead, Liferay's Document Library portlet empowers users to access and up-
date documents simultaneously, and all versions of the documents are preserved. A
Calendar portlet can be used to keep track of the team's appointments and meetings,
and can send notifications out to the team. A Wiki portlet can be used to document
the project as it progresses. A Message Boards portlet can be used to keep all team
discussions in one place.

To enable the ad-hoc creation of communities for this purpose, Liferay 5.2.3 and
above allows portal administrators to create communities based on templates. What
this means is that you can create a template community that has a pre-defined set of
pages and portlets, and then use that template to very quickly create multiple com-
munities that are pre-populated with those pages and portlets.
You can create templates for open, restricted, and private communities. Addi-
tionally, you can create a default template that applies to all kinds of communities.
For our example, we will work with the default template.
Go to the Control Panel and click Communities. Click the Add button and create a
community called DEFAULT_TEMPLATE. Make it a private community. Once the com-
munity has been created, click Actions Manage Pages

, and then click the Settings tab.

Select Activate Staging.

Now go ahead and use the Public Pages or Private Pages tabs to create pages in the
template and populate them with portlets. You can always use the View Pages button
to view the pages you are creating, to add portlets, and to change layouts. These pages
will be surrounded by a red border. This indicates that you are working in a staging
environment.

That's all you need to do. Don't publish the changes to the template; leave it in
staging mode. Any future communities that you create will have the same layouts and
portlets as what you have placed in the DEFAULT_TEMPLATE.

Using the Control Panel

91

Illustration 40: Activating Staging on the community template.

Configuration

To further refine this, you can create other kinds of templates for specific types
of communities in the same manner.
If community is open, use the name OPEN_TEMPLATE to create a template for
open communities. Use the name RESTRICTED_TEMPLATE to create a template for re-
stricted communities. Use the name PRIVATE_TEMPLATE to create a template for
private communities. The DEFAULT_TEMPLATE we have just created applies to all
types of communities. If you want all newly created communities to have a Forums
page with a Message Boards portlet on it, you would create that in the
DEFAULT_TEMPLATE.

This feature streamlines the community creation process for administrators,
making it very easy to quickly create communities for teams.

User Groups

User Groups are arbitrary groupings of users. These groups are created by portal
administrators to group users together who don't have an obvious organizational or
community-based attribute or aspect which brings them together. Groups cannot
have permissions like roles, but User Groups can be added to Roles. Why would you
use User Groups, then? They come into play when you have complex security require-
ments and for page templates, which we will discuss below.
Creating a User Group is easy. Click the User Groups link and then click the Add
button. There are only two fields to fill out: Name (the name of the User Group) and
Description (an optional description of what the group is for). Click Save and you will
then be back to the list of groups.
As with the other resources in the portal, you can click the Actions button to per-
form various operations on User Groups.
Edit: Allows you to modify the name or description of the User Group.
Permissions: This allows you to define which Users, User Groups, or Roles have
permissions to edit the User Group.
Manage Pages: Though User Groups don't have pages of their own, you can cre-

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Using the Control Panel

Illustration 41: Populating pages in the community template

Configuration

ate page templates for a group. When a User Group has page templates, any users ad-
ded to the group will have the group's pages copied to their personal pages. This al-
lows you to do things like create a Bloggers user group with a page template that has
the Blogs and Recent Bloggers portlets on it. The first time users who are added to
this group log in to the portal, this page will get copied to their personal pages. They
will then automatically have a blog page that they can use.
Assign Members: Takes you to a screen where you can search for and select
users in the portal to be assigned to this User Group.
View Users: Lets you view the users who are in the User Group.
Delete: Deletes the User Group.

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