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Link Management for Intranets

March 18, 2011 by Igor Lozhkin

At first glance, a link is one of the most basic implementation items on the intranet, extranet, or a public site. Developers usually implement links with HTML anchor (<a>) element, specify its URL, visible label and style... and that is about it. 

At Arnica we have a product called LinkServer (http://www.arnicasoftware.com/products/web-link-server/overview.aspx), which was designed specifically to manage links on both internal local Intranet and external web sites. This product allows managing both standalone links and link collections, which we call link categories. Link collections are usually integrated by a web portal system with other content. Why do we need a specific product for such a simple task as link management? The easiest way to explain this is to list some of its features:
 
  • authentication (find out who the user is when a click is processed by the server)
  • authorization (control whether a user has access to a link, and optionally hide a link from certain users)
  • click statistics for link collections
  • activity reporting
  • server-side script actions, triggered by a click on a link
  • server-side web requests, triggered by a click on a link 
  • implementation of dynamic link lists based on database queries
  • capture various events associated with link access and automatically publish events into central events repository
  • template-driven link presentation with various presentation effects, reusable for multiple link lists
  • personalized link lists
  • link display quota
  • link click quota
  • random and rotating link list presentation
  • various link list sorting options, e.g. alphabetical, by pre-defined position numbers, by popularity, etc.
  • conditional links display

Many of these and other features require absolutely no coding, and therefore can be managed by non-programmers.