[Faccus] Graduate Admissions - Document Management Active X Controls/Java Deployment

Derek Kirkland kirkland at ist.uwaterloo.ca
Tue Oct 21 16:13:08 EDT 2008


Graduate Admissions Project (GAP) / Document Management System (DMS):

The university is implementing new Graduate Admissions functionality on an
institutional basis for the Graduate Studies Office and all faculty members
/ academic staff that review, manage or make decisions on graduate
admissions applications. The required functionality will be delivered in an
integrated manner with Quest as well as a new Document Management System
(Hyland - OnBase). This will provide for scanning, storage and retrieval of
digital documents, as well as workflow capabilities and e-forms for managing
admissions application reviews and recommendations/decisions. This project
will also include functionality for online referee reference letters.

1. Production Dates:

Production for GAP/DMS will begin on the week of November 10 for the GSO and
a single academic department as a production pilot. This will subsequently
expand to all academic departments over the course of November (subject to
delivery of training by the GSO). 

2. Thin Client / Deployment Requirements:

The new Document Management System (DMS) is web-based with a thin-client
(using ADS authentication), initially supporting access by PC XP
workstations with Internet Explorer and Mac OSX workstations with Safari and
Firefox. PC users will need to have a set of Active X controls in an MSI
package deployed to their workstations. Mac users will need Java runtime
software (a separate email will identify the minimum version level
required). We will need to identify if deployment of Java for Macs is an
issue or not, depending on the nature of the Mac workstations in use. 

DMS is certified for Windows XP, but not yet for Vista. Further verification
is still required to see if Vista works in this context and under what
conditions. 

We need to investigate a solution for Unix/Linux users who cannot access a
suitable PC/Mac, with possibilities for use of Firefox with Java runtime
(subject to verification testing). It appears that Firefox on a PC may work
with some minor issues, but it is not certified by the vendor (this
certification may come in 2009 with a future version of OnBase software).
The use of terminal servers may be an option but it has not been thoroughly
investigated to-date (and time would be required to set it up if required). 

3. Deployment Source: 

SISP / IST will provide the Active X controls (MSI package from OnBase)
through a web site or we can email it directly to support group personnel.
The web site will have full instructions for users that self-manage their
own workstations. The information will include instructions for installation
by a workstation administrator or by a non-administrator altering browser
settings to allow for installation. Instructions for installing Java run
time will also be provided for Mac users (and possibly Unix/Linux users). 

Walter McCutchan of IST is responsible for the DMS technical environment and
will provide additional support/training to the faculty/school support units
and to individuals, as required. 

Tim Farrell of IST has successfully tested the automated deployment of these
Active X controls to PC/IE workstations in the Graduate Studies Office using
group policy (security group = Onbase Thinclient). 

Each faculty/school support group will be primarily responsible for the
deployment of the required Active X controls and possibly Java run time
software for workstations that are centrally managed within their
faculty/school. Faculty and staff with self-managed workstations and home
workstations/laptops will be assisted as much as possible, but they are
individually responsible for this activity.  

4. Support Group Testing: 

Walter McCutchan can provide the Active X MSI package immediately to each
support group (on request) to allow for testing of deployment. We strongly
encourage each support group to test deployment as soon as possible for the
variety of workstation environments found in their area of responsibility.

We are in the process of setting up restricted DMS test accounts (native
password authentication - with limited document retrieval capabilities, not
workflow/eforms) for each of the support groups (one test account for each
of: ES, Arts, MFCF, CSCF, Science, Optometry, Engineering and AHS). This
will allow for verification testing that OnBase works for any
identified/supported workstation/browser environment. Further
instructions/information will be provided. 

5. PC/Mac/Unix/Linux Matrix: 

The general makeup of academic faculty / departmental workstations with
breakdowns by PC/Mac/Unix-Linux as well as central management/self
management are provided below.

Note that further clarification / refinement may be required within the
following approximate numbers. 

Environmental Studies:
	PC 70-85; Mac 30-35;
	Centrally managed.

Arts: 
	PC - mostly new and centrally managed; 
	Mac about 20% and mostly centrally managed.
	Unix/Linux with Firefox - some individuals.
	Centrally managed with Arts domain or
		Nexus domain for Psychology. 
	Numbers to be determined.

MFCF: 
	PC 110; Mac 60; Unix/Linux 11; 
	Help desk can do some central support.

CSCF: 
	PC - mostly centrally managed; Mac; Linux/Unix;
	Numbers to be determined.

Science: 
	PC/Mac mix 50%/50%. 
	Some centrally managed by Nexus. 
	60-70% self-managed. 
	Numbers to be determined.

Optometry: 
	PC 15; Macs 2;
	Low volume deployment.

Engineering / Nexus: 
	PC 2700; 
	   Numbers that are used for administration 
		in Engineering subject to further clarification.
	   50% PCs managed centrally by Nexus through group policy.
	   50% PCs (in ECE) self-managed with dept support.
	Mac 70 - 80 (mostly Architecture). 
	Unix about 50 (users also have PC office machines).

	Nexus provides central support for some workstations in
		ES, AHS, Arts (Nexus domain), Science and MFCF 
		2150 workstations of which 600-750 are for students.

AHS:
	PC 60 - XP and Vista - Vista more centrally managed.
	Mac 2-3;


6. Application Training for support groups: 

The Graduate Studies Office, with support from IST, is responsible for
addressing GAP/DMS application training requirements for the institution.
Familiarity training (functional / technical) for the application and
associated technical environment will be made available to the
faculty/school support units. This will assist them in the future when
assessing problem reports from academic faculty and staff. We will provide
more information on content, dates and locations where this would be made
available. 

7. CSAG / WNAG / FACCUS

CSAG Computing Systems Advisor Group, WNAG Windows Nexus Advisor Group and
FACCUS Faculty Computing Advisory Group have been copied on this email to
ensure appropriate communication of requirements for this initiative. 

...Derek.

Derek Kirkland, Project Manager
Information Systems - Student Administration, IST, University of Waterloo
 




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