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Virtual Learning Platforms Thread, Uniservity v's Moodle in Technical; Originally Posted by User3204 Uniservity is difficult to use, but Moodle is a pain to setup. SLG is only really ...
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    reggiep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by User3204 View Post
    Uniservity is difficult to use, but Moodle is a pain to setup. SLG is only really good, because you can pay Capita to set it all up for you, and be up and running within days...
    I disagree with saying that moodle is hard to set up! On a windows system you can downlaod the xamp moodle install or even as a linux novice there are some docs to follow to install it. But saying that I do know what you mean. Uniservity has been set up for us and all we have to do it upload the users.

    If I had the money though and had to choose between the two, it would be a no brainer for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by User3204 View Post
    The Obvious question to ask is, When ? It's not ready yet, and they have been talking about it for a while.

    We also have the Uniservity as the VLE, by the same LA, although as we already had it as our website, it is full of the old Junk ... err.. information, and until we get a new website running, we can't really run Uniservity as a VLE. So this has stalled, until we get a new website running. The only thing that I have managed to get the Uniservity VLE to do to date, is import users staff and students from SIMS, and this is difficult as it gets very messy, due to the vast array of classes/forms we have.

    We got SLG2 to provide this access, but as there is no-one who is really in-charge of this, it isn't happening either. It's all installed, running, etc, but it got stalled when I had another project to do.


    Uniservity is difficult to use, but Moodle is a pain to setup. SLG is only really good, because you can pay Capita to set it all up for you, and be up and running within days...




    The thing to do, if you think Moodle will be easier, is to set up a trial, configure all the LDAP / SIMS integration (as per penfolds). NTLM etc etc, and then a few quick sessions with selected staff on how to use it, and see which is used the most (Wirral LA will be providing limited training for Uniservity).
    @User3204: do Uniservity not do all this for you, or do you run it in-house? How much training did you receive, and were teaching staff also along for any training offered? When our LEA were trying to get us to use Uniservity I was told we'd receive a full day's training, but what was the point of the training if I was eventually going to be tuped across to a managed service and possibly not even be required to go back into the school again? Just over a year ago the LEA persuaded three schools to go with Fronter, and even offered support until this was withdrawn, leaving them on their own. Once again it was the technicians who were left to take responsibility for this and try to muddle through. I see from the forums that some people are trying to set up Fronter support communities, can I infer from this that Fronter either don't offer any support, or whatever support is provided is so poor as to be useless?
    Can anyone tell me what happens to the running of a VLE once a managed service is in place? Is it part of the MSP brief to support it? My views on this may be coloured by the fact of the seeming incompetence of our LEA. I'm sure some places get it right.
    It seems to me that the important thing for the LEA is to get a VLE in place; it's then up to the schools to sort out their own problems. It's going to work in some schools but not in others

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by reggiep View Post
    I disagree with saying that moodle is hard to set up! On a windows system you can downlaod the xamp moodle install or even as a linux novice there are some docs to follow to install it. But saying that I do know what you mean. Uniservity has been set up for us and all we have to do it upload the users.

    If I had the money though and had to choose between the two, it would be a no brainer for me.
    I think you understand the whole create the users. SLG can create staff, pupil and parent logins automatically from your SIMS database, otherwise, you've got to create a report, export them, then create a username format (that copes with multiple same name) then import it into AD, then link Moodle with AD! Note if you don't link into AD then you've got the whole, multiple logins, which suck.

    It'll take at least a day to get the user accounts created, if not more. [WAITS FOR PENFOLD]

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    Quote Originally Posted by reggiep View Post
    I disagree with saying that moodle is hard to set up! On a windows system you can downlaod the xamp moodle install or even as a linux novice there are some docs to follow to install it. But saying that I do know what you mean. Uniservity has been set up for us and all we have to do it upload the users.

    If I had the money though and had to choose between the two, it would be a no brainer for me.
    If you're running Ubuntu you can even do a apt-get install moodle to have it download and configure it all for you

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    I think you understand the whole create the users. SLG can create staff, pupil and parent logins automatically from your SIMS database, otherwise, you've got to create a report, export them, then create a username format (that copes with multiple same name) then import it into AD, then link Moodle with AD! Note if you don't link into AD then you've got the whole, multiple logins, which suck.

    It'll take at least a day to get the user accounts created, if not more. [WAITS FOR PENFOLD]
    You don't need to create moodle accounts when it is integrated with LDAP/AD - the accounts are automatically created from a template from AD - not from SIMS.
    When linking moodle with SIMS, the courses are automatically imported for each user.

  6. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    You don't need to create moodle accounts when it is integrated with LDAP/AD - the accounts are automatically created from a template from AD - not from SIMS.
    When linking moodle with SIMS, the courses are automatically imported for each user.
    The only problem with users created when they log on is a user can't be managed until they log on, which can cause problems with having classes ready, setting staff up as staff or creating groups.

    We are getting their with our install, but I can see it being a long summer!

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    Quote Originally Posted by TechMonkey View Post
    The only problem with users created when they log on is a user can't be managed until they log on, which can cause problems with having classes ready, setting staff up as staff or creating groups.

    We are getting their with our install, but I can see it being a long summer!

    You can if the courses are automatically imported from SIMS, and have a template user.
    Larger courses are metacourses of the smaller courses, the only management I ever need to do is populate metacourses, in sept when everyone goes up a year, they automatically get the new courses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    You don't need to create moodle accounts when it is integrated with LDAP/AD - the accounts are automatically created from a template from AD - not from SIMS.
    When linking moodle with SIMS, the courses are automatically imported for each user.
    How do you create user accounts in AD? Do you have accounts for parents? That was my point. I'm total for SSO

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    How do you create user accounts in AD? Do you have accounts for parents? That was my point. I'm total for SSO
    from a script that pulls the data from SIMS. Penfold is writing a moodle php module to automatically create the AD accounts (in AD)- IIRC there were some 'technical difficulties' that delayed the project.

    I see your point wrt the parent accounts. I discussed the parent accounts with penfold, the feeling is that it would be best to have local moodle accounts, rather than AD accounts from a security/administration PoV.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    How do you create user accounts in AD? Do you have accounts for parents? That was my point. I'm total for SSO
    We create our accounts via a moodle block, this pulls information from sims compares it to AD if the user is missing then the account is created.

    As for parents is similar but as a moodle enrolment plugin, this is current under testing. The parental account is only a moodle account not AD, as we don't envisage the need to give parents access to services outside moodle.

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    from a script that pulls the data from SIMS. Penfold is writing a moodle php module to automatically create the AD accounts (in AD)- IIRC there were some 'technical difficulties' that delayed the project.
    Are we referring to the stuff that access the SIMS db directly, again this will take a while to setup and test, and most importantly requires technical knowledge, it's not something that a primary school could just do. I believe this new version uses the SIMS business model, so it should be alot easier, still no phone support, so it's still a bit "techy only".

    Can't comment on creating moodle-based users over AD. I don't fancy getting into a discussion over what is "secure". (Basically, Moodle would be open to SQL attacks, which could allow another parent to gain access to another parents account, also would emailing reset password be insecure? Then again is AD really secure? Could a man-in-middle style attack work (between the AD and Moodle)? - basically I don't know. I'm not a security consultant. Doubt anyone here is.)

    At the end of the day, you want to use Moodle, good for you, but you have to remember anyone can find this post, including people who have trouble installing Windows Server and I've yet to hear anyone giving out a telephone number and providing support (minus a few LA's). (Yes, I know people offer support on the forum, but really, how good is it? What is the SLA? A. there isn't one, there is however, a nice disclaimer).

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post

    Can't comment on creating moodle-based users over AD. I don't fancy getting into a discussion over what is "secure". (Basically, Moodle would be open to SQL attacks, which could allow another parent to gain access to another parents account, also would emailing reset password be insecure? Then again is AD really secure? Could a man-in-middle style attack work (between the AD and Moodle)? - basically I don't know. I'm not a security consultant. Doubt anyone here is.)

    .
    I agree with your points about setup, it does require a lot of prerequisites about how the infrastructure is setup. wrt security, I was simply refering to not giving parents access to other AD services (we have citrix etc). Last thing we would want is non-CRB checked parents accidentally geting any info about other children. I wasn't refering to any technical attacks.

    If there was a service/support offered - would there be much takeup?

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    I agree with your points about setup, it does require a lot of prerequisites about how the infrastructure is setup. wrt security, I was simply refering to not giving parents access to other AD services (we have citrix etc). Last thing we would want is non-CRB checked parents accidentally geting any info about other children. I wasn't refering to any technical attacks.

    If there was a service/support offered - would there be much takeup?
    Shouldn't be no different then having web access to Outlook. To can limit LDAP (AD) users access quite nicely too.

    No idea about take up, I've had a few talks with people about it, pretty much it's able to be done, just needs some company to take it up. Tempting to starting up a company, but the VLE bubble pretty much burst. What I mean, most LA's have spend there money already, which who you really want. It would have been brillant really, you could of create a "marketplace" where schools can submit\sell\trade moodle lessons \ courses. Best thing about Moodle is that most Uni's use it, so it makes sence, plus you could ask them to submit some stuff, then it's just a question of filtering it down to pupil's level.

    Anyone know any Moodle companies who want to extend there market?

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    reggiep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    When linking moodle with SIMS, the courses are automatically imported for each user.
    Is this done through the add on that penfold is creating or some other way?

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    Quote Originally Posted by reggiep View Post
    Is this done through the add on that penfold is creating or some other way?
    yes, we're using penfolds module.



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