My Sessions at Oracle OpenWorld 2012

 

 

 

Update Nov-2012: The session pages now have the slide pdf documents for download. Simply click on each session link below to get started.

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OOW 2012 I'm Speaking

I have 4 sessions at Oracle OpenWorld 2012.

Oracle Fusion Applications: Customizing and Extending Business Processes

I will join my colleague Ravi Sankaran (outstanding architect and advisor to the Fusion applications development team) to talk about the approaches in customizing and extending Oracle Fusion Applications with Oracle SOA Suite. CON8719

When: Monday, Oct 1, 4:45 PM – 5:45 PM

Where: Palace Hotel – Twin Peaks North

Managed File Transfer Use Cases and Oracle Fusion Applications Cloud

As part of the “Birds of a Feather” session, I will join Dave Berry and Sundar Shenbagam to discuss usage scenarios for integrating managed file transfer with Oracle SOA Suite, Oracle B2B applications, Oracle Healthcare applications, and Oracle Fusion Applications. BOF8326

When: Monday, Oct 1, 6:15 PM – 7:00 PM

Where: Marriott Marquis – Golden Gate C3

How to Integrate Cloud Applications with Oracle SOA Suite

I will be joined by Geeta Pyne (Director, Middleware at BMC Software) to address cloud integration challenges and how Oracle SOA Suite can help with a consistent approach to integration, whether on-premises or cloud. I am quite excited about this session as we will tackle the hype and myth of “simple” cloud integrations and share real-life application integration experiences. Don’t miss this one! CON8968

When: Tuesday, Oct 2, 11:45 AM – 12:45 PM

Where: Moscone West – 3003

Oracle Fusion Applications: Best Practices in Integration Design Patterns

I will be joined by Ravi Sankaran to provide a high level view of the Oracle Fusion Applications integration strategy and showing the best practice integration design patterns. You will learn how to discover integration assets, invoke web services and use cloud data integration. The session is not just limited to SaaS deployments, but will be useful for on-premises customers as well. CON8685

When: Tuesday, Oct 2, 1:15 PM – 2:15 PM

Where: Palace Hotel – Telegraph

I will also be at the SOA Customer Advisory Board on Thursday, in case you are attending. See you at OpenWorld!

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Five Frequently Asked Questions About EXTERNAL Web Services in Fusion Applications

The Fusion Applications OER white paper (introduced in my previous post on Fusion Applications Integration) touches upon the EXTERNAL keyword tagged on services.

FA OER Service External KeywordAs described in the paper, these services are used by customers/partners to extend and integrate with Oracle Fusion Applications, whether in on-premise or SaaS mode. This post describes the keyword in detail by addressing five frequently asked questions.

Q1. What does the EXTERNAL keyword imply for integration scenarios and SaaS deployments?

To understand this, let’s look at the Fusion Applications deployment topology below Note: this shows only SOA Composite services, but is also applicable for ADF Services.

Fusion Applications TopologyThe topology splits visibility to web and service resources into two categories – internal and external. This is achieved by fronting all HTTP requests through two different Oracle HTTP Servers (OHS), one for internal traffic routed between Fusion Applications servers, and another for external sources, which has only a small subset of the routing rules to prevent unauthorized access by external systems. This approach facilitates unhindered access within the Fusion Applications domain and acts as a firewall to restrict access to external systems.

In the example shown above, internal clients (i.e. those deployed in the same Fusion Applications domain) would have access to all composite services – A, B, and C and any service endpoints that they provide. In contrast, all other external clients are restricted to accessing only services provided through composites A and B.

Another characteristic of services that are exposed externally is that they also enforce a more stringent Oracle Web Services Manager (OWSM) policy using SSL or WS-Security message protection. By contrast, services NOT marked as EXTERNAL are protected using the OWSM Global Policy Attachments (GPA) feature, which in the case of Fusion Apps do not enforce message protection and rely only on username token or SAML identity propagation.

As you may have guessed by now, services tagged with the EXTERNAL keyword in OER, are the only ones provisioned with routing rules on the External OHS and protected with a stringent message protected OWSM policy. This is what makes them suitable for application integration use cases; even more so in the cloud where deploying custom services to the SaaS WebLogic Server domain may not be possible.

Q2. The service I want is not marked as EXTERNAL. Can I just tag it with the keyword for my integration project?

As explained above, making a service “EXTERNAL” is more than just tagging the keyword in OER. The service also needs to be secured using a message protection enabled local OWSM policy and requires modification of the OHS routing rules to allow service URI access to the external world. For Oracle-shipped services, this is done by the Provisioning framework. For custom services, this can be possible in on-premise and hosted installations, but may not be possible in the SaaS mode.

Most likely, if an Oracle-shipped service has not been marked as EXTERNAL, it is due to specific functional and/or security reasons, which is usually not addressable at the customer site.

Q3. If I can’t change non-EXTERNAL services, why document them in OER?

While it is true that non-EXTERNAL services cannot be consumed by external clients, they can still be consumed by internal clients, such as custom implemented composites that are deployed in the Fusion Applications SOA domain in on-premise or hosted deployments. Moreover, apart from service invocations, many composite services also have capabilities for layered customizations for BPEL processes and Oracle Business Rules. The OER entries for these non-EXTERNAL services therefore serve as API documentation.

Q4. Are EXTERNAL services the same as “Public” services?

The two terms — “EXTERNAL” and “Public” — are frequently used interchangeably, however, they are not synonymous! “EXTERNAL” refers to service visibility in the topology, while “Public” basically amounts to the level of API support provided by Oracle. In fact, there is no attribute called “Public”, instead it is referenced by the Compatibility attribute value of Supported.

While most EXTERNAL services tend to be Public, there are exceptions. For instance, mobile-enabled services accessed by iPad or iPhone apps (external to Fusion Applications) will be tagged as EXTERNAL. However, if the only intended supported client is the pre-certified mobile app, then the service may be marked with a Compatibility value of Not Supported to effectively make it “Private”.

The Fusion Applications OER white paper also lists the various combinations of the Keyword and Compatibility tags and their implications for service use in integration projects.

Q5. How do I find all available EXTERNAL services?

Using the cloud hosted OER instance. Simply search for EXTERNAL and limit the Asset Type to ADF Service or Composite Service to filter the results.

FA OER Service External SearchIMPORTANT NOTE: This is a simple text search and will result in services that have the word EXTERNAL in any metadata, including descriptions. Therefore, you may get false positives. To confirm the service accessibility, always check the Keyword value on the Taxonomy tab of the service detail page as shown in the screenshot at the top of this post.

Hopefully this post has addressed most of the questions about the EXTERNAL keyword usage. If you still have some, feel free to sound off in the comments.

Using Cloud OER to Find Fusion Applications On-Premise Service Concrete WSDL URL

In my previous post on Fusion Applications Integration, the Fusion Applications OER white paper explains Oracle Enterprise Repository (OER) usage in the applications context, assuming a dedicated OER for your Fusion Applications instance (whether cloud/SaaS or on-premise). Having a dedicated OER instance is recommended as it can provide customized service metadata and can be used for overall SOA governance in addition to simple service discovery.

One of the common queries I get is how on-premise customers without a dedicated OER can find a concrete service WSDL URL for their specific environment using the cloud hosted OER instance.

To answer this, let’s understand the two attributes on the OER service details screen.

In the Cloud OER instance, the Abstract WSDL URL link points to the Oracle-shipped non-customized service definition, which can be used by partners/ISVs for developing tenant-agnostic apps (more on that in future posts).

The concrete WSDL URL can be found in the Service WSDL URL link (highlighted in the screenshot above). In an on-premise deployment, this link points to the runtime WebLogic Server where the service has been deployed. Since the cloud OER instance is not linked with on-premise customer-specific runtime environments, the link does not work (as expected). However, you can still derive the on-premise environment-specific concrete Service WSDL URL via a simple substitution.

Replace

rep://FUSIONAPPS_HCM/

with

https://host:port/ for the specific Fusion Applications environment.

The Fusion Apps repository team is working on making usability improvements to document this in-place, along with adding additional service metadata that you are sure to find very handy when consuming the services. Stay tuned!

Integrating with Oracle Fusion Applications: Discovering Integration Artifacts

This is a first in a series of posts I hope to write on the topic of integrating with Oracle Fusion Applications, which is the next generation of enterprise applications built on top of Oracle Fusion Middleware. My goal is to share the ease with which integrations are now possible using standards-based technologies with enterprise applications.

Oracle Fusion Applications are designed and built from the ground up using a service-oriented architecture (SOA). As I have discussed in an earlier post, visibility and control are the key tenets to SOA governance, and the first step in integrating with Oracle Fusion Applications is to find out what are the integration options available. Oracle Enterprise Repository, an industry-leading metadata repository, provides this visibility.

Oracle Enterprise Repository for Oracle Fusion Applications can be used to discover functional and technical information about integrating with other applications, including web services, business events, interface tables and data model documentation among other artifacts.

Oracle Enterprise Repository for Oracle Fusion Applications

Oracle Enterprise Repository for Oracle Fusion Applications

To maximize the usage of the repository, I have posted a white paper “Making the Most of the Oracle Enterprise Repository for Oracle Fusion Applications” – also available from the Help link on the top right of the repository. I thank Nigel King, Tim Hall and Kris Doherty for their valuable inputs and reviews on the paper. I hope that our customers and partners will find this a useful resource to mine the repository content. In future posts, I will discuss various best practice integration patterns i.e. how to integrate with Oracle Fusion Applications.

Note: Access to the repository and the white paper requires an Oracle account.