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Preconfigured Portal Application Descriptor and Archive

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000022351D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Mar-10
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Mar-10
Document File: 2 page(s) / 60K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

A declarative descriptor for the complete definition of a portal application allows for a default out-of-the-box working instance of a portal application running inside a portal server. This accelerates the end user's time to commission while configuring his portal. This publication discusses a new, optional, declarative descriptor that defines all aspects of a portal application and provides the means of configuring these options.

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Preconfigured Portal Application Descriptor and Archive

Problem statement:

Web applications are composed of elements such as servlets, JSPs, EJBs and other technologies. When installed into an application server through a simple deployment process, these pieces come to life and become usable immediately. Portal applications which consist of a collection of portlets are not immediately usable when installed in a portal server. An administrator has to set up content and create pages, define the page layout, create groups necessary for the application, and even define the access control for each page, based on groups or users.

Portlets tend to be standalone elements that can be entered in a catalog and composed in arbitrary ways into pages. However, portal technology is also useful for composing user interfaces out of elements that may not stand on their own, but can be reused in a wide variety of page compositions. This is a development task, not a system administrator task. For example, one of the future directions of portal applications is the support for various inter portlet communication technologies. A requirement for these technologies to work is the collection of certain basic sets of portlets together. The portal application approach of building the whole completely from pieces becomes less attractive as the only communication from the developer to the end user is through documentation of how the portlets must be collected and configured together. With the approach of a declarative descriptor file, the developer can put together a default application, which the end user can customize with little effort.

The invention:

The invention is the inclusion of a new declarative descriptor called component.xml in the preferred embodiment and the XML semantics to completely define a portal application. Constituents of a portal application include page definitions, page layouts, navigation to the pages, access control on the portal resources, access control definitions for the application and various levels o...