UTILITY – a handy standalone utility for launching IE7/SharePoint 2010 in a kiosk scenario…

2010 09 13 MV: My current project has nearly 50 kiosk-type computers set up in various locations throughout the USA. We learned (after much investigation) that in order for PeopleSoft to successfully integrate and implement SSO with SharePoint 2010, we could NOT simply let kiosk users login via the OOTB “Sign in as a Different User” menu item. Doing so only changed the SESSION security context, but PeopleSoft was actually inspecting the owner of the IE7 PROCESS itself as well. By signing in as a different user PeopleSoft got confused. It would look at who launched the BROWSER, so it was possible to start the browser as Person A, change the SharePoint login to Person B, and yet when looking at a PeopleSoft via SP2010’s Page Viewer Web Part, Person A’s information was still visible…

Most uncool.

We solved this problem by simply having kiosk users actually start the IE7 browser as THEMSELVES; this required a simple little utilty which I wrote in C# using the cool new Visual Studio 2010 Pro Edition (I have a personal $1100/yr MSDN sub, and encourage all of you to do likewise), using only the .NET Framework v2.0 since the utility was heading to some pretty “dumb” kiosk computers (XP Embedded OS, 250 MB of RAM, etc etc)…

Kiosk IE7 Launcher Utility Screenshot

The utility can be configured to run on kiosk startup. It presents a splash screen with a we-told-you-not-to Disclaimer, and then a pair of fields for The User to enter their LAN credentials. When they hit the bit “I Agree” button, the launcher uses The User’s credentials to start the IE7 process as them. From there SharePoint then knows who they are, but MORE importantly, PeopleSoft does as well, and displays only The Users info (NOT the info of a previous user).

If you’ve encountered the same problem, then hopefully you’ll benefit from this small utility.




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