Vivek Agarwal’s Portal/Java Blog

An IBM Gold Consultant’s weblog about IBM, Lotus, WebSphere, J2EE, IT Processes, and other IT technologies

Deploying WebSphere Portal Document Manager (PDM) on a guest page

Posted by Vivek Agarwal on April 17, 2008

Recently our team needed to deploy the Portal Document Manager (PDM) portlet on a public WebSphere Portal page for guest user access. It turned out that this was not as trivial as expected if you don’t know what actions are required and there is nothing on IBM’s site documenting the steps involved in getting the document manager portlet to work for guest users. I figured I would capture the key steps here in case you need to do the same and are having a hard time with this task!

  1. Enable public sessions in WebSphere Portal by adding public.session=true to the Navigator Service properties file. Refer to the WP Infocenter for help with this task.
  2. Give anonymous user at least “User” level access to the “document manager” portlet.
  3. Give anonymous user at least “User” level access to the “document library” being displayed in the “document manager” portlet.
  4. Add “Everyone” to the “Authenticated” role of the “document manager” web application at the WebSphere Application Server level using the WAS admin console.

Disclaimer: I owe Dinesh on my team the credit for figuring out the last and most critical step in ensuring that the PDM portlet worked for guest or anonymous users. Kudos, Dinesh!

16 Responses to “Deploying WebSphere Portal Document Manager (PDM) on a guest page”

  1. Daniel Hoshi said

    Hi Vivek
    I’ve tried your suggestion for “Deploying WebSphere Portal Document Manager (PDM) on a guest page”, everything work fine except the fact that I get a login popup when I try to see or download a document.
    Any suggestions?

    Thank you
    Daniel Hoshi

  2. Vivek Agarwal said


    Is the login pop-up a basic auth pop-up? If it is, then I would suspect that somehow step ‘4’ of adding “everyone” to the “Authenticated” role for the “document manager” application has not been carried out successfully. Can you please verify it?


  3. Dario said

    Hi Vivek,
    what version do you have?
    i can’t perform step 4 on version 5.1…

    Thanks a lot

  4. Vivek Agarwal said


    These steps were in reference to v6.0, but I would think something similar would apply for v5.1. Unfortunately, I don’t have v5.1 handy for me to look it up. What prevents you from doing this on v5.1?


  5. Dario said

    I can’t modify Document Manager security in WAS.

  6. Vivek Agarwal said


    I am unsure what version of WAS (v5.1 or v6.0 – both are supported with WPv5.1) you are running and whether you do not have permissions to modify document manager security or whether you are saying it is not possible. I know that it is possible to update the permissions for sure using instructions at for WAS v5.1 and at for WAS v6.0.


  7. Himal said


    I had created one anonymous page and added one document manager portlet given the anonymous access to that page and portlet.Createda document libray and given the anonymous access to the document library.but i trying to access the page directly and am trying to edit any document in the document library i am getting the messag Access denied but my issue is when i loged into the page with admin ID and trying to edit the page then i am getting the error “Permission denied to edit the page” can anybody help me how to overcome from the issue .and how can i access the doc by using the admin ID.

    Thanks in Advnance!!!!


  8. Stuart Smith said

    I happened across your post looking for information on an issue I was having.

    I was trying to provide a PDM document as a link in a web content management item on a public page. I could get the web content to display but was getting an access error for the link to the PDM document.

    I found that my mistake was I was setting the User level access to the document library to the “All Portal User Groups”. Apparently this does not include the “anonymous portal user”. I had used that option figuring it would pick up the anonymous user and all the portal users so anyone logged in could also access the document. Aparently it doesn’t work that way.

    Many thanks for the details in your post. I used them to verify I could access the Document Manager portlet and that got me thinking about what was different with the access for the web content link.

    Strange that the “All Portal User Groups” does not contain the anonymous user but from the InfoCenter description it says this group contains all “non-virtual” user groups. The anonymous user is a “virtual” user so it is excluded. Not very intuitive.

  9. Eddy said

    This is a little bit of the topic but have you had any experience calling the Document management portlet from an external custom application?

    I’d like to use document manager as a lightweight document repository for a separate custom java application I have working under websphere Application Server.

  10. Himal said

    Hi Vivek,

    I tried the same steps as you had given for an anonymous Portlet in 5.1 but the issue is here i am getting only the portlet name in the anonymous page but the details of the portlet i am mot getting in the anonymous page but after log into the page i am getting the poprtlet details .can you plz help out to get the details of the portlet in the anonymous page in V5.1


  11. 3rThank’s for greate post.7l I compleatly agree with last post. wpb
    ламинат и паркет 9u

  12. name said

    Good day!,

  13. Hi,

    Not sure if anybody will see this!, but I am having a major problem displaying documents for anonymous users from my Menu Component:

    On my ‘Welcome’ page (the one before users log in), I want to display two content portlets – i) HR Documents ii) HR Documents Detail.

    I am creating Documents in the document library with anonymous permissions and I use the following code for my menu component to display the list of documents:

    <a href=” ” target=”_blank”>

    When the user clicks on a document, however, the details portlet displays:

    “Unable to retrieve data from underlying datasource”.

    I know this is usually a permissions problem, but I have checked all of my templates and everything has anonymous permissions set up.

    Is this the correct way to handle this functionality?

    Any advice much appreciated! Thanks.

  14. Umaasudhan said

    i tried to deploy a portlet in the guest page for anonyomous user acccess which retrieves a pic from the portal document manager.I followed all your instructions but still i am asked for a login up saying i am in default realm.can u help me out to bypass this login screen and display the pic without any logging in???

  15. Beatriz helena said

    Hola: mi pregunta es la siguiente tengo forma de saber quien ha borrado una carpeta del PDM que usuario lo ha hecho. como puedo verificar eso.


  16. Ahmed Brohi said

    Hi Vivek,

    Thanks for sharing post.

    We have exactly the same requirement. I performed all the steps as mentioned above and everything works fine except opening a document.

    When i open a document…a logon popup appears and prompts for user name & password.

    The logon popup type is BASIC AUTHENTICATION.

    As you suggested earlier that this happens if the STEP 4 is not performed. But in my case all the steps successfully performed and i can see the “EVERYONE” is attached with “AUTHENTICATED” role by using WAS CONSOLE.

    What else is missing or need to be configured.

    Please help me i need this to be done by 10 june 2011.

    My portal is V6 running on Windows 2003.

    NOTE: Portal is not running in cluster environment

    Thanks & Regards,
    Ahmed Brohi

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