Using Redirect Links to Consolidate and Simplify Access to Management Links
Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Bryan Keadle
Digg This -
Posted: 8 Jun 2007
You probably have a growing list of web-based management tools and pages; how do you keep track of them all? It can be quite a challenge to remember all the different addresses and different ports for accessing them all. For example, here are just a few of the different web-based services I need to get to:
- NoRM (Novell Remote Manager)
- iPrint Management
- iFolder/Netstorage Management
- HP WebJetAdmin
- VMware Management User Interface
- 3ware RAID Controller Management
- Wireless Administration Pages
- Canon Printer Management
If you're like me, building an internal "portal page" and keeping it updated is more effort than I have the time or resources for, nor do I know much about HTML but simple basics. Also, being more of a command-line administrator type, I like to be a "command away" from getting to where I need to go.
Here's a cool tip how I have consolidated all my various URLs so that they are easily accessible.
I simply choose one of my NetWare servers (running Apache) to be my "jump off" point from which I can access all URLs with easy-to-remember (and type) URLs, and use Novell's Welcome page "redirect link" to take me to the appropriate web server, wherever it might reside. I don't need to remember hostnames or ports.
So from a web-browser, I simply enter the following text in the Address bar to access the associated page:
and here are some of my other address URLs:
=} goto/norm/server1 =} goto/norm/server2 =} goto/norm/server3 =} goto/iprint =} goto/ifolder =} goto/webjetadmin =} goto/vmware/vmgsx1 =} goto/vmware/vmgsx2 =} goto/3ware/server1 =} goto/3ware/server3 =} goto/laserfiche =} goto/wireless =} goto/canonscan
So how does this work?
Let's use the example: goto/imanager/server1 on my NetWare 6.5 server (vopoesnw), and how that get's me to the iManager page located on server 1:
First, I had noticed with a new NetWare 6.5 server with Apache install, that when you go to the new server's URL, http://vopoesnw, you would get redirected to a Welcome page like this:
I discovered that the sys:/apache2/htdocs/index.html was a simple and effective "redirect link". So I copied this index.html file to redir.html to be used as a template. Knowing that whenever you specify a subdirectory off a URL, it looks for (by default) an index.html. So typing this in a browser address bar:
The web server would actually look for:
So, I simply create an imanager subdirectory under my Apache root directory:
then copy my redir.html "redirect template" to the imanager subdirectory, and rename it to index.html:
Then I edit this index.html with notepad, and make the following 2 changes, replacing the /welcome/index.html string with the URL to access the web service I want to go to:
<!-- var sThisURL = unescape('/welcome/index.html'); . . . <meta http-equiv="refresh" content="1;url=/welcome/index.html" target="top">
<!-- var sThisURL = unescape('https://server1/nps/servlet/webacc?taskId=fw.Startup'); . . . <meta http-equiv="refresh" content="1;url=https://server1/nps/servlet/webacc?taskId=fw.Startup" target="top">
I do likewise for the other web-services, creating subdirectory names that are easy to remember, so that my directory structure now looks something like:
\ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\norm\server1\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\norm\server2\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\norm\server3\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\iprint\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\ifolder\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\webjetadmin\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\vwareserver\vmgsx1\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\vwareserver\vmgsx2\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\3ware\server1\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\3ware\server3\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\laserfiche\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\wireless\index.html \ \vopoesnw\sys\apache2\htdocs\canonscan\index.html
and with each index.html file containing the URL to access the intended web service. (Boy, it's a lot harder to explain than to actually do!)
As new web service pages come into my environment, I can easily create a meaningful directory name, and place my "redirect index page" in that directory, and modify the 2 URL references inside to point to the new web service address and I now have a new "URL" to get to that web service ... wherever it may exist!
To make things *even* easier, I simply add a CNAME record of "goto" to point to my web server, vopoesnw, so that goto just becomes another name for vopoesnw.
If you come up with a good, logical naming convention, then getting to the same service on different servers is easy, for example, getting to the Novell Remote Manager (norm) pages on the different servers:
goto/norm/server1 goto/norm/server2 ( so on )
However, as the number of these redirect links grow, sometimes I need a little help remembering the correct URL naming convention. So, here is a script that you can save to a file in your path (let's call it goto.bat) so that you can get a listing of your existing redirect page:
@echo off set SERVERNAME=vopoesnw goto :BEGIN GOTO - access goto and help pages SYNTAX: goto (HELP) (filter) if second parameter after HELP exists, will filter the list according to the provided text string :BEGIN if NOT "%1"=="" goto :HELP start http://goto goto :EOF :HELP echo. echo goto re-direct links:>%TEMP%\goto.HLP echo.>>%TEMP%\goto.HLP dir \\%SERVERNAME%\sys\apache2\htdocs /s/b/ad|find /v "\ippdocs\"|find /v "\info\"|find /v "\netadmin\">%TEMP%\goto.tmp if %2x==x ( type %TEMP%\goto.tmp >%TEMP%\goto.lst ) ELSE ( type %TEMP%\goto.tmp | find /i "%2">%TEMP%\goto.lst ) for /F "tokens=5* delims=\" %%A in ('sort %TEMP%\goto.lst') do ( if NOT "%%B"=="" echo =} goto/%%A/%%B>>%TEMP%\goto.HLP if "%%B"=="" echo =} goto/%%A>>%TEMP%\goto.HLP ) type %TEMP%\goto.HLP|more echo. pause
NOTE: be sure to change my SERVERNAME reference on line 2 of vopoesnw to the name of your web server.
So, from a command prompt, typing:
will give you a list of all your redirect links, and:
goto HELP norm
will give you a list of all your norm-related redirect links.
For your reference and perhaps more clarification, here is a table of my existing redirect links and where they go:
So, how cOOl is that?!
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