Wednesday Oct 30, 2013

Replicating between Cloud and On-Premises using Oracle GoldenGate

Do you have applications running on the cloud that you need to connect with the on premises systems. The most likely answer to this question is an astounding YES!  If so, then you understand the importance of keep the data fresh at all times across the cloud and on-premises environments. This is also one of the key focus areas for the new GoldenGate 12c release which we announced couple of week ago via a press release.

Most enterprises have spent years avoiding the data “silos” that inhibit productivity. For example, an enterprise which has adopted a CRM strategy could be relying on an on-premises based marketing application used for developing and nurturing leads. At the same time it could be using a SaaS based Sales application to create opportunities and quotes. The sales and the marketing teams which use these systems need to be able to access and share the data in a reliable and cohesive way. This example can be extended to other applications areas such as HR, Supply Chain, and Finance and the demands the users place on getting a consistent view of the data.

When it comes to moving data in hybrid environments some of the key requirements include minimal latency, reliability and security:

  • Data must remain fresh. As data ages it becomes less relevant and less valuable—day-old data is often insufficient in today’s competitive landscape.
  • Reliability must be guaranteed despite system or connectivity issues that can occur between the cloud and on-premises instances.
  • Security is a key concern when replicating between cloud and on-premises instances. There are several options to consider when replicating between the cloud and on-premises instances.

Option 1 – Secured network established between the cloud and on-premises

A secured network is established between the cloud and on-premises which enables the applications (including replication software) running on the cloud and on-premises to have seamless connectivity to other applications irrespective of where they are physically located.

Option 2 – Restricted network established between the cloud and on-premises

A restricted network is established between the cloud and on-premises instances which enable certain ports (required by replication) be opened on both the cloud and on the on-premises instances and white lists the IP addresses of the cloud and on-premises instances.

Option 3 – Restricted network access from on-premises and cloud through HTTP proxy

This option can be considered when the ports required by the applications (including replication software) are not open and the cloud instance is not white listed on the on-premises instance. This option of tunneling through HTTP proxy may be only considered when proper security exceptions are obtained.

Oracle GoldenGate

Oracle GoldenGate is used for major Fortune 500 companies and other industry leaders worldwide to support mission-critical systems for data availability and integration. Oracle GoldenGate addresses the requirements for ensuring data consistency between cloud and on-premises instances, thus facilitating the business process to run effectively and reliably.

The architecture diagram below illustrates the scenario where the cloud and the on-premises instance are connected using GoldenGate through a secured network

In the above scenario, Oracle GoldenGate is installed and configured on both the cloud and the on-premises instances. On the cloud instance Oracle GoldenGate is installed and configured on the machine where the database instance can be accessed. Oracle GoldenGate can be configured for unidirectional or bi-directional replication between the cloud and on premises instances.

The specific configuration details of Oracle GoldenGate processes will depend upon the option selected for establishing connectivity between the cloud and on-premises instances. The knowledge article (ID - 1588484.1) titled ' Replicating between Cloud and On-Premises using Oracle GoldenGate' discusses in detail the options for replicating between the cloud and on-premises instances. The article can be found on My Oracle Support.

To learn more about Oracle GoldenGate 12c register for our launch webcast where we will go into these new features in more detail.   You may also want to download our white paper "Oracle GoldenGate 12c Release 1 New Features Overview"

I would love to hear your requirements for replicating between on-premises and cloud instances, as well as your comments about the strategy discussed in the knowledge article to address your needs. Please post your comments in this blog or in the Oracle GoldenGate public forum -

Sunday Oct 27, 2013

ODI 12c's Mapping Designer - Combining Flow Based and Expression Based Mapping

post by David Allan

ODI is renowned for its declarative designer and minimal expression based paradigm. The new ODI 12c release has extended this even further to provide an extended declarative mapping designer. The ODI 12c mapper is a fusion of ODI's new declarative designer with the familiar flow based designer while retaining ODI’s key differentiators of:

  • Minimal expression based definition,
  • The ability to incrementally design an interface and to extract/load data from any combination of sources, and most importantly
  • Backed by ODI’s extensible knowledge module framework.

The declarative nature of the product has been extended to include an extensible library of common components that can be used to easily build simple to complex data integration solutions. Big usability improvements through consistent interactions of components and concepts all constructed around the familiar knowledge module framework provide the utmost flexibility.

Here is a little taster:

So what is a mapping? A mapping comprises of a logical design and at least one physical design, it may have many. A mapping can have many targets, of any technology and can be arbitrarily complex. You can build reusable mappings and use them in other mappings or other reusable mappings.

In the example below all of the information from an Oracle bonus table and a bonus file are joined with an Oracle employees table before being written to a target. Some things that are cool include the one-click expression cross referencing so you can easily see what's used where within the design.

The logical design in a mapping describes what you want to accomplish  (see the animated GIF here illustrating how the above mapping was designed) . The physical design lets you configure how it is to be accomplished. So you could have one logical design that is realized as an initial load in one physical design and as an incremental load in another. In the physical design below we can customize how the mapping is accomplished by picking Knowledge Modules, in ODI 12c you can pick multiple nodes (on logical or physical) and see common properties. This is useful as we can quickly compare property values across objects - below we can see knowledge modules settings on the access points between execution units side by side, in the example one table is retrieved via database links and the other is an external table.

In the logical design I had selected an append mode for the integration type, so by default the IKM on the target will choose the most suitable/default IKM - which in this case is an in-built Oracle Insert IKM (see image below). This supports insert and select hints for the Oracle database (the ANSI SQL Insert IKM does not support these), so by default you will get direct path inserts with Oracle on this statement.

In ODI 12c, the mapper is just that, a mapper. Design your mapping, write to multiple targets, the targets can be in the same data server, in different data servers or in totally different technologies - it does not matter. ODI 12c will derive and generate a plan that you can use or customize with knowledge modules. Some of the use cases which are greatly simplified include multiple heterogeneous targets, multi target inserts for Oracle and writing of XML.

Let's switch it up now and look at a slightly different example to illustrate expression reuse. In ODI you can define reusable expressions using user functions. These can be reused across mappings and the implementations specialized per technology. So you can have common expressions across Oracle, SQL Server, Hive etc. shielding the design from the physical aspects of the generated language. Another way to reuse is within a mapping itself. In ODI 12c expressions can be defined and reused within a mapping. Rather than replicating the expression text in larger expressions you can decompose into smaller snippets, below you can see UNIT_TAX AMOUNT has been defined and is used in two downstream target columns - its used in the TOTAL_TAX_AMOUNT plus its used in the UNIT_TAX_AMOUNT (a recording of the calculation). 

You can see the columns that the expressions depend on (upstream) and the columns the expression is used in (downstream) highlighted within the mapper. Also multi selecting attributes is a convenient way to see what's being used where, below I have selected the TOTAL_TAX_AMOUNT in the target datastore and the UNIT_TAX_AMOUNT in UNIT_CALC.

You can now see many expressions at once now and understand much more at the once time without needlessly clicking around and memorizing information.

Our mantra during development was to keep it simple and make the tool more powerful and do even more for the user. The development team was a fusion of many teams from Oracle Warehouse Builder, Sunopsis and BEA Aqualogic, debating and perfecting the mapper in ODI 12c. This was quite a project from supporting the capabilities of ODI in 11g to building the flow based mapping tool to support the future.

I hope this was a useful insight, there is so much more to come on this topic, this is just a preview of much more that you will see of the mapper in ODI 12c.

Thursday Oct 24, 2013

Oracle GoldenGate 12c - Leading Enterprise Replication

Oracle GoldenGate 12c released  on October 17th and includes several new cutting edge features that firmly establishes GoldenGate's leader position in the data replication space.   In fact, this release more than doubles the performance of data delivery, supports Oracle's new multitenant database feature,  it's more secure, has more options for high availability, and has made great strides to simplify the configuration and deployment of the product.     Read through the press release if you haven't already and do not miss the quote from Cern's Eva Dafonte Perez, regarding Oracle GoldenGate 12c "….performs five times faster compared to previous GoldenGate versions and simplifies the management of a multi-tier environment"

There are a variety of new and improved features in the Oracle GoldenGate 12c.  Here are the highlights:

  • Optimized for Oracle Database 12c -  GoldenGate 12c is custom tailored to the unique capabilities of Oracle database 12c and out of the box GoldenGate 12c supports multitenant (pluggable database (PDB)) and non-consolidated deployments of Oracle Database 12c.   The naming convention used by database 12c is now in three parts (PDB-name, schema-name, and object name).  We have made changes to the GoldenGate capture process to support the new naming convention and streamlined the whole process so a single GoldenGate capture process is being used at the container level rather than at each individual PDB.  By having the capture process at the container level resource usage and the number of processes are reduced. To view a conceptual architecture diagram click here.
  • Integrated Delivery for the Oracle Database - Leveraging a lightweight streaming API built exclusively for Oracle GoldenGate 12c, this process distributes load, auto tunes the degree of parallelism, scales better, and delivers blinding rates of changed data delivery to the Oracle database.  One of the goals for Oracle GoldenGate 12c was to reduce IT costs by simplifying the configuration and reduce the time to manage complex infrastructures.  In previous versions of Oracle GoldenGate, customers would split transaction loads by grouping tables into multiple different delivery processes (click here to view the previous method). Each delivery process executed independently and without any interaction or knowledge of other delivery processes.  This setup was complicated to configure and time consuming as the developer needed in-depth knowledge of the source and target schemas and the transaction profile. With GoldenGate 12c and Integrated Delivery we have made it easier to configure and faster to deploy.  To view a conceptual architecture diagram of integrated delivery click here
  • Coordinated Delivery for Non-Oracle Databases - Coordinated Delivery orchestrates high-speed apply processes and simplifies the configuration of GoldenGate for non-Oracle targets. In Oracle GoldenGate 12c a single delivery process is used with multiple threads (click here) and key events, such as primary key updates, event markers, DDL, etc, are coordinated between the various threads to insure that the transactions are applied in the same sequence as they were captured, all while delivery improved performance. 
  • Replication Between On-Premises and Cloud-Based systems. - The trend for business to utilize both on-premises and cloud-based systems is rising and businesses need to replicate data back and forth.   GoldenGate 12c can be configured in a variety of ways to provide real-time replication when unrestricted or restricted (limited ports or HTTP tunneling) networks are between on-premises and cloud-based systems.   

  • Expanded Heterogeneity - It wouldn't be a GoldenGate release without new and improved platform support.   Release 1 includes support for MySQL 5.6 and Sybase 15.7.   Upcoming in the next release GoldenGate, support will be expanded for MS SQL Server, DB2, and Teradata.
  • Tighter Security - Oracle GoldenGate 12c is integrated with the Oracle wallet to shield usernames and passwords using strong encryption and aliases.   Customers accustomed to using the Oracle Wallet with other Oracle products will instantly be familiar with how to use this great new feature
  • Expanded Oracle Application and Technology Support -   GoldenGate can be used along with Oracle Coherence to enable real-time changed data feeds to the Coherence cache using Toplink and the Oracle GoldenGate JMS adapter.     Plus,  Oracle Advanced Customer Services (ACS) now offers a low downtime E-Business Suite platform and database migrations using GoldenGate as the enabling technology. 

Keep tuned for more blogs on the new features and the upcoming launch webcast where we will go into these new features in more detail.   In the mean time make sure to read through our white paper "Oracle GoldenGate 12c Release 1 New Features Overview"

Tuesday Oct 22, 2013

ODI 12c - Getting up and running fast

Here's a quick A-B-C to show you how to quickly get up and running with ODI 12c, from getting the software to creating a repository via wizard or the command line, then installing an agent for running load plans and the like.

A. Get the software from OTN and install studio. Check out this viewlet here for quickly doing this.

B. Create a repository using the RCU, check out this viewlet here which uses the FMW Repository Creation Utility. 

You can also silently create (and drop) a repository using the command line, this is really easy.

  • .\rcu -silent -createRepository -connectString -dbUser sys -dbRole sysdba -useSamePasswordForAllSchemaUsers true -schemaPrefix X -component ODI -component IAU  -component IAU_APPEND  -component IAU_VIEWER -component OPSS < passwords.txt

where the passwords file contains info such as;

  • sysdba_passwd
  • newschema_passwd
  • odi_user_passwd
  • D
  • workreposname
  • workrepos_pass