In a new Reciprocal Net site software installation, it’s necessary to perform a few administrative tasks before samples can be submitted. Open a web browser and go to http://www.yourserver.edu/recipnet/ . (You may open the web browser on any Internet-connected computer; it need not be your Reciprocal Net server.) Log in with the site administrator credentials you specified in the previous chapter. A few new choices should appear on the web app’s menu bar. Notice also that the name of your user account appears on the right side of the menu bar as a reminder to you.
Click on Administrative Tools to go to the main page for administrative tasks. From the screen that appears, click on Manage Labs. (The Manage Labs link is the only link on that page that is functional in this release.) You should see a list of every lab in the Reciprocal Net Site Network. Click the link next to your lab that says Edit this lab.
The top portion of this page contains some technical information about your lab record that you probably won’t ever need to change. The bottom portion of the page contains a list of every user account that is associated with your lab. (In a new site software installation, the only account in the list will be the site administrator account that was created in the previous chapter.) Normally you will want to create individual user accounts for every employee who works in your crystallography lab. The way to do this is to click the Add a new user link.
In the form that appears, type the user’s full name, username, and desired password. The latter two fields are limited to eight characters. You should be sure to set the user’s Global access level appropriately. For example, crystallographers who work in your lab probably should be Scientific users, while secretaries whom you enlist to help run your lab probably are not. You should think carefully before delegating Lab administrator and Site administrator privileges to others: while there is no limit to the number of each type of user that can exist, users with these privileges will have access to the Administrative Tools module that you’re using right now. This means that they could create new user accounts or even deactivate your lab inadvertently. The only difference between a Site Administrator and a Lab Administrator is that the latter can administer only his own lab, while the former can administer any lab that’s hosted on the site. Click Submit when you’re done filling out the form. The newly-created user account should now appear on the list of users associated with your lab. Repeat this procedure until all your lab employees have their own user accounts.
The next step is to create provider records for every person or group that submits crystal samples to your lab. A single provider must be associated with every sample that you create in Reciprocal Net, and you must create at least one provider record before you can create new samples. If you aren’t prepared to key all your providers into the system right now, just create a provider record called “Miscellaneous” or something similar.
To create a new provider, click Administrative Tools in the menu bar, then Manage Labs, and then Manage this lab’s providers. (Provider records only make sense when considered in the context of the lab that created them; this is because providers do not have direct involvement with Reciprocal Net in the same way that labs do.) The list of providers associated with the lab should be displayed; it will be empty if this is a new installation. Click Add a new provider. Name the provider something informative (like “Dr. Laue’s group”) and specify the head contact (Max Laue) in the next box. If your provider consists of only a single person, and not an entire research group, then it probably would make sense for you to leave the Provider Head Contact field blank. Enter any comments you like and then click the Submit button.
Now go back to the list of providers associated with your lab and click the Edit this provider link. You should see that data you entered before, and at the bottom of the form a list of user accounts associated with the provider. Creating user accounts for a provider is an optional step. You might do it if you wanted the sample provider to be able to access on your server the samples he submitted, giving him a quick and relatively painless link to the data files you created on his behalf. It’s your choice whether you create a single user account that is shared by every person in the provider’s research group, or whether you create individual user accounts for each member of the group.
When you’re all done, click Home to conclude your tour of the Administrative Tools.