ILINX Export High Availability Configuration

ILINX Export supports the Microsoft Cluster Service (MSCS) for High Availability.  MSCS provides the ability for a group of independent servers to be managed as single system.  ILINX Export is a Cluster-Unaware Service and relies on the Generic Service Resource Type to manage services as a cluster.

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Database Lookups Made Easy

Database lookups are easy with ILINX® Content Store.  Recently I configured a few and thought I would share some of the features.  I am assuming that you are somewhat familiar with database lookups in general, so this is not a step-by-step but just to point out some cool features.

Here is the application that we need a lookup for and we are going to base it off the SSN field.  We will need to click edit on the field and enable/configure the lookup

Fill in all the information to make the connection.  Continue reading

Installation Hand Off to the Client

As an integrator there are many things we can do as far as making the install a success, but only a very limited amount we can do to guarantee its continuing success. One of the most often seen issues is the handoff of an installation to the client, in particular the maintenance of the database.

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Lighten your LiquidOffice Development Load

If you are developing forms in LiquidOffice, chances are form owners have asked you to include drop lists to ensure data integrity in your backend database or repository.  And just as likely they have asked for drop list value changes AFTER the form has been published. Or sometimes there is a business need to accommodate frequent drop list value changes. In many cases it is advantageous to allow users to make the drop list value changes themselves.   One approach is to use a LiquidOffice drop list maintenance form, and restrict access to this form to the appropriate power users. Whenever the need for a change arises the maintenance form is available.

To get started, create a database to house the drop list values.  Each field in the table will correspond to a drop list on your form.  Populate these fields with the initial values the form owner has provided.

Next, create a connect agent to your database.  In LiquidOffice Management Console, highlight the Connect Agent icon then select File/ Add.  The wizard walks you through steps where you name the connect agent and the type (SQL DataBase Read/Write in my case). Select a JDBC driver and modify the JDBC URL to reflect your hostname and database name.  Provide credentials, select ‘LookUp Only’, and you are done.

When designing your form’s drop list, go into the properties to select Control type: drop list and List source: dynamic (from database).  You can then select the connect agent, table and column and you are set.  If you want the display column to be different than the storage column, click Storage Column and select another column from the drop list. An example: Display = “Arizona”,  Storage =”AZ”.   Remember you must publish the form to confirm the drop list is correctly populated.

Now create another LiquidOffice form to perform maintenance on the drop-list table.  Continue reading

It’s All About the Database

The key component to any content management/archive/workflow system is the database. Many times this key component is overlooked at the time a new imaging system is put in place, often the database is placed on an existing server which already has many critical duties or it is a new install placed on the same server as the imaging system software. These choices might be fine for a proof of concept, but as a system takes on more data and more users the database becomes the performance bottle neck.

As with any database, issues will rarely arise within its first year of usage, the data is slow to grow and performance of queries is quick and responsive since the load put on the system is minimal. During this time with minimal data the number of active users in the system at any one time is low as well. There are more inserts taking place than data retrievals. But the point of putting in one of these systems is not that the amount of data and the number of users will remain small for any length of time; most organizations bought their software and underwent the installation and configuration process with the goal of creating a vast repository that would make access to their content easy and quick for a large community within their organization.

It is when the system has finally been adopted fully and has enough content to be useful that the undersized database server will start to become a problem for the return of data to the users. I have seen systems where the input of new data is scheduled to go in during the off hours to compensate for the inability of the database server to perform inserts as well as retrievals during business hours. By this time the money for the original project is long since gone and often times the stake holders have forgotten about the decision to use a less than desirable database server configuration as a short term solution during the software’s “Pilot phase”. Continue reading

ProStor and Oracle IPM — First Look

ProStor Systems sells a line of disk cartridge archival systems with some very compelling features. A representative of ProStor attended Nexus 2009 to demonstrate their systems, and as an Oracle IPM architect I was intrigued to see how well ProStor’s InfiniVault® would work in an IPM environment. So an associate and I visited ProStor’s headquarters in Boulder, Colorado with an Oracle IPM test system to put the InfiniVault system through its paces.

We hooked up a direct network crossover cable to the archival system in the same NT Workgroup, and then attempted to configure IPM to talk to it. We found we had to set the IPM services account name and login to be exactly the same as configured in InfiniVault. Note that InfiniVault requires at least an 8 character password so the IPM services account must follow suit.

Once we had communication, images and universal documents flowed quickly into the archive system. Retrieval of objects from the archive system was very fast. We think setting IPM to archive older objects from expensive RAID 5 magnetic storage to InfiniVault can provide an opportunity to utilize the faster storage for current daily object retrieval, while placing less often accessed objects into long term storage.

The ProStor system comes with a built in full text indexing feature we thought might be useful with IPM but unfortunately IPM stores all universal documents in a proprietary binary, with no file extension, which is what InfiniVault keys on to apply IFilters in order to index the data from many common file structures.

InfiniVault also comes with a sophisticated records management capability but this can’t be used with IPM in any meaningful way due to the way IPM stores and tracks objects. However, the records management system could be used with many other common activities in an enterprise since InfiniVault can be used for all general archival tasks within an organization.

Many more features are available with ProStor archival systems and we will be recommending them to our customers for IPM object archival. Feel free to contact me or  ImageSource for more information.

Clint Lewis
Senior Technical Architect
ImageSource, Inc.