Distributed Web Based Systems Information Technology Essay

A web based Distributed System the cardinal structural purchase in deploying effectual collaborative package otherwise known as groupware, workgroup support system or group support system.

There are rather a figure of methods or platforms used in puting up a distributed web based system, the most noteworthy are Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP ( LAMP ) and Microsoft.Net.

A noteworthy cardinal facet of groupware package in a web based distributed system is the component of outsourcing or subscribing to an already bing distributed system platform, therefore taking out the initial cost to the administration of puting up a distributed system platform, nevertheless doing it chiefly an cyberspace based entree merely platform.

Groupware has bit by bit and noticeable better the manner and mode concern connectivity is managed and concern running procedure presently being adopted, both internal ( Companies Intranet ) and External i.e Internet, concern to concern ( B2B ) and concern to client ( B2C ) operations.

Mobile computer science and device has besides heighten the effectivity and usage of collaborative package with different enabling nomadic engineering back uping the usage of collaborative package

There are rather a turning figure of groupware tools and package available for usage, an overview of collaborative tools, devices and engineering, benefit to concern connectivity ( internal and external operations ) and security concerns would be the primary focal point of this work.


1.0 ABSTRACT… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … .. 2

2.0 Introduction… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 4

2.1 Frame Work of a Web Based Distributed System… … … … … … … … … … 4

2.2 Web Based Distributed System and Mobile Technology… … … … … … . 5

3.0 LITERATURE REVIEW… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 7

3.1 Groupware Application in Web based Distributed System… … … … … .7

3.2 Groupware: Current usage… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 8

3.3 Groupware and the Intranet… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … .. 9

3.4 Groupware: Benefits to B2B and B2C… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … .. 10

4.0 Discussion… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 11

4.1 Categorization of Internet systems into degrees of functionality… … … ..11

4.2 Functional Areas of a company that can profit from groupware applicationsaˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦.12

4.3 A reappraisal of the functionality of a groupware bundle usedaˆ¦ … … … 13

4.4 Review Developing scope of devices to back up groupware connectivityaˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦ … … 14

4.5 Review security deductions of groupwareaˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦ … … … … . 15

5.0 CONCULSION… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 18

5.1 Groupware: Future Development… … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … … 18

6.0 REFERENCEaˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦aˆ¦ … … … … … … … … 19


In deploying a web based distributed systems, there is a demand to take into consideration, basic frame work, and apprehension of the functionalities and tools of a distributed system to efficaciously tackle it full potencies.

This can be disputing, nevertheless many administrations and companies have successfully deployed it, therefore comparative reappraisal of this system across all board has amplified it huge benefit and deployment challenges, therefore encouraged more and more administration to follow its usage and learnt from others

2.1 Frame Work of A Web Based Distributed System

Basic break down of the construction of a web based distributed system shows the synergistic cardinal constituents as ;

The client ( Notification Application, user interface )

The Server ( Web server Module )

The Data Base System

Normally used platforms as ;

Lamp: Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP ( Open beginning )

Microsoft.Net Stack: IIS ( Internet Information Systems ) web waiter, MS SQL Server, MS SQL Server ( Proprietary ; Microsoft )

Organisation ‘s Internal and External ( B2C and B2B ) Web tools ;





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In the class of an administration ‘s initial designing to set uping a robust Web based distributed system or a groupware seller, an effectual structuring can be built along these lines of concern ;

Scalable ; Allows for system growing from one point incrementally to another without doing the administration to lose their investing.

Secured ; Safe package ( 2005 ) pointed out that the system must be secured in two ways

It must let users to see any restricted informations

It must guard against petition for excessively much informations that, if processed blindly, would ensue in loss of debasement in service.

In add-on, be able to log any effort to queer the system with every bit much user and/or IP information as possible and advise the system operator

Reliability ; A dependable system, construction to be able to

Catch and study mistake presenting this map with the administrative portal

Statistical coverage of the overall public presentation of the system ( System Health cheque ) , enable the system operator preform preventative care efficaciously.

Cost-efficient ; Design and deployment cost should be weighed against the administrations need of a web based distribution system, proposed figure of coincident users, care cost across client system and interoperability cost across users.

2.2 Web Based Distributed System and Mobile Technology

There are farther considerations for an administration design in utilizing a web based distributed system or groupware along the lines of back uping nomadic calculating engineering in accessing their goods and services and internal operations, as there are some restrictions and challenges of different nomadic calculating engineering. To advert bing nomadic calculating engineering ;

GPRS ( general package wireless service )

WAP ( Wireless Application Protocol )

3G ( Third Generation )

A web based distributed system is known to impact an administrations overall public presentation perceptibly and positively more than an inauspicious consequence to its running operations when decently designed and managed.

These benefits include ;

Synchronized and managed agendas, electronic mails, undertaking, contacts and files, existent clip online

Expansion and addition in concern chances and net incomes with 24/7 unfastened concern hours with an “ everyplace ” office presence.

Instantaneous interface between seller, client and organisation

Automatic logging and entering maintaining of administrations concern and operations existent clip and online

Enhance accounting system, as e-payment, stock, gross revenues and currency transition 24/7


Groupware Application in Web based Distributed System

Groupware refers to plans that help people work together jointly while located remotely from each other ; Programs that enable existent clip coaction are called synchronal groupware. These services include sharing of calendars, corporate authorship, e-mail handling, shared database ( ANON1/SearchDomino.com 1997 )

Anon 2/Webopedia ( n.d ) defined groupware as a category of package that helps groups of co-workers ( workgroups ) attached to a local-area web form their activities. Typically, groupware supports the undermentioned operations: programming meetings and apportioning resources, e-mail, password protection for paperss, telephone public-service corporations, electronic newssheets, file distribution

EGroupWare is free unfastened beginning groupware package intended for concerns from little to endeavors. Its primary maps allow users to pull off contacts, assignments, undertakings and to-do lists.

It is used either via its native web-interface, doing entree platform-independent, or by utilizing different supported groupware clients, such as Kontact, Novell Evolution, or Microsoft Outlook. It can besides be used by nomadic phone or PDA via SyncML ( Anon 3/Wikipedia, 2011 ) .

This is a fast developing subdivision of applications used in a web based distributed system ; Collaborative or groupware application.

Groupware applications are presently being adopted by tonss of administration as a collaborative package tool within the administration for internal running operations and externally for BtoB and BtoC intents.

Some groupware applications are ;





Detailed list, reappraisal and comparing of available collaborative tools can be viewed at ; hypertext transfer protocol: //en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_collaborative_software # Open_source_or_free_software

Groupware: Current usage

The current usage of groupware in an administration as explained by King ( 1996 ) may good turn out to be every bit of import as the debut of personal computing machines. Groupware which he says are good known to include multiuser package as meeting, Personal computer picture conferencing, programming and work flow package, which has the possible to alter the constellation and procedures of work every bit much as the Personal computer did and a major enabler of big additions in white-collar productiveness.

Current engineering and methods used by administration such as word processing and optical maser pressmans enabling circulation of good formatted paperss amongst squad or group members to notice or electronic mail, ( which frequently get lost or misfiled ) is a one-to-one or one-to-many footing, do n’t assist much with communicating nor effectual coaction as compared to groupware.

Groupware changes all these by supplying an array of existent clip on-line functionalities as, word processing, bulletin boards, E-mail, facsimile, storage, retrieval and information base entree that are in procedure of being at the same time created by member of a squad who are on the same papers or undertaking, or among people with similar involvement. Therefore this creates a many-to-many communicating context that facilitates existent squad computer science and sophisticated collaborative work ( King, 1996 ) .

An administrations usage of groupware can greatly heighten group work and increase administrations effectiveness as groupware provides the substructure that can back up this.

However, King ( 1996 ) say that non every administration that has used groupware have enjoyed these consequences as he highlights some of the issues in Groupware as

Choosing the right package to utilize from the huge scope available and how to implement it in visible radiation of the considerable cost and attempt involved

An administrations behaviour group work civilization must be seen to suit into the usage of groupware, as groupware does n’t consequence a alteration of behavior group work civilization of an administration, instead amplifies and simplifies attempt of an effectual and bing behavioral group work civilization of an administration.

As a consequence of the openness communicating of information among users of a groupware, the Godhead of the message may non ever know all the users that entree the information and what it ‘s done with. This is n’t known as the usual patterns of most administration.

Groupware and the Intranet

The Intranet Lunt ( 1996 ) defines as one or more local or broad country webs managed by a web waiter. A web browser residing in every desktop Personal computer and firewalls prevent foreigners ( unauthorised users ) from accessing the web.

The Intranet uses the same protocols as the Internet i.e the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol ( TCP/IP ) , Hypertext Transfer Protocol ( HTTP ) and Hypertext Markup Language ( HTML ) which allows computing machines with different runing systems to speak to each other and move and show paperss around.

As a collaborative tool in an administration, the intranet is platform independent ; hence information on the waiter can be entree via a secured connexion by users or employees from place or different location and see the same papers as their co-workers at the office.

In the same manner, corporate and retail clients can see the same information as for illustration, with the bank staff in the bank, nevertheless with different read and write entree.

Lunt ( 1996 ) argues that Intranet can be less expensive than groupware or collaborative package ‘s as the intranet is already an incarnation of the administration ‘s IT construction, unlike collaborative package sing the cost of license and user fee.

However Newing ( 1997 ) explains that groupware package is speedy and easy to utilize, demands few resources and no new accomplishments, monetary value of entry is low as compared to keeping and puting up an Intranet. It gets people productive rapidly. He noted that the Intranet, although being effectual at sharing information, it has yet to develop much functionality for coaction and work flow.

Groupware: Benefits to B2B and B2C

Collaborative package or groupware has produced merely an effectual and functional real-time relationship between concern to concern ( B2B ) and concern to client ( B2C ) .

Some of these countries can be seen in ;

Business to concern working together to develop and bring forth procedure content

Creates the platform for cognition direction between concerns that are dependent on each other. e.g ecommerce as retail merchant and provider.

Allows multiple users to work on the same content at the same clip sharing the same resources and background informations.

Creates practical white boards used for scheduling and pull offing undertakings, assignments, brainstorming with enabling communicating application as picture conferencing.

Enables single to happen each other and concern in a practical community over different but incorporate electronic platform that support synchronal groupware.

Presents instant messaging, application/desktop sharing and societal computer science tools ( My Space, Facebook etc ) between the client and concern.


Categorization of Internet systems into degrees of functionality

Harmonizing to John ( 2009 ) the usage of the cyberspace system by an administrations can be classified into 4 Degrees or province of functionality, which can be described in brief as follows ;

Internet State 1: An administration set uping fundamentally Internet connexion supplying entree to mails and web site as a agency of communicating amongst staff, clients and stakeholders, now viewed as a standard agency of communicating.

Internet province 2: At this province, the administration sites up their web site which is used as an information portal embed with basic Customer relationship direction tool such as newssheet subscription and merchandise download. This comes with the advantage to the administration of being able to roll up informations from clients utilizing the site helping the administration in new concern development and informing current clients and clients of events and offers.

They manner and mode an administration handles this province can either impact on stakeholders, rivals, administrations image and assurance, positively or negatively.

Internet province 3: This involves more complex ICT concern procedures largely fiscal minutess which involves payment gateways, automated buying of goods, pull offing dealing input from clients and houses. System design should be robust and configured to manage synchronism across all procedures and entree to the system, extinguishing dealing mistakes which can be dearly-won to both the client and administration.

Internet province 4: At this province, the administration begins the gradual displacement, entirely depending on the Internet as the nucleus construction of it operations, using the practical environment, a more beforehand ebusiness application which greatly benefits administrations holding staff and offices in multiple locations. They integrate internally within the house and across stakeholders, accommodating dynamically at the altering concern environment of the cyberspace. Typical illustration of concerns on Internet province 4 is Google.

Functional Areas of a company that can profit from groupware applications.

The Benefits of groupware within an administration are rather many, Newing ( 1997 ) says that organisation usage groupware to back up strategic concern ends through operational invention and gross coevalss, every bit good as addition effectivity through improved quality and cost control.

There are functional countries of an organisation that can take advantage of the benefits that come with integrating groupware, these country are:

Gross saless and Selling:

The gross revenues and Marketing maps use groupware to happen new clients, retain bing clients through relationship direction and client service support application, and convey new merchandises to the market.

They besides use groupware to rush up response to clients and clients request as it provides the organisation entree to information about the client


In disposal, it helps organisation that have a big distribution of offices locations to pull off professional staff and their cognition on a planetary footing and organize them, reappraisal and implement new undertaking in sync and with quicker response. This enables the organisation to rapidly setup new systems to back up new market activities

Human resources direction:

There are ever continues alteration and burden of information refering staff informations as new staff are employed and old staff are upgraded to new duty and place as the company grows and expands, groupware can supply the enabling platform with a structured direction informations base to treat tonss of information, capturing needed cognition of their staff and portion same across the organisation were need.

Customer Service

Toss offing and Clark ( 1999 ) Note from their surveies that on balance most houses are pleased with the ability groupware to increase their ability to function their clients, describing that immediate entree to online cognition depositories ( e.g. , past client proposals, often asked inquiries, new statute law, etc. ) and unrestricted, time- and place-independent communicating greatly contributed to a higher quality of service.

A reappraisal of the functionality of a groupware bundle used.

Reviewing the functionality of a groupware bundle I have used would be stylite egroupware. It speedy and easy to put in and does n’t truly necessitate excess accomplishment to utilize. It ‘s on-line package and comes with the proviso for a 30days test period.

Some of the chief maps of Stlite egroupware are as shown below:

Address book:

This provides an reference book for concern contacts. It helps in Keeping and pull offing concern contact doing it easy accessible anyplace there ‘s an cyberspace presence, therefore easing concern work flow procedure. It besides has privilege puting on which user has entree to reach information country.


This Manages the company ‘s agendas helping users keep path of undertakings, assignments, events, and meetings easy and expeditiously.

File Manager

The file director portal enables on-line papers direction ; this implies better organisation, bettering work flow control and and anywhere entree of informations. Privilege scenes are besides associated with this map which allows the decision maker to curtail booklets and files, leting entree to stipulate users merely. There is besides proviso for remarks for files, therefore encouraging coaction, making undertaking advancement records.

Time Sheet

This map makes it possible to maintain path of group activities, assignments, on-line meetings, and other of import events. Reminders can be posted, group update and more.

Undertaking Manager

Undertaking director facilitates concern undertaking to fininsh at a much faster rate by bettering synergistic work flow and productiveness ( like Gantt ‘s chart ) , reappraisal of undertaking issues join forcesing together and project study from anyplace in the universe.

Review Developing scope of devices to back up groupware connectivity

One of the cardinal advantage of the distributed web based system is the ability to hold entree to database from anyplace in universe, nevertheless is made possible merely were the cyberspace is in being.

Users of the system can entree the administrations database via any scope of cyberspace enabled device being supported by nomadic engineering as GPRS, WAP, 3G.

A few of these devices are mentioned below ;

Smart Telephones: Smart phones by Segan and DeFeo ( 2004 ) are phone that go the excess stat mi. They have more calculating power than regular phones. The bring voice and information together, including syncing e-mails, surfing the web, hiting images and back uping 100s of third-party applications. Most smart phone can back up 24/7 connectivity enabling the user to have or synchronize all corporate and personal electronic mails, contacts, references, calendars, to-do list etc, heightening the usage of groupware. A twosome of them have full keyboard while some have practical keyboards doing interaction with the device much easier.

The normally operate on different runing systems as Symbian, Palms OS, MS windows, black berry OS, depending on the brand or maker.

Laptops: Laptops are normally the most common agencies used in nomadic communicating with groupware. Internet entree can be wirelessly via GPRS, WiFi, WiMax or wired through a LAN other than the administrations office web. The normally have really big storage capacity and high processing velocity than Smart phone.

The typically have most of the constituents of a desktop computing machine, nevertheless in a compact signifier and can be used off from a power mercantile establishment since they have alternate power supply ( batteries ) that can supply power on the move for a longer period of clip, back uping users actively sometime up to 10hrs.

Tablet Computers: Tablet PCs in a nutlike shell can be said to hold all the expressions and functionalities of a Laptop and more, with the absences of a keyboard nevertheless virtually integrated on the screen when the map of the keyboard is needed.

They are normally touch screen and can be operated with the fingers or a digital pen call a stylus. They are besides light weighed with some of them holding nomadic phone communicating.

Review security deductions of groupware.

Distributed work patterns via collaborative or groupware brings with it extra security menaces ( an act of purpose to assail the web, internally or externally ) and hazards ( possible or possible exposure exposure ) as compared to workers runing from a cardinal location. Hence proper information security direction systems should be put in topographic point for an administration to efficaciously run in a planetary concern environment.

Some of these security concerns are highlighted as

Information Asset security

As a consequence of people working together from geographically dispersed location, independently in their undertaking to a achieve a common result, information assets security is of import as these single contribute to a cardinal database with shared apprehension, ratings, scheme, recommendations, determination, action program, corporate scheme, runing rule etc. , it is critical that these information assets be protected by guaranting robust entree direction system, read and write policies and entree control list, with uninterrupted reappraisal of the full system intermittently Rosanna ( 2006 ) .

Committedness, Loyalty and Organisation Identity

Rosanna ( 2006 ) noted that there exist the security concern with the issue of committedness, trueness and administration individuality. This is of import, indicating that psychological consequence can be associated with the communicating medium like the outgrowth of animuss, uneffective treatment and acceptance of options among participants that are riskier and possibly less well-considered than those that would hold emerged from a face-to-face treatment. There may be an effort of deliberate or subconscious effort of sabotage as relationship between stokeholders affect information results and information security direction


These include user hallmark, describing log of users and failed effort to entree the system with every bit much information as possible reported on the log for web decision maker to measure the action.

System investigation by unauthorised users, group loopholes when delegating multiple groups.

Strong watchword conformity with combination of characters or hashing marks.

Network Integrity

Blocking of possible entry ports of onslaught.

Guaranting proper security pattern such as password list encodings.

The usage of Antivirus and robust firewall against, Trojan, Worms, virus or human invasion.

Filter of informations that ‘s stored in the system restricting the opportunities of an internal back door to the system.

Appropriate Backup and reconstruct process in instance of system clang or omission.

Network Security Auditing and Intrusion sensing processs


Groupware: Future Development

The altering groupware market, Annestad and Hooper ( 1997 ) says it has caught the attending of Major participants in the operating systems and cyberspace industries, like Microsoft, Netscape and Oracle

Therefore, Annestad and Hooper ( 1997 ) envisages that the following milepost in the groupware market will be built on systems that promote “ synergistic organisations ” in which concern procedures are ductile and can be redefined and adjusted by employees as needed. They illustrated an illustration with the following scenario: You have merely hired a new employee. You now have to advise paysheet, publish a parking card, assign office infinite, supply a telephone extension, and assign security privileges.

An synergistic groupware procedure could trip each of those undertakings, managing some at the same time and some consecutive. ( For illustration, a telephone extension can non be assigned before office infinite is assigned, but paysheet and security can be notified at the same time. )

The existent promise of groupware for the hereafter — and the challenge for the industry — is in applications that will hold an impact on the larger organisation and let it to construct interactivity into the work processes. If designed and managed suitably, a extremely synergistic system will significantly surpass an inflexible “ reappraisal, O.K. , feedback ” system that does n’t let the participants in the procedure to do accommodations as needed ( Annestad and Hooper, 1997 )

Nolle, ( 1993 ) nevertheless view the hereafter of groupware with an convergence of new coevals of applications that, by nature, are concerted and would alter how we use computing machines and multimedia information. This filed is called Computer-supported concerted work ( CSCW ) .

CSCW addresses “ how collaborative activities and their coordination can be supported by agencies of computing machine systems, although many writers consider that CSCW and groupware are equivalent word, nevertheless, CSCW focuses on the survey of tools and techniques of groupware every bit good as their psychological, societal, and organisational effects. Therefore, CSCW is a generic term, which combines the apprehension of the manner people work in groups with the enabling engineerings of computing machine networking, and associated hardware, package, services and techniques ( Carstensen and Schmidt ( 1999 ) and Wilson ( 1991 ) /Wikipedia ) .A

The hereafter of Groupware and the manner to travel, from my surveies, one reckon would be determined if there is an increasing per centum of users that are willing to accept the functionalities, applications and new alterations that come with the usage of groupware in their administration. Percentage of users and acceptableness, I may state would find the speedy growing and hence subsequent development of groupware, which is still rather early to state.

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