Why Code Reviews Are Crucial When Adding Moodle™ Plugins

One of the most frequent questions we receive from our customers is related to our code reviews and the use of Moodle™ plugins.

In Open LMS, we’re continuously striving to improve our customer experience, and we’re interested in ensuring your learning ecosystem's growth by having additional solutions, whether you’re in a higher education or corporate environment. 

However, we also need to do it responsibly, making sure that the plugins are secure, offer excellent performance, and can be maintained in the long term. These precautions will allow us to provide a sustainable solution and achieve the relevant service level agreements (SLAs) for our customers.

In this article, I’ll address the considerations we take into account regarding plugins and extensions and the reasoning behind leveraging code reviews.

3 Key Considerations for Moodle™ Plugins

Before diving into code reviews and their importance for plugins, let’s take a quick look at the following considerations:

1. Importance of Stability

One of our essential commitments to you, our customers, is our service level agreements (SLAs)—from security assurance to performance for users. Offering 99.9% of availability in the system (which means less than 8 hours and 46 minutes of downtime per year) and 100% of concurrence for the contracted users is a huge challenge, especially considering the incorporation of new features and integrations in each client’s system.

2. Moodle™ Community

One of the best things about Moodle™ is the great community around it. It’s formed by thousands of instructors, academics, and developers from all over the world contributing to solving issues and adding new plugins. The community has implemented many great functionalities that have even added to the Moodle™ core. Nonetheless, not all the Moodle™ community plugins follow the Moodle™ alignments. In some cases, they could compromise the stability of the LMS, its security, or even information integrity.

3. Ecosystem and Integrations

There are a lot of solutions that contribute to the virtual educational ecosystem. Solutions for anti-plagiarism, proctoring, web conferencing, business intelligence, among others. Each company or institution selects the best fit for their specific needs. These solutions can be integrated using LTI or Moodle™ plugins.

The Value of Code Reviews

Code reviews are there to ensure the quality of the plugins and, inherently, the stability of our customers' environments in the long term. Code reviews aim to improve the process with three current initiatives:

  • A new plugin matrix: To be transparent with our customers, we’re working on a new matrix with the plugin versions installed, the type of plugins, the fee (if applicable) for the annual support and maintenance, and eventually the number of customers using it. 
  • Code review semi-automation: We’re using tools that help us automate code reviews and increase the revision speed with less manual effort.
  • Cost-effectiveness: We’re focused on ensuring the code review service is a sustainable, rather than profitable, solution, since the value of having more plugins with good quality is more relevant than unhappy customers.

To ensure the stability and reliability of the Moodle™ plugins used in Open LMS, we recognize the importance of thorough code reviews. Our customers frequently inquire about our code review process, as they understand the significance of having secure and high-performing plugins that can be maintained in the long term. Open LMS provides the confidence that plugins are going to work stably to the lowest downtime rate possible. We work with certified and updated plugins that meet the needs of our customers.

Open LMS provides you with the technology you need to design state-of-the-art educational and training experiences. Check out our fully vetted list of extensions and integrations. If you want to know more about Open LMS, contact our team of experts or request a free trial to see the LMS in action!
Germán Rojas
About the author

Germán Rojas

Director, Global Consulting Services

Germán has more than 8 years of experience in the implementation of eLearning projects in universities in Colombian, Peru, Chile, Mexico, Spain, United States, Japan, Australia, among others. Germán has worked as a designer of innovative educational solutions, and has also worked on various global projects to create educational processes. He is currently Director of Professional Services for Open LMS at Learning Technologies Group (LTG).

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