Monday Apr 11, 2016

Tuning the Purging Strategy; Oracle SOA Suite Metadata Repository Performance Management by Martijn van der Kamp

clip_image002My colleague, Paul Wever, wrote an excellent blog about turning the MDS to increase performance. Purging is something we do at almost all our customers. Paul provides excellent tips, tricks and insights to increase the performance.
In my job as system administrator/DBA, projects related to Oracle’s SOA Suite I put a lot of emphasis on configuration of the environment, like the OS, the Oracle database, WebLogic, OSB, and other products. Part of the Oracle SOA Suite is the Oracle Metadata Repository, where all metadata and run-time data of applications is stored. This repository is often forgotten in performance management, but deserves special attention when dealing with performance improvements.
This blog is part of a series of blogs around Oracle SOA Suite Metadata Repository Performance Management. In this blog we will show how a performance gain of factor more than 100 was achieved while purging the Metadata Repository.
Terminology
Oracle Metadata Repository
Oracle Metadata Repository is an Oracle database that contains additional schemas to support Oracle Fusion Middleware and its components, for design and run-time management of the applications. Oracle SOA Suite mainly uses two components:

  • The Metadata Store (MDS) to store all SCA artifacts
  • The Dehydration Store (SOAINFRA) to persist composite instances and to audit composite instance

Case
Investigating performance issues around purging the Oracle Metadata Repository, I stumbled over the following delete statement that was executed during purging the Oracle Metadata Repository: Read the complete article here.

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Sunday Apr 10, 2016

Deploying SOA across Active-Active Data Centres by Simon Haslam

clip_image002I've recently started on another active-active SOA infrastructure project and thought I'd share a few introductory notes since it's a relatively new topic in the context of Fusion Middleware.

History

Over recent years within Europe some customers have accepted a close geographic distance (e.g. 15 km) between data centres in return for a high bandwidth, low latency interconnect (typically ‘dark’ or dedicated fibre). This is to enable them to share normal production workload across both sites – so called "active/active" data centres – which is contrary to the traditional approach of having a highly segregated Disaster Recovery (DR) site (an "active/standby" topology).

Prior to the mid-2013 Oracle supported a single approach to High Availability (HA), which was clustering within a single site, as described by Fusion Middleware High Availability Guide, and not stretched across two sites. The Oracle supported approach to Disaster Recovery was entire site fail-over using an active-standby model, as shown below (from Fusion Middleware Disaster Recovery Guide):

A few large customers had negotiated agreements with Oracle to support architectures that were simultaneously active in 2 data centres, but these were people spending considerable sums on licences and ACS support.

Network Trend

Over the last 5 years the cost of site-to-site fibre has fallen considerably with “metropolitan” scale data centre links becoming common. Whilst the term Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) originally meant a connection across a city, these days it tends to also apply to low latency connections between neighbouring conurbations, typically running Ethernet over DWDM. The scale of a MAN falls in between the Local Area Network (LAN) within a single data centre and the traditional Wide Area Network (WAN) which can span hundreds of miles. Read the complete article here.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

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Saturday Apr 09, 2016

Scriptable MFT: The Ginsu Knife of MFT Callouts by Dave Berry

Overview?

Scriptable File Transfers are "Groovy", or Node or Python, batch files or plain ole boring Bourne shell scripts invoked by the MFT runtime server. Maybe you want to maintain a library of custom callouts, java code or manage moving them from one environment to another? No problem, use the Ginzu knife of callouts to extend MFT, the Run Script Pre-Processing callout now available on the MFT OTN page at bit.ly/learnmft. This baby can do it all, file processing, add new endpoints, enable REST, notify or validate. Got your attention, read on for more details or if you're already sold, just click the link to download and open the README file.

Use Cases

I hate repeating myself but there is virtually no limit to what can be done with this tool but before we blogstorm on this topic, lets briefly review MFT Java callouts from previous blog entries and the official Oracle MFT 12.1.3 documentation. To create a callout from scratch, you have these 6 basics steps.

  1. Create code
  2. Create XML defintiion
  3. Compile
  4. Import
  5. Copy jar to disk
  6. Test

Not really that painful for the DIY types but to use RunScript, you can skip the 1st 3 and just do import, copy and test.

  1. Import Sample Transfer
  2. Copy the jar (as described in the readme)
  3. Test basic scenarios
Internal Processing Things Callouts Can Do
  • Rename and Replace file with  different file
  • Reject a file and return an error
  • Update the monitoring dashboard transfer report
    • protocol headers section
  • Duplicate the file elsewhere
Source Pre-Processing

Source pre-processing is triggered right after a file has been received and has identified a matching Transfer. This is the best place to do validation or extend MFT to go grab a file from some external source. There is an FTPGet.sh example in the RunScript download that shows how to do custom FTP commands such a SITE often needed when interacting with mainframes.

Target Pre-Processing

Target pre-processing triggered just before the file is delivered to the Target by the Transfer. This is a good place to send files to external locations and protocols not supported in MFT. RunScript supports retry semantics and if an error is received, it is reflected in the MFT monitoring dashboard where it can be diagnosed or resubmitted.

Target Post-Processing

RunScriptPre can not be invoked for Target Post processing. A separate callout would be required for that. Post Target processing is not suited for file manipulation and is best for notifications, analytic/reporting or maybe remote endpoint file rename. Read the complete article here.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

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Friday Apr 08, 2016

SOA Suite 12c: Best practices for project structure and deployment by Maarten Smeets

clip_image002Efficient usage of version control has specific requirements to allow identification of versions and synchronous development on different branches. Design time you will want to have your Service Bus projects in a single application in order to allow usage of shared objects. At deploy-time or when creating a release, you want to group SCA composites together with Service Bus projects. How do you combine these different requirements?

In this article I’ll describe several practices and considerations which can help you structuring your version control and artifact repository. The main challenge is finding a workable balance between the amount/complexity your deployment scripts and developer productivity / focus on business value. A lot of scripts (large investment) can make it easy for developers on the short term, however those scripts can easily become a burden.

If you are just looking for some good practices to structure your version control and artifact repository, look at the list below. If however you want to know why I think certain things are good and bad practice, read on.

Development

Use a per technology structure

SCA composites can use customizable MDS directories (you can update the path in adf-config.xml and even use variables. See here for example). In order to use shared objects in your Service Bus project however, they should be part of the same application (in order to avoid compilation errors in JDeveloper). The application poms for the Service Bus and SCA composites use the Maven module structure to refer to their projects. This means the application should be able to find the projects. When creating a new application with a new project for SCA composites and Service Bus, the application has the projects as sub-directories. SCA composites and Service Bus projects require separate applications. Thus there are several reasons why you would want to group projects per technology. This makes development more easy, avoids the dirty fixes needed for a custom directory structure and is more in line with the default structure provides when creating a new project.

Version control structure

A version control system (VCS) should allow you to identify different versions. The versions of the software also live in the artifact repository. If you want to create a fix on a specific version of the software, it is usual to create a tag from that version, branch the tag and fix it there since the trunk might have evolved further and sometimes contains changes you do not want yet. Read the complete article here.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

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Thursday Apr 07, 2016

Building SOA 12c Projects that Include Java Code with Maven by Adam Desjardin

clip_image002While testing the Maven build scripts I shared in my previous post, I found a few issues while building more complex composite projects.  Both of the issues I found were related to included Java code in the project. One of which has a work around while the other does not.

The first issue was with using the Java Embedding activity in a BPEL process.  This results in a Java class being generated for the BPEL process, which then was failing to compile.

The second issue was with custom Java classes in the SOA composite project which were then used in a Spring component.  These classes were not being compiled, causing an exception at run time when the spring bean was invoked.

BPEL and Java Embedding

Inside that activity I put a simple System.out.prinln as shown: Read the complete article here.

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Wednesday Apr 06, 2016

SOA Suite 12c: Collect & Deploy SCA composites & Service Bus artifacts using Maven by Maarten Smeets

clip_image002An artifact repository has many benefits for collaboration and governance of artifacts. In this blog post I will illustrate how you can fetch SCA composites and Service Bus artifacts from an artifact repository and deploy them. The purpose of this exercise is to show that you do not need loads of custom scripts to do these simple tasks. Why re-invent a wheel when Oracle already provides it?

This example has been created for SOA Suite 12.1.3. This will not work as-is for 11g and earlier since they lack OOTB Maven support for SOA Suite artifacts. In order to start using Maven to do command-line deployments, you need to have some Oracle artifacts in your repository. See http://biemond.blogspot.nl/2014/06/maven-support-for-1213-service-bus-soa.html on how to put them there. I have used two test projects which were already in the repository. A SCA composite called HelloWorld_1.0 and a Service Bus project also called HelloWorld_1.0. In my example, the SCA composite is in the GroupId nl.amis.smeetsm.composite and the Service Bus project is in the GroupId nl.amis.smeetsm.servicebus. You can find information on how to deploy to an artifact repository (e.g. Nexus) here.

SCA Composite

Quick & dirty with few dependencies

I have described getting your SCA composite out of Nexus and into an environment here. The process described there has very few dependencies. First you manually download your jar file using the repository API and then you deploy it using a Maven command like:

mvn com.oracle.soa.plugin:oracle-soa-plugin:deploy -DsarLocation=HelloWorld-1.0.jar -Duser=weblogic -Dpassword=Welcome01 -DserverURL=http://localhost:7101

In order for this to work, you need to have a (dummy) pom.xml file in the current directory. You cannot use the project pom file for this. The only requisites (next to a working Maven installation) are;

  • the sar file
  • serverUrl and credentials of the server you need to deploy to

Notice that you do not even need an Oracle home location for this. In order to build the project from sources however, you do need an Oracle home. Read the complete article here.

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Tuesday Apr 05, 2016

SOA Expert Series Webcast April 6th 2016

http://www.middleworks.com/wp-content/uploads/MW_4c_leftaligned_35px.jpgWe’ve been talking about this for a couple years now, but finally did it. The idea is to take the very popular Open World panel session called “Oracle SOA Suite Tips and Tricks from Oracle Engineering and A-team” and bring this content to a much wider audience via webinar. We tested the waters with the first webinar in Jan, 2016 and it was even more successful than we had hoped.

We are now extending this into a larger series, to promote sharing of knowledge and expertise with the SOA Suite community at large. We have the commitment of the A-team and lots of good content from engineering, partners as well as customers. So, please check out the information below and register for the series.

And, please email any suggestions you have for future topics or proposals you have to present content of your own.



Upcoming Events

Weds Apr 6, 9AM PDT – Upgrading to SOA Suite 12c:
Tips and Best Practices from Engineering, Customers and A-team

Register Now!

(For those of you who have already upgraded to 12c, or are planning to in the next 12 months, please fill out our survey.)

In this webinar, we have put together a panel to share tips, tricks and best practices for upgrading to SOA Suite 12c. By now, many customers have made this transition, but there are still a very large base of 11g installations. This session will share real world experiences and lessons learned from those who have been down this path to those who will follow. As usual, we will have an active panel with brief, focused presentations and pointers to much more content which can be digested following the session. On the panel will be the SOA product management/engineering team responsible for the upgrade, and customers or partners describing the easiest and hardest parts of their upgrades, as well as some of the new opportunities/components available once your upgrade is complete. Come prepared with your questions and comments!

Planned for the panel or available for chat questions:

  • Antony Reynolds and Jay Kasi from the Oracle Service and Cloud Integration prod mgmt team, responsible for 12c upgrades, providing an overview and best practices for upgrade and describing a customer case study
  • Danilo Schmiedel of Opitz, an Oracle ACE Director talking about lessons learned and best practices from a 12c upgrade experience
  • Deepak Arora of the Oracle A-Team with some upgrade recommendations
  • David Shaffer of Middleworks, moderating and providing a list of additional resources
  • Kathryn Lustenberger from the Oracle Service and Cloud Integration prod mgmt team responsible for this series
  • Vamsee Goruganthu from the Oracle QA team, responsible for SOA 12c upgrade QA

Check back regularly as we plan out future events or email dave@middleworks.com to be put on the mailing list for an invitation.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

For regular information on Oracle SOA Suite become a member in the SOA & BPM Partner Community for registration please visit www.oracle.com/goto/emea/soa (OPN account required) If you need support with your account please contact the Oracle Partner Business Center.

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Composite Sensors in Oracle SOA Suite 12c by Jennie DeRosa

clip_image002Overview

Implementing composite sensors within a SOA solution provides the ability to define trackable fields on messages and enables you to find a specific composite instance by searching for a field or fields within a message. For example, a sensor could be defined for an invoice number within a message, thus allowing us to search and find the instance where the invoice number in question is found.

While this functionality is not new within Oracle SOA Suite 12c, there are some improved capabilities that have been included in this release, which will be covered in this article.

Composite Sensors Review

Composite sensors can be defined within a SOA composite application in several components:

  • Service component (exposed service)
  • Reference component (external reference)
  • Mediator or BPEL component that have subscribed to a business event (publishing an event cannot have a sensor)

Within these components, a composite sensor can be defined in a couple of different ways. One way is to specify an existing variable as the sensor (as shown below). Another way is to define by an expression with the help of the expression builder. The third way is to define using properties (e.g. message header properties). Read the complete article here.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

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Monday Apr 04, 2016

StreamExplorer and Oracle Event Processor – installation instructions to quickly get going by Lucas Jellema

clip_image002This article discusses the installation of Oracle Event Processor 12c on Linux 64bit and the subsequent installation of Stream Explorer on top of OEP 12c. This article assumes Linux 64bit as the operating system. More specifically: it assumes the environment that can be produced following the instructions in my article Quickly produce a Linux 64 bit Ubuntu 14.04 Desktop environment using Vagrant and Puppet – as starting point for Oracle installations – Ubuntu 14.04 64bit plus Desktop and JDK 7U79. Note that other Linux 64bit environments are probably fine (even better maybe as Ubuntu is not officially certified with OEP). Note that in a subsequent article I am going to leverage Vagrant and Puppet to automatically install OEP and Stream Explorer – so as to stamp out VM images for researching OEP and SX without manual actions.

I assume that the Linux environment has a user oracle in a group oracle and a directory (tree) /u01/app/oracle of which user oracle is the owner. This directory is where the ORACLE_HOME will be based.

The following steps are required:

1. Download Software Packages for OEP and SX and JDeveloper

2. Install Oracle Event Processor

3. Install Stream Explorer (as OPatch on top of OEP)

4. Create an OEP Domain

5. Start the OEP Domain and access Stream Explorer in browser

optional: 6. Install JDeveloper and create a connection to OEP domain

1. Download Software Packages for OEP and SX and JDeveloper

Go to http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/complex-event-processing/downloads/index.html, accept the OTN license agreement, and download three files:

  • OEP – ofm_sx_generic_12.1.3.0.0_disk1_1of2.zip
  • Stream Explorer – ofm_sx_generic_12.1.3.0.1_disk1_2of2.zip
  • (optional) JDeveloper – fmw_12.1.3.0.0_soaqs_Disk1_1of1.zip

Read the complete article here.

SOA & BPM Partner Community

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Sunday Apr 03, 2016

SOA Suite on Docker by Jorge Quilcate

clip_image002

Visit Docker here

SOA & BPM Partner Community

For regular information on Oracle SOA Suite become a member in the SOA & BPM Partner Community for registration please visit www.oracle.com/goto/emea/soa (OPN account required) If you need support with your account please contact the Oracle Partner Business Center.

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