Administer widgets and remote applicationsYou can extend your community to include various components or applications. These applications are contained within the community as widgets. You can administer widget life-cycle events to ensure that changes are synchronized between the Communities server and the servers hosting the widgets.
Communities has several widgets that are automatically added when the community is first created. These widgets include the Bookmarks, Files, Forums, and Members widgets. The Bookmarks, Files, and Forums widgets are opened by default, but can be removed or hidden. The Members widget is a default widget, and it cannot be removed or hidden. In addition, community owners can optionally add the Activities, Blog, Feeds, Subcommunities, and Wiki widgets. Of these widgets, the Activities, Blog, Files, Forums, and Wiki widgets are affected by life-cycle events.
When you create a community and add a widget to it, such as the Activities widget, any activities added to the community are owned by the community. Only members of the community can access those activities and, if the community's membership changes, or if the community is deleted, then the Activities widget must be updated with those changes. Provided that the Communities server and the widget (Activities, in this example) server are both up and running, these changes are applied to the widget immediately.
However, if the widget server is down for some reason, the changes need to be synchronized when the server is back up and fully running again. If an event cannot be pushed out to the widget server, the event is queued in a Communities database table, LC_EVENT_REPLAY. The IBM WAS scheduler attempts to push queued events to the widget server's event handler on a scheduled basis until it is successful. When multiple events are queued for a single widget, the events are tried in consecutive order, with the oldest events tried first. You can use the CommunitiesQEventService commands to manually administer queued events when there is a problem with the WAS scheduler and you don't want to wait for the next scheduled retry task to run. For more information about these commands, see Administer community queued events.
Changes are only pushed from Communities to the Activities, Blog, Files, Forums, and Wiki widgets; changes to these applications are not pulled into Communities. The changes that are pushed out to the widget servers include the following:
- Membership changes. For example, when users are added, removed, or when membership roles are changed.
- Community privacy setting changes. For example, when a community is changed from public to private and vice versa.
- Widget addition or removal. For example, when the activities, blog, files, and wiki widgets are added to or removed from a community.
- Updates to community information. For example, changes to the community name, description, or tags.
- Community deletion.
The widgets-config.xml file contains a section for each of the widgets available in Communities. Each widget section contains configuration settings for the widget's life cycle and lists the events that correspond to the widget. For more information about this file, see Use the widgets-config.xml file for Communities.
Use the widgets-config.xml file for Communities
The widgets-config.xml files contains configuration settings for each of the widgets supported by Communities and Profiles. To update settings in the file, check the file out and, after making changes, check the file back during the same wsadmin session as the checkout for the changes to take effect.
Add custom widgets to Communities
Extend the functionality of the Communities application by adding custom widgets. To make the widgets available for use in Communities, configure the widgets in the widget definition file, widgets-config.xml.
Specify different system users for widget life-cycle events
Specify a system user to manage widget life-cycle events that overrides the default authentication alias created at installation time.
Administer community queued events
Use the CommunitiesQEventService commands to administer the life-cycle events that occur within a community.
Configure the widget life-cycle retry schedule
Communities uses the IBM WAS scheduler to run a scheduled task that processes events in the widget life-cycle event queue. You can configure the frequency with which this task runs by editing settings in the communities-config.xml file.
Recovering from a database failure
When Communities or another IBM Connections application experiences a database failure that involves restoring to a backup without replaying the transaction log to the point of failure, you can follow a number of steps to ensure a consistent data state for communities and their associated remote applications.
Parent topicAdminister Communities
Work with remote applications
Manage Communities scheduled tasks