ONLYOFFICE Docs is an open-source office suite distributed under the GNU AGPL v3.0 license. It is available as a free community version and also offers commercial editions for enterprises and software developers. The suite consists of web-based editors for text documents, spreadsheets and presentations that can be integrated with various cloud storage platforms and electronic document management services, such as Nextcloud, ownCloud, Seafile, Confluence, Alfresco, Plone, Nuxeo, etc. as well as with your own web application via the official API or WOPI.
Apart from the file-sharing and productivity software, ONLYOFFICE Docs can be used to create collaborative environments with some popular e-learning platforms including Moodle, OpenOlat, WebWeaver and Chamilo. These integrations let educators create and share learning materials, while students can work on their essays, research papers, project presentations, reports and any other documentation without leaving the interface of their e-learning solution.
In this guide, we will tell you about the ONLYOFFICE integration with Chamilo, an open-source e-learning and content management system that is designed for improving access to education and knowledge all over the world.
What you’ll learn
This guide describes how to connect ONLYOFFICE Docs to the Chamilo platform on Ubuntu using an integration app that allows several users to create and co-edit documents in real time using the ONLYOFFICE collaborative editors.
What you’ll need
- ONLYOFFICE Docs (Community Edition or Enterprise Edition)
- Chamilo instance (you can get the latest version from the official Chamilo website)
- ONLYOFFICE integration app for Chamilo
Installing ONLYOFFICE Docs
For successful integration, you need an instance of ONLYOFFICE Docs (ONLYOFFICE Document Server) that is resolvable and connectable both from Chamilo and any other end clients. ONLYOFFICE Docs must also be able to POST to the Chamilo instance directly.
If you have never used ONLYOFFICE Docs, you can get the latest version of the online editors from GitHub or read this guide to check the software requirements and find the most suitable installation way.
You can install ONLYOFFICE Docs and Chamilo either on different machines or on the same one. If you install them on one machine, you need to set up a custom port for ONLYOFFICE Document Server, as both ONLYOFFICE Document Server and Chamilo work on port 80 by default.
Installing the ONLYOFFICE integration app for Chamilo
Starting from Chamilo v1.11.16, the ONLYOFFICE connector v.1.0.0 is pre-installed, and you just need to enable it in the plugins list. However, the default integration app can always be replaced with a newer version that comes with more features. To do so, you should delete the standard plugin first:
- Open the terminal in the root folder.
- Delete the pre-installled plugin using the following command:
rm -rf /var/www/html/chamilo-x.x.x/plugin/onlyoffice
chamilo-x.x.x is the version of your Chamilo software.
After that, you need to upload the newest version of the connector in the Chamilo Administration settings.
To get the newest version of the ONLYOFFICE integration app, run this command:
git clone https://github.com/ONLYOFFICE/onlyoffice-chamilo
Then get the submodule:
git submodule update --init --recursive
Collect all the files together:
cp -r ./ /tmp/onlyoffice-deploy/onlyoffice
rm -rf ./.git*
Archive the files:
zip onlyoffice.zip -r onlyoffice
When the archive is ready, go to Chamilo Administration -> Plugins -> Upload plugin. Upload onlyoffice.zip, and you will see the list of all available plugins.
composer install command from the Chamilo root folder.
Go back to the Chamilo plugin list, select the ONLYOFFICE plugin and click Enable the selected plugins.
Alternatively, you can get the latest version of the ONLYOFFICE plugin directly from GitHub.
Configuring the ONLYOFFICE plugin for Chamilo
After the ONLYOFFICE plugin for Chamilo is successfully uploaded, you need to configure and activate it. Go to the Plugins page in Chamilo and find ONLYOFFICE. Click Configure, and the Settings page will appear. Enable the plugin and enter the address of ONLYOFFICE Document Server. Don’t forget to click the Save button.
Using ONLYOFFICE Docs within Chamilo
Now that the ONLYOFFICE plugin is installed and configured correctly, you can create new documents by opening the required folder and clicking the Create new icon. To open a document that already exists, you need to click Open with ONLYOFFICE.
Apart from creating and editing text documents, spreadsheets and presentations in the DOCX, XLSX and PPTX formats, the plugin also allows you to co-edit files in real-time using the following collaborative features:
- switching between two co-editing modes (Fast to display changes in real time and Strict to lock a paragraph and edit it privately);
- Enabling Track Changes to control all the edits, accept or reject them if necessary;
- leaving comments for other co-authors;
- exchanging text messages in the built-in chat.