Integration, Security, Updates, Support and Availability
Linchpin includes all of the prerequisites to ensure the stable and high-performance operation within your own IT infrastructure behind your firewall. The system integrates itself seamlessly into existing system landscapes, integrates with all common user directories, and meets high requirements for operational and information security. Regular software updates not only provide new features, but also continuous security optimizations.
Data migration from third-party systems
Migrating content from a variety of sources is possible and can be automated. Our system administrators work with you to find the appropriate path, automatic or manual, which offers the best result for your situation.
Connections with your existing IT infrastructure
For authentication, user and group management, Linchpin (with optional SSO support) can be linked to an existing Active Directory user directory. The following native connectors are supported: Microsoft Active Directory, Apache Directory Server (ApacheDS), Apple Open Directory, Fedora Directory Server, Novell eDirectory, OpenDS, OpenLDAP, Sun Directory Server Enterprise Edition (DSEE).
We help you set up sensible checks for your monitoring system. In addition to the usual system values, this also includes active and passive checks on the Java VM and Linchpin itself. If you choose to purchase one of our operating packages, this monitoring is included.
Securing a business-critical application requires a detailed conceptual design, documentation and regular recovery tests. We support you with these tasks within the context of your specific environment.
- Linux (recommended!)
- Microsoft Windows
- MySQL (no support for MariaDB or Percona Server)
- Oracle 12c
- Microsoft SQL Server
- Microsoft Edge
- Internet Explorer
- Safari (iOS)
- Android (Android)
- Chrome (iOS and Android)
Demands on hardware resources
To use a Linchpin, choosing the right hardware that also supports future expansions plays an important role. When you have designed your system with appropriate buffers, you may not need to extend or upgrade your hardware as often or even at all. In general, the load on the system is based on the number of active users and their behaviour. (A test phase is the best way to estimate the resources that you will require. It will become clear during this test, whether users in the intranet prefer multimedia files, e.g. graphics or videos, or whether information will almost exclusively b3 in text form.)
An additional consideration is the number of concurrent users: If many users work in parallel in the intranet, the load on the system increases, especially with regard to memory consumption and CPU. If the number of parallel users is rather small, but the content is predominantly high-resolution video or graphics, the system’s load will drop, but disk space requirements will increase dramatically. (This does not apply if the attachments are stored in an external database.)
Thus, choosing individual hardware components directly depends on the users’ requirements in the intranet. This table may help:
|Accounts||CPUs/Cores||RAM (GB)||Hard drives Capacity|
Atlassian continues to develop Confluence intensively and regularly provides versions with new features, improvements and bug fixes. The Linchpin add-ons used for the social intranet are also continuously optimized. To ensure that your collaboration system is IT-compliant and scalable with changes to your infrastructure, //SEIBERT/MEDIA will happily assist you with release management and the development of an individual update compliance process based on your requirements. Here you can take advantage of our extensive experience and our knowledge of best practices.
In addition to your productive system, a test system is cloned from the productive instance, matching it as closely as possible. With this we ensure that a test platform is available to test various development and application scenarios, changes and application innovations to see if they are viable to be implemented in the productive instance. To support clone management, we have created a corresponding automation tool, which regularly updates the information between the systems. Here, you can define further staging steps.
Procedure for releasing an update
Our standard approach to releasing updates, in addition to working with you to develop an update compliance procedure that is appropriate, helps you optimize security planning and manage expectations within your business.
- Check version compatibility of all installed add-ons
- Import the new Linchpin version into the test system
- Tests and acceptance within //SEIBERT/MEDIA
- Testing and acceptance with a test group of customers
- Agreement on a maintenance window with a downtime of 60-180 minutes
- Complete a backup of the productive instance
- Update the productive instance to the new version
- Update the configuration of updated Linchpin components
Maintenance – Application, operating system, and server updates
Our standard approach to maintenance ensures your environment and the application are continuously compatible and up-to-date. An important factor to do this is an IT-compliant process that ensures compatibility.
- Check of the supported Atlassian software components before updating Confluence
- According to dependencies, update Java, the database or the entire operating system where necessary
- Update Confluence to the newer version
- Installation of compatible add-on versions including the Linchpin add-ons
- Testing and acceptance within //SEIBERT/MEDIA
- Testing and acceptance with a test group of customers
- Agreement on a maintenance window with a downtime of 2-4 hours
- Backup the database as well as the installation and home directory for the Linchpin instance that has been shut down
- Update the software dependencies on the productive system (see step 2)
- Update Confluence and install the new add-on versions
Linchpin offers granular authorization management at a global level, as well as at the space and page levels. Thus, if necessary, you can restrict specific actions in the intranet on principle, and effectively protect sensitive information (permanently or temporarily). Setting permissions is done using easy-to-understand dialogs, for which no technical knowledge is required.
At the global level, permissions can be granted to individual users and to user groups, allowing them to perform specific actions within the system in general. Global permissions cover basic access to the system, ability to update a user’s status, ability to create spaces, as well as administrative functions.
You can restrict access to individual pages to individual users and/or user groups, if necessary. You can assign read permissions and read/write access separately. The restrictions include all sub-pages of a protected page, and can be modified and/or revoked at any time.
Thanks to the ability to define permissions for entire spaces, Linchpin provides effective access protection for entire content areas. This can be useful to protect and securely separate the workspaces of different partners and customers, or separate internal spaces from external areas, or protect sensitive projects from unauthorized access. The following permissions can be set for individual users and user groups: read access; add and delete pages, blog posts, attachments and comments; the ability to assign permissions to pages ;delete email settings; and access space administration features.
A valid Confluence license entitles you to unlimited support from the developer Atlassian. This includes problem solving, root cause analysis, support for installations and upgrades, help with implementation and configuration, and support for integration with other Atlassian systems. The Atlassian support is known to provide a fast and competent service. Support is generally provided by email or via a publicly available ticket system (Jira).
//SEIBERT/MEDIA is responsible for the operation and hosting of your Linchpin. We ensure that your social intranet that your employees, partners and customers use is both stable and high-performance, at a predictable cost. The operation package for a Linchpin includes the hosting and support of a virtual machine as well as updates, emergencies and service level agreements for service times, response times and resolution times. It covers all of the essential components for operating a Linchpin at a flat rate.
You can find more information on our operation packages at seibert.biz/operationpackage
//SEIBERT/MEDIA offers comprehensive user support for Linchpin in addition to the support provided by Atlassian. A dedicated support team takes care of all questions and problems that our customers may have, and can be contacted via email, live chat and telephone.
For detailed information and to view the conditions of this package, please go to: seibert.biz/linchpinsupportpackage
Operate your own instance
Do you want to operate your Linchpin yourself? //SEIBERT/MEDIA will help you define technical aspects, as well as support you with the installation and configuration of the Social Intranet in your environment. Your IT department is responsible for the operation of the Linchpin, including maintenance and the initial analysis of reported errors or disturbances during daily operation. We recommend that you schedule training your system administrators as part of the Linchpin project.
With a standard license, Linchpin uses Confluence Server Edition. In this case, the Confluence application is operated within a single instance of the supplied Java Application Server and accessed via a reverse proxy (HTTPS). Confluence requires access to a relational database management system, see the section above: Supported platforms.
If the component’s application server or reverse proxy fails, the Linchpin is no longer available. Linchpin is also not available when updating to a newer version of Confluence. The database management system can be configured independently of Confluence by using a suitable database cluster function redundantly and with increased availability.
The failure of the physical server system on which Confluence operates always means a failure of the Linchpin application. The application or its recovery is therefore directly dependent upon the availability of the physical server. When using virtualization solutions (such as VMware vSphere) with shared storage, this downtime can be significantly reduced. The time needed to start a VM and a Confluence application varies between 5 and 20 minutes.
The performance of the Confluence Server Edition is determined by the available server resources for the Java Application Server, as well as the performance of the database management system. Since only one instance of the Confluence application is available with a standard license, only the vertical scaling of the Linchpin application is possible. Vertical scaling means improving or adding to the server’s physical resources (computing power, memory, data storage).
Confluence Server Architecture
Confluence Data Center
With Confluence Data Center, the Confluence application can be operated in several instances on multiple servers. A load balancer distributes the load of the application requests across the various server instances. By adding additional instances, the application can scale almost infinitely (horizontal scaling) with the number of users in the system.
In addition to improving the scaling, the availability of Confluence is increased. If one instance fails, the load balancer reacts and removes it from the list of available instances. Confluence therefore remains available even when a physical server fails. Instances are not available when undergoing scheduled maintenance, such as during a Confluence update.