Moodle Administration

Moodle Administration
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Table of Contents
Sample Chapters
  • A complete guide for planning, installing, optimizing, customizing, and configuring Moodle
  • Secure, back up, and restore your VLE
  • Extending and networking Moodle
  • Detailed walkthroughs and expert advice on best practices
  • Checklist of over 100 common problems with solutions

Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 376 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : September 2008
ISBN : 1847195628
ISBN 13 : 9781847195623
Author(s) : Alex Büchner
Topics and Technologies : All Books, Other, Content Management (CMS), e-Learning, Moodle, Open Source

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Moodle Installation
Chapter 3: The Moodle System
Chapter 4: Course Management
Chapter 5: User Management
Chapter 6: Roles and Permissions
Chapter 7: Moodle: Look and Feel
Chapter 8: Moodle Configuration
Chapter 9: Monitoring User Activity
Chapter 10: Moodle Security
Chapter 11: Moodle Performance and Optimization
Chapter 12: Backup and Restore
Chapter 13: Installing Third-Party Add-Ons
Chapter 14: Moodle Networking
Appendix A: Moodle Health Check
Appendix B: Configuration Settings Reference
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
    • Moodle's Rationale
    • Moodle Overview
    • The Moodle Model
      • The Moodle Development Model
      • The Moodle Business Model
    • Moodle Usage
    • VLE Administration
      • VLE Job Functions
      • Obligations and Skill Sets of a VLE Administrator
    • Moodle Administration
    • Summary
  • Chapter 2: Moodle Installation
    • Moodle Installation: An Overview
      • What is the Best Setup for Me?
      • Moodle Prerequisites
        • Hardware Requirements
        • Software Requirements
    • Installation in a LAMP Environment
      • Downloading Moodle
      • Creating the Moodle Database and the Data Directory
        • Using a Hosted Server
        • Using the Command Line
        • Creating the Moodle Data Directory
      • Running the Installer Script
      • Finalizing the Installation
      • Setting up the Cron Process
    • Installation in a Windows Environment
    • Installation in a Mac OS X Environment
    • Updating Moodle
      • Manual Update
        • Creating a Backup
        • Creating New Moodle System
        • Running the Update Script
      • Update via CVS
    • Summary
  • Chapter 3: The Moodle System
    • Moodle Architecture
      • The LAMP Architecture
      • The Moodle Layer
      • Code and Data Locations
    • Finding Your Way Around in Moodle
      • Breadcrumbs
      • Administrator Search Facility
      • Moodle Bookmarks
      • Moodle Docs and Help
    • File Management
      • Moodle File Management Interface
      • Web Host File Management
      • File Management via FTP
      • File Management via WebDAV
        • WebDAV Prerequisites
        • Setting up WebDAV
        • Using WebDAV from Windows
    • Summary
  • Chapter 4: Course Management
    • Course Categories
      • Course Categories Overview
      • Managing Course Categories
        • Adding Course Categories
        • Course Sub-Categories
        • Deleting Course Categories
        • Organizing Courses
    • Creating Courses
      • Meta Courses—Sharing Enrolment across Courses
      • Course Requests—Enabling Teachers to Ask for New Courses
    • Forms of Enrolment
      • Internal Enrolment
      • Database-driven Enrolment
        • LDAP
        • External Database
        • Flat File
        • IMS Enterprise File
      • Enrolment with Payment
        • PayPal
        • Payment Gateway
    • Summary
  • Chapter 5: User Management
    • Authentication Versus Enrolment
    • User Profiles
      • Profile Fields
        • Category "General"
        • Category "Picture of"
        • Category "Interests"
        • Category "Optional"
      • Creating User-Defined Profile Fields
        • Profile Categories
        • Profile Fields
    • Standard User Actions
      • Browsing Users
      • Filtering Users
      • Bulk User Actions
    • Manual Accounts
      • Adding Individual Users
      • Bulk-Uploading of Users and Their Pictures
        • Text File Format
        • Uploading Users
        • Setting Default Values and Templates
        • Loading of Data
        • Uploading User Pictures
      • Self-Registration
    • User Authentication
      • Common Authentication Settings
      • Manual Account Settings
      • Self-Registration Settings
      • LDAP Server Settings
        • LDAP Server and Bind Settings
        • User Lookup Settings
        • Password-Related Settings
        • Miscellaneous LDAP Settings
        • Data Field Mappings
      • External Database Settings
        • Connection Settings
        • Data Field Mappings
      • Other Authentication Mechanisms
        • External Moodle Authentication Methods
        • Internal Moodle Authentication Methods
    • Username–Best Practices
    • Summary
  • Chapter 6: Roles and Permissions
    • Moodle's PreDefined Roles
    • Contexts
    • Assignment of Roles
      • Time for some action: Assigning Roles
        • Hiding Role Assignments
        • Time-Limited Role Assignments
      • System Context
      • Course Category Context
      • Course Context
      • Module Context
      • Block Context
      • User Context
      • Front Page Context
      • Multiple Roles
    • Capabilities and Permissions
      • Role Definitions
        • Resolving Permission Conflicts
        • Permission Risks
      • Modifying Roles
      • Overriding Roles
      • Creating Custom Roles
        • Example Roles
        • Parent or Mentor Role
        • Testing New Roles
    • Roles Management
      • Allowing Roles Assignments and Overrides
      • Assignment of Default Roles
        • Assigning Front Page Roles
        • Roles—Best Practice
    • Summary
  • Chapter 7: Moodle: Look and Feel
    • Look and Feel: An Overview
    • Customizing Your Front Page
      • Front Page Settings
      • Arranging Front Page Blocks
        • Login From a Different Website
      • Other Front Page Items
        • Front Page Roles
        • Front Page Backup and Restore
        • Front Page Questions
        • Site Files
      • Allow Personalization via My Moodle
        • Making Blocks Sticky
    • Moodle Themes
      • Selecting a Moodle Theme
      • Theme Types
      • Theme Settings
      • Creating Your Own Theme
        • Theme Creation Basics
        • Moodle Theme Styles
        • Theme Design and Development
    • Look and Feel: Good Practice
      • Consistency
      • Supporting Different Browsers
      • Guaranteeing Accessibility
    • Summary
  • Chapter 8: Moodle Configuration
    • Accessibility
      • Accessibility Supported by the Moodle Editor
      • Screen Reader Support
    • Localization
      • Languages
        • Language Packs
        • Language Settings
        • Language Editing
      • Calendaric Information
        • Calendars
        • Time Zones
    • Module Configuration
      • Configuration of Activities
      • Configuration of Blocks
      • Configuration of Filters
    • Grades and Gradebook Settings
    • Miscellaneous Settings
      • Editing Options
      • Tags
      • Experimental
    • Summary
  • Chapter 9: Monitoring User Activity
    • Monitoring Overview
    • Reporting
      • Live Logs
      • Error Reports
      • Exporting of Logs
    • Tracking
    • Statistics
      • Statistics Settings
      • Statistics View
      • Web Log Analyzers
      • Google Analytics
    • Privacy and Data Protection Issues
    • Summary
  • Chapter 10: Moodle Security
    • Security Overview
    • Security Notifications
    • User Security
      • Access to Moodle
        • Self-Registration
        • Guest Access
        • Protection of User Details
        • Course Managers
      • Moodle Passwords
      • Security in Roles
        • Role Definitions
        • Default Roles
    • Data and Content Security
      • Content Created Within Moodle
      • Visibility of Content
      • Site Policy
      • Antivirus
    • System Security
      • Configuration Security
        • Accessibility of Dataroot
        • Cron Process
      • HTTP Security
      • Module Security
    • Summary
  • Chapter 11: Moodle Performance and Optimization
    • Performance and Optimization Overview
    • Moodle Content
      • Content Creation
      • Content Volume
      • Content Types
    • Moodle System Settings
      • Path Settings
      • Caching Settings
      • Module Settings
        • Gradebook Optimization
        • Chat Optimization
        • Forums
      • Miscellaneous Settings
        • Language-Related Settings
        • Large Log files
        • Filter Settings
        • Search Settings
        • Course Backups
        • Cron Optimization
        • Roles
    • Moodle Performance Profiling and Monitoring
    • Summary
  • Chapter 12: Backup and Restore
    • Course-Level Backup and Restore
      • Course Backup
        • Backup Options
        • Content-Only versus Full-Course Backups
        • Finalizing Backup
      • Course Restore
      • Course Import
    • Site-Level Backups
      • Backup Settings
      • Backup Strategy
      • Drawbacks of Site-Level Backups
    • System-Level Backups
      • Moodle Backup
        • Moodle Software
        • Moodle Data
      • Snapshot Creation
    • Summary
  • Chapter 13: Installing Third-Party Add-Ons
    • Third-Party Software: An Overview
    • Good Add-Ons and Bad Add-Ons
    • Popular Add-Ons
    • Installing Third-Party Add-Ons
      • Installing the Feedback Module
      • Installing Other Add-Ons
    • Uninstalling Third-Party Add-Ons
    • Summary
  • Chapter 14: Moodle Networking
    • Networking Overview
    • Networking Prerequisites and Security
      • Required PHP Extensions
      • Networking Security
    • Peer-To-Peer Networks
      • Adding a Peer
        • Peer Services
        • Peer Themes
        • Peer Logs
      • Network Authentication
      • Allow Roaming
      • Network Server Block
      • Network Enrolment
        • Networking Enrolment Plug-In
        • Network Enrolment Service
    • Community Hubs
    • Mahara Integration
      • Mahoodle!
      • Mahara Networking
      • Adding Mahara to Moodle
    • Summary
  • Appendix A: Moodle Health Check
    • Moodle Health Check: Performance
    • Moodle Health Check: Security
    • Functionality
      • Core Functionality
      • Accessibility
    • System
      • Operating System
      • Database
      • PHP
      • Web Server
  • Appendix B: Configuration Settings Reference
    • Configuration Reference: An Overview
    • Configuration Reference: Administration Settings
    • Configuration Reference: System Settings
      • Compulsory Parameters
      • Optional Parameters
    • Configuration Reference: Theme Settings

Alex Büchner

Alex Büchner is a co-founder and technical lead of the leading Moodle, Mahara, and Platinum Totara partner, Synergy Learning. He has been involved in system and database administration for more than two decades and has been administering virtual learning environments of all shapes and sizes since their advent on the educational landscape. Alex has a PhD in Computer Science and an MSc in Software Engineering. He has authored over 50 international publications, including three books, and is a frequent speaker on Moodle, Totara and Mahara, and related open source technologies. His first two books on Moodle, published by Packt, have become the de facto standard on the topic.

Submit Errata

Please let us know if you have found any errors not listed on this list by completing our errata submission form. Our editors will check them and add them to this list. Thank you.


- 1 submitted: last submission 05 Nov 2013

page 7 Others 12 Mar 09
Moodle stands for Module Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment should be<br />Moodle stands for Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment.

Sample chapters

You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

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What you will learn from this book

  • Install and update Moodle on multiple platforms
  • Understand the Moodle architecture and find your way around its user and administrator interfaces
  • Work with large numbers of users: bulk enrolments and operations; advanced user management
  • Configure courses, course categories, enrolment, and authentication mechanisms
  • Assign, modify, and create roles and permissions to users
  • Brand your site by changing the look & feel and creating custom themes
  • Configure Moodle for accessibility, localization, and customize your module and grade/gradebook settings
  • Interpret and analyze user activity, tracking statistics using Moodle's in-built monitoring facility and third-party tools like Google Analytics
  • Secure user information, data, content, and the Moodle system
  • Optimize Moodle for performance by fine-tuning your system parameters
  • Back up and restore Moodle at course, site, and system level
  • Extend Moodle through third-party add-ons—making the right choice for your needs, installing, configuring, and uninstalling add-ons
  • Build a network of Moodle systems and set up Moodle with the Mahara ePortfolio and social networking system
  • Improve your Moodle experience by following the tips laid down in the Moodle Health Check—a checklist of over 100 common problems with solutions

In Detail

Moodle has evolved from an academic project to the world's most popular virtual learning environment. During this evolution, its complexity has risen dramatically and so have the skills that are required to administer the system. While there is plenty of literature for Moodle course creators, there has been, with the exception of some disparate online resources, no Moodle administrator book. Until now!

This book is a complete, practical guide to administering Moodle sites. It covers how to set up Moodle in any learning environment, configuration and day-to-day admin tasks, as well as advanced options for customizing and extending Moodle.

This is a one-stop reference for any task you will ever come across when administering a Moodle site of any shape and size.

The author, who has been administering systems for over 20 years, has adopted a problem-solution approach to bring the content in line with your day-to-day operations.


Written in a clear, straightforward way with lots of screenshots and direct instructions this book will equip you with all the tools you need to set up, optimize, extend, and maintain a Moodle system. A problem-solution approach has been taken when possible to bring the content more in line with your day-to-day operations.

Who this book is for

This book is written for technicians, systems administrators, as well as academic staff—basically anyone who has to administer a Moodle system. Whether you are dealing with a small-scale local Moodle system or a large-scale multi-site Virtual Learning Environment, this book will assist you with any administrative tasks. Some basic Moodle knowledge is helpful, but not essential.

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