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Thread: Intranet needed

  1. #1
    WDF Staff m3n0tu18's Avatar
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    Hi guys,

    I am looking for a decent opensource Intranet software package, that would be easily deployed and could connect to an active directory. Any Ideas would be great, it needs:

    :ability to update staff of new Joinees and company news
    :custom wiki for issues for technical staff
    :Connect to an active directory for user management
    :todo list (but this is not necessary)
    :company and department calanders
    :Templateable, but this is not 100% needed, i just need to get something so I can edit it accordingly.
    :HR section, (most probably be under the wiki)

    Other than that I can't think of anything else. If anyone knows of a good open source package or something that would do the job, and can be easily manageable that would be great

    Marc
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  3. #2
    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
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    I build all mine from ASP ( since most companies have windows servers ), a MySQL DB backend... and If the server is joined to the domain... You can use AD for control and management.

    As for AD user list... There are tons of examples for pulling AD info, but the trick is creating an account on the AD that gives it read permission of the AD values...

    As for the calendar, I use their corporate exchange server to create a shared calendar... "So it's integrated into their personal calendars"... I built several calendar and scheduling systems over the years... But by using exchange calendars, I'm able to assign a few people as "admin" that can override and manage the whole thing, but everyone else can create their own and manage only their own entries. Without being able to mess with anyone else's.

    If they are not using exchange, most robust mail systems have some sort of shared calendar system.

    Not sure if that's what ours looking for...

    I hear sharepoint is something that can be used for this, but its only available on actual server platforms ... I saw it on server 2008 as an install option and believe it can be added to most any windows servers.

    There are tons of sites out there that cater to the sharepoint community, but again, I've only dabbled with it, didn't like it and moved on... When ASP is no longer supported... Will probably move to something like that if I keep doing this stuff.

  4. #3
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    I haven't played with AD myself, but I've seen a bunch of examples where it can be manipulated using ASP.net. There's an AJAXToolkit calendar control that might work, although I've personally moved past it (found it to be somewhat limiting.) I'd build that with an SQL server backend.

    If ANYTHING will do what you want, and I doubt it will, DotNetNuke might (www.dotnetnuke.com).
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    Senior Member Webzarus's Avatar
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    A lot of it depends on the level of control and information and people that will be using the system.

    The ones where you have a central person that manages and updates everything is always the easiest.

    I have one client that needs something that anywhere from 60-80 people needed to be able to update information at any given time ... And let me tell you... Some of those people have lower IQ's than my front door mat... And their computer skills were non-existent...

    I had to create a hybrid system... Using a local file server that everyone has access to and was mapped to as a shared drive ... ( under ad control ), so I could assign groups and privledges... Created some templates... Currently using Komposer for them to access and update their pages... Then the core pulls in the local files and displays them in the web site...

    Depending on the control and structure there are tons of options but the main component ( in my opinion) would be the people using and maintaining it...

  6. #5
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    That's actually very true. A lot of what you can use and what you have to build will depend very much on the skill, or lack thereof, of the people who are going to use it.

    I'm working on a site for a not-for-profit organization that a longtime client and friend of mine is the president of, and in order for them to administer their pages, I had to use a copy of CKEditor with custom toolbars that reflected each user's level of ability to administer the pages. I even had to create custom buttons to allow them to float content to the left and right along with buttons to clear the floats (as well as a counter check when the form is submitted to clear any straggler floats). You want to have some fun sometime? Try explaining the concept of a float and why / how to clear it to a non-techie. It's like reaching into your ear and pulling out one of your nose hairs.

    This is ultimately where open source ends up hitting a wall (even though CKEditor is itself open source and one of the few decent open source tools out there)...when you have situations like this, you have to step in and deal with them yourself. This sounds very much like one of those situations...you'll build what you think they want, and the actual specifications will become a very small moving target. The good news is that if you can hack a situation like the ones WZ and I are describing, you know you're a coder.
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