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University Deploys Moodle On-line Course Management on "Multiplied" SLED 10 System

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Omni Technology Solutions Inc.

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Posted: 14 Sep 2006
 

Overview:

An increasing number of organisations are integrating e-learning and on-line course management into their environments. E-learning allows students and knowledge workers to upgrade their skills constantly, remain more competitive, extend classroom training and access high quality content. While the acknowledged industry leader in course management and e-learning software is Blackboard, there are popular Open Source alternatives like Moodle Course Management System.

Two students from the Popular Autonomous University of the State of Puebla (UPAEP), Tehuacán Campus, Jorge Huerta and Diego Martínez, with the guidance of their thesis advisor, Nestor Pascual Tenorio Carreón, decided to investigate the Moodle Open Source course management and e-learning software. They took a leadership role in customising and deploying Moodle Course Management System (CMS) in their environment. Their deployment included SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 and the Linux Desktop Multiplier.

The Challenge:

"While Moodle is a free Open Source course management system, the hardware you need to run it is not," said Jorge Huerta. "Our campus still faced the significant hardware, maintenance, desktop management and backup costs of running Moodle on traditional workstations. What we really needed was a desktop solution that would reduce our hardware costs and still deliver exceptional performance."

The Solution:

"At LinuxWorld Mexico, we discovered Omni and the Linux Desktop Multiplier. What got us excited is how the Linux Desktop Multiplier software allows up to 10 students to work at the same time on a single shared SLED 10 desktop computer. Each user has his or her own monitor, keyboard and mouse and logs in to a fully independent desktop session running Moodle, a web browser, email and other applications."

"To connect the additional monitors, we installed three standard ATI Radeon 9250 dual-head video cards (two monitors connect to each card). To connect the USB keyboards and mice, we added two additional powered USB hubs. The desktop assigment wizard allows each keyboard and mouse to be assigned to their respective monitor."

"We sure appreciate Omni's help in getting us up and running. We had a small budget and a very tight deadline to meet before we needed to start providing training for our professors and students. I would certainly recommend the Linux Desktop Multiplier for schools, universities and companies who want to deploy course management and e-learning software in computer labs or e-learning environments."

The Results:

With a very limited budget, the student team at UPAEP was able to use the Linux Desktop Multiplier to deploy a 7-user Moodle Course Management system using a single Pentium 4 3Ghz desktop computer. Because it is an Open Source project, Moodle helped the University save 100% of the software costs for the e-learning and course management software. SLED 10 and the Linux Desktop Multiplier eliminated 80% of the hardware and desktop costs, making the Moodle course management deployment a great deal more scalable and much less expensive than a traditional single-desktop environment.

Seventy-five to eighty-five percent of the students at UPAEP's Tehuacán Campus will have an opportunity to access the university's new E-Learning System once the campus-wide deployment is complete.

For more information on this story, go to: www.omni-ts.com/success/moodle-course-management.html For more information about the Linux Desktop Multiplier for SLED 10, go to http://www.omni-ts.com/linux-desktop/ or visit: http://www.omni-ts.com


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