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A solution to Federated Moodle Management

First of all – Federated Moodle Management – what does that even mean?
This is where an entity (regional organisations or perhaps umbrella groups) require the ability to self provision multiple Moodle instances for each of their member organisations, while at the same time retaining the services of a professional external provider to manage and maintain the service. These umbrella organisations may want to retain a supervisory role over the spawned instances (very often keeping full admin control) while letting the member organisations create the content and look after enrolments among their learners. New courses, can be created locally or pushed from the central organisation using a course hub for all to use. New functional components can be added or removed by the umbrella organisation. On top of all this there is a need for reporting across all sites and perhaps the ability to turn off sites and functionality on a case by case basis. The diagram below outlines how Federated Moodle Management works.

federated moodle management

Federated Moodle Management architectural diagram

Enovation have built up considerable expertise in the managed hosting of Moodle implementations in a diverse infrastructure – shared physical and virtual servers, dedicated physical and virtual environments. Harnessing this expertise we have built an open source stack to create an environment where these umbrella organisations can be empowered to control the generation/deletion and updating of Moodle instances for member organisations.

What are its benefits?
The Centralised management solution offers:
– A Simple interface for package (could be a custom Moodle) creation – allowing a premade custom package to be deployed together with selected add-ons
– Facilitate billing of member oganisations
– Automated package upgrades
– Ability to turn on/off sites
– Ability to turn on/off components within these sites (eg additional Moodle modules, or additional packages – mahara)

Who is using this?
The Irish Computer Society (ICS) is one organisation who are using this solution as part of their ICSGrid. ICS have the ability to fully manage all their member schools using an interface provided by Enovation. In the background Enovation manage the infrastructure and maintain the packages, and ensure that all instances are up to date and running correctly.

If you would like to see a demo of Federated Moodle Management – just give us a shout!

February 15, 2012 In: Blog Written by: Mark Melia

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