Feature of the Month: Support of the Shibboleth Implementation

By | 22. January 2015

One of amsl‘s main advantages is its adaptability to changed or completely new requirements. An example of this flexibility is the use of amsl to support the shibboleth implementation at Leipzig University Library.

Electronic resources will prospectively be accessible for library users via shibboleth authentication. This alteration demands adjustments and working effort in different areas, one of them being the clarification of shibboleth availability. This clarification has to take place at platform level, demanding enquiries at vendors and platform hosters, which may cause delays and might drag on over longer periods. How can such a procedure be documented best?

Platform with shibboleth note

Platform with shibboleth note

amsl offers an easy solution. Thanks to the flexible data model, the amsl vocabulary may be enhanced by systems librarians with a new property amsl:shibbolethImplStatus, a new class amsl:ShibbolethImplStatus and correspondent individuals. The templates may be extended to assign the newly defined property to the platform template – and already the information on the implementation status on shibboleth can be linked and saved as desired.

Platform input form with drop-down menu for shibboleth information

Platform input form with drop-down menu for shibboleth information

Due to the adjustments made in the templates, the amsl input form for platforms now automatically offers a drop-down menu to choose a status of Shibboleth implementation, like implemented, inquired or in process. Thus, the information on the shibboleth process is saved directly with the platform concerned.

The data may also be easily displayed and filtered in the list view, choosing e.g. only those platforms still to be inquired about at a vendor. To answer even more detailed and complex questions like “Which journals are currently accessible via shibboleth authentication?” a systems librarian may write simple SPAQRL queries.

Platform list view with shibboleth information

Platform list view with shibboleth information

These fast and easily implemented adjustments make amsl a valuable help even for individual and novel applications.