Availability Maps for Labs

KeyServer data is often used by KeyReporter to provide a public web page that shows real time availability information for labs — whether a lab is open or closed and how many computers are available for login versus which computers are in use. KeyReporter includes simple editing tools for creating and configuring web pages that display Availability of computers in each Division. "Maps" of each Division can be drawn directly in a browser by a KeyServer Administrator and then made available to the public:

lab map graphic

Availability Widget

The KeyReporter default dashboard for Guest connections from any browser contains just this one widget, "Availability". The widget will show a simple list of divisions as illustrated below:

For each division the number of computers available (where no one is currently logged in), and the total number of computers in the division is displayed on the right. If a map has been defined for a division, clicking on its name will then display the map and show which specific computers are available.

By default the maps only update when the refresh button is clicked, but from an administrative login to KeyReporter, you can enable “auto-refresh mode” using shift-click on the refresh button (or by adding “auto=1” to the URL options). The green border around the refresh button then indicates that the map page will be updated every minute.

Availability Page without a Map

Without any maps defined, availability for each division will still be summarized like this:

The page merely shows a list of computers, indicating the platform for each and whether a user is logged in or not. You can configure the widget to show all divisions, or only those divisions where a map has been defined. In the screenshot above, we are logged in as Administrator, so we are able to edit the map for this page — note the pencil icon near the upper right.

Edit Mode

Here we've clicked edit and so far we've added a simple box (brown) and placed 2 computers on the map. Boxes can contain text, be colored as needed, have borders on all or only some sides, etc. The size of the overall room can be changed. You can align everything to a grid.

Click the question mark / F1 in the lower right of the window for an in-browser tour of some of the layout functionality. For example, you may want to use an image as the background of the room instead of "drawing" the layout using boxes. When you're satisfied with your map, click Save.

Example Maps

Here's a finished map with the general room layout and labels for important areas. With a conceptually simple map like this the availability of computers is easy to see without being cluttered by further details.

Here's an example of the same room above, but which uses a background image as opposed to boxes. A background image can be created with any drawing program, and can show as much detail as required. Images can be saved in gif or png format.

Adding Scheduled hours — lab open/closed times

Since each lab is uniquely identified by its Division name, we can specify a schedule by assigning a Time Set to the Division. From the Windows menu in KeyConfigure, select the Time Sets menu item and then use right-click to choose "New Time Set". Name your new time set using the Division name of a lab. Then use right click in the Time Set Details window to create one or more New Time Periods, then save changes. Since the name of the Time Set matches your lab, KeyReporter will use this information to display the lab open and closed times at the top of its Availability Map. The lab will be marked as "open" during all of the time periods you specified, and will be marked as "closed" otherwise.

Heat Maps

When you are logged in to KeyReporter as an Administrator, you can choose to turn on a "Heat Map", which will show visually which computers in a lab are being logged into the most. Click the flame icon near the upper right to select what time period to base the heat map on. Heat maps cannot be seen by anonymous users.

Demand Forecasts

At the bottom of each availability page are two Demand Forecast heat maps, one for the next 24 hours and another for the next 7 days. These forecasts are based on recent historical usage of the computers within the division. If you have added a Time Set for the Division, the forecast timeline will include the open and closed information. This forecast is visible to everyone viewing the page, including anonymous users who are not logged into KeyReporter.