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Cloud Services Thread, Google Apps School Directory Sync in Technical; Download / Direct Links Windows : ( 32-bit , 64-bit ) Linux : ( 32-bit , 64-bit ) ... today ...
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    Google Apps School Directory Sync

    Download / Direct Links Windows: (32-bit, 64-bit) Linux: (32-bit, 64-bit)

    ... today we are announcing School Directory Sync, a new version of the Google Apps Directory Sync (GADS) tool built specifically for schools.

    This utility allows an admin to export data from their student information system (SIS) and quickly sync it to their Google Apps for Education domain. With this tool itís easy to create users, organizational units, and Google Groups, and also to keep everything in sync. (Source)
    Note: To run synchronization, you must also enable APIs on your Google Apps domain. See Administrative APIs for details.


  2. 3 Thanks to Arthur:

    dhicks (29th June 2014), jumpinjamez (1st July 2014), sparkeh (30th June 2014)

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    Holy Grail Batman!

    This is exactly what I was looking for!

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    seawolf's Avatar
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    It remains to be seen how well this will actually work in integrating with existing school administration systems. There is no indication of what systems this tool is compatible with. I think I'll let someone else be the pioneering soul for this one.

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    rob_coles's Avatar
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    We use the other one works well

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    Here's the link to the help pages. https://support.google.com/a/topic/6..._topic=4511280

    As with rob_coles we've been using GADS for 3 years with no issues. It took a bit of testing to set up the initial rules, there's lots of help out there, and its been working seamlessly.

    The school Directory Sync uses a csv export rather than direct integration with the school management system, so as long as you can get the info out of your system it should work fine.
    Last edited by kipster; 30th June 2014 at 08:42 AM.

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Given that I put a fair bit of effort wrestling with the normal GADS to get it where I want it, I may wait to see if others find it a better option

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    We use the normal GADS as well and it works fine 99.9% of the time. Integrating with AD is a lot easier than integrating with a plethora of School Admin Systems though.

    Seeing as how the new version is only able to get data from CSV imports it wouldn't do much for us. Especially when we already have an SSO system (CloudWorks) that can dynamically pull data directly from our school admin system and create email groups for all of our classes. If Google could do the same as well for free it would be worth a look though.

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    This is, hopefully, exactly what we're looking for too. Our MIS is SIMS and our Principal wants group email addresses for every class (which change more than once per academic year too, a real pain).

    I'm fairly sure, given the time, I could have scripted something to do it but if this tool will do it out of the box then even better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tall_Paul View Post
    This is, hopefully, exactly what we're looking for too. Our MIS is SIMS and our Principal wants group email addresses for every class (which change more than once per academic year too, a real pain).

    I'm fairly sure, given the time, I could have scripted something to do it but if this tool will do it out of the box then even better.
    Just so you know, GADS can do this very easily. Just create a group in AD, add the members and sync. Job done.

    Similar to comments by @seawolf above, I think its probably easier to manager this by AD than MIS.
    Last edited by sparkeh; 1st July 2014 at 08:48 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tall_Paul View Post
    I'm fairly sure, given the time, I could have scripted something to do it but if this tool will do it out of the box then even better.
    I've done some work on this which might be a good start for anyone. Code is Here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sparkeh View Post
    Just so you know, GADS can do this very easily. Just create a group in AD, add the members and sync. Job done.

    Similar to comments by @seawolf above, I think its probably easier to manager this by AD than MIS.
    We have no choice unfortunately, our class data is held in SIMS rather than AD.

    If GADS syncs perfectly with AD I suppose I could faff around with using CSVDE to import the data from SIMS.

    I'd be interested to know if anyone else on here syncs class data between SIMS and Google Apps (and how you do it if you do).

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcstru View Post
    I've done some work on this which might be a good start for anyone. Code is Here.
    That looks handy, thanks.

    Looks like it might be a case of downloading the data from SIMS via CSV, using your script (altered to make it fit us) to populate the required groups in AD (and amend the required groups when required like at the end of the academic year) and then finishing with GADS to sync the groups into Google Apps.

    Still a bit of fiddling, but it'll (touch wood) work which is the main thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tall_Paul View Post
    Looks like it might be a case of downloading the data from SIMS via CSV, using your script (altered to make it fit us) to populate the required groups in AD (and amend the required groups when required like at the end of the academic year) and then finishing with GADS to sync the groups into Google Apps.
    Yes. I have the CMIS data extract scripted via powershell and run the whole lot as a scheduled process overnight. The biggest problem is the teachers distribution groups are dependant on the teachers actually teaching groups. I get requests for technicians etc to be put on but they would then be removed by the auto update. I probably need to think of some way of adding in a maintained list without hard coding it..

    If you do the SIMS -> CSV, could you post the report into the thread? It might well be useful to others.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcstru View Post
    Yes. I have the CMIS data extract scripted via powershell and run the whole lot as a scheduled process overnight. The biggest problem is the teachers distribution groups are dependant on the teachers actually teaching groups. I get requests for technicians etc to be put on but they would then be removed by the auto update. I probably need to think of some way of adding in a maintained list without hard coding it..

    If you do the SIMS -> CSV, could you post the report into the thread? It might well be useful to others.
    Yes, will do.

    We're moving over to Google Mail and Apps this summer so the real donkey work will take place then (and it's also then that I'll take a good look at GASDS).

    The ideal scenario would be to download data from SIMS into a CSV and then, using GASDS, shove it into Google Apps but I cant believe it's going to be as straightforward as that.

    My current mindset is that if I have to do significant manipulation to the SIMS CSV then I may as well just shove it into AD and rely on the 'tried and test' GADS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tall_Paul View Post
    This is, hopefully, exactly what we're looking for too. Our MIS is SIMS and our Principal wants group email addresses for every class (which change more than once per academic year too, a real pain).

    I'm fairly sure, given the time, I could have scripted something to do it but if this tool will do it out of the box then even better.
    For email addresses we use graduation year as part of the address. You could use "class of 20xx" as your email group names and never have to change them.

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