16 March 2022

If you’re currently using unsupported Moodle plugins on a Totara Learn platform, now is the time to change that.

While plugins for Moodle LMS and Totara Learn were once almost interchangeable, that is no longer the case. As the two platforms move in different directions, continuing to rely on unsupported Moodle plugins on a Totara site is putting your LMS at risk of damaging security and performance issues.

 

Why are Moodle plugins no longer supported on Totara?

Strictly speaking, Moodle LMS plugins were never supported on Totara Learn. But since Totara Learn was originally built on top of Moodle LMS when it was first released in 2011, Moodle plugins could easily be used on Totara sites. The close similarities in the codebase meant we were able to use well developed and well maintained Moodle plugins for customers with Totara sites without any issues.

 

What has changed?

In September 2015, Totara announced plans to gradually move away from the Moodle codebase in order to make deeper architectural changes it believed were necessary to provide key functionality needed in a corporate learning environment.

Since the release of Totara TXP — incorporating Totara Learn, Totara Perform and Totara Engage — in 2020, the two platforms have now diverged to such a degree that we can no longer justify using Moodle plugins on Totara sites (beyond a select group of Moodle plugins that we have tested and have a high level of confidence will continue to function as intended on Totara TXP).

We quickly realised that the security issues and bugs created by continuing to use unsupported Moodle plugins on Totara TXP installations outweighed any benefit from the additional functionality delivered by the plugins. That’s partly because we wouldn’t be able to put our name to a platform that doesn’t perform as intended, but also because Totara TXP’s extended core functionality now supports many of the features and functionalities for which Moodle plugins were previously used.

 

Are you using unsupported Moodle plugins on Totara Learn?

If so, we strongly recommend that you change that situation as quickly as possible. The stability, security and performance of your learning platform is at stake. The advice we’re offering our customers is that it is too risky to continue using unsupported Moodle plugins on their Totara sites.

We’re reviewing Totara sites in which Moodle plugins are in use and working with customers to find the best route forward for their organisation. Some of the options include:

  • Upgrading to Totara TXP to access new functionality in Totara that may not have existed when you first installed the Moodle plugin.
  • Removing unsupported plugins and focusing on configuring the core functionality rather than customising it. We’ve discussed elsewhere the importance of this move from customisation to configuration in the next generation of learning platforms.
  • Developing your own plugin to extend Totara’s core functionality in the case that a workflow or feature specific to your organisation is not available.

 

Reviewing your unsupported Moodle plugins

If you are interested in ending your reliance on unsupported plugins and moving to a new installation of Totara TXP, we will be happy to review the installed plugins with you and help you to make the right decisions for your organisation’s long-term needs.

Just fill out the form below and we’ll be in touch to discuss your requirements.

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