[greenstone-users] Problems with using GLI remotely

From Kevin O'Rourke
DateFri, 03 Mar 2006 13:08:03 +0100
Subject [greenstone-users] Problems with using GLI remotely

I'm working as an ICT adviser for the National Teachers' Institute in
Kaduna, Nigeria. They've been trying to set up a virtual library for
some time, with various idiot consultants setting up a random selection
of junk they found on the web, none of which works.

Somebody suggested Greenstone to them, I found the CD lying around,
downloaded 2.63 and we've now got it installed and working.

One of the requirements is that it should be possible to upload content
from anywhere (here at headquarters, out at study centres, at some
random internet cafe, ...). The library staff are not at all impressed
at the thought of having to go and sit in the server room to use GLI.

I've managed to get GLI set up to run as an applet, despite a few
problems (detailed at the end). I've also followed Michael Dewsnip's
instructions at
to run GLI remotely as a standalone app.

In both cases I've found that:

1. The Download view mentioned in the help is missing. I'm not at the
server just now but I'm sure I remember seeing the Download view in GLI
when run on the server.

2. Many plugins are missing, in particular the plugins for Word and PDF

3. I get cryptic errors when trying to build some of the documented
example collections. This might be related to the plugin problems
mentioned in 2. The error is:
"An error has occurred on the remote Greenstone server while performing
this operation:
Unable to write file

I then get another error about being unable to open fail.log, I'm
assuming that's probably because fail.log isn't writable by the Apache user.

4. I get a warning when importing HTML files:
"None of Greenstone's plugins are expected to process the file
"SubsetOptimising.html". Check that the file has the correct extension.
If it is correct then you may have to use UnknownPlug to process this file."

The HTMLPlug plugin is present and when I build the collection it
successfully extracts metadata.

Has anyone else had similar problems? Are there any known workarounds?
If not I'm going to have to look into messy solutions like allowing
remote access to GLI on the server using VNC.


Problems setting up GLI to run as an applet

I followed the instructions in the FAQ:

which seem to be a little out of date.

1. The FAQ doesn't mention having to correct the first line of
gliserver.pl to include the correct Perl path. Using the default
'/usr/bin/perl' would work for most installations.

2. I had add ".pl" to the end of GLI's gliserver URL in Preferences.
This may be due to Apache server configuration, it won't automatically
convert "gliserver" -> "gliserver.pl".

Where is this preference stored? I'm assuming it's in the JAR file
somewhere, so I'll need to rebuild the applet after modifying the