A web hosting service consists of a server and/or platform that allows departments and publishers to make their website accessible to their audiences. McGill offers many hosting options, including its recommended central IT-supported Web Management System platform for official departments, units, and frontline services. Here we list that service as well as other central and non-central options.
Web Management System
The McGill Web Management System (WMS) is a content management system that provides a user-friendly, feature-rich, centralized method of building and maintaining web pages. This unified support service includes design and content consultation, as well as training and support for site admins, site managers, and site editors.
Benefits of the WMS include:
- Page layout and design that complies with accessibility standards.
- Consistent design theme across all McGill sites while still allowing individual sites to customize their layouts.
- Since the system is built on an open-source platform, it can be upgraded and enhanced to meet the needs of McGill publishers.
- Easier editing tools, including a WYSIWYG editor for most content.
- Centrally managed by McGill, so you don't have to worry about upgrading software, managing servers, etc.
See details on WMS services and resources on the Web Services website.
Blogging at McGill
Blogs are provisioned centrally at McGill University by IT Services through a WordPress multi-user software platform. This provides a centralized platform for building and publishing blogs using a common theme and turnkey set up. Blogs offer individuals or groups a virtual space to publish, discuss or link to any content, be it textual or multimedia, that they wish to share privately or with the global online community.
Virtual web hosting
Virtual web hosting allows you to publish your independently designed website on a centrally managed system that is secure, reliable and easily recoverable, and offers a reduced risk of server downtime. These websites are nevertheless expected to conform to McGill accessibility and branding guidelines. IT Services assumes no responsibility for the construction or maintenance of the sites using this service. It is expected that clients requesting a virtual host have the skill and competency needed to install and run their own site and any additional compatible software. Certain space limits and restrictions apply.
IT Services provides a service for virtualizing Linux and Windows servers for McGill academic, administrative, and qualifying research units. This service provides virtual servers to run multiple heterogeneous OS and applications that are completely isolated from one another on the same physical Intel based server. --See the service description in the IT Knowledge Base.--
Hosting of physical servers
Some research groups or special projects budget for their own physical servers. IT Services offers an industry standard Data Centre to host computer equipment within a physically secure, climate controlled and monitored environment.
Other non-central services
Some faculties, schools and departments offer their own non-central web hosting options, such as Med IT. These are generally used for hosting special projects or applications and are managed by local IT staff.
Document management tools
A document management solution is a set of tools used to capture and create, manage, and publish electronic documents. The solution can be used with a wide range of document types ranging from text documents, to spreadsheets, slideshow presentations, images, media files, etc. The advantages of using a document management solution include the ability to collaborate with small or large groups of people to create and share documents; manage access to documents based on user roles; easily store and retrieve documents; keep track of different versions; develop basic and complex workflows for documents; automate document lifecycles.