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Repository in a Box (RIB) is a toolkit for setting up and maintaining repositories of metadata. RIB automatically generates a set of web pages for the metadata it maintains and makes that information available for interoperation with other repositories. Documentation on how to use the RIB management page is provided below. Documentation on the repository administration interface is provided within the interface itself. That documentation can be accessed at any time by clicking on the "Help" tab.
How to use the RIB management page
The RIB management page provides three different views for three different types of users.
For the RIB administrator:
The RIB administrator's management page has three buttons. Click the button that says "Create a repository" to load the repository creation form. The "Import a repository" button allows the data from a remote RIB repository to be imported. Also, data stored in a RIB version 2.x repository can be pulled into the new version of RIB using the import feature. "Change the main RIB password" allows the password which grants access to the RIB administrator's management page and to any repository maintained by RIB to be changed (see help on the access control system below).
After creating or importing a repository, there will also be two choice boxes on the RIB administrator's management page. Choose the action to be taken from the first choice box, and then choose the repository to take that action on in the second choice box. Click the button marked "Go" to proceed with the action.
For repository administrators:
The repository administrator's management page only provides operations that are specific to the repository currently being managed. Higher level functions such as creating, deleting, and importing repositories are not available in the repository administrator's management page.
For the general public:
There is no management page for the general public. All they can do is to view the catalogs of various repositories that are made available to them.
Access to all three views are under administrator control. See How RIB's access control system works for details.
How to start the repository administration pages
RIB uses a java applet for the repository administration interface. This java applet requires the java 1.4.0 (or higher) browser plugin which is available from the Sun web site. Your browser should prompt you to download the plugin the first time that you try to run the applet. The plugin is not required to view the repository catalogs.
The RIB beginner's guide provides a gentle introduction to the RIB user interface for new user's of RIB. Click here to view the beginner's guide.
The Basic Interoperabilty Data Model (BIDM)
When a new repository is created, RIB uses the Basic Interoperability Data Model (BIDM) as the default data model for the new repository. The BIDM is an IEEE standard for encoding metadata and is very useful for exchanging information between loosely related repositories. While RIB allows the data model to be reconfigured in any way that you choose, sticking with the BIDM will provide the maximum reuse value for the repository data. For example, using the BIDM means that it is possible to interoperate with the repositories listed on the RIB home page. Click here for more information about the BIDM.
RIB's data model editor
A beginner's guide for RIB's data model editor is provided here.
How RIB's Access Control System Works:
Since RIB can manage more than one repository at a time, distinguishing between the main RIB password and individual repository passwords is important. The main RIB password allows access to the RIB administrator's management page and to any repository administrator's management page. Repository passwords grant access to repository administrators' management pages, but do not grant access to the RIB administrator's management page. Each repository can have its own password. This arrangement allows high level functions such as creating, deleting, and importing repositories to be restricted to the RIB administrator. After the RIB administrator creates a repository, the new repository's password can be passed along to the repository administrator without compromising the security of the high level functions.
To change the main RIB password, click the "Change the main RIB password" button on the RIB administrator's management page. To change a repository's password by the RIB administrator, choose "Change password for" from the first choice box on the RIB administrator's management page; and select the repository from the second choice box. Then click the "Go" button. A repository's password can also be changed by its own repository administrator, either on the web management page or within the java-applet administration interface.
In addition, a repository's catalog can be protected by a catalog password. General publics must obtain the catalog password in order to view a password-protected catalog. The main RIB password and the repository password automatically grant access to the repository's catalog, while the catalog password does not grant access to either the RIB administrator's management page or the repository administrator's management page. Password protection to a repository's catalog can be enabled within the java-applet administration interface under the "Manage Catalog" tab.
RIB was developed at the Innovative Computing Laboratory (ICL), which is headquartered at the University of Tennessee Computer Science Department . Support for RIB was provided by the National HPCC Software Exchange (NHSE), which had the goal of facilitating software reuse among the High Performance Computing and Communication (HPCC) agencies.
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