Config Advice & Q re Unpriv'ed User Web Int'face, Replying from Web

I am looking into using RT to replace an old homegrow request tracking
system. The old system was command line based, although we had a mail
gateway and a CGI based web page for submitting initial tickets. The web
page was quite popular, and thought the change to a more web based system
like RT would go well with our users.

I have installed RT and am now running 3.6.0pre1 (some of the stuff about
required custom fields was desirable).

Although generally quite impressed with the application, I was somewhat
disappointed when noticed that RT seems to be somewhat lacking with regard
to the web interface for ‘unprivileged’ users (users without the “can be
granted rights” flag checked). In particular, I wanted a nice web interface
wherein unpriv’ed users can enter new tickets, view their existing tickets, and
respond to their existing tickets. Based on experience with the old system,
I expect this would be heavily used by our users. Also, in the old system we
would frequently run into users who submitted tickets with little useful
information about the problem and even in some cases barely identifying who
they are. So I really wanted mandatory custom fields for the user to put
information in.

The SelfService area allows submitting tickets (but does not validate/mandate
Custom fields), and allows viewing existing tickets, but does not appear to
allow for responding to tickets.

I replaced (in local tree) /SelfService/Create.html with a link to
/Ticket/Create.html, and made some hacks so that the latter would work when
invoked by an unpriv’ed user. Also made some hacks to “hide” certain links,
etc. from unpriv’ed user, and to improve the display of custom fields
(no invalid messages first time seeing the page, listing invalid fields and
other problems at the top of the page, making subject and content fields
required, plus a mechanism to allow custom fields to placed in different
places in the form without repeating and for per queue custom displays of
the custom form variables)(if there is interest, I can put any or all of these
on the wiki or elsewhere as appropriate). Although I believe everything is
working, I am somewhat concerned with things breaking down the line or being
difficult to maintain.

I also hacked /SelfService/Display.html to display the same header as in
the /Ticket/Display.html (including a “Reply” button if user has reply rights,
which I have granted globally to the requestor role) and then added a symlink
from /SelfService/Update.html to /Ticket/Update.html.
/Ticket/Update.html was tweaked to make somewhat (I did not test much beyond
the “Reply” action) usable for unpriv’ed users.

Although comments, advice, gotchas are welcome, my main question is in regard
to the Reply action. The default text label for Update Type is “Reply to
requestors” with value “response”. Although this seems to mostly do what
I want, I am unable to find a list of valid values for this field, and am not
sure what the appropriate value for a response from requestors should be. The
text message suggests that this may not be the best fit (and while I can easily
change the text message, if there is a better fit wrt what is stored in the DB,
I would like to use it).

Thanks in advance for any assistance. Although I think the above scenario
will work, I am also interested in hearing what people with more experience
with the product think.

Tom Payerle

Tom Payerle Dept of Physics
University of Maryland (301) 405-6973
College Park, MD 20742-4111 Fax: (301) 314-9525