[Deploying Sakai] URGENT: I must choose between Sakai and Moodle within 24 hours

Warwick Chapman warwick at thusa.net
Wed Feb 24 01:56:54 PST 2010

Thank you Paul.

So something like this would be perfect:

On Wed, Feb 24, 2010 at 5:57 AM, Paul Gibbs <pgibbsjr at hotmail.com> wrote:

>  Hi Warwick,
> Stephen's 4GB-8GB dual-core recommendation will give you room to grow. If
> you're used to open source PHP projects, it can be a little disappointing to
> find out you'll have a hard time running on less than 3GB. But--the speed
> and stability of moving to Java/Tomcat is really rewarding. It's very
> stable, and it just sort of takes care of itself on small installations.
> Part of the trick is setting your environment variables correctly. I have a
> small installation (usually no more than a handful of people on at any given
> time), and I am running on a VM with 4GB. Here are my Tomcat variables:
> export CATALINA_OPTS="-server -Xms1200m -Xmx1200m -XX:MaxPermSize=512m
> -Djava.awt.headless=true
> -Dorg.apache.jasper.compiler.Parser.STRICT_QUOTE_ESCAPING=false
> -Duser.timezone=America/New_York -d64"
> You could give these a shot and see how they work out for you.
> Paul
> On 2/22/2010 10:48 PM, Warwick Chapman wrote:
> Paul
>  Thanks for that.
>  I don't suspect at any one time there would be more than 10 current users
> though usually probably just one or two (or none).
>  If I make the correct platform choice and implement properly, there are
> upwards of 2000 people in this organisation who could make use of online
> learning.  The South Africans on list list will attest to the fact that
> since 1994 we've been growing slowly but surely in political terms
> (1.4%-16.6%) and that translates in real terms to more and more staff and
> representatives in the field.  In early 2011 we have an election coming up
> which should see another significance increase in the number of office
> bearers flying our flag and needing to be trained what flying that flag
> means (and understanding of our liberal democratic ethos, our policies,
> skills etc).
>  So we really do need to make the right choice, implement well and have
> the platform and the first course complete by 1 April 2010.
>  Warwick
> On Mon, Feb 22, 2010 at 11:01 PM, Paul Gibbs <pgibbsjr at hotmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi Warwick,
>> I think I can relate when you speak about the uphill challenge in setting
>> up Sakai. For me, making the transition from PHP/Apache to Java/Tomcat was
>> the biggest challenge I had to overcome. Although that transition had little
>> to do with Sakai itself, some of my newbie challenges *were *specifically
>> related to understanding the way Sakai Project structures its online user
>> community.
>> The first challenge I found is the use of listservs instead of forums.
>> Coming from open source projects, it is odd that the community operates
>> through listservs instead of through forums. However, my experience has been
>> that the Sakai listservs are *far *more responsive than the average open
>> source forum, and the participants' willingness to help has been excellent.
>> (Thank you, folks--you've been a God-send!) There is also something to be
>> said for listservs in terms of convenience--you can take part in the
>> conversation without needing to open a browser. I really like the
>> convenience of interacting via e-mail instead of needing to do all my
>> posting via a web form. Not that it has to be *either* listserv *or *forum--I
>> suppose the Sakai Project could switch to a forum product which combined the
>> features of listservs with the convenience of forums (e.g., you could choose
>> choose to subscribe to a thread, or an entire forum, and then post or
>> respond to your subscribed content via e-mail or via the web interface).
>> Nabble.com helps with some of this, but that's a third-party tool and isn't
>> the first thing you'd think of when you're first entering the community.
>> Getting comfortable with the multiple Sakai web interfaces is also
>> confusing at first--sakaiproject.org, listservs, Nabble, Confluence, and
>> Jira all have different interfaces, require multiple user accounts, and take
>> some work to get used to. Many open source projects have a single website
>> with forums, downloads, wiki, and other tools wrapped in the same web
>> interface, making it less disorienting when moving between tools.
>> Nevertheless, once again, there are some strengths to the way the Sakai
>> Project does some things. There is something to be said for having all the
>> tools located centrally in Confluence, rather than sending you off to
>> everyone's private website to download source code, find instructions, etc.
>> It is also true that the documentation is hard to find, and it is
>> incomplete in many places. However, there are some good documentation
>> sources out there, if you Google long and hard enough. Some people have put
>> a *lot* of hard work into some of the guides, and I greatly appreciate
>> them for it!
>> As you have already indicated, I think you'll find the Sakai community to
>> be a tremendous resource full of helpful people who produce robust, secure,
>> scalable products. They stand behind their code and are eager to help when
>> they can.
>> Regarding the creation of new sites--you're right in that the admin
>> interface is, once again, difficult to understand. Briefly, you'll need to
>> assign permissions per Stephen's response using the Realms tool, and then
>> your users will need to use "Site Setup" in their "My Workspace" to create
>> new worksites.
>> How many concurrent users do you think you will have?
>> Paul Gibbs
>> Lansdale, Pennsylvania
>> On 2/22/2010 1:36 PM, Warwick Chapman wrote:
>>  Hi All
>>  This is my first post so please forgive me should I not be familiar with
>> protocol.
>>  Please could I ask for some assistance.  I've been tasked with deploying
>> a learning platform for the Democratic Alliance, the official opposition
>> political party in South Africa.  We want to use this platform to further
>> and more effectively train all our public representatives and staff around
>> the country.
>>  I have a report detailing the outcomes of a scoping working which I can
>> make available to anyone should they be interested but basically, the
>> requirements of the platform are as follows:
>>  1. Online courses
>> 2. Knowledgebase
>> 3. Chat module for learner support
>> 4. Forum
>> 5. Must work on dialup-speed connections, though we expect most people to
>> have 256kbps-4096kbps connections
>> 6. Simple to create and manage courses and assessment
>> 7. Support multiple languages (SA has 11 official languages)
>> 8. Work on mobile devices
>>  The more I look at Sakai, the more it appears to me that out of the box
>> it meets more of these requirements than Moodle does, and it seems to me to
>> be better built and more sensible.
>>  -- BUT --
>>  I have been in the IT industry for 15 years as a developer, project
>> manager and executive focusing on Open Source solutions and Sakai is making
>> me feel like a real dum dum.  I have 2.6.2 demo running and am using Packt's
>> "Sakai Courseware Management" as a guide.
>>  Something as simple as following the steps in "My First Project Site"
>> are leaving me wondering if Sakai is well documented enough for the average
>> non-University IT department user to deploy and manage.  I cannot seem to
>> find a "new" link when logged in as a non-admin user and as an admin, I
>> cannot find where to grant permission to the non-admin user to create a
>> project site.
>>  Also, I cannot seem to easily find details relating to what hardware
>> requirements I should expect for a low-use deployment.  Pointers?
>>  Warwick
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