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April
Grid-Compliant
Open Source Portals
GridwiseTech public reports series
  April 2007
new edition
Written by GridwiseTech
contact@gridwisetech.com
The report can be downloaded from
http://www.gridwisetech.com/portals
April
Contents
4 Introduction
4 About GridwiseTech
5 Portal definitions and evaluation criteria
8 Chapter 1: Gridsphere
12 Chapter 2: Liferay
16 Chapter 3: uPortal
20 Report Summary
20 Adding information
April
April
Introduction
This report was prepared by the
GridwiseTech team and presents the results
of our research on the most popular open
source portals, suitable to be used with the
Grid framework. The report discusses the
solutions currently available on the market
and is addressed to technology investigators
in the process of selecting portal technologies
according to their specific needs.
GridwiseTech is a vendor-independent Grid
technology expert. This report has been
written from a vendor-neutral perspective. The
order in which the solutions have been
presented is entirely unrelated to their
respective quality. It was not our intention to
rank the discussed solutions against one
another, but rather highlight their strong and
weak points.
This freely available report is the result of
research carried out by the GridwiseTech
team. The process included software testing
and acareful documentation review. GridwiseTech
is available for consulting engagements to assist
customers in making the right choices among the
portal
frameworks as well as assisting with
development, customization and integration.
This report was prepared in April 2007. For
information on updates, please visit our
website at www.gridwisetech.com/portals.
Vendors interested in adding or updating in-
formation about their product should write to
contact@gridwisetech.com.
About GridwiseTech
GridwiseTech is a consulting and development
company providing comprehensive technical
technical assistance in Web portal and Grid solutions.
Our clients list includes Philips Research, Ricoh
Co., BP, MCNC (Microelectronics Center for
North Carolina), USGS (US Geological
Survey), SAIC, TRW Automotive and other companies,
for whom we have successfully completed
a number of consulting and development projects.
We regularly teach the Grid Primer class
at major conferences such as the Global Grid
Forum and offer tutorials at the client's
direct request. We are located in Europe and
the US.
What makes us unique and valuable to our
partners is that we are vendor-independent
and, thus, able to offer unbiased expertise and
top-quality consulting services in distributed systems.
GridwiseTech offers years of expertise in the
development, integration and support for grid
environments, including secure portal solutions.
For more information on GridwiseTech, our
clients and a complete list of services please
visit our website www.gridwisetech.com.
To be informed about the most recent
developments at GridwiseTech, please subscribe
to our monthly newsletter. We can be contacted
by writing to contact@gridwisetech.com.
4
April
Portal - definitions
and evaluation criteria
The web-based user interface is nowadays
becoming the most popular approach taken in
the construction of the presentation layer for
remote systems. It has several significant
advantages, most notably the minimal
requirements on the client side. Other strong
points are: the ease of software maintenance,
its remote accessibility and the relatively
simple development and deployment process,
as opposed to the case when desktop clients
are used.
Portal frameworks facilitate the development
of the end-user software. They provide the
coherent and customizable look and feel, as
well as the standard APIs. Thus, they enable
the production of portable, maintainable,
reusable and high-quality code and
significantly reduce the development cost.
Definitions
A portal, in general, is a web-based application
that provides means for data aggregation,
customization and personalization.
Portlets are sub-programs that generate
fragments of mark-up code that can be
subsequently integrated within the portal.
Portlets are managed by portlet containers
and can be implemented in various
languages, although we have focused on
Java-based, JSR-168-compliant solutions.
The Java Community Process (JCP) has
developed the JSR-168 - a portlet specification
standard that ensures the portability of portlets
between portals developed by different
vendors (although some portals provide
extended APIs, as compared to JSR-168,
which prevents the portability of portlets
developed with the help of these extended
APIs).
Version 1.0 of the JSR-168 specification
defines the requirements that ensure
portability among particular portlet containers.
These are as follows:
q portlet container contract
q portlet life-cycle management
q window states and portlet modes
q portlet preferences management
q user information
q packaging and deployment
q security
q JSP tags to aid portlet development.
In general, the function of portals is to serve as
gateways between the end-user and portlets,
which implement the business logic or
delegate requests. Before the page with
portlets can be displayed, each portlet is sent
a request that reflects either the previous user's
actions or the settings of a default portlet.
Having processed the request, the portlet
returns fragments of the web page that should
be presented (as such, it cannot contain
certain HTML tags). These fragments are later
wrapped by the portal with standard frames
and presented on a web page. The portal also
handles other tasks related to the
management of portlets, such as moving,
minimizing, resizing, removing and adding
them to the web page, as well as changing
their state between the 'view', 'modify' and
'help' screens.
5
Portal definitions
and evaluation criteria
April
Discussed features of portals
The market offers a set of commercial portal
software, including products such as: Sun ES
Portal Server, IBM WebSphere, BEA
WebLogic, Microsoft SharePoint, etc. We have
not included these solutions into our research,
though, as we have focused on open source
software products only.
This report investigates three open source
portals, i.e. GridSphere, Liferay and uPortal.
The three portals presented in this report show
three different approaches to building a web-
based user interface to the grid.
There is a wider selection of other open source
solutions available on the market. We have left
SDSC HotPage Portal or Jakarta JetSpeed
outside the scope of our research, as they do
not seem to be popular in grid-related
applications. On the other hand, we have not
included solutions like GENIUS Portal or P-
Grade Portal because they are based on other
solutions, either closed-source ones, or those
already covered in this report.
In our discussion of GridSphere, Liferay and
uPortal we have focused on the following
issues:
q installation and configuration
q portal management
q look and feel
q JSR-168 compliance
q development facilities
q portlets provided
q documentation
q communities and usage
q grid functionality
q security
Installation and Configuration
In each case we performed the installation
process and checked whether following the
manual installation option can lead to
problems.
An important factor are the portal
dependencies - especially as the concept of a
servlet-based portlet requires a servlet
container, in order to run a portlet container
on it. It is essential that the portal should be
compatible both with the open source
solutions, such as Tomcat or Jetty, and the
commercial ones, like WebSphere.
Apart from that, we also tested the
configuration capabilities of the portal, i.e. the
layout, the messaging system, databases, the
logging system and other vendor-specific
features.
Portal Management
The management of portlets requires either
the modification of XML files, or can be
performed on the level of the web portal. A
portal also provides administrative functions,
such as adding and editing users, defining
groups, privileges, etc. At least, functions such
as changing colors, themes and localization of
the portal should be available.
Look and Feel
The overall appearance of the portal is a
factor of crucial importance. Portlets should
look consistent as regards colors and themes.
Information should be presented in a standard
way and ergonomically positioned on the web
page.
6
April
JSR-168 compliance
JSR-168-compliance should guarantee the
portability of portlets among particular portal
containers. We described this issue on two
instances. One is the situation when other
JSR-168-compliant portlets are run within the
portal under investigation. The other case is
when the portlets developed for a particular
portal, due to its potential non-standard APIs,
are run with the use of other vendors'
products.
Development facilities
JSR-168 provides only the basic contract
between a portlet container and portlets. If
portlets are to be built efficiently, higher-level
abstractions become useful. Portals may
provide the developer with a different set of
APIs that facilitate the creation of facilities
such as the user interface, persistence, inter-
portlets messaging, etc.
Portlets Provided
Some basic functionality portlets, such as
authentication and portal management,
should be provided with the portal. Other
kinds of portlets may speed up the
development process.
Documentation
The scope of our investigation has been the
online documentation of the open source
solutions. We checked whether the installation
and configuration process had been
adequately described, tutorials and guidelines
made available, as well as demos placed for
download. Additionally, we strove to evaluate
the maturity of the documentation, i.e. its
completeness and adequacy to the latest
version of the software.
We also researched the existence and
completeness of help modes in portlets
bundled with the portal.
Communities and Usage
A good indicator of the maturity of software
can be the size of its user community. A large
number of users guarantees easier access to
solutions to particular problems, with the aid
of mailing lists and forums. The use of the
software in business is a proof of its reliability.
Grid Functionality
Grid-oriented portals provide additional
portlets and services that enable access to grid
resources. Higher-level APIs and common grid
software (such as Java CoG Kit, MyProxy, etc.)
provide means for quick development of the
grid presentation layer.
Among particular grid portlets, the following
types are significant:
q certificate management
q credential retrieval
q single sign-on
q resources/information
q job submission
q file management
Security
The major issue as regards portal security is
that it should provide reliable authorization
solutions. We examined the approaches that
had been implemented in the tested portals
and the possibility of using the standard,
external authorization or directory services
software.
7
April
Chapter 1
GridSphere
8
April
1. GridSphere
GridSphere is a portal framework that has
been developed since 2002 as a part of the
GridLab project. Though focused on grid
solutions, it remains a very stable, general-
purpose portal with a large community. It is
available upon a BSD-like license.
1.1 Installation and Configuration
As regards installation, the software does not
cause any major problems. Before the
installation of GridSphere, in its default
configuration, a prior installation of Apache
Tomcat 4.1+ or 5.0.25+ is required. In the
case of Tomcat 5.5+, it is necessary to install
additional packages as well. After making
some minor adjustments, it is also possible to
run GridSphere using the Jetty servlet
container. Deployment on a J2EE-compliant
server is possible as well, although this requires
making some other changes in the
configuration files, which have not been
documented. Additional configuration - by
means of XML files - makes it possible to
adapt the currently used database, as well as
shape the messaging system, portal layout or
authorization preferences.
1.2 Portal Management
The administration of the portal can be
accomplished from the level of its web
interface. Editing users and groups is
effortless, and so is the authorization and
management of portlets. However, a subset of
the attributes can only be defined by
modifying XML files.
1.3 Look and Feel
The graphic design of the portal is coherent
and tidy, although only two default graphic
themes are offered. Any customization of the
graphic design is a manual process that
requires modifying XML data, as well as
logging in and out of the portal. Despite the
fact that the presentation layer seems to be
ergonomic, some features are missing, e.g.
moving or closing windows, are missing.
1.4 JSR-168 compliance
GridSphere is JSR-168-compliant, i.e. it passes
Sun Technology Compatibility Kit test (TCK),
therefore it can serve any standard JSR-168-
based portlet. In addition to that, it
implements the IBM WebSphere Portlet API (v
4.1+), as well as provides its own API that
speeds up portlet development.
1.5 Development Facilities
In order to simplify portlet development,
GridSphere provides facilities for both the user
interface design and the implementation of
business logic.
The user interface is supported by visual beans
and a User Interface (UI) tag library. The UI tag
library is used for the construction of interfaces
as visual components that wrap the underlying
HTML elements with a default look and feel.
The visual beans provide bean representations
of the tags that are used in portlets for action
handling or the presentation logic.
The implementation of business logic is
facilitated by the concept of Portlet Services,
which encapsulate the reusable code that
provides a common interface to users' portlets.
GridSphere supplies the programmer with a
core set of services as well as enables the
creation of new services.
GridSphere offers a higher-level API that
provides persistence capabilities and is
accessible through Hibernate.
9
GridSphere
April
A major strength of GridSphere is a template
build system to develop new portlet projects.
GridSphere provides an ANT-based template
allowing developers to simply execute "ant new
project" to generate all the necessary portlet
template files that can be easily customized.
Because of this, development with the use of
an IDE can commence rapidly.
1.6 Portlets Provided
The provided core set of portlets covers the
basic portal functionality, such as
authorization, portal administration and
customization. Still, the help modes and the
localization function in those portlets have not
been completed. No additional utility portlets
are bundled, although any other standard-
based portlet can be deployed as JSR-168-
compliant software.
1.7 Documentation
Well-written documentation is available
online. Even though some documents have
not been finished, the documentation is
sufficient for the successful accomplishment of
the installation and configuration processes,
as well as for the development and
deployment of portlets. Also, commercial
support is available on request. The
documentation looks well-maintained and
regularly updated.
1.8 Communities and Usage
GridSphere has an active community. Both of
its mailing lists group GridSphere developers;
and complete archives of these lists are
available.
As regards its application, GridSphere is used
in university projects as well as in business.
1.9 Grid Functionality
As a grid-oriented portal, GridSphere provides
a portal framework for the development of a
grid presentation layer. The web application
known as GridPortlets provides a basic set of
portlets for credential and resource
management, job submission and file
browsing. GridSphere is also supported as a
platform for portals developed under the
supervision of OGCE.
1.10 Security
GridSphere follows the concept of role-based
access control to portlets. Each portlet has a
defined role, in order to be accessed by a user;
consequently, each user has a role, specified
for every portlet group.
Authentication can be processed by a set of
modules. The order of processing and the
involvement of modules can be managed by
the portlet at run time. GridSphere provides
authentication based on passwords stored in a
database and the JAAS authentication
module.
1.11 Unique concepts
q built-in support for Role Based Access
Control (RBAC) that divides users into
guests, users, administrators and super
users
q a higher-level model for building complex
portlets, which uses visual beans and the
GridSphere User Interface (UI) tag library
authentication modules
q portlet development, using the Java Server
Faces (JSF) standard
q JSR-168 and IBM WebSphere 4.1
compliance
q persistence of the provided data, with the
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GridSphere
April
use of Hibernate JDO/OQL for database
support
q integrated Junit/Cactus unit tests for
complete server side testing of portlet
services, including generation of test
reports
q support for portletizing Struts applications,
using the Portals Struts Bridge
1.12 Summary
GridSphere is a fully functional, easy-to-use
and stable portal framework. As a JSR-168-
compliant application, it can serve as a
platform for any standard-based portlet. The
higher-level API and service concept provides
a comfortable development environment and
enables a fast development process.
At the same time, proprietary solutions result
in an unportable code. GridSphere suffers
from a simplistic UI design and accidental
gaps in documentation. Also the XML-based
configuration requires profound knowledge of
the software.
1.13 Obtain more information
GridwiseTech offers vendor-independent
expertise and is available for commercial
engagements concerning technical evaluation,
integration and development of complete Grid
solutions incorporating this product. We can be
contacted at contact@gridwisetech.com.
11
GridSphere
April
Chapter 2
Liferay
12
April
2 Liferay
The Liferay portal is an open source solution
that has been developed for six years. Its
spectacular interface, as well as the wide
range of bundled portlets, is accompanied by
substantial development capabilities. The
solution is available upon an MIT License
2.1 Installation and Configuration
The portal cooperates with an impressive
amount of application servers and servlet
containers. Liferay was released in two
versions: the enterprise version, which requires
an application server, and the professional
version, for which a servlet container is
sufficient. The installation process of each
configuration is precisely described in the
documentation. For the most popular open
source containers, Liferay provides a version of
portal bundled with a container, which
practically limits the installation process to
installing the JDK and unpacking the bundle.
Persistence facilities, accessed through
Hibernate, can be back-ended with various
databases. Liferay can also be configured to
work with a number of mail servers.
Even though the list of supported applications
is very long, developers still work on expanding
it. Liferay has published a complete list of
tested configurations on its website.
2.2 Portal Management
Liferay provides browser-based administration.
Unlike many other portals, all typical activities
can be performed without modifying its XML
configuration files - the graphical interface
remains sufficient.
2.3 Look and Feel
The greatest advantage of Liferay is the
abundance of presentation layer capabilities,
closely followed by its wide variety of
configurations. The graphical interface
enables adding and removing WYSIWYG
content, repositioning portlets on the page
with the use of the drag-and-drop technique,
as well as intuitive windows management. The
general impression of this AJAX-powered web
interface is very close to traditional desktop
graphical interfaces.
Several themes are bundled, which can be
assigned to specific user groups, in order to be
chosen by a user for their own personal portal
page. Additionally, independent configuration
of the design of each portlet is possible. The
additional external themes are hot-deployable
as WAR files.
2.4 JSR-168 compliance
Liferay is a fully JSR-168-compliant solution.
Non-standard JSP tag libraries and other utility
classes are provided in order to accelerate the
development, however, their use induces the
unportability of the created portlets.
2.5 Development Facilities
The portal supports many modern
technologies, such as Struts, Tails, Spring, EJB
and Hibernate. The development of portlets is
facilitated by the use of JavaServer Faces and
Apache template: Velocity engine. Persistence
is available as a result of using either
Hibernate or EJB.
The enterprise version allows for separate
deployment of the web server, the database
and the EJB container, which makes it possible
13
Liferay
April
to introduce clustering at each individual level.
In order to simplify the development of J2EE,
Liferay provides Apache Ant tasks which, by
using the service.xml metadata file, can
generate a set of Java classes which can be
subsequently modified by the developer.
2.6 Portlets Provided
A large set of well-written and useful portlets is
included in the distribution. All of them
conform to the standard procedure of
configuring permissions and appearance. A
complete set of administrative and
management portlets is bundled as well.
As one of its core functionalities, the portal
incorporates the Content Management System,
which enables document management and
publishing. These functionalities are also
accessible through adequate portlets.
2.7 Documentation
Liferay offers a detailed description of the
installation, configuration and administration
procedures. Moreover, Lifecast tutorials have
been created for basic activities related to
installation, CMS, security and permission,
user administration and other issues. They
guide the user step-by-step through these
processes, aided by Flash animations.
Unfortunately, the documentation that covers
the development process is more laconic and
quite fatiguing to understand. This is
becoming even more challenging in the
context of using J2EE technologies, supported
by the portal framework. A set of Javadoc
documents has also been published - both for
the portal itself and for bundled portlets -
however, the quality of this specification is
relatively poor.
2.8 Communities and Usage
Liferay has a large user community, as well as
and active forums and a mailing list. However,
we have found that questions posted in the
forum often remain unanswered. The
company has published a list of success
stories, including names of customer
companies and university environments.
Commercial support is available.
2.9 Grid Functionality
Liferay is not classified as a grid portal,
therefore it does not provide any grid facilities
directly. However, as JSR-168-compliant
software, it can serve as a platform for grid
portlets applications (e.g. OGCE portlets).
2.10 Security
Liferay is provided with authorization support,
although, as it supports JAAS security, in the
course of the authorization process the Servlet
and EJB tiers are propagated as the main
ones. Furthermore, the portal offers a
possibility to incorporate additional
authentication methods, like LDAP and Active
Directory.
Access restrictions can be set even on the level
of portlets - if only this is implemented by the
developers, as it happens in case of bundled
portlets. The administrator may then modify
access to portlets or delegate the permission-
giving authority to others. Access can be set at
the individual, community or object levels. The
portal also provides single sign-on.
2.11 Unique concepts
q application server- and database-agnostic
q hot-deployable themes
q Spring EJB and AOP support
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Liferay
April
q scalable N-Tier cluster
q large set of out-of-the-box portlets
q single sign-on implementation
q Content Management System incorporated
q Velocity template support
2.12 Summary
Liferay is an example of mature software that
provides a complete set of tools for creating
web portal applications. Due to its cooperation
with practically all leading application servers
and servlet containers, as well as the powerful
graphical interface combined with extensive
use of J2EE technology, Liferay is an
interesting solution for commercial purposes.
Still, due to its complexity, the use of all its
features requires an effort on the part of the
developer. Also the documentation, especially
the development section, should be written in
a more comprehensible manner.
2.13 Obtain more information
GridwiseTech offers vendor-independent
expertise and is available for commercial
engagements concerning technical evaluation,
integration and development of complete Grid
solutions incorporating this product. We can be
contacted at contact@gridwisetech.com.
15
Liferay
April
Chapter 3
uPortal
16
April
3 uPortal
uPortal is a solution developed by - and
according to the requirements of - academic
institutions. As such, it provides a framework for
creating a university campus portal, though, as
a generic product, it can be also utilized for
creating non-academic web portals.
3.1 Installation and Configuration
Two distributions of the portal are provided:
the quick-start and the source-code only.
The quick-start distribution consists of a Java
database (HypersonicSQL), a servlet
container, a build tool, a portal source code
and configuration files. Its purpose is to
provide an easy-to-install demo and
development environment.
The source-code distribution contains only the
source code of the portal and configuration
files, and has been designed to be hosted in a
production environment.
JA-SIG, the higher education, open source
consortium supporting uPortal, provides
documentation for tuning uPortal to work with
Tomcat and Resin containers, as well as
details about the configuration of several
popular databases.
3.2 Portal Management
For performing the standard management
tasks, like user and group management, a
graphical interface has been provided. These
activities can also be accomplished by using
command line tools. uPortal provides ways to
adjust layout attributes through the portal
interface, in order to fit the user's needs,
however, the procedure is quite unclear. The
parameters may also be set by changing XML
files. In order to add new content (i.e. for
channel creation) either the convenient
graphic Channel Manager can be used, or the
user can manually place the configuration files
in the appropriate directories.
3.3 Look and Feel
The default layout of the portal does not seem
very advanced. The appearance of the GUI
does seems slightly outdated and is quite
unintuitive to use. Still, it matches the basic
requirements of the portal, though it lacks
some well-known features, present in other
solutions (e.g. no button for switching back to
the default VIEW mode; the custom Portlet
modes are not supported, etc.). Nevertheless,
the software has been put into production by
academic institutions, and the snapshots of
their systems make a professional impression.
In order to facilitate the usage and
configuration of the Portal, referring to the
documentation is advised. Because of its
academic origin, uPortal uses names
conventions that correspond to the university
name space in the standard distribution.
uPortal 3.0 (which during the writing of this
report has entered the Release Candidate
phase) provides a number of other features,
such as the new, attractive default layout, as
well as functional layout management with
drag-and-drop support.
3.4 JSR-168 compliance
uPortal 2.5 does not support JSR-168
specification directly, but portlets are
integrated through a Portlet-to-Channel
adapter and a portlet container, managed by
Apache Pluto, which states for the reference
implementation of the JSR-168 specification.
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uPortal
April
Direct support for portlets is expected to be
implemented natively in the uPortal 3.0
release.
3.5 Development Facilities
The uPortal architecture is designed around
the channel concept. The channel is a
mechanism that enables rendering the varied
content to a portal page layout, which in
some way resembles the concept of portlets.
The channels enable publishing the following
types of content: applets, images, HTML -
either formatted or not - documents, RSS,
XML transformations, etc. It is also feasible
to provide custom implementations of the
channel. A portlet is rendered as a channel in
uPortal 2.0 release, which is expected to be
changed in version 3.0 of the portal,
designed with portlets as the core means of
delivery.
As a facility for portlets development, the Ant
subtask has been provided, in order to perform
the deployment of Portlet Applications.
However, all XML portlet configuration files
have to be written from scratch and packaged
with the class files in a WAR file.
3.6 Portlets Provided
Only a small number of illustrative portlets are
bundled with the distribution. They include a
test suite portlet, the RSS portlet and the
Google portlet, although the latter ones come
from the portlet open source trading site.
uPortal contains a complete set of channels,
such as authorization, administrative, utility,
as well as demo channels. These key channels
are provided as portlets in the new uPortal 3.0
Release Candidate.
3.7 Documentation
The documentation provided by uPortal is not
complete, and dispersed between the wiki
(where references to PDF documents are also
stored), a mailing list and the JIRA tracking
system, as well as some external sources. The
documentation describes different versions of
uPortlet, it is incoherent and, in general, not
up-to-date. This results in difficulties with both
starting to use uPortal and its further utilization.
The documentation lacks a comprehensive
description of terms and procedures, both
during the installation and the development of
the portal. This was the case when the authors
of this report sought to obtain the generally-
available information. According to a
representative of the JA-SIG, uPortal's support
provider, this information can be found on the
internal JA-SIG wiki, and another valuable
resource is the JA-SIG-uPortal mailing list, in
case of questions related to particular problems.
3.8 Communities and Usage
uPortal is commonly used in university
environment. The list of producers on their
website includes names of over seventy
academic institutions, some of which provide
snapshots of their production installations.
Commercial support from a few companies is
available as well. According to the JA-SIG
representative, there are over 400 production
implementations worldwide, with
commercially branded versions (SunGard
Higher Education's Luminis, Unicon's
Academus) adding approximately 350 more.
The project contains a bug tracking system,
wiki, and active mailing lists for users and
developers. In addition to that, semi-annual
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uPortal
April
conferences provide a forum for education
and support.
3.9 Grid Functionality
No grid facilities are bundled with the
distribution and the documentation contains
no references to grid technologies. However,
OGCE supports a one-step, integrated build
for uPortal and the relevant documentation.
3.10 Security
The basic authorization services provided by
uPortal enable the storing of the main data in
a database that uses the MD5 encryption. The
basic structure to connect to LDAP or NT
ACLs systems has been included. uPortal also
has the CAS security module bundled in the
package.
uPortal claims to have a rich authorization
framework that allows administrators the
ability to customize very fine-grained
permission profiles for individual users or
groups. However, in this study we have not
investigated this functionality in greater depth.
3.11 Unique concepts
q wide variety of content sources
q built-in support for academic institution
requirements
q fine-grained administration of permissions
q Central Authentication Service support
q JSR-168 support through adapter to
Apache Pluto
q used as a platform for OGCE grid portlets
3.12 Summary
uPortal is a very stable, commonly used
solution. The large community of users is a
proof of the software's usability. However,
even though the installation of the quick-start
release is fairly easy, putting the Portal into
production requires some effort. This can be
attributed to to the necessity of manual
configuration, low quality of default layouts, as
well as the scattered and outdated
documentation.
3.13 Obtain more information
GridwiseTech offers vendor-independent
expertise and is available for commercial
engagements concerning technical evaluation,
integration and development of complete Grid
solutions incorporating this product. We can be
contacted at contact@gridwisetech.com.
19
uPortal
April
Report Summary
Portals have already proven to be an efficient
way of enabling end-users to use Grid
resources. GridwiseTech has successfully
developed portal solutions for a number of
satisfied customers. Here are several selected
examples:
q for Philips Research – a highly interactive,
web-based access to professional engine-
ering applications that perform simulations
of the customer's new medical technology
(http://www.gridwisetech.com/success_sto-
ries)
q for the School Grid project of Dr. Wolfgang
Gentzsch (Director of D-Grid) – develop-
ment of a prototype grid infrastructure for
a digital science laboratory grid for schools
q for Ricoh, Co., Japan – development of
collaboration environment for a prototype
of the customer's new technology.
When choosing a particular portal solution for
a specific purpose, a number of important
factors should be taken into consideration.
The most obvious ones are the portal's ease of
use, as well as its look and feel. Other factors,
of no lesser importance, are: the ease of
development, manageability and portability -
to name just a few of them.
GridwiseTech offers consulting and guidance
services through the process of helping the
client to choose the best solution, tailored to
the company's specific needs. We provide
comprehensive assistance in designing and
building successful portal solutions, as well as
other services:
q unbiased advice – consulting on portal so-
lutions from different vendors (e. g. Grid-
Sphere, uPortal, Liferay, EnginFrame,
JBoss Portal, WebSphere), recommenda-
tion of the one that best suits the client's
requirements;
q optimization of the client's resources (set-
up, installation, configuration, tuning);
q advanced integration with customer's
infrastructure;
q grid-enabling of the client's applications;
q outsourced development;
q long-term, outsourced support of the
client's infrastructure and staff training.
The GridwiseTech team invites you to share
your comments or ask questions related to this
report, to Grid computing issues, as well as to
our services. We can be contacted at
contact@gridwisetech.com.
Adding Information
Portal vendors interested in adding their product
to our report or updating information about their
product are invited to contact the GridwiseTech
team at contact@gridwisetech.com.
20
Summary
April
http://www.gridwisetech.com/portals
GridwiseTech
ul. Chrobrego 28/4
31- 428 Krakow, Poland
Phone: +48 12 294 71 20
contact@gridwisetech.com