1 - Introduction
2 - Installation and Configuration
3 - Features
4 - Bestpractices and limitations
5 - References
WebRadar is an Ephox product designed exclusively for IBM Web Content Management. WebRadar enhances WCM with powerful reporting capabilities and options for editing multiple items in a batch, which is not possible out of the box. It reduces the dependency on WCM API, hence saving tremendous amount of time in manually scripting reports using wcm api.
WebRadar comes with a portlet for front end user interface and a WebSphere application which provides backend services. The WebRadar portlet provides user interface for all custom reporting, dashboard and editing functions. The backend application populates the newly created database tables with content metadata by extracting it from JCR database and carries out other backend data manipulations. WebRadar cache updates are scheduled to run every few minutes fetching the updated metadata from JCR DB and populate the WebRadar meta-data cache (DB). A Scheduler can be set up which suspends the data extraction process at predefined times to reduce load on JCR DB during peak hours. Reporting functions go to WebRadar repository without impacting authoring performance. You can configure specific libraries which you would like to monitor, so that the cache can only pull information from those libraries.
In addition to using WCM security for item level access control, WebRadar provides 3 roles for authorization: User role for reporting and Dashboard capabilities, Editor for multi-Edits and Admin role for additional Administration activities:
Installation and Configuration
Download WebRadar from:
1. Before installing the paa file downloaded from Greenhouse catalog, you will need to create the WebRadar database.
Please follow the steps for the respective database you are using. (I successfully configured this on Portal 8.5 using DB2).
Create datasources using these instructions:
2. Locate the file webradar-install.properties in the downloaded zip and edit it to point PROFILE_DIR to your WebSphere portal profile directory, e.g.:
C:\IBM\WebSphere\wp_profile (Windows) 09830C
3. Edit the webradar-application.properties to match your database settings including Database name, user account and password and server location and port. Any properties that do not need to change can be left commented out
4. In the webradar-application.properties you can also set a user group that will be used for WebRadar administration and report editing. If left empty the installer will use the Portal Administration Group.
5. Run the install
Restart Portal server to make sure the newly installed application is started. Login to portal. You will find WebRadar under the Applications > Content
Features and Use Cases
WebRadar provides powerful reporting capabilities. You can generate your custom reports within minutes and export them to different file formats. These reports can also be viewed in bar charts and graphs for a visual representation of the data being presented.
You can also subscribe to a report which can be sent to your inbox automatically.
1- Need a report of all published content which do not have an expiration date set.
You can sort the results by meta-data of your choice and export the results into CSV or PDF file.
You can also display the results in charts and graphs:
2- Need a report which shows all the expired content published before 2 years:
3- Need a report to check drafts lingering over 1 year
You can create your own reports and place them on the dashboard for a customized view of the reports that you would like to monitor.
- Need to be able to check all the drafts that need my approval.
- Need to monitor any items that are expiring this month
- Need to keep an eye on all new content published in the last 1 week.
Multi-Edit function allows you to query content items that meet a certain criteria and then update corresponding metadata for those items. Following meta-data can be updated using WebRadar multi-edit function:
Additional Viewer, Author, Owner, Title, Description,Workflow, Current Approver, Expiry Date, General Date 1&2, Publication Date, Keywords, Category, Site Area. These changes will reflect immediately in Authoring, but after a cache update in WebRadar.
- Find all content by user xxx, who left the company and edit all items to replace the user with another user. This is essentially taking over the member fixer functions and making it very easy to execute.
- Find all content items in publish stage >2 years with no expiry date set, select all results and set an expiry date.
It provides option to let the changes go through the workflow or simply make the change bypassing workflow.
Best Practices and limitations
Try to avoid both syndication and WebRadar extraction running at the same time.
Schedule WebRadar extraction at non-peak times to avoid JCR DB contention and performance issues.
If the data in WebRadar is not in sync with what is seen in authoring, rebuild the WebRadar cache during non-peak hours.
Make sure you back up your JCR database before doing large sets of multi edits.
WebRadar is supported with DB2, Oracle and SQL Server Databases.
WebRadar is currently not supported with Virtual Portals.
If you are running into issues with updates using WebRadar, try out the same update from authoring portlet to isolate where the issue is. If the problem only happens with WebRadar and not with Authoring, then please reach out to Ephox support.