Running the Alfresco Solr backup from the command line

SOLR can be backed up by different ways. It uses a scheduled job by default but also can be triggered by the JMX interface in Alfresco Enterprise. Additionally can be done by direct using next URLs. Example for doing a backup of the alfresco solr core and only keep 1 backup:

https://localhost:8443/solr/alfresco/replication?command=backup&location=/opt/alfresco/alf_data/solrBackup/alfresco&numberToKeep=1

For the archive core and only keep 1 backup:

https://localhost:8443/solr/archive/replication?command=backup&location=/opt/alfresco/alf_data/solrBackup/archive&numberToKeep=1

In order to do the backup from the command line, you may use the “curl” command and run it like this (see comment about pem certificate below):

[bash]curl -k –cert /opt/alfresco/alf_data/keystore/browser.pem:alfresco "https://localhost:8443/solr/alfresco/replication?command=backup&location=/opt/alfresco/alf_data/solrBackup/alfresco&numberToKeep=1"
[/bash]

 

[bash]curl -k –cert /opt/alfresco/alf_data/keystore/browser.pem:alfresco "https://localhost:8443/solr/archive/replication?command=backup&location=/opt/alfresco/alf_data/solrBackup/archive&numberToKeep=1"
[/bash]

Please, note that “curl” does not support p12 certificates therefore you need to convert the default browser.p12 to browser.pem by running (password is alfresco):

[bash]
openssl pkcs12 -in /opt/alfresco/alf_data/keystore/browser.p12 -out /opt/alfresco/alf_data/keystore/browser.pem –nodes
[/bash]

This option will be included in next version (0.3) of the Alfresco BART (Backup and Recovery Tool).

Deploying an Alfresco cluster in Amazon AWS in just minutes

I have been playing with Amazon Web Services since few months ago. AWS is for a SysAdmin like Disneyland is for a 8 years old child, I enjoy so much doing this kind of stuff.
If you are not familiar with AWS products/services, let me describe with Amazon words and in my own words what are the most important services and concepts we have been using for deploying an Alfresco on-premise installation in AWS:

  • EC2: virtual servers in the cloud.
  • VPC: isolated cloud resources. Yes, a real isolated cloud architecture and resources.
  • S3: Scalable storage, like a CAS (Content Addressable Storage) for your local or cloud servers.
  • RDS: Managed Relational Database Service (MySQL, Oracle or MS SQL Server).
  • ELB: Elastic Load Balancer, as part of EC2 allows you to create load balancers easily.
  • CloudFormation: Templated AWS resource creation. *This is why I’m writing this article. A CloudFormation template is a json file which creates a wizard and options based in our needs.
  • AWS Region: a location with multiples AZ .
  • AZ: Availability Zone (data centers connected through low-latency links in the same region).

Once said so, my colleague Luis Sala has been working together with the Amazon AWS crew and they have made a CloudFormation template to deploy an Alfresco cluster in just minutes. This template is available here: https://github.com/AlfrescoLabs/alfresco-cloudformation.

This CloudFormation template will create a 2 nodes Alfresco cluster inside a virtual private cloud (VPC), a Load Balancer (ELB) with sticky sessions bases on the Tomcat JSESSIONID, a shared ContentStore based on S3, a shared MySQL DB based on a RDS instance. Each Alfresco node will be in a separate Availability Zone and finally the template includes auto-scaling roles for add extra Alfresco nodes when some thresholds are reached.

We will have something like the diagram below, I say “like this” because we will have only 2 Alfresco nodes in the cluster and the auto-scaling will add more nodes in case of thresholds are reached (clic to see it bigger).

aws-cf-alfresco

Finally in the video below you can see step by step a real CloudFormation deployment, I think the video screencast is self-explanatory, it does not have audio. As you can see, the video is 6 minutes length after cropping some dead times but it was around 15 minutes total.

I thought it is a very interesting approach about Alfresco clustering and it worth it to share with you all. Any question or feedback is welcome, even in spanish or english 😉

How to compare two documents or versions in Alfresco

I use to be asked about the ability of  Alfresco to compare documents or versions of a document. I used to say “not by default” but, this is not totally true, the right answer is “it depends”. In Alfresco, thanks “Edit Online” option and to the Share Point Protocol implementation in the server and with MS Office 2010 (or any other version with SPP support), you can compare versions of MS Office documents stored in Alfresco. Here you can see what I’m saying:

Apart from this solution, that is very straightforward but also very Windoze based solution, you can try to implement some of these other options (I haven’t tried them, by the way):

the_raven_diff

Alfresco Backup and Recovery Tool, release v0.1

Project was moved to Github!

Please go to https://github.com/toniblyx/alfresco-backup-and-recovery-tool for downloads, questions, issues, suggestions or feedback. Thanks!

Here you go, first release of the Alfresco Backup and Recovery Tool (Alfresco BART). An Apache 2.0 licensed tool for backup and restore of Alfresco ECM.

DESCRIPTION
Alfresco BART is a tool written in shell script on top of Duplicity for Alfresco backups and restore from a local file system, FTP, SCP or Amazon S3 of all its components: indexes, data base, content store and all deployment and configuration files. It should runs in most Linux distributions, for Windows you may use Cygwin (non tested yet).

Brief description of its features: full and incremental backups, backup policies, backup volume control, encryption with GPG, compression. Also it has a restore wizard with shortcuts for quick restore of some key components (alfresco-global.properties and more).

DISCLAIMER
This is an initial version, it has bugs and needs many improvements, please take care 🙂

FEATURES
Features in this version (v0.1):

  • 5 different modes of work: backup, restore, verify, collection and list
    • backup: runs an incremental backup or a full if first time or configured
    • restore: runs the restore wizard
    • verify: verifies the backup
    • collection: shows all the backup sets in the archive
    • list: lists the files currently backed up in the archive
  • Full and incremental backups.
  • Backup policies:
    • Periodicity: number of days of every full backup, if not backup found it does a full
    • Retention: keep full or incremental copies, clean old backups.
    • Control of number of moths to remove all backups older than or backup retention period.
  • Separated components (backup sets or groups), ability to enable or disable any set (cluster and dedicated search server aware), all backup sets supported are:
    • Indexes (SOLR or Lucene)
    • Data base (MySQL, PostgreSQL and Oracle)
    • Content Store plus deleted, cached and content store selector (optional).
    • Files: all configuration files, deployments, installation files, etc.
  • Restore wizard with support to:
    • restore a full backup (all sets)
    • given backup set
    • restore from a given date or days, month, year ago
    • restore alfresco-global.properties from a point in time
  • Backup volume control:
    • All backups collections are split in a volume size 25MB by default, this can help to store your backup in tapes or in order to upload to a FTP, SCP or S3 server.
  • Backup to different destinations:
    • Local filesystem
    • Remote FTP or FTPS server
    • SCP server (should have shared keys already configured, no authentication with user and password supported)
    • Amazon S3
  • Encryption with GnuPG, all backup volumes are encrypted, this feature is configurable (enable or disable).
  • Compression, all backup volumes are compressed by default
  • Log reporting, Alfresco BART creates a log file each day of operation with in a report of any activity.

DEPENDENCES

  • Duplicity 0.6 (with boto and fabric)
  • Python 
  • GnuPG
  • NcFTP
  • librsync
  • mysqldump for MySQL backup
  • pg_dump for PostgreSQL backup
  • exp for Oracle backup

TODO

  • TEST, TEST and TEST with JBOSS, MySQL, Oracle, S3, FTPs, SCP, etc.
  • Add more input and task controllers (and configuration, first run).
  • Restore single repository file.
  • Snapshots (LVM if exist, AWS if exist).
  • Support for MS SQL Server.
  • Configuration wizard (shell).
  • Share admin panel configuration page as main point to configure more options related to backup (eager, cleaner, index backup, trascan cleaner, etc.).
  • Custom logging control and reporting improvement.

DOWNLOADS and INSTALLATION 

Most recent information about tool and latest code is available in:
http://blyx.com/alfresco-bart

Please report bugs and improvements to: reverse [email protected]

Alfresco trick: bulk users invitation to a site (external and internal users)

For a personal project I was wondering if I can invite a group of friends to a site without having to get them access to my Alfresco, just wanted to give them access to certain site as consumers.

Here is how I did that, once I generate a list of friends like below (file solo-mails.txt):

[bash]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[/bash]

I run next curl command in JSON format. Remember that $i is the mail address of any friend, use your own admin credentials as user:password, you should change ‘surname’, localhost, and site name ‘mysite’ in the URL. The option -H “Accept-Language: en,en;q=0.8” will send the invitation in english, if you want to sent it in spanish use Accept-Language: es,en;q=0.8.

for i in `cat solo-mails.txt`; do curl -i -u user:password -H “Content-Type: application/json” -H “Accept-Language: en,en;q=0.8” -d “{‘invitationType’:’NOMINATED’,’inviteeUserName’:”,’inviteeRoleName’:’SiteConsumer‘,’inviteeFirstName’:’$i‘,’inviteeLastName’:’surname‘,’inviteeEmail’:’$i‘,’serverPath’:’http://localhost:8080/share/’,’acceptURL’:’page/accept-invite’,’rejectURL’:’page/reject-invite’}” “http://localhost:8080/alfresco/s/api/sites/mysite/invitations“; done
This command will send an invitation with an autogenerated username and a password.

As I mentioned, command above is for external users, but if you want to do same thing for internals use same command but the value ‘inviteeUserName’ has to have the username you want to invite, for example ‘inviteeUserName’:’toni’. Obviously I run this command from my Mac also valid from a Linux with curl.

Thanks to my colleague at Alfresco Rui Fernandes, he pointed me out about where to start.

How to enable Tomcat Manager in an Alfresco installation

In order to address some maintenance tasks in Tomcat, may be useful to get access to the Tomcat Manager (http) interface, things like stop or start an application if you are doing some changes in Alfresco or Share, even a different way to access to its JMX interface using jmxproxy if you are working remotely.

This is a easy step by step guide about how you can enable the Tomcat Manager that comes with an Alfresco default (bundle) installation. Tested with Alfresco Enterprise 4.1.4, but should work with any other Alfresco 4 version.

  • Edit tomcat/conf/tomcat-users.xml and adapt it like below:

[xml]
<tomcat-users>

<role rolename="manager-gui"/>

<role rolename="manager-status"/>

<role rolename="manager-jmx"/>

<role rolename="manager-script"/>

<user username="CN=Alfresco Repository Client, OU=Unknown, O=Alfresco Software Ltd., L=Maidenhead, ST=UK, C=GB" roles="repoclient" password="null"/>

<user username="CN=Alfresco Repository, OU=Unknown, O=Alfresco Software Ltd., L=Maidenhead, ST=UK, C=GB" roles="repository" password="null"/>

<user username="manager" roles="manager,manager-gui,manager-status" password="manager"/>

<user username="manager2" roles="manager-jmx,manager-script" password="manager"/>

</tomcat-users>
[/xml]

  • Then edit tomcat/conf/Catalina/localhost/manager.xml and change like this:

[xml]
<Context antiResourceLocking="false" privileged="true" useHttpOnly="true" override="true">

<Valve className="org.apache.catalina.authenticator.BasicAuthenticator" securePagesWithPragma="false" />

</Context>
[/xml]

  • Restart your Tomcat and thats all.

Once Alfresco is up agan, lets try to access to the manager with user “manager” and password “manager”, please avoid using this credentials in production environments.

To access html interface:

http://localhost:8080/manager/html

Screen Shot 2013-05-30 at 12.38.33 PM

To list all applications:

http://localhost:8080/manager/list

To list server information:

http://localhost:8080/manager/serverinfo

To see default session info (use / or /context):

http://localhost:8080/manager/sessions?path=/

To start, stop, and undeploy alfresco or share

http://localhost:8080/manager/start?path=/alfresco

http://localhost:8080/manager/stop?path=/alfresco

http://localhost:8080/manager/undeploy?path=/alfresco

http://localhost:8080/manager/start?path=/share

http://localhost:8080/manager/stop?path=/share

http://localhost:8080/manager/undeploy?path=/share

To see all MBeans (jmxproxy):

http://localhost:8080/manager/jmxproxy.

Screen Shot 2013-05-30 at 12.39.34 PM

Sources: http://forums.alfresco.com/forum/developer-discussions/other-apis/unable-access-tomcat-manager-03292012-1345

and http://www.ixxus.com/blog/2011/02/monitor-and-manage-alfresco-jmx

Video del webinar “Uso práctico de Alfresco” (demo)

Aquí comparto el video del webinar en el que hago una demo de Alfresco sobre temas como:

  • Introducción a Alfresco Share
  • Clasificación automática de ficheros por correo entrante: Gestión de Facturas
  • Workflow
  • Edición de PDFs (marca de agua)
  • Alfresco One, colaboración y nube híbrida.
  • Sincronización
  • Alfresco Mobile
  • Edición en linea con MS Office
  • Búsquedas
  • Desktop Sync
  • Publicación Social

Espero que os resulte útil.

OpenDJ (LDAP Server) and how to configure with Alfresco for your best demos

OpenDJ is a fork of the former Sun OpenDS. Is a free and Open Source LDAPv3 server. It is not under our Alfresco Supported Platforms umbrella but it works fine for demo porpuses and is very easy to install, configure and maintain. Since OpenDJ is a Java application you can run it in Linux, Mac or “even” Windows 😉

Lets see how how to start with OpenDJ from scratch.

  • Installation and configuration of OpenDJ:

Download the application downloader and launcher here: http://download.forgerock.org/downloads/opendj/20130305020001/install/QuickSetup.jnlp (you may also download the entire package from here http://www.forgerock.org/opendj.html  but I think with QuickSetup is the easier way)

Download this initial LDIF file with demo users and groups for the first population of our new brand LDAP server.

You must have installed Java in your system in order to execute file QuickSetup.jnlp. Then double click to open it. And follow as in the video:

Now lets configure our Alfresco Server (I did all this steps with Alfresco Enterprise 4.1.3 but should be valid for any 4.X version).

  •  Alfresco configuration:

[bash]
# vi tomcat/shared/classes/alfresco-global.properties
[/bash]

Add next line with our new authentication system before the default chain.

[bash]
authentication.chain=ldap1:ldap,alfrescoNtlm1:alfrescoNtlm
[/bash]

Create the needed directory for our new settings:

[bash]
# mkdir -p tomcat/shared/classes/alfresco/extension/subsystems/Authentication/ldap/ldap1
[/bash]

Create your own config file, set as your needs:

[bash]
vi tomcat/shared/classes/alfresco/extension/subsystems/Authentication/ldap/ldap1/ldap-authentication.properties
[/bash]

File:

[bash]
ldap.authentication.active=true
ldap.authentication.allowGuestLogin=false
ldap.authentication.userNameFormat=uid=%s,ou=people,dc=alfresco,dc=com
ldap.authentication.java.naming.factory.initial=com.sun.jndi.ldap.LdapCtxFactory
ldap.authentication.java.naming.provider.url=ldap://localhost:1389
ldap.authentication.java.naming.security.authentication=simple
ldap.authentication.escapeCommasInBind=false
ldap.authentication.escapeCommasInUid=false
ldap.authentication.defaultAdministratorUserNames=
ldap.synchronization.active=false
ldap.synchronization.java.naming.security.authentication=simple
ldap.synchronization.java.naming.security.principal=cn\=Directory Manager
ldap.synchronization.java.naming.security.credentials=secret
ldap.synchronization.queryBatchSize=0
ldap.synchronization.attributeBatchSize=0
ldap.synchronization.groupQuery=(objectclass\=groupOfNames)
ldap.synchronization.groupDifferentialQuery=(&(objectclass\=groupOfNames)(!(modifyTimestamp<\={0})))
ldap.synchronization.personQuery=(objectclass\=inetOrgPerson)
ldap.synchronization.personDifferentialQuery=(&(objectclass\=inetOrgPerson)(!(modifyTimestamp<\={0})))
ldap.synchronization.groupSearchBase=ou\=groups,dc\=alfresco,dc\=com
ldap.synchronization.userSearchBase=ou\=people,dc\=alfresco,dc\=com
ldap.synchronization.modifyTimestampAttributeName=modifyTimestamp
ldap.synchronization.timestampFormat=yyyyMMddHHmmss’Z’
ldap.synchronization.userIdAttributeName=uid
ldap.synchronization.userFirstNameAttributeName=givenName
ldap.synchronization.userLastNameAttributeName=sn
ldap.synchronization.userEmailAttributeName=mail
ldap.synchronization.userOrganizationalIdAttributeName=o
ldap.synchronization.defaultHomeFolderProvider=largeHomeFolderProvider
ldap.synchronization.groupIdAttributeName=cn
ldap.synchronization.groupDisplayNameAttributeName=description
ldap.synchronization.groupType=groupOfNames
ldap.synchronization.personType=inetOrgPerson
ldap.synchronization.groupMemberAttributeName=member
ldap.synchronization.enableProgressEstimation=true
ldap.authentication.java.naming.read.timeout=0
[/bash]

To have a full control about what is happening during the LDAP authentication add next lines to your custome log configuration file like next one. If you don’t have a custom log file already you can create it:

[bash]
cp tomcat/webapps/alfresco/WEB-INF/classes/log4j.properties tomcat/shared/classes/alfresco/extension/custom-log4j.properties
[/bash]

Add next options to the file:

[bash]
vi tomcat/shared/classes/alfresco/extension/custom-log4j.properties
[/bash]

Content:

[bash]
# LDAP
log4j.logger.org.alfresco.repo.importer.ImporterJob=debug
log4j.logger.org.alfresco.repo.importer.ExportSourceImporter=debug
log4j.logger.org.alfresco.repo.security.authentication.ldap=debug
[/bash]

Now reboot and try. Also you can do that easily and without reboot using JMX with console

Remember to keep watching your logs:

[bash]
tail -f tomcat/logs/catalina.out
[/bash]

When Alfresco is starting after our changes, you must see something like this:

[bash]
2013-03-07 09:46:26,175  INFO  [management.subsystems.ChildApplicationContextFactory] [main] Starting ‘Authentication’ subsystem, ID: [Authentication, managed, ldap1]
2013-03-07 09:46:26,212  WARN  [authentication.ldap.LDAPInitialDirContextFactoryImpl] [main] LDAP server supports anonymous bind ldap://localhost:1389
2013-03-07 09:46:26,234  INFO  [authentication.ldap.LDAPInitialDirContextFactoryImpl] [main] LDAP server does not support simple string user ids and invalid credentials at ldap://localhost:1389
2013-03-07 09:46:26,235  INFO  [authentication.ldap.LDAPInitialDirContextFactoryImpl] [main] LDAP server does not fall back to anonymous bind for a simple dn and password at ldap://localhost:1389
2013-03-07 09:46:26,237  INFO  [authentication.ldap.LDAPInitialDirContextFactoryImpl] [main] LDAP server does not fall back to anonymous bind for known principal and invalid credentials at ldap://localhost:1389
2013-03-07 09:46:26,247  INFO  [management.subsystems.ChildApplicationContextFactory] [main] Startup of ‘Authentication’ subsystem, ID: [Authentication, managed, ldap1] complete
[/bash]

And after your first login:

[bash]
2013-03-07 09:47:34,404  DEBUG [authentication.ldap.LDAPAuthenticationComponentImpl] [http-8080-5] Authenticating user "toni"
2013-03-07 09:47:34,421  DEBUG [authentication.ldap.LDAPAuthenticationComponentImpl] [http-8080-5] Setting the current user to "toni"
2013-03-07 09:47:34,422  DEBUG [authentication.ldap.LDAPAuthenticationComponentImpl] [http-8080-5] User "toni" authenticated successfully
[/bash]

Remember to change your LDAP log debug level before going live, something like INFO could be enough.

Integration demo between LibreOffice 4 and Alfresco 4 with CMIS

As first post for 2013 I want to share with you all this new screencast about the straightforward configuration and how it works the new version of LibreOffice with Alfresco. Note that my demo was done with Alfresco Enterprise 4.1 but this CMIS integration also should works with Alfresco Community 4.2. As you can see check-in/out and versioning with comments are already supported out-of-the-box from LibreOffice.

Also I would like to highlight the connection binding URL “http://localhost:8080/alfresco/cmisws/RepositoryService?wsdl” that is automatically filled by LibreOffice at configuration time, this URL is the new CMIS Web Services binding address for Alfresco 4.

Appendix:

Alfresco 4 CMIS binding address (based on OpenCMIS):
CMIS Web Services Binding: WSDL Documents = http://localhost:8080/alfresco/cmisws
CMIS AtomPub Binding: AtomPub Service Document = http://localhost:8080/alfresco/cmisatom

Alfresco 3 CMIS binding address (based on Apache CXF, obsolete/deprecated)
CMIS Web Services Binding: WSDL Documents = http://localhost:8080/alfresco/cmis
CMIS AtomPub Binding: AtomPub Service Document = http://localhost:8080/alfresco/service/cmis

More info about Alfresco and CMIS here.