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Arnica WebPortal

Arnica WebPortal - Product Overview:
Arnica WebPortal - Intranets and Public Web Sites | Data Visualization | Cloud Computing Tools and Components | Software Development

Overview 

Arnica WebPortal is a web-based integration tool for creating and presenting personalized web pages that display content from different sources and applications, including reports, forms, content generated by dynamic web services or provided by static pages, output from standalone content management systems, data derived from database sources, etc.  Container page and portlet design, management and administration are done through a web browser. Fast middle-tier-based content processing engine provides an excellent platform for customized presentation of corporate information or for building public websites.

Design Concept  

Arnica WebPortal implements a simple yet powerful design concept: you create and relate to each other two types of entities - container pages and portlets. A container page is a template specifying where and how to present portlets, which are the smallest content units on the page, e.g. banner images, latest news links, details of customer's last orders, etc.

One portlet may be registered with many container pages, providing you with a collection (mesh-up) of different page parts (portlets) to be presented in different ways to suit the needs of different users. Users may further customize the output presented on a container page using portlet controls, e.g. move up or down, minimize, restore, open in a new dedicated window, etc. The extent to which portlets may be further customized by end users is pre-defined at design time. Various rules, e.g. role-based security settings, may be applied to control whether a specific portlet is included in a page and/or how it is displayed. 

Template-Driven    

Style templates for containers and portlets make it easy to maintain the same look and feel.  By changing the template, you may quickly change the appearance of a web site from a corporate look with distinct borders and separations between different page parts, to a "social networking" mesh-up style of a seemingly one whole page with no separation between various types of content. Moreover, container pages may force their own portlet templates to registered portlets, thus the same portlet may look different on different container pages.

Templates are created using standard HTML content fragments with evaluatable expressions and may be used to customize virtually any presentation part of container page or portlet. For example, two-, three-, or four-column pages are easily created by using a corresponding template, portlets may be presented with or without borders, shadows, titles, etc.

Shared presentation features saved in a template may be used by multiple container pages and portlets and managed centrally. A contemporary default template may be used for all new solutions, with further modifications added to fit your style requirements.

True Thin Client 

Arnica WebPortal is a true thin client solution: design, execution and administration are all done through a web browser. To ensure broader compatibility and high performance interactivity, WebPortal uses pure HTML/XML/CSS content on web pages and does not utilize client-side ActiveX components, DLLs, or heavy-duty JavaScript libraries.

Designed for Integration 

Output from any component in HTML format may be easily integrated with Arnica WebPortal. If any component output is not HTML, Arnica WebPortal content processing actions may be engaged to convert such content into HTML, blend it with content derived from other portlets on the same container page and send the resulting HTML page to user browser.  Arnica WebPortal may call multiple components asynchronously, which results in faster processing time. If a particular component is known to delay response, proper timeout may be configured per portlet and page output will be displayed even if one portlet fails to respond in time allocated.

Arnica WebPortal may be used as a stand-alone tool or it may be integrated with other web portals, such as Microsoft SharePoint, and others. For example, Arnica WebPortal integrates content from several components (customer address information, last orders and current order details), this resulting content is then treated as one solid information unit and is served into the web part of the SharePoint portal page where it is presented together with other customer-related data.

Content Processing 

Arnica WebPortal provides content processing capabilities against output produced by individual portlets before it is assembled by container page into final output, as well as against content generated by container page before it is sent to user browser.

Content Caching 

Content may be set to be cached and or stay realtime. Caching may be enabled on portlet or container level, which results in a high level of manageability when creating responsive sites. Cache timeout may also be specified individually per portlet or per container; when timeout is reached Arnica WebPortal executes a realtime request to refresh the cache and continues to serve content from the cache. For sites with enabled personalization (i.e. when container and/or portlets may produce different content for different users), caching also takes into account user identity and creates caches individually for each user account.

Central Database Repository  

Arnica WebPortal stores its meta data and content (containers, portlets, templates, content processing rules, cached content, etc.) in a central database repository (based on Microsoft SQLServer or free SQLServer Express Edition) and allows for certain operations to be performed against multiple containers, portlets and templates simultaneously at design time, for example, meta search and updates, report export/import, ability to use global parameters shared by multiple containers and portlets, etc.

Access Control and Activity Log 

Arnica WebPortal supports user authentication and authorization provided by .NET and allows granular user access control with zero programming efforts through integration with the Arnica UnifiedLogon identity management system (single application version of Arnica UnifiedLogon is included at no cost with Arnica WebPortal).

Arnica WebPortal publishes detailed activity events into central database repository, enabling you to perform activity analysis by various parameters, such as user, page, date range, etc.