SakaiAdminX officially released!

I am very excited to announce that SakaiAdminX has been officially released!

SakaiAdminX is a web application you can use to administer Sakai with ease.

Using SakaiAdminX you can:

  • create and delete sites (either blank or based on templates)
  • edit sites (title, skin, site icon, type, contact details etc)
  • add and remove users with different degrees of permissions
  • search for users
  • manage people that have ‘admin’ or ‘helpdesk’ access to all sites.

SakaiAdminX introduces more levels of administrative permissions to Sakai which allows a single Sakai environment to be used for multiple institutions or clients. This is achieved through the concept of ‘clients’, where each client has a set of sites attached to it – with their own branding/look and feel. Each client also has its own admin/helpdesk users who have access to all sites attached to that client.

You also get a helpdesk user, which has access to all sites like an admin user and you assign users to be helpdesk users giving them access to all sites, much like the admin user works in Sakai at present.

The main function of SakaiAdminX revolves around the ‘Site Profile’. This is a place where all editing of the site takes place, ie title, skin, icon, contact details, as well as adding and removing users. All done with far less clicks than the existing Sakai interfaces, and all done on the one screen. The Site Profile is easily extensible, so if you need additional functionality, just plug it in!

SakaiAdminX can also be deployed separate to Sakai itself, or sitting alongside the rest of the Sakai webapps as it makes use of a vastly extended set of webservices written for Sakai.

SakaiAdminX includes a single sign on from SakaiAdminX to your existing Sakai installation, and can be CASified easily (instructions included).

Comprehensive information, including screenshots, is available at:

This includes the step-by-step Installation Guide:

as well as guides on Using SakaiAdminX (including screenshots), Skinning SakaiAdminX, an Administrators guide and another guide on simple enhancements you can perform on your Sakai environment to make it completely integrated with SakaiAdminX.

You can use SakaiAdminX on existing Sakai installations via the migration utility included, or on fresh installations of Sakai.

SakaiAdminX is currently in production at Lancaster University, UK, as well as a local UK company using it to manage their Sakai installation.

For any comments or questions, please send them along. We would love for anyone that likes SakaiAdminX and wants to extend it, to get involved!

The ternary operator and JSP

This interesting bit of JSTL for JSP is worth writing about.

Background: The ternary operator allows you to combine an if-then-else statement into one line using a bunch of symbols. It makes code a bit harder to read, but it also makes it look cool.

I can turn this:

<c:when test="{not empty somevariable}">
  not empty

into this:

<c:out value="${not empty somevariable ? 'not empty' : 'empty'}" />

It even parses variables for output:

<c:out value="${not empty somevariable ?  somevariable: 'empty'}" />

And you don’t even need the c:out:

${not empty somevariable ?  somevariable: 'empty'}

Old hat yes, but I thought an interesting tidbit to write about!