Personal tools
You are here: Home Articles Jan 2005 Site managers in Zope 3
Document Actions

Site managers in Zope 3

by paul last modified 2006-01-20 19:06

On zope3-dev we had discussions about site managers. This collects some previous thoughts.


Zope 3 needs a facility for configuration of sites. To scope this correctly, we need to understand the actor of "Site Manager" as different from other actors. Specifically, we should choose some tasks this actor wants fulfilled.


As discussed elsewhere, Zope 3 has incepted, prototyped, and deferred work on TTW "site management". The discussion has resurfaced.

Site Manager Profile

The site manager configures and operates a specific site. They don't create software for use by other sites. Most likely, they won't understand any details about the underlying technology. They are a business user whose job isn't to make the application, but to make the application work.

As Stephan pointed out, this is almost exactly the same as the Windows Control Panel.


  • Newbie-compliant user interface. Accessible, understandable in one look without flipping through screens. Verbose, with helpful text inline (rather than terse). Well-organized.
  • Jargon-free. Don't use a lot of Zope 3 jargon.


  • Start with CMS site managers, as these are the only ones we have access to.
  • Leave developers (whether Python, CPSSchema/Archetypes, or ZClass) out of the picture for now
  • Focused mostly on configuration.
  • Specifically leave out TTW type-building for now. No building/customizing schemas, etc.
  • Cover the same kind of territory as Plone's "plone setup" (Control Panel) and similar facilities in other systems.
  • Make it easy for developers to create simple/usable configuration UIs for site managers. The CMF community adopted the Extensions/ external method convention as a way to install software. The Plone community then took this, combined it with some package metadata, and added a discoverable GUI.

Site Manager's Configuration Tasks

  • Configure site metadata.
  • Manage add-on packages. View package information, install, uninstall, review install log, update to new version, deactivate.
  • Skin/template configuration.
  • User/group administration and membership policy management.
  • Portlets.
  • Multilingual. Localizing. Language policies.
  • Metadata configuration.
  • Workflow management. Certainly installing and configuring an existing workflow, but perhaps designing new workflows is out-of-scope for this actor.
  • Caching policies.
  • Configuration panels for add-on packages. (Don't know if the UI should distinguish between core stuff and add-on, as in Plone.)
  • Archive config and re-install elsewhere (or checkin to SVN).


  • Review "plone setup". Entry point, kinds of tasks, specific tasks, install/uninstall/log/reinstall, configlet w/ multi-tab. Connection to CMFSetup or some other kind of config-archive. Showing basic information about each service (title, author, mod date, version, etc.) No panel for skin setup or template management. Need good facility for developers to register friendly configlets. Discuss package vs. tool dichotomy in "plone setup" (and whether it matters).
  • Have a "site setup" that doesn't even talk about utilities versus adapters.