This chapter describes how to use RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds in a portal. RSS provides the ability to publish content from WebCenter Portal as news feeds in RSS 2.0 and Atom 1.0 formats. News feeds deliver content update information to your favorite RSS or Atom reader. In addition, RSS enables you to view news feeds from external sources on your portal pages in an RSS Viewer.
This chapter includes the following topics:
Permissions:To perform the tasks in this chapter, you need the portal-level permission
Manage Security and Configurationor
Manage Configuration. A portal moderator has this permission by default.
To add the RSS task flow to a page and to edit the feed location, you need the portal-level permission
Basic Services: Edit Page Access, Structure, and Content (simple permissions) or
Create, Edit, and Delete Pages (advanced permissions).
A portal moderator has these permission by default.
For more information about portal-level permissions, see Section 29.1, "About Roles and Permissions for a Portal."
For RSS to work, the system administrator must perform the following task for WebCenter Portal:
For external RSS feeds, set up a proxy server. For more information, see the "Managing RSS" chapter in Administering Oracle WebCenter Portal.
For RSS to work in a portal, the portal moderator or anyone with
Manage Security and Configuration or
Manage Configuration permission must perform the following tasks at the portal level:
Enable the Publish RSS option for a portal, as described in Section 7.2.7, "Enabling or Disabling RSS News Feeds for a Portal."
Add the RSS task flow to a page in the portal, as described in Section 54.3, "Adding an RSS Task Flow to a Page."
Edit the feed location, as described in Section 54.5.1, "Editing the Feed Location of an RSS Task Flow."
Note:For information about the RSS feature and how to view and obtain RSS news feeds, see Section 54.5, "Working with RSS Task Flows."
RSS exposes its features in the following ways:
A dedicated RSS Manager page (WebCenter Portal only)—displays a list of published feeds from all accessible portals for viewing in either RSS 2.0 or Atom 1.0 news readers. See the "RSS Manager" section in Using Oracle WebCenter Portal.
The RSS task flow—adds an RSS viewer to the page for displaying feeds from external sources and WebCenter Portal tools. See Section 54.2.1, "RSS Task Flow" and the "Obtaining Tool News Feeds" section in Using Oracle WebCenter Portal.
Note:RSS does not support non-ASCII user names and passwords if the character encoding of the browser-based basic authentication is different from the character encoding of the system on which WebCenter Portal is deployed. On a Linux system, the character encoding is generally different, and therefore RSS does not support non-ASCII credentials.
If the character encoding is same, users can use corresponding non-ASCII credentials. For example, for the WebCenter Portal instance installed on French Windows Server 2003, users can use a French user name on the French Windows to pass the basic authentication using Internet Explorer.
Use the RSS task flow to add a news feed from an external site to your portal (Figure 54-1).
You can add the RSS task flow to a page (see Section 54.3, "Adding an RSS Task Flow to a Page") and configure it to display content from any external RSS feed. Additionally, the RSS task flow supports login credential passing, by using an external application.
See Also:For information about specifying a feed for the RSS task flow, see Section 54.5.1, "Editing the Feed Location of an RSS Task Flow."
The RSS task flow can render news feeds outside of a corporate firewall. However, to consume external news feeds outside of the firewall, your system administrator must configure proxies for RSS. For more information, see the "Managing RSS" chapter in Administering Oracle WebCenter Portal. Contact your system administrator if you cannot consume external feeds, but want to do so. To contact the administrator, click the Administrator link at the bottom of WebCenter Portal.
Every time you access a secure news feed item, you must log on to that secure application to view content. You can either supply login credentials each time you access an application, or let an external application store and manage your login credentials. After your credentials for a particular application are stored, you are logged in to that application automatically when you log in to WebCenter Portal. You can provide this capability for all frequently used external applications.
If the secured application you want to access is not registered as an external application, perform the steps in the "Providing Login Information for External Applications" section in Using Oracle WebCenter Portal.
You can incorporate news feeds from external sources into your portal pages by using the RSS task flow. You can add the RSS task flow from the resource catalog in Composer. The RSS task flow includes an RSS viewer, which you can use to view content from external news feeds within your portal page.
Each instance of the RSS viewer displays news feeds from one source. If you plan to display multiple external news feeds on a particular page, you can place multiple RSS task flows on that page.
To display content from an external RSS feed, proxies must be configured in WebCenter Portal. Contact your system administrator if you have problems accessing external RSS feeds in your task flow.
WebCenter Portal provide the ability to store and manage your login credentials by using external applications. After your credentials for a particular application are stored, you are logged in to that application automatically when you log on to your application. So, if an external RSS news feed or WebCenter Portal tools feed requires your login credentials, when you get to the step where you specify the feed URL, you may have to also specify the name of the external application that is configured to store your login credentials for reading a secure RSS feed.
For the steps to add an RSS task flow to a page, see Section 14.2, "Adding a Component to a Page."
Tip:The presence or location of the RSS task flow in the resource catalog depends on how the resource catalog is configured. For example, in the Default Portal Catalog, the RSS task flow is included under the Alerts and Updates folder.
After adding the RSS task flow, you need to edit the task flow to specify the RSS feed location. For information, see Section 54.5.1, "Editing the Feed Location of an RSS Task Flow."
The RSS task flow has associated properties, which users with sufficient privileges can access through the Component Properties dialog in Composer (Figure 54-2).
For information about accessing the Component Properties dialog, see Section 14.3, "Modifying Component Properties."
The following sections provide information about properties of the RSS task flow and describe the properties on the Parameters tab:
The properties on the Parameters tab of the Component Properties dialog control the default task flow content. For descriptions of the parameters on this tab, see Section 54.4.2, "RSS Task Flow Parameters." For some task flows, parameters on this tab facilitate the wiring of the task flow to page parameters and page definition variables. For more information, see Chapter 19, "Wiring Pages, Task Flows, Portlets, and ADF Components."
Changes to the properties on the Display Options, Style, and Content Style tabs affect the appearance and behavior of the task flow for all users. These properties are common to all task flows. See Section 54.5.2, "Deleting the RSS Task Flow" if you want users to have the option of deleting the task flow. For more information about these tabs, see Section 14.3, "Modifying Component Properties."
The contents of the Events tab depend on the events supported by the task flow. For more information, see Section 14.3.7, "Working with Component Contextual Events."
All properties on the Parameters and Display Options tabs provide access to an Expression Language (EL) editor, which you can use to select or specify a variable value instead of a constant value. Click the icon next to a property, then select Expression Builder to open the editor.
Note:When you enter EL on the generic Display Options tab in the Component Properties dialog, the parser reports an error only if it detects invalid syntax, such as a missing closing bracket. Validation is performed only on syntax, not on the expression value. Generic Display Options are those cataloged in Table 14-1, "Display Options Properties".
EL validation is not performed on non-generic display options.
If you need EL assistance, an application developer can provide an EL expression; see the "Expression Language Expressions" appendix in Developing Portals with Oracle WebCenter Portal and Oracle JDeveloper.
Table 54-1 describes the parameters that are unique to the RSS task flow.
The name of the external application that is configured to store a user's login credentials for reading a secure RSS feed.
If you are not sure whether there is an external application configured to store your credentials, contact your system administrator. To contact the administrator, click the Administrator link at the bottom of WebCenter Portal.
The URL to access the RSS feed. For example, to use the Oracle Press Releases RSS feed, enter:
As the portal moderator, you can add or edit the feed location of an RSS task flow and also provide users an option to remove the task flow from a page.
This section contains the following subsections:
Note:For information about the RSS feature and how to view and obtain RSS news feeds, see the "Monitoring RSS Feeds" chapter in Using Oracle WebCenter Portal.
You can change the feed URL or the external application ID specified for an RSS task flow at any point of time.
To change the feed location of an RSS task flow:
Go to the web site that provides the RSS feed you want to view through the RSS viewer, and copy its RSS URL.
Log on to WebCenter Portal, and go the page that contains the RSS task flow you want to modify.
Edit the page.
Click the Edit icon (wrench icon) on the header of the RSS task flow.
In the Component Properties dialog, click the Parameters tab, if it is not open already. (Figure 54-3).
In the RSS Feed URL field, paste the URL that you copied in step 1.
For information about the RSS task flow parameters, see Section 54.4, "Setting RSS Task Flow Properties."
If the feed you want to publish requires authentication, in the External Application ID field, specify the name of the external application configured to store your login credentials for accessing that feed.
See "Accessing External Applications" for information about external applications.
Click Apply to save your changes and continue editing, or click OK to save your changes and close the dialog.
Content from the external feed you specified is displayed within the RSS task flow.
Click Save at the top-right corner of Composer to save your changes and remain in Composer.
Optionally, click View Portal to exit Composer.
From the Edit page mode, you can delete the RSS component from a page by using the Remove icon (Figure 54-4).
You can also allow users to remove the RSS component from a page by selecting the Allow Remove option from the Display Options tab of the Component Properties dialog (Figure 54-5).