Migrating from Stellent UCM & IBPM – A little foresight can alleviate a lot of trouble

Migrations from systems like IBPM to ILINX can be fraught with issues that can bite the unwary in very bad places. However, if you are aware of such problems, you can plan ways to mitigate them and have a successful migration in the end.

One issue we run into is documents that have a page or two with corrupt images. Perhaps when the page was first contributed to IBPM, a system or other type of issue caused the image to be corrupt or cease to exist. Either physical hardware or a software bug can be the culprit. The product we use for migration, ILINX Export, will flag this document as an error, skip it and move on to the next document in RECID order. Once the export is completed, these flagged documents have to be re-visited. Once a determination is made that an image is indeed corrupt, and the chance to recover it from backups is extremely remote, the document can be deleted or manually exported from IBPM without the corrupt image.

Another matter we’ve dealt with is related to non-tiff images. This category is “universal” type images, and includes PDF, DOC, XLS, MSG and a host of other file types that IBPM supports. There are options within the ILINX Export tool that will allow the export of these files types in their native format through the IBPM SDK. Or the export can be done through database manipulation that can directly access the image file and then “unzip” the universal file into its native format.

The issue that can be encountered here is twofold, and manifests itself when migrating to another repository. One, IBPM stores the native file zipped up with another file that contains metadata and has no file extension. When the document is unzipped there are two files, one with a valid file type and one without. Typically, backend repositories require file extensions, which are useful for performance, like displaying file type icon on the user interface, and a variety of other reasons. During the migration, importing to the backend may be impeded due to a lack of extensions on the metadata files. Secondly, if the extension of the universal file has been altered or damaged in storage, the file type may not be a standard that the new repository will accept. In any case, having your migration come to a screeching halt is something to avoid.

Awareness is the key. By proactively incorporating a response into your migration plan, you can eliminate much heartburn and anxiety. That is where the expertise and knowledge of a seasoned Optika / Stellent / Oracle integrator, like ImageSource, comes into play. We have helped many customers build migration plans that take these and other items into account, so the migrations are as smooth and worry-free as possible.

Steps for a successful ECM migration using ILINX Export

As a Sr. Systems Engineer at ImageSource, I am currently engaged on a project where the customer had a need to migrate all content out of their Stellent IBPM software platform. (This is the same product stack as Optika Acorde and Oracle IPM; the product has gone through a few name changes over the years with the different acquisitions.) In my experience, I have found there are several steps that need to be taken when considering migrating content from your current ECM repository.

The first steps in any migration are to analyze existing content and ensure that the majority has been discovered, identified and prioritized.

  1. Categorize content into categories (document types, applications, folders, etc.)
  2. Prioritize content based on:
    1. A business value rating to the content
    2. A difficulty level associated with the migration effort

Categorizing Content:
All discovered content should be cataloged by the indexes or field data that exists for it and the file formats used. All systems that may be migrated need to be investigated for existing export tools that can export data into various formats, such as CSV or directly to custom databases. If the system is lacking any direct export capability built into the product it is necessary to either develop a migration tool or purchase one. In my current project we are using a tool developed by ImageSource called ILINX Export. ILINX Export supports migrations out of Oracle IPM (along with Stellent IBPM and Optika Acorde), WebCenter Content 11g, EMC AppXtender, IBM FileNet P8, and IBM FileNet ImageServices. Continue reading

ADF 11g: Passing Information to Bind Variables

For the past year, I’ve been working with a customer on a large Oracle BPM project.  As part of the project there are a couple forms written using Oracle’s Application Development Framework (ADF.) I’d like to do a small series on this blog of useful techniques that have helped me with a successful implementation in a large scale production environment. Today, we’ll be talking about how to pass information from the ADF binding layer to a named parameter that is setup on a view object in the model layer.  This comes up pretty often and there are some neat things you can do using the technique.

Let’s take a look at our view object first.

The query for the GetEmployeesInDepartment view object.

The query for the GetEmployeesInDepartment view object.

For this discussion we are using the HR sample schema that comes with an Oracle database. As you can see this view object uses a query that has a single bind variable that represents a department id. Its result set will be all the employees which belong to the supplied department. Our use case is going to be a table that will display employee information based on the department selected in a drop down list. There are many ways to do this type of thing in ADF and this isn’t necessarily the best use case for it but it has the advantage of being simple to follow and explain. We will talk a bit about some other uses for this technique later on. Continue reading

Converting Image Files

At some point there is going to be a need to convert an Imaging Systems image files from one format to another format when moving to a new Imaging system.  ILINX® Import can be used to handle the conversion.

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Getting Started With Oracle BPM 11g

In a previous blog post I wrote a step by step guide on how to install Oracle BPM 11g. That was all good and well, but now what?

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Fusion Middleware Patchset 5 in the Wild

Oracle slipped out the fifth patchset release for the Fusion Middleware products during the middle of the night on the 22nd of February.  For the most part things will be very familiar to longtime users.  One of the most visible changes is that the branding has caught up with the software.  Oracle Content Server is now Webcenter Content,  Imaging and Process Management is now Webcenter Imaging.  It feels like an end of an era!

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Oracle BPM 11g Install for a Development Environment

Who is finally ready to get off their laurels and start looking at Oracle BPM 11g? I knew I was, the question I had was: where do I start? I figured the best place to start would be to actually install the software. A special thanks to one of our Systems Engineer, Les Harris who helped in getting me going on installing the software. I installed the entire Oracle BPM 11g stack on my laptop and documented the procedure.

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The Case for 11g

ORacle Fusion Middleware 11g

Welcome to the Jungle

A Look Back

Oracle IPM 11g is the latest version of the venerable Image and Process Management product but the product has a long history.  IPM was developed by Optika in the late 90s with the name eMedia as a workflow enabled replacement for an imaging solution named FilePower.  The eMedia brand was phased out at version 2.0 and replaced with the Acorde name.  We still have some clients who are successfully running Acorde installations to this day.

Optika was bought out by a company called Stellent and the product went through another rebranding phase this time as Imaging and Business Process Management (IBPM).  It was at this time the version was bumped up from Acorde 4.0 to Stellent IBPM 7.5 to bring the product in line with Stellent’s overall product versioning.

Finally Oracle buys Stellent and brings the Stellent Content Server and IBPM products under their umbrella.  Content Server turns into Universal Content Management and IBPM turns into Oracle Image and Process Management 10gR3.

So we’ve finally arrived at IPM.  A key thing to remember that during this period of development and rebranding is that the product remained essentially the same.  It operated on the same principles and was architected in the same manner.  Not to say there weren’t improvements between eMedia 1.0 and IPM 10gR3 but these improvements embodied natural evolution of the product.

This is true no longer; IPM 11g has changed the game.

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Oracle Content Management – IPM 11g Links

Looking for some useful links to information about installing Oracle IPM 11g?  We have been performing successful Oracle IPM 11g implementations and will be providing useful information, as well as, tips and tricks on this blog.

Here are the main links that have been leveraging for some valuable information related to this next generation ECM Suite:

Oracle Content Management Description URL
Overview http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/content-management/overview/index.html
Downloads http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/content-management/downloads/index.html
Documentation http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/content-management/documentation/index.html
UCM 11g Downloads http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/content-management/downloads/index-085241.html
IPM 11g Downloads http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/middleware/content-management/downloads/index-ipm-088963.html
Ryan Keller
ImageSource, Inc.

Nexus 2010

I recently attended the Technology conference put on by my company. Nexus®, as it is dubbed, is where we try to bring in all the local and national minds in our ECM space together. On the vendor side we had both hardware and software manufacturers represented. On the standards side we had credits offered for PMI, ARMA, AHIMA, and IAPP just by attending. There was pre-conference training on  Oracle I/PM11g, a risk management course, and an AIIM ECMp course. For the user community we had attendees from Fortune 50 companies  down to small government agencies and everything in between. Sounds great right? It was.

As with any conference, you have to make it to the break out session that relate to you, and make connections with people that you can relate to. The latter was easy of course, we are all living and breathing the ECM world. Even if your content is different, the pain points are nearly always the same. It’s great to connect with others and find out their resolutions to similar issues, their approach to common problems, and to hear their success stories. Besides giving a presentation on our product ILINX® Integrate (something I have blogged about in the past), I also attended sessions on advanced document capture, ILINX Content Store, Oracle I/PM, and sessions on project management.

The breakout sessions had real value for me. Continue reading