How To Cycle Through Web Pages Automatically
Display those dashboards on TV screens in your business
So you’ve created a bunch of dashboards & reports and now you’re wondering how to display these masterpieces to the rest of the world.
You have the URLs to these web pages and you would like to display all of them in a rotation on screens around your workplace but you’re not sure about the best way to do it. Sound familiar?
Generally when people start thinking about how to create an office tv dashboard rotating through web pages automatically they’ll think about a basic implementation such as
- Creating a script to run in the browser
- Using some sort of free tab rotator browser plugin
It doesn't take long however to realize why both these options aren't great solutions
The Problem With Tab Rotators & Scripts
The problem with both of these approaches is that if you have anything more than one or two screens to manage, you’ll find it’s a hassle to maintain.
- Adding new web pages to the rotation requires you to access the machine with a keyboard and mouse
- Any updates to the rotation (interval times or changing URLs) requires you to physically access the machine
- You need to screw around with power settings to keep the machine awake
- You need to fiddle around with startup scripts to ensure the browser opens and starts the rotation after the machine boots up
- Every new screen just adds more management overhead for you to think about. If you have more than one office location, things can get pretty painful quickly
I Want to Use Multiple Screens To Display Multiple Dashboards
How do you go about showing different dashboards on multiple TV screens attached to your machines? Do you open multiple browser windows and manually move them to each screen? You going to do this everytime you restart the machine? That’s painful.
Machines need to restart for various reasons, patching & power loss etc. We don't want to be configuring whats on screen every time this happens. The machine should come back up and start displaying your dashboards and content the same way it did, on the same screens before it restarted.
Wouldn't it be nice to simply assign particular dashboards or reports to a particular screen and know that everytime you start the rotation they would just appear in the right place?
How Do You Scale This TV Dashboard Solution?
First it was just a few Microsoft Power BI and Tableau dashboards, then we had New Relic reports and now there's several Jira project boards. What started as a simple single screen in the middle of the office has new spread out to a TV dashboard screen in each department and growing.
Chances are your company will have a dozen or more tools they use for day to day business with more being added every year with each team having their own specific tools.
We end up with a collection of links to various reports and dashboards that we want to display on our office TV dashboards, we want to display them where everyone can see and being able to update them easily
Once every other department locks eyes on your pretty new office tv dashboard screens they’ll want one too, and you find your self walking around and updating dashboard screens a little too often.
So what’s the solution here?
We created a simple solution to solve all these problems that will let you manage, update and control as many TV screens and machines as you wish from a centralised location without needing to walk around to screens with a keyboard and mouse.
VuePilot allows you to create as many rotations (essentially playlists) as you want, with variable interval times and remotely assign them to any particular screen attached to your machines, without needing to leave the comfort of your desk.
Think of it like a smart, remote controlled browser that you can manage from a central location
What about multiple screens?
VuePilot can rotate web pages automatically on as many screens attached to a machine as you wish.
Read more about multiscreen management here
How To Manage Multiple Dashboard Screens
What about screen savers & power savers?
When running, VuePilot prevents screen savers and power saving settings from putting the machine to sleep. Forget about fiddling with power management settings, we'll do it for you. When VuePilot is closed, your machines default power settings will apply, when open, we'll take over for you
Can I update the web pages on all screens at once?
Yep. Update a rotation from the dashboard and all machines displaying that rotation will synchronise the changes without you needing to physically be near the screen
Step 1 - Create the rotation
From both the dashboard and the software you’ll find a “Rotations” section which allows you to create a playlist of the web pages you wish to cycle through. Simply create a rotation, add the relevant URLs to your dashboards or web pages and give each one an interval, this is how long you wish the page to be displayed on screen for.
Read more about our free apps here
Step 2 - Assign the rotations to your screens
From the machines section in the dashboard select the machine you wish to assign the rotation to (or from the Display section on the VuePilot software).
From here you will see a representation of the screens attached to this machine. Here you can easily assign your rotations to one or more screens and you'll never need to manually move browser windows around
Simply click the drop down underneath the screen and pick the desired rotation for that screen, then click the save button and it will be immediately synchronised to your machine
Step 3 - Configure Automatic Start
Now we want to ensure that our rotation will start when the machine reboots and logs in so we don't have to fiddle around with start up scripts
Simply enable Auto Run On Start and Launch On Login from the settings panel. These two settings will ensure the software starts when the machine logs in, and the rotations starts when the software opens.