Wednesday Apr 29, 2015

On PaaS, Mobile Security, Cloud Content Sharing: April Newsletter is Out

The April edition of the Fusion Middleware newsletter is now out. This edition is all about Digital Transformation. Find out how Platform as a Service (PaaS) is driving the digital revolution and get access to the latest IDC report on the PaaS market, business drivers, benefits and more. As personal and work boundaries blur in the digital age, organizations are getting increasingly concerned about security. The challenges is more acute with trends like Bring Your Own Devices (BYOD)and even Bring Your Own Applications (BYOA). How do you open your company without incurring the security risks? Find out how Mobile Security can help protect your IP, your brand reputation while still enabling a digital trend. And, we continue our ongoing series of Cloud Computing use cases. In this edition, we take a closer look at cloud content sharing and collaboration. Oracle Documents Cloud Service (OracleDOCS)  is an enterprise grade solution that not only offers the intuitive features of cloud file sync and share but to support the various use cases drives a PaaS for SaaS solution allowing you to unlock your company potential. be sure to give it a read to understand how enterprises today are leveraging OracleDOCS.

The newsletter comes complete with news, recent press announcements, information about upcoming events both regional and online, latest market and product materials, and more so don't miss it. And we recommend you subscribe to the newsletter today.


Friday Jan 16, 2015

Tackling SaaS Integration, Multi-Channel Experience and Integrated Systems

Running a digital business or moving towards it? Building a cloud strategy or busy implementing it? Have mobile on your mind? Well, Oracle Fusion Middleware is the cloud platform to support your digital business. Coming out of Oracle OpenWorld, I found there were a few key themes you could bundle some of our customers' questions in. So, I sat down with product and domain experts to better understand some of the more common use cases we have started to hear around digital businesses and cloud.

SaaS to On-Premise Integration: While most organizations have adopted a cloud strategy - public, private or hybrid, a recent survey shows that 81% of those organizations agree that it is important for the applications to be fully integrated with each other and other software to reap the full benefits of cloud. And over 40% believe that cloud poses a security risk to their information and infrastructure. From a development standpoint, an integration platform rather than point to point integration ensures lowest TCO, less maintenance and upgrade costs, more scalability and flexibility for an organization. The same integration platform that supports your on-premise infrastructure supports your SaaS model too and ensures better integration between SaaS and On-Premise applications. Catch this brief webcast and demo to see how Oracle enables simplified SaaS to On-Premise integration.

Multi-Channel Enablement: Whether you are a B2B or a B2C, your customers, partners and even your employees have come to expect a seamless, consistent multi-channel experience. They need to be able to get the information they need on desktop or phone,  via web or mobile securely, anytime and anywhere. How do you enable this digital experience across multiple channels without adding to your development costs? How do you ensure security across these channels? And most of all, how do you give them a user experience that will have them coming back to you? Catch this demo webcast to learn how.

Platform Optimization: Integrated systems are all the rage today. You can't move through tech news without bumping into the term "integrated systems". But what is the value of one? If your hardware and software are optimized to support your middleware and your applications, there are  clear advantages to that - high performance, high reliability and availability, lower operational expenses (OpEx) and better efficiency. But then does deployment get tricky? How are private cloud environments supported? This webcast, complete with a demo, answers those questions and more.

Have more questions? Let's keep the conversation going. Send us your comments and we will get the product experts to answer those for you.



Thursday Sep 18, 2014

Inside the OOW Session CON7646: Simpilify SaaS-On-Premises Integration

By: Srikant Subramaniam, Director, Product Management, Oracle

CON7646: Simplify SaaS and On-Premises Integration by Using Oracle Fusion Middleware

Monday, Sep 29, 10:15 AM - 11:00 AM - Moscone West – 3018

Integration involves the exchange of information between systems to achieve a specific business objective such as synchronization of customer account data for fulfilling orders. The location of an application and its data, whether in the data center or under the auspices of a cloud provider, does not change this basic business need.

With the increasing popularity of Software as a Service (SaaS), many organizations are having to deal with newer cloud-based applications, in addition to their existing on-premise systems. Without proper planning, integrating these two sets of applications can often end up with an “accidental cloud architecture” characterized by point-to-point connections from the on-premise systems to their cloud counterparts, completely bypassing any well-established integration architecture principles. These custom interfaces result in brittle connections that are difficult to upgrade when endpoints change.

Attend this session to see how Oracle Fusion Middleware provides a single set of integration tools to handle all of these integration scenarios, with direct and interchangeable connections to cloud and on-premise systems. Learn how the new Cloud Adapters in SOA Suite 12c simplify the task of developing and managing connectivity and enable you to focus on building the business logic for the integration processes.


In addition, see how all these concepts come together via an actual customer example -- where we will discuss how Ricoh Americas used Oracle SOA Suite as the framework for their SaaS and on-premise integration to minimize complexity and bring new efficiencies to their business.

For more information on other Oracle AppAdvantage sessions at Open World 2014, refer to Focus on AppAdvantage.

Tuesday Feb 04, 2014

Oracle CloudWorld: The Recap

There was a buzz in the air at Oracle CloudWorld in San Francisco last week at the Westin on Market Street.  It was a great opportunity to hear Oracle's strategy for the Cloud across Applications such as ERP, HCM, Eloqua and other as well as Oracle's strategy for Mobile.  There was something for everyone with a floor dedicated to demos and numerous sessions for all interested.  CloudWorld in San Francisco is just one of several locations worldwide where this event is being held.  CloudWorld is slated to take place in Melbourne, Moscow, Beijing and Chicago - so if you missed last week, not to worry, it's coming to a city near you!

CEO, Larry Ellison delivered an energizing keynote in the afternoon to a packed audience.  He focused on Oracle's investment in HCM and why it sees this is an important initiative and one that requires additional staff resources and greater innovation in order for us to maintain our leadership position in the market.  Following his keynote, there was a good amount of time set aside for Q & A from the audience.  Among the many sessions, the one not to be missed was delivered by Ray Wang, Principal atConstellation Research. He had a very well attended session that covered what a sales cloud-related product should entail (feature, function and address which business needs) . 

Still want to attend CloudWorld?  To register for a CloudWorld near you, click here.

Wednesday Nov 13, 2013

Cloud to On-Premise Connectivity Patterns

Rajesh RahejaDo you have a requirement to convert an Opportunity in Salesforce.com to an Order/Quote in Oracle E-Business Suite? Or maybe you want the creation of an Oracle RightNow Incident to trigger an on-premise Oracle E-Business Suite Service Request creation for RMA and Field Scheduling? If so, read on.

In a previous blog post, I discussed integrating TO cloud applications, however the use cases above are the reverse i.e. receiving data FROM cloud applications (SaaS) TO on-premise applications/databases that sit behind a firewall. Oracle SOA Suite is assumed to be on-premise with with Oracle Service Bus as the mediation and virtualization layerThe main considerations for the patterns are are security i.e. shielding enterprise resources; and scalability i.e. minimizing firewall latency. Let me use an analogy to help visualize the patterns: the on-premise system is your home - with your most valuable possessions - and the SaaS app is your favorite on-line store which regularly ships (inbound calls) various types of parcels/items (message types/service operations). You need the items at home (on-premise) but want to safe guard against misguided elements of society (internet threats) who may masquerade as postal workers and vandalize property (denial of service?). Let's look at the patterns.

Pattern: Pull from Cloud


The on-premise system polls from the SaaS apps and picks up the message instead of having it delivered. This may be done using Oracle RightNow Object Query Language or SOAP APIs. This is particularly suited for certain integration approaches wherein messages are trickling in, can be centralized and batched e.g. retrieving event notifications on an hourly schedule from the Oracle Messaging Service.

To compare this pattern with the home analogy, you are avoiding any deliveries to your home and instead go to the post office/UPS/Fedex store to pick up your parcel. Every time.

Pros: On-premise assets not exposed to the Internet, firewall issues avoided by only initiating outbound connections

Cons: Polling mechanisms may affect performance, may not satisfy near real-time requirements

Pattern: Open Firewall Ports

The on-premise system exposes the web services that needs to be invoked by the cloud application. This requires opening up firewall ports, routing calls to the appropriate internal services behind the firewall. Fusion Applications uses this pattern, and auto-provisions the services on the various virtual hosts to secure the topology. This works well for service integration, but may not suffice for large volume data integration.

Using the home analogy, you have now decided to receive parcels instead of going to the post office every time. A door mail slot cut out allows the postman can drop small parcels, but there is still concern about cutting new holes for larger packages.

Pros: optimal pattern for near real-time needs, simpler administration once the service is provisioned

Cons: Needs firewall ports to be opened up for new services, may not suffice for batch integration requiring direct database access

Pattern: Virtual Private Networking

The on-premise network is "extended" to the cloud (or an intermediary on-demand / managed service offering) using Virtual Private Networking (VPN) so that messages are delivered to the on-premise system in a trusted channel.

Using the home analogy, you entrust a set of keys with a neighbor or property manager who receives the packages, and then drops it inside your home.

Pros: Individual firewall ports don't need to be opened, more suited for high scalability needs, can support large volume data integration, easier management of one connection vs a multitude of open ports

Cons: VPN setup, specific hardware support, requires cloud provider to support virtual private computing

Pattern: Reverse Proxy / API Gateway

The on-premise system uses a reverse proxy "API gateway" software on the DMZ to receive messages. The reverse proxy can be implemented using various mechanisms e.g. Oracle API Gateway provides firewall and proxy services along with comprehensive security, auditing, throttling benefits. If a firewall already exists, then Oracle Service Bus or Oracle HTTP Server virtual hosts can provide reverse proxy implementations on the DMZ. Custom built implementations are also possible if specific functionality (such as message store-n-forward) is needed.

In the home analogy, this pattern sits in between cutting mail slots and handing over keys. Instead, you install (and maintain) a mailbox in your home premises outside your door. The post office delivers the parcels in your mailbox, from where you can securely retrieve it.

Pros: Very secure, very flexible

Cons: Introduces a new software component, needs DMZ deployment and management

Pattern: On-Premise Agent (Tunneling)

A light weight "agent" software sits behind the firewall and initiates the communication with the cloud, thereby avoiding firewall issues. It then maintains a bi-directional connection either with pull or push based approaches using (or abusing, depending on your viewpoint) the HTTP protocol. Programming protocols such as Comet, WebSockets, HTTP CONNECT, HTTP SSH Tunneling etc. are possible implementation options.

In the home analogy, a resident receives the parcel from the postal worker by opening the door, however you still take precautions with chain locks and package inspections.

Pros: Light weight software, IT doesn't need to setup anything

Cons: May bypass critical firewall checks e.g. virus scans, separate software download, proliferation of non-IT managed software

Conclusion

The patterns above are some of the most commonly encountered ones for cloud to on-premise integration. Selecting the right pattern for your project involves looking at your scalability needs, security restrictions, sync vs asynchronous implementation, near real-time vs batch expectations, cloud provider capabilities, budget, and more. In some cases, the basic "Pull from Cloud" may be acceptable, whereas in others, an extensive VPN topology may be well justified.

For more details on the Oracle cloud integration strategy, download this white paper.

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