Creating and Managing a Document Server

A How-To Recipe
July 2005
Brian Leeland

Issue

Technology companies consistently generate substantial helpful documents. They include release notes, user guides, training classes, presentations and the like. Sometimes these documents are available to all and sometimes they are limited to specific customers or sets of customers or to specific internal audiences.

This How To is intended to allow an SQI client to easily and quickly create a mechanism for making such documents available on a self-serve basis. The solution incorporates full security with the ability to limit access on a page basis to appropriate audiences. The common name for such a mechanism is a "Document Server."

Solution

The SQI document server is a special application of the SQI Knowledge Base. Though using the same technology, it sits on the Appbus as a separate tab. Clients who use the Knowledge base already, will find the learning curve particularly shallow. The main difference is the extra understanding of the granular security that allows some customers to see only a subset of the available documents.

Expectations

If you are an experienced Knowledge Center user the process described below to set up the infrastructure for FAQs should take less than 10 minutes. If you are new to the Knowledge Center concept, the process, including reading and maybe some trial, should take no longer than 45 to 60 minutes. If you are new, the help pages for the Knowledge Center will provide a useful resource and we recommend taking a few minute to study them.

Once the Document Server structure is set up, adding new documents and publishing will take only a couple of minutes.

General Considerations

A Document Server is the means to make files available to customers. Files may be documents, in a common format such as Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat, or specialized files such as parameter sets, firmware loads or software applications.

It is useful to think of the Document Server as one component of a Knowledge Base that includes an FAQ, a series of "How Tos," and other useful items. Generally, the document server contains longer items that are non-volatile and publishing to the doc-server is normally a little more formal than publishing to other components of the Knowledge Center.

The organizational structure for a Document Server tends to be easier than for an FAQ because the variety of content tends to be less. Subsequent reorganization is easy, so it is not necessary to spend too much time pondering the structure before beginning to populate the document server.

Markup Framework

Document Server Components



CategoryToComplete

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