Via permanent activities

Blocks ::: block_via_permanent
Maintained by SVI eSolutions, Thomas Fauquignon
The Via Permanent Block can only be used if you have the Via activity module. This block creates shortcuts to the Via permanent activities* that have been shared within the course. *Permanent activities have no begining or end date, you may control its' access with the waiting room. See the Via guide for reference.
Latest release:
27 sites
Current versions available: 2

The Via permanent block displays quick links to via activites created by the Via activity module.

The Via module provides integration between Moodle and Via, a virtual teaching tool. It is designed to simplify the use of synchronous events within Moodle. It provides a single sign on between the two systems with easy event creation and management.

To connect to Via, you will need to create an account with us at SVI e Solutions. We will then provide a personaliszed URL and authentification keys that will be required in the plugins' parameters to create activities. These provide added security.

The module allows users to create Via - Virtual Classroom activities by adding many instances to a course. When creating the activity, the creator will have the choice of creating an activity with a start and end time and date or a permanent activity, which is always open. These can be great for homework groups. There is even a block that will display all the permanent activities of a course which offers quick access.  The activity creator can also chose if the activities can be recorded and made public. There is another block to display the recordings to made access quicker and easier. The enrollment method can be set to automatic or manual.  With the automatic enrollment all students enrolled in the course will be added as participants. The users will be synchronized with the help of the Moodle cron. The presenter will be the activity creator, but can be changed manually. An animator can be added manually. When manual enrollment is chosen the creator can pick which students will be allowed to participate.

Any user who creates or joins a meeting will have their account created on the Via server (if one doesn't already exist) and they will be signed in automatically using HTTP header authentication. So, as long as the user is logged into Moodle they will never have to enter in user details to get access to the Via activity.

The plugin is available in french and english.


Screenshot #0


SVI eSolutions (Lead maintainer)
Thomas Fauquignon
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  • Thu, Oct 20, 2016, 3:05 AM
    Hi. I took a look at your block on behalf of the Plugins Guardians.
    In the language file, you have two definitions for 'pluginname'. One that says, 'Via permanent activities' and another that says 'Courses'. I believe you only want the first definition. You should fix that and re-release this block.

    Other than that, the block seems find codewise and functionality wise. One improvement you may want to consider is that as written, it displays a list of all of the visible "Via" activities in a specific course. This could include activities that the current user cannot access, due to capability assignments or conditional completion rules. If they click them, they won't be able to access them if that is true. You may want to consider adding logic to only return "Via" activities that are fully available to the current user.
  • Thu, Oct 20, 2016, 8:18 PM
    Hi, Thank you for the comments/suggestions. I've made both modifications, hopefully, the blocks will be accepted soon.
  • Thu, Oct 20, 2016, 8:48 PM
    Hi... I took a look, and the language string is fixed - thanks.
    I apologize, but I missed some other issues with the SQL statement. You should be using table aliases in the SQL, rather than full names with the "mdl_" prefix. That prefix is optional and can things other than "mdl_" for sites.
    Review this page -
    You want your SQL to be "SELECT, FROM {via} v" instead of "SELECT, FROM mdl_via v", etc.
    You also added this to the SQL - "JOIN moodletest.mdl_via_participants vp ON vp.activityid =". I'm not sure what this is intended to do, and seems to be referring to another database called "moodletest"?
  • Thu, Oct 20, 2016, 8:57 PM
    Simple copy and paste error. I removed all references to the table and removed the "mdl_" prefixes... Sorry, for the inconvience...
  • Thu, Oct 20, 2016, 9:08 PM
    Ah. Okay. So, what does the "JOIN {via_participants} vp ON vp.activityid =" part do?
  • Mon, Oct 24, 2016, 4:29 AM

    Thanks guys for sharing the plugin with the community, and thanks Mike for the approval check. Especially thanks for the well caught issue with hard-coded table prefixes. From the discussion here I've understood it was the only blocker and should be fixed now, and the discussion on further improvements of the SQL queries can eventually continue in a separate issue (it seems to me the JOIN part is there to filter just the current user's activity modules).

    You are cleared to land now, welcome to the Plugins directory.

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