Integration using IBM Solutions

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1 With special reference to integration with SAP XI

2 Table of contents Integration using IBM Solutions Executive Summary Introduction IBM Business Integration Architecture IBM Integration Products Proposed Integration Solution Requirements Final Integration Solution Conclusion References...12 Prepared by: 2 of 12

3 Executive Summary SAP and IBM are the major players in the Enterprise Application market and in the Enterprise Application Integration area. This report is an effort to understand IBM WebSphere Integration products with a view to find out integration options between IBM WebSphere and SAP XI. In this regard, this report covers the following aspects related to IBM Integration Solutions: IBM Business Integration Architecture IBM Integration Products After this introduction to the components of IBM WebSphere Integration Products, we examine how SAP XI can be integrated using the appropriate IBM WebSphere products. Prepared by: 3 of 12

4 1. Introduction IBM is one of the leading integration vendors. It provides an array of products that help integration of Enterprise Applications. These include products that help integration at various levels eg. User, Process and Application level. One of the other major ERP vendors, SAP, has introduced an integration platform of its own called SAP Exchange Infrastructure (SAP XI) as part of its NetWeaver suite of products. Many businesses have already invested heavily in both platforms and hence it is important for all stakeholders (vendors and customers) to ensure that these platforms can work together to provide solutions to business needs. This paper examines the various IBM integration products with a view to understand how they can be used to integrate SAP XI with WebSphere platforms. It also examines how WebSphere products could be used to build an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) that will form the backbone of a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) based solution. 2. IBM Business Integration Architecture Fig. 1: IBM Business Integration Reference Architecture (Source: (IBM Corporation 2005)) As described by (Davies, Birkler et al. 2004; IBM Corporation 2005), the IBM Business Integration Reference Architecture consists of various components. The different components of the IBM Business Integration Reference Architecture are as shown in Fig.1. The services provided by each of these components are indicated in Fig. 2. The IBM Business Integration Reference Architecture consists of the following: 1. Development Platform: The development platform provides tools required by various people involved in developing an integration solution. For example, business analysts need tools to model business processes, software architects needs tools to help them model data, functional flows etc. and Prepared by: 4 of 12

5 programmers need tools to help them develop platform independent business logic. These tools are provided by the Development Platform component. In addition, the development platform provides a unified development platform that enables collaboration between these different types of developers. As shown in Fig. 2, the Development Platform provides services to Model, Design, Implement and Test integration solutions. 2. Business Performance Management Services: As shown in Fig. 2, the Business Performance Management Services enable monitoring of the integration at two levels viz. Process Monitoring and IT Monitoring. It allows for collaboration between Line of Business (LOB) personnel to collaborate with IT personnel to optimise the integration process by using the metrics gathered during the monitoring phase. Fig 2: WBI Reference Architecture Comprehensive Services (Source: (Davies, Birkler et al. 2004) 3. Interaction Services: The Interaction Services help to deliver the IT applications to the enduser based on their specific usage preferences. This is achieved through use of a portal that can be accessed through various channels like Web browsers and pervasive computing devices like mobiles and PDAs. The services offered by these components are Delivery (eg. multi-device support, internationalisation etc.), Experience (eg. Personalisation, Collaboration) and Resource (eg. Security) 4. Process Services: The Process Services help in managing the flow and interactions of multiple services with a view to implement business processes. A business can model, automate and monitor its business processes within and outside the enterprise, across heterogeneous systems using Prepared by: 5 of 12

6 this service. This enables end-to-end process integration. The actual services provided by this component include: Choreography: This helps to combine various components to form processes that could be then combined to build other composite processes. Transactions: This service supports ACID transactional activities and compensatory processing. Staff: This service enables interaction between Interaction Services and Process Services with the view to enable peopleoriented task management (eg. workflows, delegation, task assignment) 5. Information Services: This service enables integration and aggregation of heterogeneous data sources. It includes the following services: Federation: This service enables the aggregation of data from traditional (eg. RDBMS Systems) and non traditional sources (eg. text data). Replication: This enables the provision of local data access irrespective of source data location. Transformation: This helps in translation of data to support data cleansing and metadata interchange. 6. Enterprise Service Bus (ESB): The ESB provides standards based interconnectivity services between applications that span across several locations and even multiple companies. It includes the following services: Event: This service enables the various components connected to the ESB to respond to external stimuli (eg. business events) through messaging services. Transport: This service provides for synchronous and asynchronous communication. Mediation: This service enables message transformation, dynamic routing and service binding resolution services during transport. 7. Partner Services: This service helps in Business-to-Business (B2B) integration. It includes the following services: Community: This service enables the hub manager to manage the trading community besides providing for self-management functions for the providing partner. Document: This service enables RosettaNet and AS1/AS2 support and state management for public process conversations. Protocol: This service provides transport level services, including authentication, document routing and other edge services for automated document interchange. 8. Business Application Services: This service provides the framework and operating environment for new application services during runtime. This service can help businesses to easily develop new business logic to adapt existing Prepared by: 6 of 12

7 business processes to meet new business demands. These services include: Component: This provides a runtime environment that handles issues such as object persistence, relationship navigation, object query and transaction management. Core: As the name suggests, this provides the core services required during runtime like memory management, object instantiation, directory and security to provide support to programming models like J2EE, XML, Messaging and Web Services. Interface: This provides robust bidirectional integration of the new business logic with databases, messaging systems, management frameworks and other enterprise applications. 9. Application and Data Access Services: This service provides for access and operational interface to existing enterprise applications and data. These services include: Event Detect: This provides notification services depending on the event framework supported by the source application/data. On-Ramp: This enables application/data integration patters like one way inbound, request-reply and solicit reply patterns to support application and data integration. 10. Infrastructure Services: This is a set of services that provides security, directory, IT system management and virtualisation to the entire IBM Business Integration Architecture. They interact with hardware and with other components in the architecture to provide these services. 3. IBM Integration Products Having become familiar with the IBM Business Integration Architecture, it is now possible to understand how it is implemented using IBM products. As shown in Fig. 3, IBM has software offerings for the different components. Fig. 3: WBI Reference Architecture Software Offerings (Source: (Davies, Birkler et al. 2004) Prepared by: 7 of 12

8 Development Platform: This is an open extensible platform based on the Eclipse Framework which is an industry standard supported by over 175 vendors. The software products available to aid development are: Websphere Business Integration Modeller: As the name suggests, this tool helps model business processes, thereby helping in optimising them. WebSphere Studio: This tool provides an extensive set of tools and utilities for application development. Using the WebSphere Studio Application Developer (WSAD) Integration Edition Version 5.1, Business Process Execution Language for Web Services (BPEL4WS) can be used to define business processes. Business Performance Management Services: The software product that is available for monitoring business process is: WebSphere Business Integration Monitor: This software product helps in monitoring and controlling business processes across the value chain. It provides dashboard and alert notification services along with real-time metrics. Interaction Services: IBM offers the following product as part of Interaction Services: WebSphere Portal Server: This product provides for user level integration. It provides for page aggregation, markup transcoding, language translation, multi-device support and internationalisation. It also supports pervasive computing devices like mobiles and PDAs through use of WebSphere MQ Everyplace and ESB. Process Services: This service is of greatest interest to this paper as it seeks to integrate SAP and IBM at the process level. IBM provides two products that help provide process integration services: WebSphere Business Integration Server: This product is actually a set of products consisting of products like WebSphere MQ Workflow and WebSphere Interchange solutions. It includes pre-built collaborations and its components can be surfaced via Web Services Description Language (WSDL) thereby enabling creation of high-level composite applications using foundation technologies. Websphere Business Integration Server Foundation: This software product builds on the WebSphere Application Server to provide a platform based on J2EE and Web Services to enable development and deployment of SOA-based applications that can be easily adapted to new business requirements. Information Services: IBM provides the following software product for enabling information services: DB2 Information Integrator: This product helps in data federation, replication and access to traditional and non-traditional data sources Partner Services: The following product is offered as part of Partner Services: Prepared by: 8 of 12

9 WebSphere Business Integration Connect: This software tool is based on the WebSphere Application server and provides the ability to manage a trading community in a B2B environment. Business Application Services: As part of the Business Application Services, IBM offers the following product: WebSphere Application Server: It is a base component for several other integration tools and is an application server that provides support for J2EE, XML, Messaging and Web Services programming models. Enterprise Service Bus: This component could be described as being the backbone of an integration solution based on WebSphere Integration products. It consists of the following products: WebSphere MQ: This is an award-winning messaging platform that enables once-only reliable message delivery across 35 different platforms using a queuing concept. WebServices Gateway: As the name suggests this product provides a gateway service for Web Services WBI Event/Message Broker: As stated by (Keen, Acharya et al. 2004) the WebSphere Business Integration Message Broker V5.0 extends the messaging capabilities of WebSphere MQ by adding message routing, transformation, and publish/subscribe features. Application and Data Access: IBM enables application and data access services through use of adapters. The adapter relevant to this paper is the WBI Adapter. WBI Adapters: These adapters provide the interface between the enterprise applications and IBM integration components (Eg. WebSphere Integration Server, WBI Message Broker). The adapters run on the same framework and can be used with any relevant IBM broker/integration platform depending on the business needs. This component will be covered in detail when discussing the proposed integration solution. 4. Proposed Integration Solution We are now familiar with the various business integration software products offered by IBM. Using these products, this paper endeavours to integrate the two integration platforms viz. SAP XI and WebSphere Business Integration products Requirements The main requirements of this integration solution are: 1. Integration of SAP XI and WebSphere Integration Products at a process level to enable other enterprise applications that already use WebSphere Integration products to interact with SAP using SAP XI. One of the applications that this paper is Prepared by: 9 of 12

10 interested in integrating with SAP XI is INDEX which is an application developed as part of the Phoenix Project run by the Victoria University of Technology. INDEX enables easy creation and execution Business Logic Modules that can use existing enterprise applications to deliver an output based on business rules. 2. Build an ESB that allows applications to easily connect to the ESB and enable a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) 4.2. Final Integration Solution Process Integration: In order to establish process level integration between SAP XI and other applications, it is appropriate to use one of the products offered as part of the Process Services. As shown in Fig. 4, the most appropriate product for this purpose is the WBI Interchange Server (ICS) which is part of the WebSphere Business Integration Server suite of products. As stated by (Davies, Birkler et al. 2004), this product has a library of pre-built integration processes and business objects that enable creation of a collaboration process isolated from the end-point applications. Fig. 4: Business Integration using IBM Business Integration Products Interfaces: There are two interfaces required by the IBM WebSphere Business Interchange Server. WBI Adapter for SAP XI: As shown in Fig. 5, this adapter can communicate with SAP XI using XML and with the WebSphere ICS using Business Objects Prepared by: 10 of 12

11 JMS Adapter: This adapter enables communication between INDEX and WebSphere ICS using JMS. Web Services Adapter: In case the INDEX application is Web Services enables, it could also be possible for it to interact with WebSphere ICS using the Web Services Adapter. Fig. 5: Function of WBI Adapter for SAP XI (Source: (Davies, Birkler et al. 2004)) Messaging Platform: The messaging platform that will be used by this solution is IBM WebSphere MQ. It will provide queue based messaging services to enable communication between the connected applications. Enterprise Service Bus: As mentioned earlier, one of the requirements is to build an ESB, that will be capable of providing enterprise connectivity to enable a SOA. As stated by (Keen, Adinolfi et al. 2005; Nott, Edwards et al. 2005) this is accomplished by use of IBM WebSphere MQ Series in conjunction with IBM WebSphere Business Integration Message Broker. As shown in Table 1 below, this product provides a very strong platform for an ESB. Table 1: Comparison of ESB capabilities in IBM products (Source: (Keen, Acharya et al. 2004) Prepared by: 11 of 12

12 5. Conclusion User Integration: As show in Fig. 4, user level integration is accomplished by use of the WebSphere Portal. The portal would communicate with the INDEX application through a Portlet. As mentioned earlier, this product will enable multi-channel delivery including delivery to pervasive computing devices like mobiles and PDAs through use of IBM WebSphere Everyplace if so desired. As can be seen from the above discussion, IBM WebSphere products provide comprehensive coverage of the enterprise integration space. IBM has comprehensive and mature software offerings based on industry standards that cover all levels of integration. Using these products it is possible to integrate SAP XI with other enterprise applications. In order to support the new generation of Service Oriented Architectures, it is also possible to build ESBs using these products. In conclusion it could be stated that use of these products will certainly help enterprises build solutions that will help them to remain competitive in future. 6. References Davies, S., K. Birkler, et al. (2004). WebSphere Business Integration for SAP. viewed on August 13, 2005 IBM Corporation (2005). Integrating SAP solutions with IBM WebSphere products - An interoperability survey. viewed on August 10, 2005 Keen, M., A. Acharya, et al. (2004). Patterns: Implementing an SOA Using an Enterprise Service Bus. IBM Corporation,. viewed on September 13, 2005 Keen, M., O. Adinolfi, et al. (2005). Patterns: SOA with an Enterprise Service Bus in WebSphere Application Server V6. IBM Corporation,. viewed on September 13, 2005 Nott, C., P. Edwards, et al. (2005). Using Message Sets in WebSphere Business Integration Message Broker to Implement an ESB in an SOA. IBM Corporation,. viewed on September 13, 2005 Prepared by: 12 of 12

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