WEB SERVICES NAMING POLICY Approving Authority: Pro-Vice Chancellor (Information Services) for Griffith University’s Executive Group Approval Date: 2 March 2005 Approved Document No: 2005/0010346 Review Date: 2009 Policy Advisers: Anthony Dendle, ext 56440 Email: A.Dendle@griffith.edu.au Chris Walker, ext 57339 Email: C.Walker@griffith.gu.edu.au and Karl Turnbull, ext 56517 Email: K.Turnbull@griffith.gu.edu.au Description of the Policy: Internet or web services enable the transfer of data and information from a server to a web client application such as a web browser for web sites or an email application that links to a mail server. Each individual service has an internet address or name which can also be given an “alias” in order to provide additional meaning or other benefits. Some examples at Griffith University include: www.griffith.edu.au for the University’s main web site; www2.griffith.edu.au for the University’s Learning@Griffith service; and studentemail.griffith.edu.au for the University’s email services for students. Internet aliases are generally recognised in the form of a URL or CNAME. The complete name can also include a sub-directory that refers to a specific component of the service. For example: www.griffith.edu.au/ins or www.griffith.edu.au/ school/gbs/mkt/ This policy supports the branding and overall communications strategies within Griffith University by setting down standards and processes for the selection and configuration of internet service names used to publish and access the University’s Web or Internet Services. The policy addresses: Service and sub-domain prefixes for the griffith.edu.au domain (and the legacy domain gu.edu.au); Redirections of service names to alternative addresses; and Directory names. This policy establishes the process for approval of new aliases, service redirections and top level directories. The policy is intended to remain flexible enough to allow existing and new concepts of Internet-based services and interactions to be introduced without unnecessary delays. This policy both complies with and extends the University’s Web Collection Management Policy. Definitions: Griffith University’s internet domain consists of all internet services available through the domains and sub-domains of griffith.edu.au (and gu.edu.au) and of the “Class B” domain of 132.234. Sub- domains include all prefixes to the .griffith.edu.au domain. For example, www.secure.griffith.edu.au. The alias given to an internet service helps to identify the service function and makes the name easier to promote and remember. It also facilitates transfer of the service to different infrastructure when required. Top level directories are the file directories found at the top level of a service domain. Top level directories may have multiple sub-directories each with their own sub-directories. The name of the directory generally relates to the type of information or service that can be found within that directory. Service redirections can be configured for the same logical area as the top-level directories but will redirect the service request either to another sub-directory or to another service on a different web server. These redirections are controlled by the service administrator. It is also possible to configure redirections from within sub-directories. Such redirections will either be configured by the service administrator or by the nominated person responsible for that sub-directory. Like actual top level directories, the name of the redirection generally relates to the type of information or service that can be found within the target sub-directory or internet service. Related Policies, Procedures & Forms: Schedule 1 – Operational Guidelines & Procedures Web Collection Management Policy Schedule 1 – Roles and Responsibilities in Managing Web Content Schedule 2 – Expiration of Web Records and Content Policy for Publishing University Web Addresses Scope Policy 1.0 Scope The scope of this policy includes domain names, aliases, top level directories and top level web server based redirections for internet services provided for University purposes. The requirements of internet service security is also considered in this policy. The security policy and subsequent guidelines will at times over-ride the requirements of this policy although this policy is meant to be flexible enough to incorporate those requirements when they occur. Internet services and information repositories each have their own marketing name that may be supported by a URL. However, the scope of this policy is only for the supporting alias and does not cover any other name for the service such as the actual service title or marketing brand. For example, service names like eNABle, Learning@Griffith and Griffith@Anywhere are outside the scope of this policy but the alias used by these services is within scope. There are some examples of content arising from collaborative ventures in which Griffith is a partner. Such examples may be treated as exceptions to this policy where necessary. 2.0 Policy 2.1 Aliases and URLs All Griffith University internet services are assigned an alias within the griffith.edu.au domain. Use of this domain is not permitted for non-University internet services. Similarly, non-Griffith domain names and service aliases should not resolve to (point to) a Griffith server that serves web pages, unless done so as part of: an approved hosting service for a collaborative venture in which Griffith is a partner (such as a CRC); an event or association with which the University is involved (such as a conference); or for an external agency (as a commercial event). The domain gu.edu.au is not used for new services. Existing services on the legacy .gu.edu.au domain should be migrated from gu.edu.au to griffith.edu.au wherever possible. Existing services within the gu.edu.au domain remain governed by this and all other relevant policy. The Division of Information Services manages the Domain Name Service and assignment of aliases, top level directories and top level redirections for the University. Subdomains of .griffith.edu.au are not used unless required to enhance security. Approval of service aliases are subject to availability and are reviewed for appropriateness. Names are not approved if they contain personal, geographic or element names or if they consist wholly of numbers. Names must not prejudice the reputation or credibility of the .griffith.edu.au domain. Trademarks or copyrighted text within names are not allowed. The domain name should be less than 20 characters in length. (This character limit refers to the name component itself and does not include .griffith.edu.au). Plain English aliases are only appropriate for high-use sites which may often be accessed by the user entering the URL directly. The alias should be clear, unambiguous and logical to remember, and reasonably short without resorting to contractions or acronyms. Names for testing, staging, development or other instances of a production internet service should include the production name with a suffix that indicates the purpose of the non- production instance. If necessary, a numeral should also be included to indicate that multiple instances exist. For example: First test instance of internet service www2-test.griffith.edu.au Second test instance of internet service www2-test2.griffith.edu.au Reference instance of internet service www2-ref.griffith.edu.au Development instance of internet service www2-dev.griffith.edu.au Staging instance of internet service www2-stage.griffith.edu.au 2.2 Top Level Directories Top level directories should be created either to contain a group of related subdirectories or to contain the definitive and complete collection of the subject information, where that information cannot be placed within an existing top level directory. Top level directories should not be created for sites which can be logically contained within the existing top-level directory structure or where a redirection to another location is more appropriate. They should have concise and clear names, avoiding unnecessary contractions/abbreviations. 2.3 Internet Service Redirections Redirections are approved where there is a clear and demonstrable requirement for the target site to have a shorter/clearer URL that insufficient to justify the cost overhead of creating, tracking and maintaining the redirection. The redirection must be clear, unambiguous and apply only to the specific target of the redirection. Reasonable forward planning considerations should be applied to evaluate the possibility of a term becoming more broadly used in future. Potentially generic names may be allocated to sufficiently high-profile elements/events, should they be the definitive instance of that term for the University (eg. "/openday"). Where the redirection relates to an instance-specific subject (such as an event or project), then the redirection should be suffixed with the relevant year (four-digit format), for example "/event2004. 2.4 Registering Aliases, Top Level Directories and Redirections Requests for aliases, top level directories and redirections should be lodged using the appropriate mechanism, as set out in the procedures in Schedule 1 that accompanies this policy.