Basic Asset Tracker and Message Board Web Page


Project tamb at Sourceforge


Related Links: Setup Procedure    History




This application is intended to be used to communicate the status and location of prototype boards during that stage in the hardware development cycle where the initial prototype boards are distributed to various software and system integration teams.  Because not all boards are identical, parts shortages and modifications are made to accommodate the requirements of the teams, it is important that the locations and state of each board be clearly communicated to all the developers in order to prevent wasting time.  At the same time, a full revision and asset tracking system may be too complicated to set up for this early stage of development.  This web-based application helps solve this problem using a basic web-based message board.

 System requirements are:

  1. Net based connection
  2. Sytem running Apache with PHP
  3. available Mysql server with privileges to create, update, and alter tables.


Example Application


In version 1.0 there are three web pages the user may display.  The key page is shown below.  The other pages, a summary list of all the boards, and the administration page for adding and deleting boards, users, and other information are shown on other links (Example Summary Page and example Administration Page).


Figure 1 Example Board Status Page




While there is no hard limit on the number of boards that may be entered on a system, practically speaking, more than twenty may make web navigation too laborious.


Future Work


-          timestamping entries

-          uploading documents of interest to the project development community

-          more fields (board STATUS = working, broken, …)

-          printing reports

-          saving the database information to a portable format

-          scheduling functions (reservation system)

-          copying summary.php to index.php may confuse some



Basic Asset Tracker and Message Board Web Page


Project tamb at Sourceforge


Related Links:    Home       History


Setup Procedure


  1. Setup Apache on your system. 
    1. Apache should be installed with PHP (version 4 or higher) support
    2. Locate the directory on the system where documents are served from.  When Mandrake Linux was installed on my system, Apache was set up to serve from /var/www/html .As I have root access to this machine, I did not investigate privilege requirements in setting up either apache or the location documents are served from.  Setting up apache port 8080 (or any address higher than 8000) may be easier if root access is not available – check the apache configuration file to see where the root web page is for ports other and 80.
    3. If the apache installation is fresh, the file index.shtml can be accessed by the web and it shows whether the version of apache is able to process PHP coded documents.
    4. Rename the index.shtml file to index.old or some other name to force apache to use the supplied index.php file.  NOTE: If there is an existing index.html or index.php application being provided by this server, and this asset  tracker application is to be added, then either add a link in this page to link to summary.php, or inform users to enter http://your-server-name/summary.php.


  1. Download the .zip file and Extract Here or (unzip in Linux) to the web document root as determined in step 1.  The directory contents should look something like (global_val.php is missing in this list):

  1. Setup mysql and mysql tables.
    1. Mysql is required to store data related to this application.  Some mysql privileges are also required for setup and operation.
    2. Edit the file tamb_setup.sql in order to enter user data quickly. Change the values sections to the desired set of names.  If not changed the database will be set-up with these default values and further changes will have to be made from the Admin web page.  Not a major undertaking, but it is a little less convenient.  Here is the default set-up script.

      This defines 3 boards, 4 names, and 3 locations.  NOTE: This script is run only once; it DELETES any previous versions of the board table in the database.
    3. Run the mysql script using an account with the appropriate privileges.  On my Linux machine, the process looks something like (ignore the vi command – this is an editor which you should not use unless you have familiarity):

  2. As mentioned in step 1, either modify the existing index.html or index.php file, or copy summary.php to index.php.  In Linux the copy command is cp so you would enter cp summary.php index.php
  3. Edit the global_val.php file to provide mysql access information.  Localhost refers to the fact that the mysql server resides on the same system as the apache process.  The user name is one created and selected in step 2.  NOTE that mysql may install with the user root and no password.  You could use this if you have no concerns on security (local intra-net for example).
  4. Accessing the web page should now be possible.



Basic Asset Tracker and Message Board Web Page


Project tamb at Sourceforge


Related Links:    Home




Version 1.0 – 7 Sept 2006

-          initial release.



Basic Asset Tracker and Message Board Web Page


Project tamb at Sourceforge


Related Links:    Home


Sample Summary Page Screenshot


Sample Administration Page Screenshot