September 19, 2005
RT Essentials: The Ticket to Managing Teams and Projects
Sebastopol, CA--In a typical organization, there's always plenty to be
done: Vendors need to be paid. Customers need to be invoiced. Sales
inquiries need to be answered. Bugs in hardware or software need to be
fixed. And when the end of the day rolls around, someone has to keep track
of who wanted what, who did it, when it got done, and most important, what
This is where a ticketing system comes in. A ticketing system allows you
to check the status of various tasks: when they were requested, who
requested them and why, when they were completed, and more. RT (Request
Tracker) is a high-level, open source ticketing system that allows a group
of people to efficiently manage tasks, issues, and requests submitted by a
community of users. In RT Essentials (O'Reilly, US $34.95), authors
Jesse Vincent--one of RT's core developers, Robert Spier, Dave Rolsky,
Darren Chamberlain, and Richard Foley introduce the system and explain its
uses for end-users, system administrators, and developers who are
interested in using RT to manage tasks.
Jesse Vincent originally developed RT while working as a summer intern at
a web design shop. The company's founders allowed him to take his creation
with him, continue to hack on it, and offer it to others to use. "Over the
next few years, I found more and more organizations picking RT up for
tracking everything from security incidents to sales inquiries to email
counseling sessions for troubled teens," Vincent recalls. "Our current
best guess is that over 10,000 organizations use RT."
RT is especially important in our current business world because, "RT can
help a company to track each step of the inevitably complex flow of
international service and production processes, and this is a good thing,"
notes coauthor Foley. "RT uses the thin-client (web-based) model, and is
especially suited to today's networked structure."
Coauthor Dave Rolsky agrees, adding, "RT is a tool I use every day, and
it's very powerful, but has needed better documentation for awhile. This
book will help fill the documentation gaps."
The book starts off with a quick background lesson about ticketing
systems, and then explains how to install and configure RT. Readers will
learn how to perform day-to-day tasks that turn their RT servers into
highly useful tracking tools. Among other topics, the book examines how a
company can use RT to manage its internal processes. Advanced chapters,
aimed at developers, focus on creating add-on tolls and utilities using
Perl and Mason. Other topics include:
Maintaining an RT installation
Customizing RT with templates, actions, and scripts
Using RT from the command-line
The nuts and bolts of RT's internals
Tips on contributing code to RT
No matter what kind of data an organization tracks--from sales inquiries
to security incidents or anything in between--RT Essentials is the
ticket to instilling order where it's needed most.
Jesse Vincent, Robert Spier, Dave Rolsky, Darren Chamberlain, and Richard
ISBN: 0-596-00668-3, 200 pages, $34.95 US, $48.95 CA
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