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General Chat Thread, External access for students in General; Hi all Do you allow staff/students access to their school accounts from home. If so how or what do you ...
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    steve_nfi's Avatar
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    Question External access for students

    Hi all
    Do you allow staff/students access to their school accounts from home. If so how or what do you use to control it. I used to have Sonic Wall at my last school but that was only for a limited amount of staff and Ranger outpost for the students. I don't think Outpost would be an option here because we have Classlink.
    Any guidance with this would be much appreciated.

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    Pete10141748's Avatar
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    Our staff get their acounts at home by way of local account caching and offline files omn their laptop.

    Pupils don't get access outside of school.

    Both pupils and staff have access to our VLP for their own personal files (if they've uploaded them in the first place)


    Our ISP doesn't allow outside access to our network apparantly (tried various methods of Remote Access, all unsuccessfully).

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    clarky2k3's Avatar
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    We use SSL Explorer here. Brilliant.

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    Friez's Avatar
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    At our school I wrote my own piece of PHP software to sit on the webserver to dish up files to people from home.

    Essentially, to use our site they must login (hooked into LDAP) and from there the webserver hooks up to our file server to dish up files they requested / upload files to their home drive.

    Definitely not supplying the source code for that one though

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Definitely not supplying the source code for that one though
    Why not? would giving santised source code away allow people to bypass your current setup?

    Ben

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    BaccyNet's Avatar
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    We are currently in the process (started in March on this one) of introducing Citrix Secure Gateway for use by staff/students. That way they not only get their files but can also use school software.

    Still waiting for the external access though

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    HMCTech's Avatar
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    We use two seperate terminal servers, only staff account's can log into one, and only student accounts into the other. Seems to work quite well.

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    steve_nfi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clarky2k3 View Post
    We use SSL Explorer here. Brilliant.
    Is it easy to set up?

    Do you allow staff and students to connect from home using this?

    What about security?

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BaccyNet View Post
    We are currently in the process (started in March on this one) of introducing Citrix Secure Gateway for use by staff/students. That way they not only get their files but can also use school software.

    Still waiting for the external access though
    How are you dealing with licensing issues? For example, I know that some of our 'site licensed' software stipulates that it's only valid for one geographical location...

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    Sylv3r's Avatar
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    We are using the MyDocuments webpart from Salamandersoft via our sharepoint installation for staff / students accessing their documents from home.

    I am looking at rolling out a terminal server with limited applications for our staff in the not too distant future also.

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    Richie's Avatar
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    External access

    Here at our school, all staff and students have access to the same mapped drives they get in school.

    Similar to Friez, I wrote an ASP.NET interface that runs off the back of our mail server. This is setup already with IIS and Outlook Web Access and is externally visible (obviously).

    The ASP stuff is deigned to run using impersonation so when a user logs in, the scripts can only access the files that the file server says that user should have access to so security is the same as if they were on site.

    The pages they see are similar to windows explorer but only allows users to upload and download files, they cannot delete anything nor create or move directories. This was decided on for security but can be pretty limiting.

    Most of the script that decides what drives people see is coded pretty specifically to our network but I am currently re-writing so mapped drives are determined by HomeDirectory property in AD as well as Group Policies (since this is how they are determined on site), this way any changes to GPOs or user properties are automatically pulled through.

    Anyone who wants the code for what we have in place is welcome to it, and the new interface when I have finished it. (Should be a couple of months away)

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    tom_newton's Avatar
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    SSL explorer has always been pretty good. Met the lads behind it at infosec a few years back, and you'd go a long way to meet folk as sound

    Other options: openvpn (also available in your smoothwall firewall complete with AD integration - but doable roll-yer-own as well)

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Between the two schools i work at many methods of remote access have been used. Including web based VPN.

    The best ones we found was terminal server and VPN for staff who have laptops.

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    there is also a moodle plugin for accessing homeDirectories via the web
    Moodle: Modules and plugins

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    there is also a moodle plugin for accessing homeDirectories via the web
    Moodle: Modules and plugins
    Does your webserver live in a DMZ?



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