There are two goals for the Cocoon Portal Tools. First, the usability for an administrator of the Portal should be increased. The Cocoon Portal is a highly configurable environment. However, its use of complex, file-based configuration requires a lot of time as well as an advanced knowledge of Cocoon. Administrative tools within the web application can improve the speed in which changes can be made, make understanding the portal a little simpler, and can also increase the acceptance for the portal.
The second goal is to improve the usability for a user of the portal. Prior to the portal tools all users of the portal could only view the content. The portal tools allow site administrators the ability to give users an administrative tool with restricted capabilities. For example, the user profile environment of the Cocoon Portal allows everyone to edit the layout and save it on the server for the next session. The user can change the content coplets by selecting different ones. Another tool allows the user to create new coplets or change the whole layout.
In the end, the Cocoon Portal will have different tools which will provide different functions to users and administrators. In summary, the idea of the Portal tools is to provide a simple framework with some sample tools, where new tools can easily be added or removed.
Please note: The provided Tools are just samples and maybe not ready for production use. The samples are just Tools for the User of the Portal and not for the portal administrator.
The incentive to develop and build the PortalTools framework was the lack of tool-support in the new portal and a growing need for tools as in the old, deprecated portal. The main difference between the Portal Tools and those in the portal-fw is that the Portal Tools are not directly built into the portal itself, but they run as an add-on. So there is no need to have the tools if you dont need them.
What should the framework/tools do?
- Provide an easy way to integrate/add tools to the Portal
- Provide a common standard defining how to develop tools
- Offer a user interface for functions provided by the Portal
What should the framework/tools not do?
- The tools should not add additional functions to the portal itself; they should just provide a user interface.
If you want to access the PortalTools from another computer (not localhost) please change the following configuration in the PortalTools Sitemap:
Replace localhost with the ip/hostname of the computer running the portal. Hopefully we will remove this configuration soon.