User Group Sites

Each user has a personal Site that consists of public (Profile) and private (Dashboard) pages. A user group Site determines the base pages of the user group members’ personal Sites. If the user group Site pages are added to a user’s Profile pages, then the user group Site is a public Site, accessible to anyone with the URL (http://www.[sitename].com/web/[username]). If the user group Site pages are added to the user’s Dashboard pages, then the user group Site is a private Site. A mixed approach can also be used, where both private and public pages are added for the user group Site. If users belong to multiple user groups, all the pages from those user group Sites are made part of their personal Sites.

When creating a user group, you can create the user group Site via the Site Templates available for selection in the My Profile and My Dashboard selector menus. You can also create a user group Site later, either manually or via a Site Template.

Creating User Group Sites From Site Templates

Follow these steps to create a user group Site from a Site Template, for a user group that already exists:

  1. Open the Menu (Menu) and select Control PanelUsers Groups. User groups are listed here in a table.

  2. Click Actions (Actions) → Edit for the user group you want to create a Site for. This opens a form that you can use to edit the user group. Note that this is the same form that appears when creating a user group.

  3. To use a Site Template to create a public profile for the users on their My Profile Site, select that Site Template from the My Profile menu. To use a Site Template to create private pages for the users on their My Dashboard Site, select that Site Template from the My Dashboard menu. Note that you can also do both.

  4. Click Save.

Now, when one of the group’s users navigates to their My Profile or My Dashboard Sites, the content of those Sites reflect the Site Template(s) you selected.

User group Site pages function similarly to regular Site Template pages, with an important exception: user group Site pages aren’t copied for each user. They’re shown dynamically along with any custom pages that users may have on their personal Site. For this reason, users can’t modify pages inherited from the user group. If needed, the user group administrator can define certain areas of a page as customizable, like with regular Sites. This lets users add and configure widgets in the specified area of the page.

This flexibility lets you achieve almost any desired configuration for a user’s personal Site without having to modify it directly. When users are assigned to a user group, they’ll immediately have access to the user group’s Site pages from their personal Sites.

Creating User Group Sites Manually

You can create a user group’s Site manually, instead of basing it on a Site Template. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Menu (Menu) and select Control PanelUsersUsers Groups. User groups are listed here in a table.

  2. Click Actions (Actions) → Manage Pages for the user group you want to create a Site for. This opens the Pages window. Note that this is the same window you use for creating pages.

  3. Create the public and/or private pages that you want to use for the users’ My Profile and/or My Dashboard Sites. Public pages you create here become pages on users’ My Profile Site, while private pages become pages on users’ My Dashboard Site.

When you return to User Groups in the Control Panel, you can access a user group’s public and/or private pages via these links in the user group’s Actions button (Actions):

  • Go to Profile Pages: Opens the user group’s public My Profile page(s) in a new browser window.
  • Go to Dashboard Pages: Opens the user group’s private My Dashboard page(s) in a new browser window.

In the new window, you can add more pages and portlets and configure Site settings.

Legacy User Group Sites Behavior

Since the inheritance of user group Site pages is now dynamic, even if there are hundreds of thousands of users, even millions, there isn’t an impact in performance. Versions of Liferay Portal and Liferay DXP prior to 7.0 required user group pages be copied to each user’s personal Site. If you long for the old days, or if you’re upgrading from an older version and need to keep that behavior, enable it by adding the following line to your portal-ext.properties file:

user.groups.copy.layouts.to.user.personal.site=true

When this property is set to true, the template pages are copied to a user’s personal Site once, and then may be modified by the user. This means that if changes are made to the template pages later, they only affect users that are added to the user group after the change is made. Users with administrative privileges over their personal Sites can modify the pages and their content if the Allow Site Administrators to Modify the Pages Associated with This Site Template box has been checked for the template. When a user is removed from a user group, the associated pages are removed from the user’s personal Site. If a user is removed from a group and is subsequently added back, the group’s template pages are copied to the user’s Site a second time. Note that if a user group’s Site is based on a Site Template and an administrator modifies the user group’s Site Template after users have already been added to the group, those changes only take effect if the Enable propagation of changes from the Site Template box for the user group was checked.

Note that prior to Liferay Portal 6.1, pages from different user groups could be combined on users’ personal Sites by using a naming convention. Liferay Portal 6.1 simplifies the way user groups’ Sites work by disallowing page combination. Set the property user.groups.copy.layouts.to.user.personal.site=true to preserve the page combination functionality.

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