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Re: [school-discuss] Project developing free school server solution

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On Saturday 18 October 2003 13:32, Bjoern Scheuermann wrote:
> Am Samstag, 18. Oktober 2003 09:13 schrieb Hilaire Fernandes:
> > Bjoern Scheuermann <bjoern@solution.de> wrote:
> > > What we're especially missing are the really "school-specific"
> > > features in skolelinux, like an advanced user management which is aware
> > > of "students" and "teachers", of teachers being allowed to permit and
> > > deny things, of students being in "classes" and "workgroups", of
> > > classes changing every year (without having a local administrator to
> > > spend a whole day for this procedure), tools to support writing tests
> > > at the computer, etc. This is what we want to do.
> >
> > Admin and tool to writting tests are two differents things.
> Of course, yes. And they are just two thing amongst many others.
> > For the
> > first one, within skolelinux, there is an admin tool to manage user and
> > group, maybe you want to look at this one, if you want more you will
> > find more easy to add and contributing stuff to skolelinux than starting
> > from the ground.
> Do you mean the webmin user management interface? Otherwise, could you send
> me a link?
> > Personnaly I would also like to see more school oriented stuff within
> > SL, especialy a tool to construct and manage user profiles.
> >
> > >       And, additionally, we want to avoid to force the user to use a
> > > Linux shell or to edit config files, even to know how a Linux box works
> > > or which software is used and what it does. Unfortunately, skolelinux
> > > requires exactly this nearly everywhere.
> >
> > Can you be more explicit and give us a few examples of such situations?
> I'll try to: Let's presume a teacher wants to start some kind of project
> with a couple of his students.


Some of those features could be implemented using a learning manaagment system 
such as ILIAS.

- From their website:

"The current version of ILIAS offers the following features:

- -Personal desktop for each user with information about last visited courses, 
new mail or forum entries
- -Learning environment with personal annotations, test, glossary, print 
function, search engine and download
- -Course management system
- -Communication features like mail system, forums and chat
- -Group system for collaborative work and organising users and resources
- -Integrated authoring environment (Editor) to create courses even without any 
HTML knowledge
- -Support of metadata for all levels of learning objects
- -Context-sensitive help system for learners and authors
- -User and system administration interface


or the german version of the site at


- From your initial email:

> Features we are planning to realize in a time horizon of about 10-12 months
> are for example:
> o support of single- and multi-server installations

Hmm, you can at least set up such a system with the database on one server and 
the web server on another machine, check the docs for more info. Maybe it's 
possible with ILIAS.

> o completely manageable via web interface


> o support of MS Windows (98, 2K, XP) and Linux clients


> o LDAP-based user management


> o extended privilege system, which especially supports the typical school
> requirements: easy auto-creation/maintenance of lots of student accounts,
> special privileges for teachers (without making them admins),...


> o integration of disk imaging solution to quickly restore clients via
> network o flexible internet access control (teachers can allow/deny access
> for students, integrated web filter,...)

No. There are easy ways to do scripted disc imaging with standard tools. You 
would have to set up a filtering proxy. I don't know about the other 
time-based access limitations you are talking about :-(

> o complete mail solution with out-of-the-box webmail, IMAP access,...

Yes and no.
No IMAP. Is it really necessary for your project? If it is, there's postfix 
and SquirrelMail.

> o robust and secure design


> o much, much, much more

Oh yes. :-)

Check it out. Maybe ILIAS is a good tool for most of the tasks you want to 
implement, considering the time frame you mentioned in your initial mail... 

I have seen such a system running on the notebook of a friend of mine who is 
evaluating it for a company. I was quite impressed.


- - Burkhard

- --
GNU/Linux in education book project: http://book.schoolforge.net

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