New Features with the PeopleSoft Search Indices

July 30, 2021 | 2 minute read
David Bain
Sr. Director PeopleTools Product Management
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First off, is it indexes or indices? 

A quick web search says both are correct. 

Interesting! 

Two ways to describe a plural index, and two great new features with the PeopleSoft search indices. 

Coincidence?

 

There are a lot of great new features in PeopleTools 8.59 Search.  New search dialog on the banner, great category drop down, weighted response lists, updated menu names and descriptions, so much that search really becomes the primary means of navigating your PeopleSoft system.  Frankly, it's about time!  If you haven't seen it already, take the time to watch the 8.59 Release Video.  It's got a great overview of the new search features.

But there are a couple nice new features you may not have heard about, that have to do with the search indices  Those are Real-time Indexing and External Data Integration.  Put both on the list of exciting new enhancements in 8.59.

 

Real-time Indexing

I know you've seen this before.  You're in a component, add a new object, save the page and go back to search.  When you search for the new object, it's not there.  It's pretty easy to figure out why.  Search uses the Elasticsearch indices and they are not refreshed real-time.  You usually have to wait over night for the index to be refreshed by a batch process.  That can be pretty frustrating.

PeopleTools 8.59 fixed that with a new feature called Real-time Indexing (RTI). Creative name, right?  It does exactly what you think it does.  As soon as the new object is created, appropriate index is automatically updated.  There is a little bit of latency, but not much. 

The technology behind this is pretty straight forward.  When data is transacted (online or batch) a database trigger populates a special RTI table.  That table is continuously polled by an RTI server process and when an entry is found, the process pulls the data, executes  optional PeopleCode, and updates the index real-time. 

This technology is delivered as part of PeopleTools 8.59, but you won't be able to use it quite yet.  The application teams are working on the functional implementations and will be delivering those in the upcoming PUM images.  In the mean time, you are welcome to use this technology yourself, and real-time update the indices that are important for your organization.

 

External Data Integration

More and more of our customers are visualizing PeopleSoft data with Kibana, the reporting tool that is part of the ELK (Elasticsearch, Logstash, Kibana) stack.  It provides exceptional analytics using the search indices from your PeopleSoft applications

Just about any data and variations of data (like time sequences) from PeopleSoft applications can be visualized using Kibana.  But only using PeopleSoft data, until PeopleTools 8.59.

In PeopleTools 8.59 there is a new feature called External Data Integration (EDI).  With EDI you can add any external data to your search indices by importing a file or calling a REST service.  With the EDI framework, you define the external data, schedule the extract, and Logstash is used to ingest the data into the search indices. 

Now you can pull data from custom apps, hosted applications, generally available sites, anywhere the data may reside and integrate that data into your indices for use with Kibana analytics.

 

Two great new features with the PeopleSoft search indexes!

David Bain

Sr. Director PeopleTools Product Management

Oracle/PeopleSoft employee since 1996.  Most of the time spent working on PeopleTools in some capacity.


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