Friday, April 1, 2016

User count in the Online Users block in Moodle

In Moodle 2.6 the number of online users is not displayed in the Online Users block until you have at least 50 online users. Until that point you see only their names. Turns out the Online Users block can accommodate a maximum of 50 names. Names beyond the first 50 online users are not displayed, and the online user count magically appears at the top of the block. Sensible -- it's a lot to see the names of even 50 online users! There doesn't seem to be a way of changing this setting, at least in Moodle 2.6.

I discovered this just now -- it's the first day of the AuthorAID MOOC, which I'm facilitating, and we have more than 2000 participants! 

Efficiency tip for Moodlers dealing with many Moodle assets

So you're a super-active Moodle admin or teacher who has to dip in and out of many courses and perhaps even many Moodle sites. On your admin homepage you can use the Admin Bookmarks block to bookmark settings pages within your Moodle site, and of course all the courses you're enrolled in will appear in the Course Overview block. But these aren't enough for me. So I use a simple bookmarking scheme on Firefox. This is what my bookmarks toolbar looks like:

In the "Active spaces" bookmark folder I have links to all the active learning spaces (not all are formal courses so I prefer to say "spaces") on the main Moodle site I work on. Some links point to settings pages within courses, eg, the enrolment page for the ongoing AuthorAID MOOC so that I can quickly check how many people have enrolled. "Old spaces" has links to spaces where courses or interactions have ended but which I still need to refer to now and then. And "More Moodles" is well, a collection of links to other Moodle sites where I help out as an administrator -- these are mostly Moodle sites managed by developing countries universities that are connected to the charity I work for, INASP.