Using Dashboards in UCM and URM 11g
By Kyle Hatlestad on Sep 22, 2010
On my 11g announcement posting, I mentioned one of the new features is the Dashboard feature. It allows users to put "portlets" of information together on their home page. While it seems portal-like, it's really just a standard dynamic page that pulls in those different pieces. What I think makes it interesting is it uses Content Folios as a way of defining and organizing these dashboards. So I think it helps open up the mind to the possibilities of how folios can be used...
But back to dashboards...The first thing to note about Dashboard is that they are only available with the records and retention configuration turned on. In URM, this should already be the case. But in UCM, it needs to be enabled. So step one is to enable one of the Records Settings.As an administrator, go to Administration -> Configure Records Settings. Set the Records Management Install Settings to 'Standalone' and set the Installation to at least Minimal. You'll then need to restart UCM. After the restart, you'll then be directed to complete the RM setup checklist. This will guide you through the process of configuring the records and retention setup.
Once completed, you'll now see an extra menu option in the top navigation for 'Records'. Within that menu choice you'll find Dashboards. Two dashboards are automatically created for you.
The User dashboard has all the common panels that are end-user focused. The panels on the Admin dashboard are meant for records administrators. It provides a single view into several RM tasks.
To set the dashboard as your home page, simply go to the Actions menu in the top right and select 'Set as Home Page'.
In addition to these two standard dashboards, users can also create their own and share with others. Either from the Records -> Dashboard -> Create New menu or from Content Management -> New Dashboard.
The panels are each separate content items that get added and organized into a Content Folio. But because they are flagged as a dashboard, they are edited and displayed in a special way.
To add your panels, click the Add Row icon (green plus). It will bring up a search which is pre-configured to search for panels (items with the native format of application/idoc.pane). Perform your search, select the panels you want to add to your dashboard, and click Next. They'll now appear as a list at the top.
You can now select the desired panel within each column and click OK to place that panel. When finished, go to Actions -> Save Dashboard. Fill out the metadata and click Check In
At the confirmation page, click 'View the dashboard' and click Finish. You can now go to Actions -> Set As Home Page to make it your default home page view or click Change to Edit View to make further changes. Now other users can search, find, and apply that same dashboard for themselves.
In terms of editing the dashboard, Internet Explorer seems to work best and allows for drag-n-drop of the panels.
Because the panels are content items themselves, it's very easy to customize and create your own. I found by taking an existing one as an example, removing the main display code, and inserting my own, I was able to easily add a new panel option. Here is a sample of my .. Note: In order for new panels to be found with the default search, the .idoc extension must be mapped to 'application/idoc.pane' in the Configuration Manager applet.
Disclaimer: Although Dashboards make use of Idoc Script caching, the cache is personal. So for each user that accesses a dashboard page, UCM is performing the various services to render the complete page. So plan the infrastructure accordingly to support the increase in requests if needed.