Moodle on Mahara on GPLHost server

eLearning with Moodle:

Moodle (Modular Object-Oriented Dynamic Learning Environment) is a free software e-learning platform.

In June 2013 its user base consisted of:

  • 83,000 registered and verified sites
  • 70 million users
  • 7.5 million courses
  • 1.2 million teachers.

Link to the official Moodle website  http;//moodle.org
Link to the Wikipedia page about Moodle

Video presenting Moodle (2009):

ePortfolio with Mahara:

Mahara is an open source ePortfolio and social networking web application created by the government of New Zealand. It provides users with tools to create and maintain a digital portfolio of their learning, and social networking features to allow users to interact with each other.

It interoperates out of the box with the learning management system Moodle.

Video presenting Mahara used at a university (2012)

Installation on GPLHost servers:

GPLHost = General Public License Hosting.

GPLHost is contributing to the Open Source Software community by providing a hosting base made for Open Source Software and by developping DTC (Direct Technology Control) the open source control panel for adminitring your server. More on GPLHost…

Mahara requirements: OK

The Mahara System Administrator’s Guide/Requirements are described on :
https://wiki.mahara.org/index.php/System_Administrator%27s_Guide/Requirements
The recommended platform for Mahara is the server OS Linux – Debian, and Ubuntu which is built on Debian. Debian distribution is used by the core developers of Mahara, and so Mahara is best tested there.
It happens that GPLHost was founded 10 years ago by Thomas Goirand, who is a Debian developper. So, all the architecture of GPLHOst is using intensively Debian. (Although you can also install most Linux distribution as well).

Many scripts have been writen to install automatically a server. Then, from your administrative account (running on another VPS using DTC), you can select and install an complete working OS on your VPS in minutes, selecting during installation which modules you need. All the procedures have been documented in the wiki. In case there is still some difficulties, the support team will help you with specific requirement based on your needs.

Moodle requirements: OK

The Moodle requirements are described on: http://docs.moodle.org/23/en/Installing_Moodle
« Linux is generally regarded to be the optimal platform. »   => OK
« Disk space:  … 5GB is probably a realistic minimum. »     => OK
« Backups: at least the same again (at a remote location preferably) as above to keep backups of your site »    => OK
« Memory: 256MB (min), 1GB or more is strongly recommended. The general rule of thumb is that Moodle can support 10 to 20 concurrent users for every 1GB of RAM ». So if you have 1000 users, you need 100GB.    => OK
The GPLHost VPS Pack6 is answering the needs: 2GB RAM and 50GB disks upgradable to 100GB. More on VPS …

OpenSSL needed: OK

A special question is about the capability to run OpenSSL to allow Mahara and Moodle to interoperates: yes, all automatic install of Debian includes the packet OpenSSL. For exemple, a test on the VPS running this website shows:

root@GPLHost:xen440205>_ /# dpkg -l openssl
 Desired=Unknown/Install/Remove/Purge/Hold
 | Status=Not/Inst/Conf-files/Unpacked/halF-conf/Half-inst/trig-aWait/Trig-pend
 |/ Err?=(none)/Reinst-required (Status,Err: uppercase=bad)
 ||/ Name                      Version                   Description
 +++-=========================-=========================-==================================================================
 ii  openssl                   0.9.8o-4squeeze14         Secure Socket Layer (SSL) binary and related cryptographic tools
 root@GPLHost:xen440205>_ /#

Support channels:

  • From your account, a ticketing system allows to ask any questions.
  • We are also available by instant messaging on Skype, MSN, ICQ, Yahoo, QQ, AIM. More on the contact page …
  • and telephone.
  • A user forum is very active and is used to answer frequent and specific question. With 10 years of experience, it is already very well documented: More on the forum …

How to start and test it:

Register for a one month Pack6 VPS hosted in Zurich on http://gplhost.co.uk/hosting-vps-renewal-pack6.html

Once your order has been validated, you get an email with your login.

From your account, install Debian following the procedure.

Install Mahara and Moodle.

If you have any question, just ask …  🙂