Run Instructions

Back to Table of Contents


This document instructs how to run GIFT Tutor, the Survey Authoring System, and the Event Reporting Tool.

Instructions for each section are self-contained and assume no prior GIFT software is running. For each section of this document, if subsystems (e.g., ActiveMQ or the GIFT Monitor) have already been started, the corresponding steps should not be repeated.

GIFT Instructions

1. Complete the GIFT Installation procedures.
2. Configure GIFT (this is as needed, a default configuration is provided to you already)

The configuration options are described in the GIFT Configuration Settings document and the various authoring tool documents. Pay special attention to the following:

  • Course Files
  • Module Properties
  • Logging Settings
  • Gateway Interop Configuration Settings
  • Sensor Configuration
  • Learner Configuration

3. Run GIFT

Before discussing how to run GIFT, it’s important that some distinction is made between GIFT’s different deployment modes and how they will affect GIFT when it is launched.

In particular, there are 3 deployment modes that GIFT can launch with…

  • Desktop

This is the default deployment mode for launching GIFT and is intended for environments where a single computer should have its own running instance of GIFT. In this mode, courses and their assets reside on your computer.

  • Experiment

This is a deployment mode intended for performing experiments with GIFT with a simplified user interface called the Experiment Webpage. Experiment mode eschews some of the features of Desktop mode to facilitate observing GIFT’s basic tutoring functionality, making it ideal for testing.

  • Server

This is a deployment mode intended for environments where a single running instance of GIFT is hosted on one computer while other computers connect to it via a network connection. As of this release, server mode is not finished and should not be used.

When GIFT is launched, the user interface and background logic for the running GIFT instance will be modified based on the deployment mode specified. Launch differences between the 3 deployment modes will be outlined below.

  • GIFT’s deployment mode can be manually changed in “GIFT/config/”. For more information, see GIFT Configuration Settings.

With a deployment mode set, GIFT can be run with the following options:

  • Quick Start / Learner Mode

This is the default mode of running GIFT and is intended for anyone that doesn’t need an in-depth understanding of the GIFT architecture such as students. It presents GIFT in a streamlined and clean fashion and provides additional interaction via a Windows system tray icon.

i. Double click on “launchGIFT.bat” at the root of GIFT.

This file was created after the successful install of GIFT.

ii. After GIFT has finished loading, a login webpage will be displayed in an Internet Explorer window.

a. When running a Desktop or Server deployment of GIFT, the login page for the GIFT Dashboard will be shown.
This login page requires a user name and password to login.
b. When running an Experiment deployment of GIFT, the login for the Experiment Webpage will be shown. This
login page requires a number to login.

iii. Sign in or create a new user using the login page to begin using GIFT.

  • Power User Mode

This is the mode used by software developers and researchers as it provides additional control and insight into the runtime execution of GIFT.

  1. Launch the GIFT control panel by clicking on “GIFT/scripts/launchControlPanel.bat”
  2. Launch the GIFT monitor (and ActiveMQ together) using the “Monitor” button in the “Tutor Runtime” section of the “Operator Tools” tab.
  3. In the GIFT monitor, navigate to the “Module Control” sub-panel by clicking on the tab labeled “Main”, and then clicking on the sub-tab labeled “Module Control”. Then click on the “Launch All Modules” button located in the center of the “Module Control” sub panel to launch all the GIFT modules. Alternatively, launch modules individually by clicking on the buttons labeled with the modules names. Wait for all modules to come online before proceeding.
  4. Once all modules are running, there are 2 ways to proceed:
    • To run in Experiment Mode, in the GIFT monitor, click on the “Open Experiment Webpage” button to open the Experiment Webpage in the default web browser.
    • To run in Experiment Mode, in the GIFT control panel, click on the “GIFT Dashboard” button in the “GIFT Browser” section to open the GIFT Dashboard in the default web browser.
  5. Login or create a new user using the webpage opened to begin using GIFT.

4. Shutting down the GIFT Tutor

  1. Terminate any active GIFT courses.
    1. The normal way of terminating a GIFT course (Domain Session) is to complete the course.
    2. If running the course in the GIFT Dashboard you can use the stop button to terminate the course.
    3. Press the back button on the browser and then select the appropriate button to terminate the course.
    4. Alternatively you can terminate a GIFT Domain Session using the GIFT Monitor. See GIFT Operator Station Instructions (Force a Domain Session to end) for more details. [Power User Mode Only]
  2. Log out of GIFT (applies only if you’re logged in)
  3. Closing GIFT
    • Learner Mode
      1. Right click on the GIFT system tray icon located on the bottom right of your Window taskbar.
      2. Select Exit.
      3. Answer ‘Yes’ to any GIFT prompts that may appear.
    • Power User Mode
      1. Shutdown the GIFT Modules (except for the Monitor Module). See GIFT Operator Station Instructions (Killing GIFT Modules) for more details.
      2. Shutdown the GIFT Monitor Module by closing the Monitor window or the Monitor’s command prompt window.
      3. Shutdown ActiveMQ by closing the ActiveMQ command prompt window.

Survey Authoring System (SAS)

The Survey Authoring System is used to author surveys for use in GIFT courses. GIFT surveys are stored in a database and presented on the Tutor User Interface during the execution of a domain session.
Once the SAS is started, refer to the Survey Authoring System Instructions document for details on how to use the SAS.

Quick Start

  1. Launch GIFT using launchGIFT.bat
  2. Login to the webpage that was presented using your username and password.
  3. Select “My Tools” on the GIFT Dashboard.
  4. Select the “Survey Authoring System” (SAS).

Desktop Power User

  1. Launch the GIFT control panel by clicking on “GIFT/scripts/launchControlPanel.bat”.
  2. Click on “Authoring Tools” tab of the control panel.
  3. Click on “Survey Authoring System (SAS)” button. The SAS will be shown in Internet Explorer.

Event Report Tool (ERT)

The Event Report Tool is used to create Event Reports for analysis. Events occurring during a domain session are stored in various places and formats (e.g., bookmark files, domainSession log files). The ERT is used to facilitate the selection and merging of important events from those sources. Once a report is configured, an output file can be created (e.g., csv) that can be imported into a third party tool (e.g., Excel) for further analysis.

Once running, refer to the GIFT Event Report Tool document for details on the use of the ERT.

  1. Launch the GIFT control panel by clicking on “GIFT/scripts/launchControlPanel.bat”.
  2. Click on “Event Report Tool (ERT)” button. The ERT will be show in Internet Explorer

Training Applications

GIFT has been integrated with several training applications (e.g. VBS, TC3). Here are some nuances with the training applications that the reader should be aware of:

  • VBS
    • Currently only VBS2 v1.4 and VBS3 v3.0 is fully supported with GIFT.
    • GIFT requires that you run the GIFT VBS shortcut as mentioned in the GIFT Install Instructions.
    • VBS must be running before starting a GIFT course that contains a reference to a VBS scenario. This is because GIFT uses various means to auto-load the VBS scenario when appropriate.
  • TC3 (aka vMedic)
    • Currently only the GIFT version of TC3 is fully supported with GIFT.
    • TC3 must be running before starting a GIFT course that contains a reference to a TC3 scenario. This is because GIFT uses various means to auto-load the TC3 scenario when appropriate.
  • Powerpoint
    • Currently PowerPoint 2007 and 2010 are fully supported with GIFT.
    • PowerPoint doesn’t have to be running in order have GIFT launch PowerPoint shows.
    • If PowerPoint is not running prior to GIFT executing a PowerPoint show, GIFT will close the PowerPoint application at the end of the show that GIFT launched.