Poll: Assuming you have SLG, would you buy it again?

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MIS Systems Thread, Those of you who have SLG (or hosted SLG) - would you buy it again? in Technical; We're looking around at a few providers of secure remote access to MIS data for various purposes. For those of ...
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    Those of you who have SLG (or hosted SLG) - would you buy it again?

    We're looking around at a few providers of secure remote access to MIS data for various purposes. For those of you who've gone out and bought SLG/SLG2 and had a while to play with it, would you still go down that route? And if not, why not?
    Last edited by pete; 15th July 2009 at 03:24 PM. Reason: added hosted as well

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    DMcCoy's Avatar
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    Capita quietly forget to mention the possible shortcomings of the SLG implementation.

    1) People wanting to use the system MUST exist as either a contact, student or member of staff. We have users we would like to provision who do not work directly for the school, so they are not in personnel, they can therefore not have a SLG login (you can create the AD account, but the slg webparts do not tie into an existing sims account so it fails to work)

    2) There is no automated provisioning

    ADP is rubbish, you cannot have it provision new contacts automatically. Someone will have to be responsible for making sure they are created at the same time. Finding users who do not have accounts currently is a real pain.

    3) More a Sharepoint issue is the use of NTLM for logins, this will not work via a number os users ISP proxies, we will have to change to basic auth. No guidelines from capita although they are quite happy to charge us to have a look at it.

    4) Updating SLG is a manual process at the moment.

    5) Unable to have separate OUs for different types of user, not fun when you have thousands. Users are not deleted when the contact is unprovisioned. Default AD group memberships are not ideal.

    6) Contacts are provisioned individually, you don't use the student addresses etc, you had better hope your contacts are correct and up to date and have the correct salutations (something that cannot be updated in bulk).

    7) Reports - also not much use except for initial implementation. How do I generate letters for only newly provisioned users? I can't.

    Now some of these points may be wrong, but I have yet to get back any suggestions on how to overcome them for our implementation.

    It fulfils the various requirements and uses sharepoint are the main things going for it atm.

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    Sivadam's Avatar
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    Bad Question!
    No I would not buy it.
    Yes I would buy into Capita Hosted Service.
    The best advice is to opt for a Hosted Service. If you buy it then who would support it? Microsoft? I reckon that is where many issues lie!

    DM - it is early days yet. Have you seen the Roadmap?
    Contacts have to be up to date and accurate anyway - else you have a missive problem in all aspects of SIMS. And we provisioned by Year - after checking the Contact Details! You then just have to add newcomers from time to time.
    As for the Report. Why don't you edit it so that it includes Filters? You can sort it via Names, Reg Groups etc. just like any other report in SIMS. You just clone the original, add in any sub-reports you want (e.g. Student!) add filters and, possibly, design a new Template.
    Last edited by Sivadam; 15th July 2009 at 01:31 PM.

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    You should really ask this question on SupportNet. We now have 300 schools hosted by us and 1600 hosted by LAs.

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    Phill - Is that wholely SLG installations, or does it include Kaleidos (it using the webparts)?

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    Quote Originally Posted by f21970 View Post
    Phill - Is that wholely SLG installations, or does it include Kaleidos (it using the webparts)?
    I donít think anyone is using SLG webparts in Kaleidos. Iíve been told Capita and RM tried but couldnít get it to work. I think those using the RM portal are using SLG in parallel and have a link to it from the RM portal. More like SLG webparts adjacent to Kaleidos rather than in Kaleidos.

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    When I refer to SLG I mean the hosted solution as well. So either/or.

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilNeal View Post
    You should really ask this question on SupportNet. We now have 300 schools hosted by us and 1600 hosted by LAs.
    I'm aware of the numbers* and I intend to, but the type of problems/benefits that will be pointed out on Edugeek aren't the ones that'll be discussed on SupportNet - discussion of technical merits/flaws tends to be sparse or gets bogged down in explaining simple things to thread participants.

    That and I really hate your forum implementation

    *we had a presentation from Capita this week and it looked rather useful (both the hosted + self-hosted solution). What I want (from this thread) is the technical nitty-gritty.

    Bonus question(s):

    • is anyone using 2-factor authentication with the hosted solution?
    • how much of an issue is kids discovering their parents passwords and spreading them around school?

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pete View Post
    When I refer to SLG I mean the hosted solution as well. So either/or.



    I'm aware of the numbers* and I intend to, but the type of problems/benefits that will be pointed out on Edugeek aren't the ones that'll be discussed on SupportNet - discussion of technical merits/flaws tends to be sparse or gets bogged down in explaining simple things to thread participants.

    That and I really hate your forum implementation

    *we had a presentation from Capita this week and it looked rather useful (both the hosted + self-hosted solution). What I want (from this thread) is the technical nitty-gritty.

    Bonus question(s):

    • is anyone using 2-factor authentication with the hosted solution?
    • how much of an issue is kids discovering their parents passwords and spreading them around school?
    Supportnet does have it's quirks, then again, so does Edugeek!

    Surely point 1 would contradict point 2? If you have 2-factor authentication it doesn't matter that you know the password, you need the key fob. At lot of LA uses 2-factor, what do you want to know? Names\examples\how they did it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    Supportnet does have it's quirks, then again, so does Edugeek!

    Surely point 1 would contradict point 2? If you have 2-factor authentication it doesn't matter that you know the password, you need the key fob. At lot of LA uses 2-factor, what do you want to know? Names\examples\how they did it?
    Nope, maybe should have been clearer.

    1) Ideally staff would have two-factor auth since they have access to multiple kids with write-back to SIMS - according to Becta (iirc) staff remote access should be 2-factor. Most schools use single factor for parents. I'd like to know how people have gone about this (rsa keyfobs? text message with auth code? email with auth code?), what it cost and how well it works. Also what is and isn't possible with the hosted method.

    2) I was wondering whether parents take care to ensure they keep the details safe or not. Anecdotal I know, but it gives us an idea of the hurdles.

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    We use it here on an internally hosted install and don't have any problems with it and would certainly buy it again.

    I agree with the post above - it does have its flaws but as long as you are prepared to put the time and effort in, its worth it.

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