Search and Data Visualizations Part 3 – Data Source

January 18, 2022 | 7 minute read
Sasank Vemana
Director, PeopleTools Product Management
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In this part of the blog series, we will review how to build custom Kibana analytics from scratch. This means that we will complete all the steps (see table below) which were described in earlier posts. It may seem daunting but if we break it down and understand the purpose of each step, the implementation is relatively simple.
 

Kibana Analytics Customer Action
   
1. Data Source  
1.1. Create PS Query or Connected Query
1.1.a. Define Drilling URL for Navigation
1.1.b. Create date/time prompt for incremental indexing
   
2. Search Designer  
2.1. Create Search Definition
2.1.a. Use Query (data source) created for search
2.1.b. Map query fields to search metadata attributes
2.1.c. Add security-related metadata
2.2. Create Search Category
   
3. Search Administration  
3.1. Deploy Search Definition/Category
3.2. Build Search Index
   
4. Create Visualizations/Dashboards  
4.1. Create Index Pattern
4.2. Create Visualizations
4.3. Create Dashboards
   
5. Administer Visualizations/Dashboards  
5.1. Import Dashboards
5.2. Configure Dashboards
5.3. Specify User Privileges
5.4. Deploy Dashboards


The first step is to create the data source. If we think about it, this is the starting point of any type of reporting or data visualization requirement. So, we start by asking some non-technical questions. What data do we want to report on? What data do we want to visualize? As with any other process, requirements gathering is a very important step that demands a lot of thought to ensure that we meet the users' needs.

When we have the requirements for the analytics at hand, we should be able to answer the following questions:

  • What data do we want to visualize?
  • Where does it reside?

For this blog series, we will be using the data in Integration Broker (Asynchronous Messages) as an example. If you worked in the PeopleSoft community for a few years, Integration Broker and asynchronous messaging should be no stranger to you. Integration Broker enables PeopleSoft applications to send messages to various consumers (including itself) - synchronously and asynchronously. The Asynchronous Services monitoring page (as shown below) provides a way for analysts and administrators to monitor messages, review them based on status and take action as necessary.

Navigation: PeopleTools > Integration Broker > Service Operations Monitor > Monitoring > Monitor Asynchronous Services


We will represent the data in this monitoring page as interactive visualizations providing a better user experience and insights. The end product will look as follows:
 


For those who may wonder why Integration Broker data? No reason. The main purpose is to prove the concept that we can pick any data (as defined by our business requirements) and turn that into Kibana analytics. The focus is more on the process of building the analytics and not the data used in the example.

Now that we established what we want to visualize, the next step is to identify where this data resides. In this example, all the data necessary is in a single table called PSAPMSGPUBHDR.
 



Now, we know what data we want to visualize and where it resides. Next, we can create the Data Source for the Search Definition. Since we are using data residing in the application, we have the choice of either using a PS Query (for simple requirements – as is the case in this example) or a Connected Query (for requirements involving more complex data structures).


According to PeopleBooks > Understanding Search Definition Queries the PS Query/Connect Query should contain the following:

  • List of fields to index from authorized records.
  • “Last Updated” record field.
  • Drilling URL.
  • Prompt against the “Last Updated” record field.
  • Criteria against the “Last Updated” record field.

Let’s create the PS Query (SV_IB_ASYNC_MSG) using PSAPMSGPUBHDR as the record, select the required fields, set up the drilling URL, prompt, and criteria for the “Last Updated” record field as shown below.













 

The data source for the Search Definition is now ready! In the next part, we will move on to creating the Search Definition, Category, and associated configuration in the Search Framework.

Sasank Vemana

Director, PeopleTools Product Management

Oracle/PeopleSoft Enthusiast, Developer, Architect, Strategist, Advocate


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