28 May 2013

Oracle Fusion Middleware

Oracle Fusion Middleware

Oracle's complete family of application infrastructure products—from the #1 Java application server to SOA and enterprise portals—are integrated with Oracle Applications and technologies to speed implementation and lower the cost of management and change. Best-of-breed offerings and unique hot-pluggable capabilities provide a foundation for innovation and extend the business value of existing investments.

This comprehensive family of products is now even more seamlessly integrated to help you create, run, and manage agile and intelligent business applications. Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g's
hot-pluggable architecture allows you to make the most of your current investments in applications and technology, while also taking advantage of modern hardware and software architectures. The goal of this release is to maximize your efficiency in both IT and business processes to give you the agility to adapt and innovate. Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g is the foundation for innovation.



Modular Middleware Approach Leverages Existing Investments
Oracle Fusion Middleware's hot-pluggable capabilities enables customers to "drop & deploy" various Oracle Fusion Middleware products into their existing IT environments. Spanning from industry-leading business process management and development tools to best-of-breed identity management and application server technology, hot-pluggable Oracle Fusion Middleware gives customers more choices, long-term flexibility, and better use of their current technology investment. Oracle Fusion Middleware supports the Eclipse development environment in addition to its own JDeveloper SOA development tool, and offers a range of interoperability features for Microsoft .Net and Office.




What is E-Business Suite Release 12?

Oracle’s E-Business Suite Release 12 is Oracle’s latest version of their business applications. Not all EBusiness Suite customers are running this latest release – Oracle has customers still using Releases 10.7/11.0 (though hopefully not many), and a lot of customers are running on various point releases of Release 11i, Release 12’s predecessor. Oracle also supports customers running other business applications, including the JD Edwards, PeopleSoft and Siebel product lines.



What are the Fusion Applications?

The Fusion Applications will unify best-of-breed capabilities from all Oracle Applications in a complete suite delivered on Oracle’s open technology. For those of us who only support the E-Business Suite of Applications, when Oracle says “all Oracle Applications”, they mean the JD Edwards EnterpriseOne, JD Edwards World, Oracle E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft and Siebel product lines.

These new applications will focus on end-to-end business processes like Order2Cash, Procure2Pay, and Hire2Retire. They will provide more cost effective integration, flexible business processes and extensibility and they will fuse processes, people, and products to leverage the best parts of each. The Fusion Applications will embrace a service-oriented and standards-based information architecture.


Fusion Application Design Principles

The application design principles for Fusion are straightforward. First, Fusion Applications must improve business insight by offering real-time operational analysis to enable taking action. They will accomplish this by using Oracle’s Event Driven Architecture, BI Tools, and Dashboards. Second, the Fusion Applications must mirror Adaptive Industry Processes to make it simpler to integrate and customize the applications to match your business requirements. They will accomplish this by using Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Business Process Management (BPM). Finally, the Fusion Applications must provide a better ownership experience. Oracle’s goal is to provide applications that allow zero downtime and increased automation. To do this, Oracle is investing heavily in lifecycle management.

Focus on Business Process Management and Improvement

With Business Process Management (BPM), the various stakeholders, from business analysts to developers to end users can work together to make process improvements using existing applications. Business Process Analysis (BPA) tools simulate business and process models before implementation using real customer data. Business Process Execution (BPE) tools allow customers to implement new processes and then monitor and optimize those processes using Business Process Monitoring (BAM) tools.



Fusion Middleware is the “Enabler”

Oracle has coined the term “the Fusion Effect”, and defines it as the sustainable competitive advantage achieved by continuous blending of business insight and adaptable processes. This effect depends on Fusion Middleware and its family of more than 40 software products. Fusion Middleware leverages the Oracle Application Server 10g (the 11g Application Server is currently in beta testing) and takes advantage of software from many Oracle acquisitions. Of course, Fusion Middleware is built on industry standards, which is what makes it so flexible and adaptable.

Fusion Middleware Areas

Fusion Middleware solutions address several areas, including Development Tools, User Interaction, Business Intelligence, Integration and Process Management, the Application Server, the Grid infrastructure, Systems Management and Identity Management:



Applications Integration Architecture (AIA)

Oracle’s Applications Integration Architecture (AIA) provides an open standards based framework for creating cross-application business processes that support the way you run your business today, while paving the way for your long term, strategic business transformation plans. Powered by Fusion Middleware, the AIA includes a pre-built SOA Integration Layer for BPEL. Best Practice Processes are represented as abstract models and extensible execution flows. Enterprise Business Objects provide a standard definition of business objects. Enterprise Business Services provide a common service definition.


Best of Breed Application Service Components provide logic and data. Hubs are used to Consolidate Key Entities to a common definition.


The AIA components are the Foundation Pack, the Process Integration Packs and the Industry Reference Models. The Foundation Pack leverages SOA (Service-Oriented Architecture) to allow customers to create custom process integrations more quickly and cost-effectively than traditional approaches. The Process Integration Packs provide flexible out-of-the-box process integrations that can be easily extended and  evolved as business requirements change. Oracle’s Industry Reference Models provide customers with tools and documented business process flows to adapt to specific marketplace requirements by using industry best practices.

This architectural model provides an open, standards-based architecture that accelerates time-to-value. The model provides pre-built, sustainable integrations to reduce implementation risk and cost. The extension framework protects your investment from upgrades. Documented best practice reference models help you optimize business operations. The application independent design makes it easy to plug and play new applications, including the Fusion Applications.



Business Intelligence Tools

Business Intelligence (BI) is the process of getting information about your business from available data.

Oracle provides a number of different BI tools, including:


Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition (OBIEE) – formerly Siebel Analytics, OBIEE is a comprehensive suite of enterprise BI products that deliver a full range of analysis and reporting capabilities

BI Publisher – formerly XML Publisher, is an enterprise reporting solution that allows users to create, manage and deliver all kinds of highly formatted documents

Oracle Discoverer – use this tool for creating and maintaining a business-oriented view of relational data

Business Activity Monitor (Dashboards) – allows executives to monitor key business services and processes and to quickly make changes in business process to take corrective action

Oracle Business Intelligence Warehouse Builder – use this tool to design, implement and maintain a data warehouse environment and the metadata for building reports

Daily Business Intelligence – a set of reporting and analylsis applications that deliver accurate, timely, actionable information to executives, managers and front-line workers


Event Driven Architecture (EDA)

Oracle’s Event Driven Architecture (EDA) is built into the Fusion Middleware products. It allows customers to monitor, analyze and respond to business events and requires minimal coding to do so. Creating a new user, for example, might create a business event that triggers emailing the new user a user guide, or shipping a security token, or scheduling training. EDA is designed to control Workflow, and does so by working outside the Application Suites. EDA leverages Business Activity Monitoring (BAM) and uses Enterprise Messaging (JMS). Best of all, EDA will be interoperable with non-Oracle applications, providing a tremendous amount of flexibility for customers.

Service Oriented Architecture (SOA)

A Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) implements applications as a small series of building blocks, each of which performs a discrete step or function. These blocks are then combined using another software component to create a complete application. By building this solution in a Java Enterprise toolkit, it is possible to create a solution that is based upon vendor-neutral standards, has the potential to interoperate with other applications, and can exploit Grid Computing to its best potential.



Applications Roadmap Overview

The following chart shows the upgrade paths for Oracle’s different product suites:



How the Fusion Applications Fit In

You might say that the Fusion Applications will be just another Applications product line, just like JDE, EBS, PeopleSoft and Siebel are product lines. Customers can choose an end to end solution based on one product line, or they can take a best of breed approach with components for each. For example, a customer could integrate E-Business Suite Financials with PeopleSoft Human Resources and Siebel CRM. It is Fusion Middleware that all customers will use, regardless of the applications product line they choose.



Oracle Fusion MiddlewareOverview and Strategy :


Fusion Technology Essentials:


Fusion MiddleWare for Innovation:



The Road to Fusion - Roadmap Concepts

We leave you with the following recommendations for preparing for Fusion:


Pick Your Fusion Applications “Jump-off Point” – for E-Business Suite, you must be running either Release or Release 12. If you are not running one of those releases and want to migrate to the Fusion Applications when they become available, you will have to upgrade first.

Upgrade to Your “Jump-off Point” as soon as possible.

Upgrade to Oracle Version 10g as soon as possible.

Implement Standard NAS/SAN Utilities for Snapshots

Implement Standard Oracle Utilities like Oracle Enterprise Manager with with the Applications Management Pack (AMP)

Stay Current on your “Jump-off Point”. You’ll need to stay current on the ATG Release Update Pack, year-end patches, and Critical Patch Updates (CPUs).

Evaluate and document your customizations. Determine what customizations you have, map them to Applications functionality and decommission customizations where possible if the Applications provide the same functionality. You’ll want to convert customizations to Fusion technology-based solutions where decommission is not possible. As an example, since we know that Workflow will be replaced by BPEL for the Fusion Applications, now is the time to learn BPEL. Any existing workflow customizations – or new ones – should be written using BPEL.

Start Leveraging Your Available Fusion Tools. Fusion is already here! Fusion tools that can already be used with the E-Business Suite include XML (BI) Publisher, the SOA Suite and WebCenter, and Business Intelligence tools like OBIEE or DBI and Discoverer 10g.



There is no lack of communication on Oracle’s part as to where the Applications are going in the next few years. With what you know about Oracle’s Applications Unlimited support offerings, you can plan your migration to the Fusion Applications today. The Fusion Middleware tools are already here, so you can begin learning to use them now, rather than wait until you have no choice.




WebLogic with TopLink Grid Overview

more information on Oracle Fusion Middleware can be found at these links: 


For more information please contact me at:
Drs. Albert Spijkers
DBA Consulting
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