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Revision as of 11:55, 15 April 2011 by Johnperry (Talk | contribs) (Background)

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This article describes the new version of MIRC running as a plug-in on CTP. This article is intended for people interested in installing MIRC..

1 Background

MIRC - Medical Imaging Resource Center - is an RSNA project to provide tools for radiological teaching files and clinical trials.

The earliest versions of MIRC were restricted to Microsoft platforms, using IIS as the server (versions 1-9). Starting with version 10, MIRC was rewritten in Java to run on Tomcat. Those versions were denoted with the prefix T (T10-T36).

The Tomcat-based versions supported both teaching files and clinical trials. In the clinical trials applicaton, however, the extra complexity of the Tomcat installation was an impediment, so a special clinical trials application was developed called CTP. CTP contains is own embedded servlet container, providing the necessary capabilities from Tomcat without the need for a separate installation step. It also contains a more capable processing facility and anonymizers that implement the DICOM Supplement 142 de-identification profiles.

As experience was gained with CTP, it became clear that it could serve as the servlet container for MIRC, providing both new features and simplified installation. To support MIRC, numerous extensions to CTP were implemented, the most important of which was the development of plug-ins, which provide processing capabilities outside the normal CTP pipelines.

The new MIRC implementation is denoted with the Z prefix. The starting release identifier has been reset to 1, so the first release is designated Z1.

Version Z1 is still under construction, but it is recommended for all new MIRC site installations. The components that have not yet been ported from the latest Tomcat version (T36c) are ones that are unlikely to be of interest to new MIRC sites.

2 Installation

The installer for MIRC is available on the RSNA MIRC site. It includes CTP and all the libraries required to run MIRC except for Java and the JAI ImageIO Tools.

The Java 1.5 (or better) JRE must be present on the system. Java 1.6 is strongly recommended because 1.5 has reached its end of life and is being sunset by Oracle/Sun. Java and all its components are available through the Java website. Note that only the JRE is required, not the JDK.

When installing Java, make sure to obtain the 32-bit version, even if you are running on a 64-bit platform.

MIRC requires that the Java Advanced Imaging ImageIO Tools be present on the system. It is critically important that version 1.1 of the ImageIO Tools be installed rather than version 1.0.

Note that the Java Advanced Imaging component is not the same as the Java Advanced Imaging ImageIO Tools. Only the latter component is required.

Once Java and the ImageIO Tools are installed, Download the installer and place it on the disk on which you intend to install or upgrade the CTP program. Do not run it without downloading it and storing it locally.

For convenience, it is recommended (but not required) that a folder called JavaPrograms be created in the root of the disk drive. The installer does not create this folder, but if it is present, the installer will very quickly find it and suggest installing CTP in a subdirectory of JavaPrograms. This is especially helpful when upgrading.

When the installer runs, it checks several parameters of the system and highlights ones that are not correct for the running of CTP. One such parameter is the version of the ImageIO Tools. To run the MIRC installer, double-click the MIRC-installer.jar file and choose a directory in which to install CTP. The installer can also be run in a command window using the command:

java -jar MIRC-installer.jar

The installer creates a directory called CTP in the selected location and places several files and directories in it. The key file is CTP-launcher.jar.

3 Running CTP

Note that MIRC is not a stand-alone program; it is a plug-in to CTP in the same way that previous versions of MIRC were webapps that ran under Tomcat. Therefore, it is most correct to speak of running CTP rather than MIRC.

CTP can be run stand-alone by running CTP-launcher.jar. Do not run the CTP.jar file directly.

CTP can also be run as a Windows service. See Running CTP as a Windows Service for instructions.

The default memory configuration is sufficient for all but the very largest sites. A separate article will be written to provide guidance on the special configuration parameters of the CTP-startup program to set memory size.

When the program is first installed, two users are provided. One user, with the name admin and password password, is intended for general system administration. The other user, with the name king and password password, has the ability to shut down the server through the browser interface. Both users have the ability to create and modify users and assign privileges through the User Manager, but only a user with the shutdown privilege can grant the shutdown privilege to another user.

To stop the program, either click the Stop button on the CTP-launcher.jar program or log in as a user with the shutdown privilege and click the Shutdown item in the Admin > CTP menu on the main query page. As a convenience, a user with the admin privilege can also shut the server down if the user's browser is running on the same computer as the server.

4 Accessing MIRC

When CTP starts, it loads the MIRC plug-in. The MIRC plug-in installs several servlets to provide access to the system. The query page serves as the portal into all the MIRC features. Its URL is /query.

Several other URLs also end up at the query page, but they do so by redirecting the browser, so it is most efficient to use the actual query page URL. (Other URLs that go to the query page are / and /mirc.)

5 Instructions for Administrators

After installing and starting CTP and MIRC, access the query page, click the Login button, and then go to the Admin > User Manager menu. This will display a page allowing you to add and modify users. To start, check all the boxes in the admin user except shutdown and then click the save icon in the upper right corner of the page. The page will re-display, showing that the changes have been made. You may wish to change the passwords at this time as well. When all the changes have been made, click the home icon in the upper right corner of the page to go back to the query page.

Next, go to the Admin > Storage Service Admin menu. One library will be displayed. Check the boxes to enable the Submit Service, the Zip Service and the Author Service; then click the save icon.

You can also create additional libraries, list the contents of libraries, and delete libraries. The system will not let you delete all the libraries, however, so the delete function is not displayed when only one library is present.