Moodle-SharePoint Unified (MSU) Project

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Motivation

  • Provides a integrated distance learning envinorement which unifies the Moodle and SharePoint platforms, makes possible a transparent Moodle Platform data access, taking advantage of SharePoint and Microsoft Infrastructure.
  • Enabling a trustworthy integration between SharePoint and Moodle can enable the capacity of develop new services to distance learning courses

Challenge

  • Some components can provide a Moodle data access layers to other systems, like SharePoint Web Parts for Moodle (http://www.codeplex.com/Moodle2003WP), but MSU challenge is provide this data access and a transparent user login proccess by SharePoint WebParts besides a tool to evaluate the login delay impact of a huge number of users added in many courses at Moodle Platform.
  • Several configurations and migrations should be performed before SharePoint accessing data from Moodle database.

Innovation

  • Delivery a Single Sign On model that simplifies data access and help migration to LDAP
  • Compare two different approaches (traditional Moodle PHP code and SharePoint WebParts) to help system optimization
  • Use of the WebParts Connection approach to make possible use of Moodle Data aquired by login webpart

Proposal

Implementation of a Single Sign On model that allows that a registered user in a directory server can use an only one password for the SharePoint and Moodle platform, where the process of syncronization of the existing users occurs in a transparent way for the user. The solution also involves the creation of an architecture that allows the creation of webparts that have access to the data of the Moodle platform using the information of the SharePoint login.

Project MSU also includes a evaluation tool to measure the login time in Moodle and a documentation to assist the migration of the database used in Moodle to the DBMS(Database Management System) Microsoft SQL Server.

Overview

The MSU project consists of the following items:
  • MSU Moodle Patch - A Moodle System patch to enables the access to the unified login method, consuming the necessary WebServices delivered by MSU project;
  • MSU Modified MoodleWS.PHP - A MoodleWS (http://cipcnet.insa-lyon.fr/Members/ppollet/public/moodlews/) WebService modification, which enable Moodle system data edit/access;
  • MSU WebService.NET - WebService which is responsible by the process of synchronization of already existing login data of the Moodle system to a Active Directory OU(Organization Unit) called MSU. Such data are relative to the user at the moment of login, will be replicated only in case that they do not exist in OU MSU, thus guaranteeing a form of transparent response to the user.The MSU WebService.NET also is responsible for the inverse replication, which an logged in SharePoint user has their login present in OU MSU and by use of their password, do login in Moodle system by the MSU Login Webpart delivered by MSU project. At the login process, in case that the user is not in the Moodle system, the login data replication is made to the OU MSU for the base of logins in Moodle system.
  • MSU WebParts - Currently consists in a package with the following two WebParts:
    • MSU Login - WebPart which enables a user from SharePoint, added in a Active Directory Organization Unit called MSU, can do a Log On and access the Moodle system data;
    • MSU Change Password - Sample WebPart that allows the password change, ensuring the transparency of the Moodle System and ActiveDirectory login data syncronization;
  • MSU Moodle Login Delay Tester - Tool which provides a simple way to make a Moodle system login delay tests.
Note.: That solution enables the possibility the creation of custom WebParts which consumes Moodle system data, directly related with the user login data retrieved by the MSU Login WebPart.
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MSU Components

Last edited Aug 12, 2008 at 9:25 PM by jbfranco, version 64