Home | About | Blogs


Learn from the perspectives of our industry experts in our series of blog posts.
Check back for new posts on the latest in select open source projects.

Latest Blog Postings

Q3 2016 uPortal Open Source Support Briefing

The quarterly uPortal Open Source Support Briefing is an opportunity to share the contributions performed on behalf of the OSS program, highlight Unicon's perspective on contributions, and share happenings in the community along with opportunities to engage further with Unicon.

Discussions for the Q3 Support Briefing concerned maintenance development on uPortal, plans for further enhancement of the uPortal project, as well as soliciting and discussing feedback on OSS and uPortal community future priorities.

Sakai 11 Features

(Source: https://www.sakaiproject.org)

A big community effort has resulted in the creation of Sakai 11. This release has more innovation and changes than any other release in the history of Sakai. To match the actual requirements of institutions all around the world, Sakai 11 includes a complete redesign of the interface, a new Gradebook tool, and thousands of other new features and improvements.

Let’s explore some of the most interesting updates:

Apereo CAS 5 Release Announcement

The Apereo Foundation has announced the official GA release of CAS 5. This is a major release which is packed with a lot of new features and enhancements, some of which are described here:

Spring Boot/Cloud

Configuration management and setup has been simplified extensively, thanks to the Spring Boot and Spring Cloud projects.The auto-configuration strategy of CAS features is as follows: 

Adding RESTful APIs to Portlets

RESTful APIs, while not new, have only recently seen adoption in portlets. Why? They are often used to expose a service. In the case of portlets, there is often a more complete service that the portlet fronts. Another common use is to provide the back end of single page applications. It is this later use that is likely to drive more RESTful APIs in portlets.

Luckily, most portlets use Springframework with it's vast array of complimentary libraries. Springframework Web Services is one such library that directly supports implementing RESTful APIs.

AngularJS Portlet Testing with Jasmine

Recently, I had the opportunity to add a new testing suite to a portlet. That suite is Jasmine, a JavaScript testing framework. The Survey Portlet is a modern portlet which leverages AngularJS. The Angular controllers needed to be tested as part of the project. In most Maven-driven Java applications that I have seen there is no testing performed on JavaScript. Jasmine integration is a step to correct this common shortcoming.

LDAP TLS/SSL Config for the Shibboleth IdP Explained

Many Shibboleth IdP adopters use LDAP as provide both an authentication provider and an attribute source. There is always the question of "do we need to configure TLS/SSL for the IdP's connection to the LDAP server(s)?". My response is "always" because we need to protect the user's credentials even in the most trusted network. My question back to the client, "Why do wouldn't you?". Often the response is somewhere between "we've tried and we got it to work once, but then it broke sometime" and "we could never get it to work".

Successfully Integrating a SAML Service Provider

A common task when running a SAML Identity Provider (IdP) is integrating additional SAML service providers (SP). This task is not a trivial one, especially when compared to integrating CAS clients. New IdP administrators can run into problems before they even start with the technical task at hand because they aren't given the correct information to be successful. The request to do an integration usually goes something like this: