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Change-Notification Service for Shared Files

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000105458D
Original Publication Date: 1993-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-19
Document File: 6 page(s) / 204K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Cole, G: AUTHOR [+4]

Abstract

Computer users often store information needed by many users in a single shared file which can be accessed by each of the users. If the information in the shared file is updated, there is a need to notify users interested or dependent on that changed information.

This text was extracted from an ASCII text file.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 29% of the total text.

Change-Notification Service for Shared Files

      Computer users often store information needed by many users in
a single shared file which can be accessed by each of the users.  If
the information in the shared file is updated, there is a need to
notify users interested or dependent on that changed information.

      Today this notification process is done by the author of the
change.  The author bears the burden of deciding which users to
notify, how to notify them and when to notify them.  The author may
find it difficult or impossible to maintain an accurate list of
interested users, and may include some whoa re no longer interested,
and exclude others who have become interested.  Notifying users of
changes is tedious for the author, who may not give timely
notification of the change or may neglect it altogether.

      Users dependent on shared files share the problem.  New users
must depend on others to add their names to the correct lists for
change notification.  Many users receive unwanted notifications and
also must ask others to have their names removed.  Users have little
control over the often annoying interruptions of incoming
notifications, and no guarantee that all of the crucial notifications
have arrived.

      The Change Notification Service for Shared Files automatically
notifies users when changes are made to files shared among those
users.  Once the notify request has been defined by the user to the
Change Notification Service, the entire process is transparent to
both the writer and the reader of the file.  Whenever the file is
changed, the Change notification Service will notify the user.

To use Change Notification Service for Shared Files, authors must:

1.  Create a file and authorize users to share it, as usual.
2.  Optionally, use Change Notification Service to set up notify
    requests for a group of authorized users.
3.  Update the shared file, as usual.

To use Change Notification Service for Shared Files, readers must:

1.  Use Change Notification Service to add, delete or modify notify
    requests for any accessible files.
2.  Read the shared file, as usual.

Advantages for authors include:

o   eliminates maintenance of lists of users to be notified
o   no special procedures needed, just edit the file as usual
o   can concentrate on contents of files, instead of its distribution

Advantages for readers include:

o   add notifies for any file which user is authorized to read
o   delete notifies for files no longer necessary
o   controls the time and frequency of notification
o   controls the way the notification is delivered

Typical applications for Change Notification Service for Shared Files
are:

o   schedules and meeting notices
o   instant forums
o   library systems

o   system change management
o   problem tracking systems

      The Change Notification Service for Shared Files was
implemented on the Shared File System (SFS) running on CMS ESA...