Thursday, 2 May 2013

KwaMoja/webERP security

This question came up recently on the webERP forum:

I'm new to webERP and naturally have some questions. I've created a role called "Inventory" in Access Permission Maintenance, then a user for this role and limited access to just "Display Inventory" module in User Maintenance. But I'd like to further limit access so my inventory user can NOT see pages in this range:

• Inventory Valuation Report
• List Negative Stocks
• Stock Transfer Note[/align]

The webERP Manual is vague on this. Is there a doc I can read to find out can I restrict a user, for example, to just Inventory.Maintenance.View or Update Prices Based On Costs?

Unfortunately the advice the poster was given was complex and not really correct, and the administrator of the forum has blocked me from helping people there. However, there is a much simpler answer which doesn't involve setting up phantom security tokens, and other complexities. This is to go to each of the reports they want removed in the "Page Security Settings" option in the setup module, and from there just give it a security token of a higher level than the inventory user. For instance set it to "General Ledger Reports/Inquiries" which makes more sense for something like an Inventory Valuation report. Then the report will be gone from the users screen the next time they log in. It's as simple as that!

However that led me to thinking that a lot of people (including it seems the current webERP project developer) who don't really understand the security system within KwaMoja/webERP so I thought it might be good to explain how it works.

Every user has a security role. These roles are meant to mirror their real life roles. So for instance we may have a role of an inventory clerk, and a role of an accountant. There can be any number of inventory clerks, and any number of accountants, all having the same role. As many roles as are wanted can be created.

Each role is given a number of security tokens. Each of these tokens permits the user with that role to perform different functions. There are a number of predefined tokens:

0 Main Index Page

1 Order Entry/Inquiries customer access only

2 Basic Reports and Inquiries with selection options

3 Credit notes and AR management

4 Purchasing data/PO Entry/Reorder Levels

5 Accounts Payable

6 Petty Cash

7 Bank Reconciliations

8 General ledger reports/inquiries

9 Supplier centre - Supplier access only

10 General Ledger Maintenance, stock valuation & Configuration

11 Inventory Management and Pricing

User Management and System Administration

When a user tries to access a function, the security token for that functionality is looked up in a database table called scripts and it is then compared with the array of security tokens that is owned by the role allotted to that user. If the token is in that array, the functionality can be accessed, if not, then access is denied.

This lookup is also performed when displaying the menus, and if the security token is not there, the menu option will not be displayed.

This system is simple elegant and flexible. It can be made as simple or as complex as an organisation requires. For instance a one person business only needs one security token, and one role, whereas a large business with hundreds of employees will have a very complex structure.

I hope this helps provide some insight into how the system works.

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