best practice to share PDFs through a (secure login - if possible) web page

Posted on 2012-08-17
Last Modified: 2012-08-20
I have a need for our office to views pdfs that will be managed by the other staff.  Now we can do something as basic as creating a network folder and have the appropriate user open the pdf from the desired pc however after a few weeks or months this folder will become very cluttered and lets face it, its not user friendly like a web page is with links.  So my idea is to create a intranet site that a user can open up and click on the links or search by a field when looking for a particular pdf.  

My hurtles are the staff creating the pdfs are normal users and cannot do anything beyond creating and copying to, so I'm looking for them to drop it in a folder that a program can automatically create a link for.  Can share point do this? or is there something else I should look into?

If possible the intranet site should require authentication that can be controlled by a AD environment
Question by:jo80ge121
    LVL 29

    Accepted Solution

    Run IIS on the File Server so that the file locations do not change.   The Files will have to be created/copied to their locations via Windows Networking,...not via IIS or a web page.   The same NTFS Permissions are what IIS also uses as well so the permissions you already have in place will work.

    In the end it will be a waste of time and more trouble than what you are currently doing.  You will not actually gain anything by them using a "web page".  In fact you will go from having one thing to maintain to having two things to maintain.

    You make it "user friendly" but having a UNC Based shortcut on the All User's Desktop that takes them to the file server.  This shortcut will be browse-able from almost any Browse Dialog box and for all intents and purposes behaves as just a Folder on the Users's Desktop, doesn't get any simpler than that and a web page is certainly not going to be that simple considering you need a web browser to see it as opposed to the "folder-like" behavor of the UNC Shortcut that everything can see.

    There is nothing you can do about the clutter,...that is a human problem,..not a technical one.  If the people that create the files won't take the time to delete off old files that are no longer needed then they are just screwing themselves,....the people have to clean up after themselves, is that simple.  The best you could do there is have a script that runs on a schedule that delete all files over a certain age,...but inevitably you'll end up deleting something that somebody wants.

    Author Comment

    That is a very reasonable solution.  However in the past couple of days I've come to understand the bedrock of this request from my employer which will require some type of search engine and permission auditing.  I'm going to research Sharepoint as it already has most of the elements required by them.  Thank you.
    LVL 29

    Expert Comment

    Sharepoint would be a good solution for that.  But it has a very difficult learning curve for the poor sucker that has to set it up and design the user interface portion of it to fit you rneeds.. Many have to call in consultants to at least get past the initial setup.

    But, will probably be the best solution in the end if you need more requirements than what I suggested in my first post..

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