uSignIn User's Guide
Copyright (c) 1999 - 2004; Microburst Technologies, Inc.
Table of Contents
- System Requirements
- CGI Script Configuration & Installation
- Using uSignIn
- Getting to Know the Message Board
- uSignIn Administrative Functions
- All Users - Viewing the Message Board
- Sorting the Personnel List
- Viewing by Department
- User Status and Messages
- Advanced Administration
uSignInTM is a complete web based in/out board and personnel tracking solution that provides all you need to help organize and
keep track of your office personnel. No more wasting time trying to locate people. No more holding up progress
because you can't contact someone. Easily track in-out status of employees. With uSignInTM, your whole team will stay connected!
uSignInTM allows members in your organization to utilize the Web in order to determine if someone is
in, out, at lunch or on vacation. It also provides a centralized place where members can lookup phone numbers,
email addresses and other contact information. An Integrated Message Center feature allows members to leave and
read messages without use of any email accounts/servers. Easily communicate with and track employees!
uSignInTM is the perfect web office tool for tracking the availability of all members in your organization.
Used as an employee Check-In/Check-Out Board, a Sign In board or a Sign Out board members can easily Sign In or Sign Out.
And with uSignIn's user friendly interface, you'll have your entire office running more efficiently in no time!
The Features of uSignInTM electronic In Out Board include:
- Web-based electronic in/out board that provides the ability to look
up the current location/status/availability of all members in your organization. Easily track in-out status of employees.
Find out who's in, who's out, when they'll be back and how to reach them outside of the office.
- Maintains various contact information for each employee including:
- phone number
- email address
- personal web site
- normal schedule
- An Integrated Message Center that allows users to leave messages when they are out and retrieve messages when they return.
- A user-friendly interface with the ability to sort employees
by department, last name, first name and current status. The perfect web office tool for personnel tracking.
- An administrative account that can modify any user's status when they are unable to.
- A web based system that is browser independent and OS independent.
- An Employee Sign-In / Sign-Out Board increases office efficiency.
- Easy installation and configuration.
- Per server licensing (Unlimited users!).
- And More! Be sure to check out our demo to
see what else uSignInTM can do.
uSignInTM consists of one Perl CGI script. System requirements are:
- You must be able to install and execute Perl CGI scripts on your web server.
- Transfer all the image files included with the package to an
images directory on your server. Note the location of the
image directory. The URL to the DIRECTORY is needed when
setting up the script. Make sure you use BINARY or RAW mode
to transfer images with an FTP program.
- Edit usignin.cgi with a standard TEXT editor and answer
questions 1-13 according to your servers configuration.
- Transfer usignin.cgi to your server's cgi-bin directory.
Make sure the file transfer in done in ASCII or TEXT mode as
some Unix servers do not like DOS formatted text files
- Check file permissions on usignin.cgi and make sure it can
be executed by the web server. Also, uSignIn needs to create two
text files so make sure the directory uSignIn is installed
in has the correct permissions for a file to be created.
On Unix machines, mode 755 (rwxr-xr-x) should work. If there
are still problems, change mode to 777 to TEST that permissions
are the issue.
- Access the URL configured in question 2 of the cgi script by typing the full
URL into your web browser. You should see an empty usignin
message board. If there are any problems creating the two
required csv files, you will see an error message (see the
troubleshooting section; permissions problems).
NOTE ** NT/IIS users, you may need to map .cgi to your PERL
executable if it is not already done. see your IIS documentation
on running Perl scripts.
In order to keep the troubleshooting information as up-to-date as possible,
we have moved this Troubleshooting section to the uSignInTM
online reference site at:
Below is a screen shot of a typical uSignIn message board with six users.
Overview of message board functions
- The Push Pin. This is used to leave a message
for a user. Clicking on the icon will bring up the 'Leave a message' dialog box:
- The Post It Note. This icon will appear next
to the users who have messages waiting for them. Clicking on this icon will bring up a password protected list
of messages. From this list, you can read and delete messages.
- Sorting Tools. Use these links to sort the
current list by last or first name. The default is last name. Clicking on a sorting tools twice will invert the
list. To sort by reverse last name, click on the last
link. Click on the last link again to invert the order
back to the original list.
- Additional User Info. Use the user's first name link
to bring up more detailed information on the user. Click on your own name then follow the EDIT link to edit your
- Useful Info. These two columns under Contact
display the most used information.... phone number or extension and a link to send an email.
- Status Markers. This section shows who's in
and who's out. A green 'puck' gives you a visual indication that the user is in and a red 'puck' shows a user who
is not currently in. There are five possible columns describing why a user is not in. You can click on your own
puck to modify your status (move in or out). This is password protected.
- Status Grouping. The status link in the title performs 'Grouping'. By pressing this link, the message board will group all
users who are in and all users who are out. When the grouping link is activated, users who are in will be displayed
first based on the selected ordering (see #3). Sorting the list when grouping is activated will sort "within"
the status group. Click again on the status link to return
to a sorted only message board.
- Message Board. The Back and Message columns
allow a user to leave valuable information to other team members as to when they will be back, where they are,
and how to reach them if needed.
- Admin Links. Use the Add and Delete links to add and delete users
from the system. Use the "List By Department" link to filter the message board to view only users belonging
to a specific department.
Click on the Admin link (see image above) for Add new user.
The following will appear.
Enter all the information for the new user. If the user will have a personal web site, enter the full URL including
the http://. The Home page title will be the text displayed to link to the users home page. Press update and the
user is added. Use unique login's for each user.
To modify an existing user, click on the users first name on the message board. A table will appear with the
existing data displayed and a link called Edit Data. Press the
Edit Data link and supply the required password along
with the desired changes.
Click on the Admin Link for Delete a user. Select a user
from the resulting list. Each valid user will be listed for you to select from. Once a user is selected, you will
be prompted for a password. Enter the user's password or the administrative password that was entered during initial
setup. The user will be removed from the system.
Each user has a single row where all information pertaining to that user is displayed. A green or red marker is displayed in the column
corresponding the current status of the user. Green means
the user in currently IN and red means the user
is currently out. There a five possible reasons for a user to be listed out. Check the column heading for the marker's
position to determine why the user is out.
The last two columns address these questions. The BACK column shows the estimated time of return the
user entered when they 'moved' their marker from IN to OUT. The MESSAGE column displays any message the
user wanted to leave.
The last and first links in the NAME control the sorting of the message board. The last link sorts
by last name and the first link sorts by first name. Clicking on one of the sorting links twice will invert the
order. The displayed order also depends on the 'grouping' flag controlled by the Status link. When grouping is off, the message board will be sorted by the active sorting link. When
grouping is on, the message board will FIRST be grouped by IN status and OUT status and then be sorted by the active
If you only wish to view members of your department, click on the Admin Link List By Department
and select the department you wish to view from the resulting list.
To change your current status, click on your marker. The following dialog box will appear:
Enter your password and select your new status from the list. If you are moving from IN to OUT, leave a message
and when you expect to be back. If you are moving from OUT to IN, erase your message and time back. Press update
to change your status.
To leave someone a message, click on the Push Pin in the first column. This will bring up the following:
Fill out who the message is from. Also enter any phone, fax or email where the recipient should try to reach you
when they return or view their messages.
When someone has left you a message, a Post-it Note will appear in your row. You can view your messages in two
ways. The first is to simply click on the yellow Post-it Note. The second is automatic when you change your status
from OUT to IN. Whenever you successfully change your current status to IN, your existing message list will be
displayed. Click on any single message link to view the message or delete it. Clicking on a message link will display
a note similar to this:
Click on the back button to save this message and return to your message list. Click on the delete button to remove
this message and return to your message list.
All information is kept in a text file called usignin.csv. This file contains one record
for each user. Included in this file is the current status of the user, their login name
and password. This file should only be readable and writable by the user in which
cgi programs are run on your server. This is normally the user nobody on Unix
You may manually edit this file. It is a good idea to also keep a backup in case this
file gets lost or corrupted.
When making many changes at once, it may be more efficient to import a copy of
the usignin.csv database into a spread sheet. The database is in "PLAIN CSV" format so do
not use a comma in any field. Quoted comma's will be interpreted as separated fields.
When using ftp to transport the file, make sure the transfer is done in ASCII mode to
maintain the proper line ending sequence.
This file should not be manually edited while on a working server because changes
that a user makes will not be saved once you save the copy you have open. Instead,
make a copy, edit that copy, then replace the original.
There is an administration password that can be used to delete or edit any user.
Give this password to the person that will administer this system.
They will be able to delete/edit any user from the system without
knowing their password. Otherwise, a privileged user can manually edit the database
to remove or edit a record. The default password for the administrator is "abcd".
The second file created and used by uSignIn is the message.csv file. This file
holds all saved messages and uses the same 'simple csv' format as described above and
may be manually edited in the same way.
LINKING TO SPECIFIC DEPARTMENTS:
If you have a large amount of listings in the main table, you might want to create
links from a main page to individual departments so that employees can view only
listings in a certain department. To do this, you can create an HTML page on your
site that has links to the usignin script in the following format:
where DEPT is the department you want to list. Example, from a main html page on your
site, you can have two listings:
To provide a link to a table listing of departments:
(This link is also available from the main table.)