Google Apps and Sites
February 24, 2011 1:51 PM   Subscribe

Please break down Google Sites and Google Apps (standard or education version). I want to start a uni. department wiki site but I'm confused by my options.

PLEASE READ: I am a student. I do NOT know any html. This is meant to be a collaborative site so I want a site that doesn't require learning code. I want to create a wiki site for students in my major to consolidate information like internship listings, upcoming talks, scholarships, etc. This is NOT a departmental website, more like a website helpful for the students.

I created a google site (free version) and it executes this wiki idea really well except that it has a 100 MB storage limit. I read that if you use Google Apps you can get an additional 10 GB of storage amongst other goodies.

1. Just for clarification, does this mean that if I buy a domain name from google I have access to 10 GB of storage AND I can use the templates/buttons from free google sites to build up this new domain (aka NO NEED TO LEARN HTML)? I don't want to lose any of the free google site "stuff" because I'm no longer using the http://sites.google.com domain.

2. Can I use Google Apps Education? I think you are only eligible if your domain name has .edu in it BUT I want to know that if I can somehow get the site hosted by the department, that I don't have to write code for it. I want the "Create Page, Edit Page, Edit Sidebar etc." options available to me. That is what is most important to me because it makes editing accessible to everyone.

Sorry if this question is a bit confusing I am rather frustrated with it all. I will upload screenshots later if necessary.
posted by bluelight to Technology (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Just for clarification, does this mean that if I buy a domain name from google I have access to 10 GB of storage AND I can use the templates/buttons from free google sites to build up this new domain (aka NO NEED TO LEARN HTML)? I don't want to lose any of the free google site "stuff" because I'm no longer using the http://sites.google.com domain.

You don't need to buy anything from Google to use Google Apps. You do need your own domain name, but you can buy that from any provider. If you want you can have your Google Apps version of sites at sites.[yourdomain], otherwise it will be at sites.google.com/a/[yourdomain]. Once you do that you can make a site using the same tools as the normal Google Sites app, except as you said you get a higher quota of 10GB across all of the sites in your domain.

To be clear, are you trying to make a wiki within Google Sites (I'm not sure if that is possible, I don't know enough about Sites), or are you trying to let students use the Google Sites editing tools to modify static pages? If they need to be able to use the Sites editing tools, then I believe you have to make an account for each of them on your Google Apps domain, and you are limited to 50 users total with the free Google Apps version. You can set the view access of Sites domains to different levels but I believe editing is limited to within the domain.
posted by burnmp3s at 2:26 PM on February 24, 2011


If what you want is a true Wiki, give Wikia a try. It would allow you to create a site just like Wikipedia, but for your specific topic. Anyone would be able to edit content, not just specified users.
posted by mrbob14 at 4:35 PM on February 24, 2011


Google Apps is a way for an organization to offer all Google services as part of their own domain, creating and managing Google accounts for users, creating and managing shared resources for the calendar or groups for use in calendar invitations and mailing lists, and granting the special permission "anyone in this domain" to calendars, documents, sites, etc.

Google Sites is a specific Google service. When used in conjunction with Google Apps, the primary benefit is the "anyone in this domain" permission, but you also get the ability to share site templates within the domain. Also, the domain administrator can assign hostnames like whatever.yourschool.edu to your site directly, whereas with a personal Google Site, you have to coordinate that slightly, getting the domain admin to point whatever.yourschool.edu at Google while you hook up the hostname within the site controls. Oh, quotas on Google Sites within Google Apps for Education are (were? I haven't heard about this in a while) based on the number of users in the domain--something like 100M per user, where the assumption is most users are instead using their own personal quota in Docs rather than the shared quota in Sites.

The first thing you should do is hit http://www.google.com/a/yourschool.edu to see if someone has actually started a Google Apps instance for it. Click the "Can't access your account?" link to get an informational message set by the owner of the domain.

If your school has no domain, then a personal Google Site is fine for the purpose you describe, and you should not mess with setting up Google Apps for Education on your school's behalf--ultimately, it's supposed to be a contract between Google and the owner of the domain name. But you can certainly ask your IT department to point a CNAME record (whatever.yourschool.edu) at ghs.google.com so that you can hook that up in your personal site, and you can ask them what the school's plans are for Google Apps and whether you can be a pilot user with this plan in mind.
posted by Monsieur Caution at 8:45 PM on February 24, 2011


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