Category Archives: document management
Alfresco is a Document management system, also known as enterprise content management system. While products like google docs and live office making a lot of noise in the document editing market and products like dropbox helping us save and share our documents and other type of files. There is an open market for enterprise class content management system.
Though it is called an ECM, individual users or a small team like can greatly benefit from it.
How would you like to have all your documents searchable on the cloud, group them, categorise them, render them on the fly, download and view them on any device and share them with any group of people. This is what a document management system is all about. Though the product is not targeting individual users or small groups, never the less the benefits are undeniable once you know what you’re missing. Products like google doc and live office are not any document management system, they are just storage for your document with online editors and allow you to share and collaborate them in a very limited way.
Watch this video to see some highlights of alfresco features
On the other hand smart products like Dropbox makes sure your file is always with you. Features like Dropbox offline syncing can be a great extension to alfresco. However seamless integration of Dropbox with various platforms did not come cheap.
Talking about offline file sync, Alfresco do supports CIFS export of its contents; with Microsoft offline sync you can access them offline too.
Alfresco is Open Source Open Standard product, built on java and runs on java tomcat application server and even on Jboss platform.
You can deploy it on your own cloud and set it up without spending a penny for license, which is almost as good as the enterprise edition, and good enough for most of small and medium enterprises.
Feature wise Alfresco lines up with products like Microsoft SharePoint portal and it’s a great alternative to it.
Xeois helps you with deploying alfresco open source/community edition for your business organization and help integrate to your business process. Feel free to contact your comment/document management requirement
Tag: alfresco, google docs alternative, sharepoint alternative, what is alfresco, Alfresco feature lists, open source
read more on alfresco vs googledocs
Quoted from Wikipedia: “Enterprise Content Management (ECM) is the strategies, methods and tools used to capture, manage, store, preserve, and deliver content and documents related to organizational processes. ECM covers the management of information within the entire scope of an enterprise whether that information is in the form of a paper document, an electronic file, a database print stream, or even an email”
ECM is also known as document management system (DMS) or even digital asset management system.
A simple workflow for a document management system
Read the full blog What is ECM? Document workflow work in an ECM?
An organization needs to maintain a repository of information. This includes common knowledge or business specific information such as white papers, user manuals, policy document, knowledge tags, or answers to frequently asked questions. A general purpose document management system can fill the void, however a single purpose knowledge base system will be a far better fit.
A knowledge base provides a means for information to be collected, organized, shared, searched and utilized. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knowledge_base)
Contents stored in a knowledge base are usually HTML; they can also be accompanied in various other formats for document and used
We can imagine a knowledge base build on articles, white papers, troubleshooting information, FAQs, manuals, policy and procedures. Following could be some of the attribute of a knowledge base.
There are various application platform that can be used as a knowledge base
Following are some of them:
Media Wiki http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki
As we decided to investigate more, media wiki was one of our obvious choices but once we tried out phpMyFAQ, we found it to be interesting and easy to use. phpMyFAQ looked like a great choice. It has all features you can ask of a knowledge base.
Details on phpMyFAQ
- Content management system: - You can administrate your users, groups, news, categories, FAQ records, attachments, comments, glossary items, stop words in the password protected administration backend.
- Categories and tags: - You can create unlimited categories and subcategories for your FAQs. Your users can browse through the categories. You can tag all records and an automatically generated tag cloud helps your users, too.
- Powerful Search: – Your users can easily find questions and answers using the search feature with search in all languages or in one category. Using the Instant Response frontend your users will find questions and answers while they are typing like in Google Suggest! You’ll also get a list of the most popular searches and you get a graphical report about the search in the administration backend.
- FAQ Statistics: - Analyze the way of your users through your FAQ with the built-in user tracking; analyze the quality of your records with the statistics of the user voting and the number of views on each record. You can also download an extended reporting sheet as CSV download.
- Most popular and sticky faq’s:- The start page of the public area shows an automatically created list with the most popular records and of the latest FAQ entries. You can also define “sticky” FAQs which always appear on the main FAQ page. The sticky FAQs are also the first ones in the category FAQ lists. The most popular and the latest FAQs are also available as RSS feeds.
- Question answers with Attachments
- Revisions: - Store the old entries in wiki-like revisions, so you can switch back to old versions of the FAQ entry.
- User comments: - Get more feedback by your users and visitors, by allowing them to comment on your questions and answers.
- Community modules:- All users can write questions to the system, so that other user can answer these questions. They can also answer these open questions or add translations for existing FAQ records. All these user-generated entries have to be enabled by the administrators.
- Easy to use HTML editor:- Add your FAQ entries using the integrated WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) HTML editor based on TinyMCE and create rich text, links, lists directly through your web browser. Your links will also be automatically verified during saving your new FAQ record. The Ajax-powered Image Manager provides a web interface to browse for image files (JPEG, PNG, GIF, and others) on the web server.
- User and group permissions:- You can assign permissions to users and groups, you can create users and user groups with permissions and category and even record restrictions for viewing and creating/editing content. It’s even possible to secure the whole FAQ frontend.
- LDAP/AD support: Add your company’s OpenLDAP based user management into the system for authentication or just secure your whole FAQ by using HTTP authentication. System also supports LDAP-data mapping, e.g. against an Active Directory Server, including multi-domain-authentication, e.g. against an ADS-Global Catalog
- Various database system support:- MySQL (libmysql and mysqlnd), PostgreSQL, SQLite, Sybase, MS SQL Server, IBM DB2, IBM Cloudscape, Apache Derby
- Export: FAQ can be export as PDF, printed or emailed from the same screen.
- Advanced spam control: - System uses captcha’s, bad word lists and IPv4 and IPv6 ban lists to prevent spam.
Integration aspects (with systems and policy)
This boils down to, phpMyFAQ, a knowledge base system which can be use used in various environment. For example knowledge base for a software, service, business process, educational institute or for a business.
Special thanks to Vikram for helping me out with the research work with testing and a demo implementation for the review of phpMyFAQ
When we think about email collaboration/unified messaging the first things comes into our mind is Microsoft exchange, probably not because they pioneered email collaboration but because they have great success of with all enterprise segments, more importantly the end users to felt the impact of email collaboration. Microsoft Exchange Server 4.0 was released at 1996 something that could be integrated to directory services; it was probably the first competitor to Lotus notes released in early 90s.
Let’s not forget novel. In 1990 brought the release of WordPerfect Office 3.0, adding Macintosh and UNIX to the client mix and supporting multiple servers with cross-server email, calendaring and scheduling. The next version 3.1 even included remote sync.
Today’s email Collaboration / Unified messaging
Today when try to understand email collaborative software, we think about something more than email and address book. It is also called unified messaging. Enables us to share calendar events and task lists, update presence information, advanced email routing, global/corporate address book, sharing documents and other media without having to attach it, email auto responders; most importantly, access to all these through push notification support from of your favorite desktop collaboration application, mobile, tablet, or just any web browser. Email collaboration systems are also expected to be integrated with the directory services as well as other collaboration system running within the enterprise.
Things we take for granted, antivirus, anti spam, central authentication, high availability, monitoring, backup etc.
Alfresco and google doc / google app comparison
A client of ours come up with a request to do a full document management and collaboration implementation with google doc.
We compared it with alfresco document management system and did a bit of research and this is what we came up with:
How does alfresco compares with Alfresco?