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Workflow activity screen in a portal frame

Question asked by konsultex on Sep 20, 2010
I decided to post this problem here because I think it has a significant workflow part to it. We have an Alfresco 3.3g installation that is being used as a repository for documents that are uploaded and downloaded from a custom portal written in PHP. The portal knows how to name them, group them, show them and otherwise handle those documents. Communication between the portal and Alfresco is with CMIS and it's working great. Some of those documents need to go through one or more approval workflows.

When using the complete application (portal + Alfresco) we need to restrict the user to the portal because it's not wanted for him to have the feeling that he is leaving one application and going into another one when acting on the workflow. By acting on the workflow I mean working on the workflow steps. Alfresco does a good job of letting the user change the process variables (comments, due dates, values, etc.) and approve or reject the steps. I need to put that window or one like it inside the portal (which is in php) so that the user can work on the workflows without leaving it. I can imagine that the portal could link to a url that would show just this Alfresco screen in the portal area.

What is the right way to do this? Is this done with a web form, dashlet, presentation web script, other Alfresco component or must this be developed as a stand alone app with its url?