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Microsoft Dynamics Ax 2009 : Enterprise Portal - Securing Web Elements, Developing the Navigation

4/20/2013 2:53:31 AM
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Securing Web Elements

To securely expose Web User Controls through Web parts in Windows SharePoint Services, you must create a Web managed node pointing to the Web control in the AOT. You can assign security keys, along with other configuration keys, to the Web node. You can assign parameters (if the Web User Control uses them) to exhibit different behavior on different pages. Figure 1 shows the SecurityKey property of a Web node.

Figure 1. Assigning a security key to Web content

You can also secure both Web and non-Web applications in Dynamics AX at the data access level by using table-level, field-level, or record-level security settings. Using security keys is the primary way to set permission levels for groups in Dynamics AX. After you configure security keys to define the features the application should include, the keys are used to grant permissions to individual groups. These permissions regulate how group members are allowed to work with each object in a database. You can apply more granular control by creating your own groups, assigning appropriate permissions to those groups, and then adding users to the groups.

At logon, the security keys determine user access. Access depends on which user groups the user is in and on the user’s company or domain. Because the access to an individual security key depends on its parent, the system automatically traverses the security key hierarchy and presents the correct access level to the user. You can set up access to Web menu items and Web content in the User Group Permissions dialog box (accessible from Administration\ Setup\Security\User Group Permissions). You can use the Viewing list to apply a different view to the tree structure.

If a user doesn’t have access to a Web menu item, that item doesn’t appear on the user’s Web menu. If the Web menu item is linked from other Web User Controls the user has access to, the item linked with the Web menu item appears as text rather than a link.

If the user doesn’t have access to Web content on a Web page, the content isn’t rendered on the page. The Web part properties also limit the items displayed in the drop-down list based on the user permissions for the underlying objects. Moreover, the types of operations that are allowed on these objects depend on the access level set for the objects on the groups to which the user belongs.

Developing the Navigation

Web modules are resources in the AOT that define the sites and subsites in Windows SharePoint Services that make up an Enterprise Portal installation. Web module resources also define the top-level navigation structure for Enterprise Portal.

Web menu items define the basic navigational element. They can point to either a URL or a class. Web menu items can be secured by security keys. You can use menu items in Web menus as navigational elements on a Web page, or you can use controls (e.g., buttons) in Web User Controls to provide links. Whether the links are shown or hidden is based on user permissions. Consider Web menu items the glue and the navigation mechanism throughout the Web site to help you create sites that are dynamic and versatile.

A Web menu defines the hierarchical navigational scheme and comprises Web menu items, submenu headings, and references to other Web menus. Web menus can be included on the Web page through the Dynamics Quick Launch, Dynamics Left Navigation, or Dynamics Toolbar Web part.

The Web framework uses the WebLink class to generate hyperlinks. This class has all the properties and methods the framework needs to pass information back and forth between the browser and the server. More important, it has a method that returns the URL for the link. WebLink also has several methods for passing record information.

Figure 2 shows the AOT nodes for Web menus, Web menu items, and Web modules.

Figure 2. Web Menus and Web menu items

Windows SharePoint Services displays a TopNavigation bar by using a SPNavigationProvider registered in web.config. This bar is used on the master page as a SiteMapDataSource for the QuickLaunch and TopNavigationMenus, respectively. Office SharePoint Server overrides the Windows SharePoint Services SPNavigationProvider and uses Microsoft.SharePoint.Publishing.Navigation.PortalSiteMapProvider to display TopNavigation and QuickLaunch.

The Enterprise Portal site uses the Windows SharePoint Services navigation elements and object model for showing Dynamics AX navigation items from the AOT. To display Web menus from the AOT as the top and left navigation elements on the Windows SharePoint Services site, Enterprise Portal setup adds the navigation providers DynamicsLeftNavProvider and DynamicsTopNavProvider, which are new in Dynamics AX 2009. For MOSS, DynamicsMOSSTopNavProvider is added instead of AxTopNavProvider. Both navigation providers override the default TopNavigationDataSource and QuickLaunchDataSource (for Windows SharePoint Services) and the default PortalSiteMapDataSource (for MOSS).

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