Integrating IBM WebSphere Portal and IBM Connections is a challenging task. In this guide, we provide information for a sample deployment with focuses on WebSphere Portal Version 188.8.131.52 and the IBM Connections Version 4.5 integration.
After you integrate WebSphere Portal Version 8 with IBM Connections Version 4.5, you have the following items in your environment:
- IBM WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment Version 184.108.40.206 or higher
- IBM WebSphere Portal + Web Content Manager (extend) Version 220.127.116.11 or higher
- IBM Content Template v4.1 (CTC) - to be used for IBM Web Content Manager (WCM)
- Social Network portlet (SNP)
- Social Media Publisher (SMP)
- Web Application Integrator portlet (WAI)
- IBM Connections Version 4.5 or higher
- IBM Connections Portlets for WebSphere Portal (Profiles portlet enabled)
The following prerequisites are required to integrate WebSphere Portal Version 18.104.22.168 with IBM Connections Version 4.5:
- WebSphere Application Server Version 8 fixpack level 22.214.171.124 or higher for WebSphere Portal V126.96.36.199
- WebSphere Application Server Version 8 fixpack level 188.8.131.52 or higher for IBM Connections
- WebSphere Portal Extend Version 184.108.40.206 or higher installed
- IBM Connections Version 4.5 installed
- Supported databases are: DB2, Oracle, and SQL Server
- IBM Tivoli Directory Integrator on the same physical server as the IBM Connections database
- Static cluster deployment for WebSphere Portal
- Federated LDAP user registry, with or without Secure Socket Layer (SSL), and keeping the file system user repository
For a detailed list of the prerequisites for installing the two products, visit the following pages:
You need to have an existing custom theme or create your own before configuring WAI to integrate Portal and Connections navigation components. Copying the WebSphere Portal theme ensures that your theme contains all the required elements it needs to function, and that your changes will not be overwritten by a fixpack. Do not modify the WebSphere Portal theme directly because it can be updated by service fixpacks. Instead, follow the instructions in this article Create a copy of the theme
Topology for integrating WebSphere Portal Extend Version 220.127.116.11 with IBM Connections Version 4.5
The following figure shows a common topology for integrating WebSphere Portal 18.104.22.168 with IBM Connections 4.5. This is what is used in this guide.
General deployment guidelines
Throughout this guide, we develop a scenario based on the premise that you will be adding social capabilities to an existing XWebX Portal application. Therefore, we do not provide a complete and detailed step-by-step guide on how to deploy IBM Websphere Portal V8 or IBM Connections V4.5. Instead, we provide you with the following deployment considerations with general steps and links to IBM Information Center for further deployment guidelines. Your environment might be different from the one considered here, but you will be able to understand the big picture on how to provide the core environment.
You should take note of the following guidelines while you deploy your infrastructure:
From the above guidelines, the following is a rationalized view of such a topology.
General setup to facilitate integration
This section outlines the steps necessary to configure single sign-on (SSO) and community page integration between IBM WebSphere Portal and IBM Connections. The documentation on the topic is quite extensive and is distributed between the product documentation for both products:
For configuration of SSO and community pages, we found the instructions in the WebSphere Portal documentation alone to be useful. The Connections documentation adds information about configuring the Connections portlets and deeper security integration between the products.
The minimum configuration to enable IBM Connections integration with WebSphere Portal is described at this page
. There are four basic steps, and product documentation is not repeated in this guide:
- Set up single sign-on
Set up single sign-on to ensure that visitors receive only one authentication challenge. In our case, we achieved this by accessing the two servers on the same domain and exchanging LTPA keys between the two servers. This topic provides steps to achieve this.
- Import SSL certificate to set up trust association
To prevent security alert pop-ups, import the IBM Connections SSL certificates to your portal server. This topic provides steps to achieve this.
- Configure the Portal resource environment provider with the Connections URL
The instructions for deploying the IBM Connections portlets include a procedure to configure the resource environment provider. This topic provides steps to achieve this.
- Set up AJAX proxy
The support for community pages uses the Ajax proxy to access the remote server. Use the global Ajax proxy configuration to customize the outgoing HTTP traffic. This topic provides steps to achieve this.
Enabling community pages
With the above configuration, community pages will start to function. The feature will become enabled in WebSphere Portal configuration and you will be able to browse and select communities in IBM Connections.
Further integration options are available at this page
, in particular:
- Automatically grant page access to community members
- Overriding access control integration during community page instantiation
- Configure limits for propagation of community associations
- Configuring the number of retrieved communities
These are fully described in the product documentation.
For additional references and information: