Thursday Aug 28, 2014
Tuesday Aug 26, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Aug 26, 2014
PeopleTools 8.54 is a landmark release for Oracle/PeopleSoft, and you are starting to see a lot of information on it, both in this blog and elsewhere. One of the most important aspects of this release is the new Fluid User Experience. This is a broad-ranging subject, so you will see posts from a functional perspective (this post), a developer’s perspective, and announcements about Fluid applications that are being delivered by PeopleSoft.
Perhaps you’ve heard about how the Fluid user experience provides support for mobile applications. While that is certainly true, Fluid offers much more than that. What the Fluid UX really provides is the ability to access PeopleSoft applications across a variety of form factors from smart phones to tablets to desktops/laptops. Fluid applications present a common user experience on a variety of devices regardless of screen size. These applications are efficient and attractive as well, and offer the kind of user experience the modern work force is expecting. So no matter how your users access PeopleSoft, they will be presented with the same intuitive user experience. This post is the first of a series covering the main features that you will see in Fluid applications when you install them or if you develop some yourself. We’ll also cover how to get started with Fluid/PeopleTools 8.54, and how new Fluid application pages will work with your existing applications.
We’ll start today with perhaps the most fundamental feature of the Fluid UX: the Home Page. This page provides a base or launch pad for users to navigate to their essential work. Home pages are designed for specific roles, so they contain all the essentials for each role without extraneous menus or content that might distract users. In this way, Fluid Home Pages are conceptually similar to current home pages or dashboards, but Fluid home pages employ the new responsive UI that renders well on different form factors.
Let’s look at the main features of the Home page.
The first thing you’ll notice about Home Pages is that they contain a variety of Tiles. Tiles can serve as navigation mechanisms, but may also convey dynamic information. Tiles are similar in purpose to pagelets, but are not as interactive. They are responsive, however, and can automatically change size and position to accommodate different form factors.
Now let’s take a look at the Home Page header, which contains several useful features. Central is the Home Page drop down menu. This takes the place of tabs, and enables users to move among all the home pages that they use. Users may serve in a variety of roles in an enterprise, and they may therefore have more than one Home Page—one for each role they play. For example, a person may be a manager, but they are also an employee, and as such they have different activities and tasks they perform in both those roles. They would likely have different home pages for those different roles.
Next is the PeopleSoft Search widget. This provides for a search-centric navigation paradigm, and enables users to search from almost anywhere within their PeopleSoft system. In addition, with the new PeopleSoft search, users can search across pillars and retrieve results from all their PeopleSoft content. The search results are even actionable, so users can often complete a task right from the search results page.
Notifications are a handy mechanism that lets users know when there are tasks requiring their attention. The Notifications widget displays the number of items requiring attention. When the user clicks the widget a window displays the sum of all notifications from all applications to which the user has access. The user can act on those items directly from the Notifications window.
Next is the Actions widget. This menu is configurable, but one of the main actions available is Personalizations. This takes the user to a page where they can add or remove tiles from a Home Page, delete Home Pages, or even create new home pages and configure them.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we have the Navigation Bar widget. This opens the Nav Bar, which enables users to get anywhere in their PeopleSoft system. The Nav Bar is flexible configurable, powerful and intuitive.
The Nav Bar is a rich topic in its own right, and will be covered in a separate blog post in the near future. In fact, the Fluid user experience is a large subject, so we’ll be posting many more articles describing its features in greater depth. We’ll also provide a taste of developing Fluid applications.
If you would like more information on the Fluid UX (and everything PeopleSoft) please see the PeopleSoft Information Portal.
We will also be covering the Fluid UX in great depth in several sessions at Oracle Open World. Come see us at the conference! You’ll not only acquire useful information, but you can talk with us personally and see live demos of these features. Here are a few sessions in particular that cover the Fluid UX:
- A Closer Look at the New PeopleSoft Fluid User Experience (CON7567)
- PeopleSoft Mobility Deep Dive: PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface and More (CON7588)
- PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface: A Modern User Experience for PeopleSoft HCM on Any Device (CON7667)
- PeopleSoft PeopleTools 8.54: PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface in Action (CON7595)
Monday Aug 18, 2014
By Dave Bain-Oracle on Aug 18, 2014
The first place to start with Fluid UI is with the Fluid Home Page. Sometimes it’s referred to as the landing page, but it’s formally called the Fluid Home Page. It’s delivered with PeopleTools 8.54, and the nice thing about it is, it’s a component. That’s one thing you’ll discover with Fluid UI. Fluid UI is built int PeopleTools with Fluid UI. The Home Page is a component, the tiles or grouplets are group boxes, and the search and prompt pages are just pages. It makes it easy to find things, customize and brand the applications (and of course to see what’s going on) when you can open it in AppDesigner.
To see what makes a component fluid, let’s start with the Fluid Home Page. It’s a component called PT_LANDINGPAGE. You can open it in AppDesigner and see what’s unique and different about Fluid UI. If you open the Component Properties dialog, you’ll see a new tab called Fluid
On the Component Properties Fluid tab you’ll see the most important checkbox of all, Fluid Mode. That is the one flag that will tell PeopleSoft if the component is Fluid (responsive, dynamic layout) or classic (pixel perfect). Now that you know it’s a single flag, you know that a component can’t be both Fluid UI and Classic at the same time, it’s one or the other.
There are some other interesting fields on this page. The Small Form Factor Optimized field tells us whether or not to display this on a small device (think smarphone). Header Toolbar Actions offer standard options that are set at the component level so you have complete control of the components header bar.
You’ll notice that the PT_LANDINGPAGE has got some PostBuild PeopleCode. That’s to build the grouplets that are used to launch Fluid UI Pages (more about those later). Probably not a good idea to mess with that code!
The next thing to look at is the Page Definition for the PT_LANDINGPAGE component. When you open the page PT_LANDINGPAGE it will look different than anything you’ve ever seen. You’re probably thinking “What’s up with all the group boxes”? That is where Fluid UI is so different. In classic PeopleSoft, you put a button, field, group, any control on a page and that’s where it shows up, no questions asked. With Fluid UI, everything is positioned relative to something else. That’s why there are so many containers (you know them as group boxes). They are UI objects that are used for dynamic positioning.
The Fluid Home Page has some special behavior and special settings. The first is in the Web Profile Configuration settings (Main Menu->PeopleTools->Web Profile->Web Profile Configuration from the main menu). There are two checkboxes that control the behavior of Fluid UI. Disable Fluid Mode and Disable Fluid On Desktop.
Disable Fluid Mode prevents any Fluid UI component from being run from this installation. This is a web profile setting for users that want to run later versions of PeopleTools but only want to run Classic PeopleSoft pages. The second setting, Disable Fluid On Desktop allows the Fluid UI to be run on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, but prevents Fluid UI from running on a desktop computer.
Fluid UI settings are also make in My Personalizations (Main Menu->My Personalizations from the Main Menu), in the General Options section. In that section, each user has the choice to determine the home page for their desktop and for tablets.
Now that you know the Fluid UI landing page is just a component, and the profile and personalization settings, you should be able to launch one. It’s pretty easy to add a menu using Structure and Content, just make sure the proper security is set up. You’ll have to run a Fluid UI supported browser in order to see it. Latest versions of Chrome, Firefox and IE will do. Check the certification page on MOS for all the details.
When you open the first Fluid Landing Page, there’s not much there. Not to worry, we’ll get some content on it soon. Take a moment to navigate around and look at some of the header actions that were set up from the component properties. The home button takes you back to the classic system. You won’t see any notifications and the personalization doesn’t have any content to add. The NavBar icon on the top right has a lot of content, including a Navigator and Classic home. Spend some time looking through what’s available.
Stay tuned for more. Next up is adding some content.
Friday Aug 15, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Aug 15, 2014
Thursday Aug 14, 2014
By Mark.Hoernemann on Aug 14, 2014
PeopleTools 8.54 has numerous enhancements to offer, but it does have some browser requirements that go along with it as well. As customers look at the much improved user interface along with other enhancements being delivered in PeopleTools 8.54, they will look to take advantage of the release and plan their upgrade. As they plan, diligent customers will review certifications and notice that PeopleTools 8.54 certifies only newer browser releases. For Internet Explorer, IE 9 is the absolute minimum for the Classic UI, and IE 11 (or higher) is required to take advantage of the new Fluid UI. As they continue to prepare for the upgrade, some may discover that they have older applications that have hard requirements for a less than current IE release. Can you say IE 8? I have come across a couple scenarios already where customers have that one critical application that hasn’t been updated in 5+ years and requires the use of IE 8; it can’t work with IE9 or above. Another situation I’ve seen is where a customer isn’t scheduled to roll out IE 9 (or above) to their user base prior to their scheduled go live date.
As they evaluate options, some customers facing this situation are able to implement a dual browser environment using Chrome or Firefox for PeopleSoft, and an older IE browser required for antiquated applications. Other customers have begun to ask what PeopleTools functionality might simply not work if they decide to move forward with an uncertified browser environment. Since we test our software with certified browser combinations, we sometimes aren’t sure which features might be partially supported by older browsers, and which simply won’t work.
The problem is that older versions of Internet Explorer simply did not contain the functionality that current browsers have. While those versions render HTML and CSS content, they often do so in very specific, non-standard fashion. A state of the art application like PeopleSoft relies on rich functionality implemented in the latest versions of the HTML and CSS standards. PeopleSoft utilizes AJAX and the latest accessibility suggestions as outlined in the Web Accessible Initiative – Accessible Rich Internet Applications Suite (WAI-ARIA). IE 8 and previous browsers were not designed to support this functionality adequately, and cannot deliver the performance that modern browsers do.
We expect that the following areas would be problematic if using IE 8 or (gulp) something older with the Classic UI. Of course, Fluid UI functionality will not work.
- Layout issues
- Nonfunctional breadcrumbs
- Accessibility problems
- Performance issues
- Problematic charts and graphs
- Mobile Application Platform (MAP)
Note that there are almost certainly other issues that would arise from the use of outdated and uncertified browsers.
As you make plans to roll out the best release of PeopleTools yet, we STRONGLY recommend that you use only certified environment components. We test and certify environments for a reason - so that we can find as many issues as possible, before you do. Should you find a bug we missed, our Support organization stands ready to assist you in obtaining a resolution in your certified environment. We want your roll out to be as smooth as possible - take advantage of our testing and give your users the best experience available.
Monday Aug 04, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Aug 04, 2014
This entry is one of a series of posts that will introduce readers to important features of this landmark release.
PeopleTools has long supported accessibility, and with PeopleTools 8.54 we are able to conform to WCAG 2.0 AA standards. This means that upcoming PeopleSoft applications that are built on PeopleTools 8.54 will be designed to conform to those standards. Customers that build pages, add-on applications, or customizations can also create conforming pages using PeopleTools 8.54. Most enterprises--especially those with a global footprint--are requiring WCAG conformance for the software they use. In fact many companies that operate in the U.S. only are using the WCAG standards as the basis for their requirements.
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) are part of a series of guidelines published by the W3C's Web Accessibility Initiative. Their goal is to make content accessible, primarily for disabled users but also for all user agents, including highly limited devices, such as mobile phones. The current version (2.0) of the guidelines is also an ISO standard: ISO/IEC 40500:2012. WCAG 2.0 is an international standard used in most countries that enforce accessibility regulations. The new standard provides additional requirements to address new web technologies and has become the standard by which many organizations monitor software compliance. WCAG 2.0 extends standards described in WCAG 1.0 as well as the U.S.-specific regulations described in section 508 of Federal access standards.
Thursday Jul 31, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Jul 31, 2014
Friday Jul 18, 2014
By Dave Bain-Oracle on Jul 18, 2014
The Fluid UI is one of the most exciting new features PeopleSoft has delivered in years. With Fluid UI, app developers build responsive user interfaces that run on smartphones, mini tablets, tablets and even desktops/laptops using the same PeopleTools components, pages, records and peoplecode they’ve been using for years. There’s one difference, with classic PeopleSoft, the UI is pixel perfect, meaning what you see on the page is exactly what you built in page designer. With Fluid UI the contents of a page is based on styles, and may change depending on the size of the device. It’s all still HTML, just a new way of laying out the fields.
PeopleSoft is gearing up for this big change and will deliver a new set of responsive, mobile ready applications soon. In keeping with PeopleSoft's continuous delivery strategy, the new content will be delivered in a PUM instance, available on the 9.2 product line.
A lot of developers from customers and partners will want to get up to speed and become familiar with how Fluid UI works. An easy path is to wait until the application content is available, and use that content to learn from. For those that just can’t wait, we’ll start a mini-blog series that shows you how to build your first Fluid component. Stay tuned. We’re off to talk about the great new features of 8.54 at Reconnect in Chicago, but after that we’ll begin showing you how it all works.
Friday Jul 11, 2014
By PeopleTools Strategy on Jul 11, 2014
- Oracle's PeopleSoft PeopleTools 8.54 Documentation Home Page (requires My Oracle Support login) which includes:
- PeopleSoft Information Portal (The main source for everything PeopleSoft)
Wednesday Jul 09, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Jul 09, 2014
Oracle Secure Enterprise Search (SES) is the search engine on which the PeopleSoft Search Framework relies. Here is a comprehensive set of resources on My Oracle Support that provide information on the essential hardware for Oracle SES to help ensure capacity for peak concurrent usage of your PeopleSoft 9.2 environment. When planning your PeopleSoft 9.2 installation, follow these recommendations to insure the best possible performance and stability for your PeopleSoft environment.
Tuesday Jul 08, 2014
By Greg Kelly on Jul 08, 2014
As a follow on from the CPU Analysis posting and for the frequent enquiries we get regarding an end of support/life for a particular PeopleTools version and the versions of PeopleSoft applications which PeopleTools versions support, here is some background you can use for your own research and upgrade planning.
Oracle Support Document 1272860.1 (E-UPG How to Determine End of Support or End of Life of a PeopleTools or PeopleSoft Application) can be found at:
PeopleTools releases are designated as follows - 8.xx.yy
- xx is the minor release version
- yy is the patch version
PeopleTools versions are patched until 12 months after the GA of the next minor release version.
CPU (security) patches/fixes are provided for a further 12 months.
General Availability of PeopleTools 8.52 - Friday Oct 28, 2011
General Availability of PeopleTools 8.53 - Wednesday Feb 06, 2013
PeopleTools 8.52 was patched until 12 months after PeopleTools 8.53 GA - i.e. until Feb 2014
First CPU only patch release for PeopleTools 8.52 was April 2014
PeopleTools 8.52 support ends Jan 2015 (depending on SV's, alignment with CPU cycle, and some other circumstances, CPU may be extended for another cycle, i.e. additional 3 months)
Please see this document for Maximum PeopleTools releases for particular PeopleSoft versions:
Oracle Support Document 1348959.1 (Lifetime Support Summary for PeopleSoft Releases) can be found at:
PeopleSoft applications support is defined in Applications Unlimited support - http://www.oracle.com/us/support/library/lifetime-support-applications-069216.pdf
Here is an example from the Applications Unlimited support document for HRMS (HCM) 9.0
For additional information on Critical Patch Updates, Security Alerts and Third Party Bulletin, see http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/topics/security/alerts-086861.html
Tuesday Jul 01, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Jul 01, 2014
This paper has been around for a bit, but some people may not have seen it. As customers move to the latest releases of PeopleTools they are adopting our new search technology, and this paper can help with the understanding of all aspects of the new search. The paper covers the following subjects:
- Getting Started PeopleSoft Search Technology
- Understanding PeopleSoft Search Framework
- Defining Search Definition Queries
- Creating Query and Connected Query Search Definitions
- Creating File Source Search Definitions
- Creating Web Source Search Definitions
- Creating Search Categories
- Administering PeopleSoft Search Framework
- Working with PeopleSoft Search Framework Utilities
- Working with PeopleSoft Search Framework Security Features
- Working with PeopleSoft Search (once it is deployed)
As you can see, this paper covers it all. It is a valuable resource for anyone deploying and administering the new PeopleSoft search.
Monday Jun 30, 2014
By Greg Kelly on Jun 30, 2014
Questions often arise on the PeopleTools versions for which Critical Patch Updates have been published, or if a particular PeopleTools version is supported.
The attached page shows the patch number for PeopleTools versions associated with a particular CPU publication. This information will help you decide which CPU to apply and when to consider upgrading to a more current release.
The link in "CPU Date" goes to the landing page for CPU advisories, the link in the individual date, e.g. Apr-10, goes to the advisory for that date.
The page also shows the CVE's addressed in the CPU, a synopsis of the issue and the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) value.
To find more details on any CVE, simply replace the CVE number in the sample URL below.
Common Vulnerability Scoring System Version 2 Calculator
This page shows the components of the CVSS score
Example CVSS response policy http://www.first.org/_assets/cvss/cvss-based-patch-policy.pdf
All the details in this page are available on My Oracle Support and public sites.
The RED column indicates the last patch for a PeopleTools version and effectively the last support date for that version.
Applications Unlimited support does NOT apply to PeopleTools versions.
Monday Jun 23, 2014
By Matthew Haavisto on Jun 23, 2014
Extended support for the PeopleSoft Interaction Hub will be ending in October 2014. Sustaining support will still be available, but if you are an Interaction Hub (aka Portal) customer, you should consider upgrading to the latest release before that time. The 9.1/Revision 3 release will be available soon after PeopleTools 8.54 is released, so customers considering an upgrade may wish to move to Revision 3 when it becomes available.
See this document for general information on Oracle/PeopleSoft's Lifetime support program.
By Matthew Haavisto on Jun 23, 2014
We've just published the Release Value Proposition for the PeopleSoft Interaction Hub 9.1/Revision 3. The RVP provides an overview of the new features and enhancements planned for the upcoming release, which is aligned with PeopleTools 8.54 . The release value proposition is intended to help you assess the business benefits of upgrading to the latest release and to plan your IT projects and investments.
The highlights of the RVP cover the following subjects in the upcoming release:
- PeopleSoft Fluid User Interface updates
- Interaction hub cluster setup improvements
- Simplified content creation and publication
- WCAG 2.0 adoption
Look for the availability of this release in the near future.
- Converting a Classic PIA Component to Fluid UI
- Jumpstart Patch Application and Installs with PeopleTools Templates
- Consumer Security for the season and Today's World
- Important! PeopleTools Requirements for PeopleSoft Interaction Hub
- New Interaction Hub Data Sheet Available
- PeopleTools/Interaction Hub Dependencies Doc--Updated for Revision 3
- New Central Resource for Info on PeopleSoft Update Manager
- Open World Recap
- General Availability announcement for Oracle Application Management Pack 184.108.40.206.0 for PeopleSoft
- PeopleSoft Interaction Hub 9.1/Revision 3 Now Available