Integrating Blackboard with LAMS
The LAMS2-Blackboard integration was developed with Blackboard Version 7.3 and works on 7.2 and 7.3. Currently it does not work on 7.0 or 7.1. We are trying to create a version that is compatible with 7.1.
It is recommended that LAMS and Blackboard be installed on separate servers to account for the heavy memory requirements of Blackboard and LAMS.
Please view the release notes for version update information.
There are known compatibility issues with Blackboard 7.0-7.1. We are looking into the problem and will work out a fix as soon as we can. It is in out bug tracking system as http://bugs.lamsfoundation.org/browse/LDEV-1350 should you wish to follow its progress.
Want to have a look without installing it?
LAMS2 Building Block Installation Animation
Before following the steps below, you might want to have a look at this animation that explains how to Integrate and install the LAMS2 building block in Blackboard 7.
Installation Steps - Blackboard Side
- Follow the steps at in the Blackboard Setup guide to install Blackboard. Make sure you follow the correct setup guide for your version as the installation steps can change from version to version. The setup guides can be found at https://behind.blackboard.com/s/developer/refcenter/docs/.
NOTE: You will need to install service pack 3 of SQL Server 2000 if you are using the Windows Server 2003/SQL Server 2000 configuration
This is not included in the setup guide.
- Download lams2-bb-plugin.war from the downloads page.
- Login to Blackboard as Administrator.
- Navigate to System Admin->Building Blocks->Install Building Block
- Click on Browse, locate lams2-bb-plugin.war then submit.
- Go back to the Building Blocks page, you should now see an entry in the list of Building Blocks called LAMS2. Select "Available" in the Availability drop-down menu for LAMS2 and click Ok.
- After you have made LAMS2 available in Blackboard, a "Properties" button should appear in the Building Blocks page for the LAMS2 module. Click on it.
- Fill in the LAMS server url, this is the url that points to the login page for LAMS. The same as the server URL set during LAMS installation.
NOTE: Make sure you use lower case-letters for the server id and secret key, as upper-case letters have proven to cause problems in hashing.
- Set the LAMS server ID, this should be set the same on the LAMS server.
- Set the LAMS server secret key, also the same as on the LAMS server.
- Set the Blackboard request src, this is an arbitrary string that the LAMS server uses when returning calls to Blackboard.
- A User data callback URL is shown in this page, this URL provides LAMS with dynamic user provisioning data. You will need this URL for LAMS integration configuration.
- Configure the LAMS side of the integration. Please refer to the next section "Configuring the LAMS side".
- To enable the LAMS Building Block for each course, login as the course instructor, the navigate to Manage Tools->Content Type Availability. Select the LAMS2 content type and click submit.
Configuring the LAMS Side
- Follow the instructions to install LAMS, it is recommended that you install LAMS and Blackboard on separate servers to account for heavy memory requirements. You can either build LAMS from source or follow the instructions for Window Installers or Unix Installers.
- Login to LAMS as sysadmin.
- Goto Sys Admin->Maintain integrated servers->Add New Server.
- Setup the fields to match those that you put on the Blackboard side
- The id and key should map to the "LAMS SERVER ID" and "LAMS SERVER SECRET KEY" fields respectively on the LAMS properties page in Blackboard (see above).
- Fill in a description of the Blackboard server.
- The "Pefix" field denotes a prefix that will be added to all users from Blackboard, for example if you put bb as the prefix and accessed LAMS with a user called "user", their name in LAMS would be "bb_user".
- The 'disabled' checkbox disables this integration, you can select this later if you wish to disable the connection.
- You can select an existing group to add Blackboard users to, or add a new one.
- Enter the User Information URL, this corresponds to the "USER DATA CALLBACK URL" on the LAMS properties page in Blackboard (see above). Note: if you are using SSL for accessing Blackboard, the URL suggested in Blackboard will probably start with http://myserver:443/. You should replace this will just http://myserver/ (ie remove the :443)
- You can specify a timeout page that LAMS will go to if there is an error.
And you are done! You can now create and access LAMS content from Blackboard.
LAMS 2 Building Block Source Code
The LAMS-Blackboard Integration Building Block source code is available on our CVS server. You can access the source from from cvs by checking out the lams_bb_integration project. The project comes with an ant build script that will compile the code into .war format, then just follow the installation step to install.
- access method: pserver
- user name: anonymous
- server name: lamscvs.melcoe.mq.edu.au
- location: /usr/local/cvsroot
Help, Questions, Comments?
If you have any questions or comments, please post them in the LAMS Community Tech Forums