Child pages
  • Dynamic Configuration
Skip to end of metadata
Go to start of metadata

Table of Contents



This document applies to Sakai 2.6.0 and subsequent releases.

Information for previous Sakai releases is still available: Sakai 2.4 and the post-2.4 and 2.5 releases.


Citations Dynamic Configuration Overview

Dynamic Configuration allows you to select an appropriate Citations configuration for each individual user – this is done on-the-fly, at runtime. The configuration is chosen based on user characteristics that reflect the needs of your institution. This might include campus affiliation, guest status, etc.

A custom Java implementation of the SiteOsidConfiguration API is required to set up a Dynamic Configuration.

Example Scenario

A simple scenario that suggests a dynamic configuration would be appropriate:

At my institution, users affiliated with West Campus use Sirsi SingleSearch, and users affiliated with East Campus use Ex Libris MetaLib.

To handle the example scenario, we'll need two sets of XML configuration files, one set for SingleSearch and another set for MetaLib.

We'll also need a site-specific implementation of the SiteOsidConfiguration API interface. Our custom SiteOsidConfiguration implementation will select the appropriate configuration files at runtime.

API Interface

The Citations code provides a Java interface that defines methods used by the Citations Helper to find appropriate configuration information for a given user. See:



The SiteOsidConfiguration implementation selects appropriate XML configuration files for the current user. The selction is typically based on various user attributes: campus and course affiliations, guest status, etc. – basically, whatever attributes make sense for your institution.

Default Implementation

The default SiteOsidConfiguration API implementation provided with the Citations Helper is available here:


This class makes three basic decisions:

  1. Which XML configuration file is appropriate for this user?

    The Java code returns the name of XML file that describes the proper configuration. See getConfigurationXml() in SampleSiteOsidConfiguration.

  2. Which databases are available to this user?

    The Java code returns the name of an XML file that describes the database hierarchy. See getDatabaseHierarchyXml() in SampleSiteOsidConfiguration.

  3. What groups (if any) does this user belong to?

    Groups allow the Citation Helper to decide which portions of the database hierarchy are available to the current user. In the Search Categories & Databases XML documentation, you will see that each defined database can have associated database-groups.

    See getGroupIds() in SampleSiteOsidConfiguration for a simple implementation.

Custom Implementation

Your custom implementation of the SiteOsidConfiguration API needs to make the same three decisions outlined above.

It may be easiest to modify the default implementation,, with any changes required to address the needs at your site. Your updated code can be compiled and deployed using the normal Citations build procedure.

If you prefer to build a separate class in another location, you can configure the Citations Helper to use this new class by setting the following Sakai property:


The default value for this property is org.sakaiproject.citation.impl.SampleSiteOsidConfiguration


To establish a dynamic configuration, changes are made to In addition, you may need to create multiple sets of XML configuration and search category files.

Property Values

In our example scenario, we'll need to provide the names of our configuration and search categories files in One set is for East Campus, the other is for West Campus.

# Cached configuration files (one for each campus) 

XML Configuration Files

For the example scenario, each campus requires both a configuration file (EAST-config.xml, WEST-config.xml) and a database categories file (EAST-categories.xml, WEST-categories.xml). These files should be located in the Resources area of the Citations Admin site.

When setting up an XML configuration file, it's probably easiest to copy the sample configuration file, changing values to reflect your requirements.

To learn more on creating a search category file, refer to the Search Categories & Databases XML document and the example XML configuration file.

You may also want to review the editing overview for Citations configuration files.

Note: The Java source code linked to from this page is in Sakai trunk. Be sure to review the code included with your Sakai release when making changes.

  • No labels