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Table of Contents

The default tab that loads in the Admin UI allows you to set your basic site settings. Many of these settings were initially configured in your XNAT First Time Configuration step, but can be changed here as needed. To get to these controls, go to Administer > Site Admininistration in the top navigation and click on the Site Setup tab.  

Site Information Settings

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SettingProperty NameDescription
Site ID

The ID used to refer to this site (also used to generate database ids). The Site ID must start with a letter and contain only letters, numbers and underscores. It should be a short, one-word name or acronym which describes your site. No spaces or non-alphanumeric characters. By default this is set to 'XNAT', but you will likely want to change this to the name of your particular XNAT instance (e.g. 'ConnectomeDB' for the Human Connectome Project public site). This Site ID will appear throughout the site, such as on the page users are directed to after login which informs them how many projects, subjects, and imaging sessions the site has (e.g. SITE_ID currently contains 2 projects, 3 subjects, and 4 imaging sessions.).

Site URL

This is the URL at which users should access your site. It should be the full URL, including 'http' or 'https'. This URL is the one provided to users in emails, and other external links. This should be a functional address (i.e. if the user pasted this address in their web browser, they should come to the site). localhost only works if the web browser is located on the same machine. You are required to guarantee that this address is functional for reaching the site.

Site Description

This controls what site description shows up on the login page. You have two options for configuring this content:

  • Page (Default): Select the 'Page' radio button and then enter, in the text field below the radio button, the relative path to the site description template (e.g. /screens/site_description.vm). 
  • Markdown: If you want to enter the description directly, you should select the 'Text (Markdown)' radio button and then enter, in the text box below the radio button, the site description using Markdown.



Site Description (Text)

This setting only gets used if Site Description is set to "Markdown"


Markdown is a simple syntax used by GitHub and many wikis for creating text content with headline styles, links, images and other emphasis tags. See: Markdown Quick Reference



Site Description (Page)

This setting only gets used if Site Description is set to "Page"


The file path should be relative to the XNAT webapp templates directory, and will typically be something like /screens/{templatefile.vm}.

Site Login Landing
This is the relative path (e.g. /screens/QuickSearch.vm) to the Velocity template page that you want users to land on upon logging in.
Site Home

This is the relative path (e.g. /screens/QuickSearch.vm) to the Velocity template page that you want users to land on when they click the XNAT logo in the menu bar.


Paths specified in these input fields relate to files that are located in your webapp's template folders. See "Managing Template Files" in Understanding the Components of XNAT



Site-wide config properties can be accessed via REST at /xapi/siteConfig/values/{property-name}.

Site-wide config properties can be access programmatically in Velocity via $siteConfig.{property-name}.

Admin Information

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Admin Information Settings

SettingProperty NameDescription
Site Admin Email

The administrative email account to receive system emails. This address will receive frequent emails on system events, such as errors, processing completion, new user registration and so on. These emails can be configured on the Notifications tab.




must be a valid email address. If it is not, then some emails intended for other recipients may also fail if there's an error caused by an invalid email address being one of the recipients.


Primary Admin Username

This should be the login name of an enabled and valid user. The specified user must be a site administrator.

Site-wide Alerts

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SettingProperty NameDescription
Enable Alert Message

This controls whether users will see site-wide alert messages. If it is set to 'Off', then there will not be any site-wide alert messages. If set to 'On (Login Page Only)', then a site-wide alert message will show up when people go to the login page. If set to 'On (Login and Site Header)', then a site-wide alert message will show up when people go to the login page and will also show up at the top of the page throughout the site. Site-wide alerts can be particularly useful to give users a heads up before the site goes down for scheduled maintenance.

Alert Message

This is the site-wide alert message that gets shown to users in the specified locations. If 'Enable Alert Message' is set to 'Off', this message will not show up anywhere. Otherwise, the site-wide alert will show up in the location(s) specified. This message can include HTML (e.g. if you want to add links or add emphasis to part of the message). If you change the alert message and Enable Alert Message is set to 'On (Login and Site Header)', then users that are already logged in will start seeing the new message as soon as they navigate to a new page.

Alert Type



Toggles between three possible settings:

  • "0": Off
  • "1": On, displaying only on the login page
  • "2": On, displaying on login page and site header
Alert Message


Message text. Can be plaintext or HTML.
Alert Type


Toggles between three alert types:

  • "Message": Used for non-urgent informational alerts, such as to notify users of a new feature
  • "Alert": Used for urgent informational alerts, such as to notify users of a scheduled outage
  • "Error": Used to notify users of unexpected errors, such as unscheduled downtime or an outage of a related service, such as pipeline processing


Also see Notifications and Alerts in XNAT