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building a paas for oracle unified business process management suite 11g

Building a PaaS for Oracle Unified Business Process Management Suite 11g

The huge demand for BPM solutions along with IT consolidation efforts present the need for a BPM platform as a service (PaaS) solution. In this session, Thomson Reuters explains the strategy and architecture of its PaaS implementation for Oracle Unified Business Process Management Suite/Oracle SOA Suite 11g. Learn how Thomson Reuters is using a multitenant architecture on shared infrastructure to host these applications, kick-starting process initiatives in diverse business units while controlling costs. The presentation discusses the history of BPM at Thomson Reuters, the motivation for a PaaS, architectural considerations and the multitenancy model, subsystem specs, topology and configuration, and strategies for platform provisioning and management

WALI ANSARY

Lead Software Engineer, BPM Platform

agenda
Agenda
  • BPM at Thomson Reuters
  • Plan: PaaS Approach & Overview
  • Build: Architecture & Implementation
  • Run: Platform Management & Operations
  • Lessons Learned
thomson reuters our business
Thomson Reuters – Our Business

Financial & Risk

Legal

Tax & Accounting

IP & Science

Trading Platforms

Legal Research

Corporate

Intellectual Property

Investors Data

Legal Practice Tooling

Professional

Scientific & Scholarly Research

Marketplaces

Marketing

Knowledge Solutions

Life Sciences

Governance Risk & Compliance

Government

Government

Global Growth & Operations

Reuters News

Media

bpm opportunities at thomson reuters
BPM opportunities at Thomson Reuters
  • Content is the common thread that binds these diverse business
  • The assembly lines of this information factory generally follow a similar workflow pattern
  • There are systems and services, as well as thousands of people fulfilling tasks along these pathways
  • Managed services also have workflow needs
agenda1
Agenda
  • BPM at Thomson Reuters
  • Plan: PaaS Approach & Overview
  • Build: Architecture & Implementation
  • Run: Platform Management & Operations
  • Lessons Learned
slide8
Goal

Establish a platform-as-a-service solution to host Oracle BPM/SOA Suite 11g for diverse business units

general considerations requirements
General Considerations & Requirements
  • Get tenants up and running quickly
  • All implementations will be internal-facing
  • Leverage mature Enterprise IT assets
  • Governance regime must respect BU diversity
  • Primary focus on BPM, not entire Fusion Middleware
agenda2
Agenda
  • BPM at Thomson Reuters
  • Plan: PaaS Approach & Overview
  • Build: Architecture & Implementation
  • Run: Platform Management & Operations
  • Lessons Learned
multi tenancy objectives and options
Multi-tenancy – objectives and options
    • Administrative Isolation
      • Configuration: Each tenant has own Domain
      • Binaries: Each tenant potentially has own Middleware Home
    • Runtime Isolation
      • Minimize/eliminate resource contention and spillover effects
  • Sharing Continuum:
      • Share nothing – separate host per tenant runtime
      • Share everything – share large pool of high-capacity hosts, and manage isolation through careful distribution and allocation of resources between multiple runtimes per host
multi tenancy apartment complex model
Multi-tenancy – Apartment Complex Model
  • The Platform – provides the structure:
      • Provisions tuned, secured, isolated, and configured “dial-tone” SOA/BPM WebLogic Domains to BUs
      • Makes and enforces governance rules for the tenants
      • Upgrades, patches, tunes, scales, and monitors the WebLogic/Fusion Middleware layers
      • Abstracts the complexities of the WebLogic/Fusion Middleware server environment by providing services and utilities to BUs to perform bare-minimum administration
      • Consults BU development teams on BPM/SOA implementations

The Tenant – occupies a unit:

      • Is responsible for all phases of the BPM/SOA composite lifecycle – analyze, design, develop, support, maintain, version, retire…
      • Deploys to their own “unit”
      • Complies with governance rules laid out by the Platform

BPMS Platform

4b

4a

3b

3a

2a

2b

1

slide13

Start with existing IT assets

  • Acquire App Server Hosts and Oracle DB RAC
  • Mount shared disk for storing copies of binaries
slide15

Prepare for tenant

  • Mount NAS volumes for Domain Home and Runtime Artifacts
  • Create Schemas with RCU
  • Setup DNS and Big/IP VIPs
  • Rollout BPM/SOA binaries
  • Create tenant linux accounts
slide16

Configure Domain on NAS

  • All references to Middleware Home through symbolic link
  • Setup directory structure for runtime artifacts
slide18

Repeat for new tenant, capacity allowing

  • Excess capacity reserved for Whole Server Migration
multi tenancy resource allocations
Multi-tenancy – Resource Allocations
    • Currently
      • Configurable resources are capped evenly at configuration time (e.g. disk usage, DB connections, etc)
      • Runtime profile and resource consumption monitored and alerted, and manually handled reactively (e.g. CPU, native memory, file descriptors, etc.)
  • Exploratory:
      • OS-level resource quota allocation per WebLogic Server process (pam, quota, lxc)
      • Automated corrective-action based off alerts
      • Oracle Database Resource Manager
      • Custom Work Managers
monitoring alerting cloud control 12c
Monitoring & Alerting: Cloud Control 12c
  • The Platform is responsible for monitoring and alerting on the health of server environment
    • OEM Cloud Control 12c
      • Ride enterprise-wide initiative to use OEM as the primary asset for monitoring and alerting
    • Supplemented with a combination of:
      • WLDF Watches and Notifications
      • WLDF metrics harvested into DB store
      • Cron-based scripts, some to be later replaced with User-defined Metrics in OEM Cloud Control 12c
middleware stack
Middleware: Stack
  • Note the absence of OHS and OSB
    • No pressing need, although that could change
choosing physicals over vms
Choosing Physicals over VMs
  • Physicals over VMs for agility, performance, efficiency, and administrative simplicity
  • Each tenant’s WebLogic Domain gets a slice of the physical infrastructure
weblogic standard topology config
WebLogic: Standard Topology & Config
  • Admin Server (2GB) , 2-node SOA Cluster (8-16GB), 1-node BAM Cluster (2GB)
  • Dedicate one host for Admin Servers, even-distribute Managed Servers across other hosts
  • Configure for manual Whole Server Migration
  • Leave breathing room on any N-1 to accommodate demand from 1
weblogic standard topology config1
WebLogic: Standard Topology & Config
  • Configure multi-LDAP virtualization across multiple Active Directory domains and Embedded LDAP
  • Develop and integrate custom WebLogic Security Providers using SSPIs to integrate with non-standard corporate SSO provider
middleware heavy usage of shared storage
Middleware: Heavy usage of Shared Storage
  • (Nearly) everything is on shared storage
    • IT has dedicated storage team with years of experience supporting highly-available fault-tolerant NetApp NAS
  • Simplicity in administration primary driver:
    • Fewer copies of Middleware Homes = fewer patches to apply
    • No domain pack/unpack needed – all hosts point to the single copy of the Domain Home
    • Single spot to access log files
  • Future direction to migrate various file stores (OPSS, JMS, Tlogs) to the DB, further reducing the overall IOPS pressure on NAS filers
scm build deploy configure
SCM: Build, Deploy, & Configure
  • Customized WLST scripts only way for tenants to perform SCM activities
    • Simplifies, limits, abstracts, and validates for tenants – our value-add on top of out-of-the-box tools
    • Helps with governance enforcement
    • Works around granting administrative access
    • Sudo-access to SCM scripts to tenant developers/release management on the Admin Host in each environment
    • Pluggable into tenant’s Continuous Integration tool of choice
agenda3
Agenda
  • BPM at Thomson Reuters
  • Plan: PaaS Approach & Overview
  • Build: Architecture & Implementation
  • Run: Platform Management & Operations
  • Lessons Learned
platform management
Platform Management
  • Consists of internal operations to run the platform
  • Goals:
      • Control human cost of performing these operations.
      • Strive for consistency and control drift
      • Ensure quality
  • Approach:
      • Use BPM for repeatable internal processes
platform management domain provisioning
Platform Management: Domain Provisioning
  • Fully automated on the Middleware Tier –provisioning of BPM/SOA Domain in minutes
  • Requests fulfilled by partner teams for Big/IP VIPs, Floating IPs, DNS records, AD Groups, DB schemas using RCU, Admin Host Linux accounts
platform management patching
Platform Management: Patching
  • Multiple tenants’ Domains by default share the same Middleware Home, but have ability to get their own
  • Never patch an already provisioned MWH; accumulate interim patches, alpha-test, beta-test, then provision a new MWH
  • If a tenant needs a patch, re-point their domain to a patched MWH (update symbolic link and domain-registry.xml)
  • Control the number of MWHs; encourage tenants to keep moving
platform management work streams
Platform Management: Work Streams
  • Independent Work Streams create “stepping stones” for tenant upgrades:
      • Middleware Home Image -> T2P-based tool to create Middleware Homes of a specific version/patch level
      • Domain Configuration Template (DCT) –> Domain Template and WLST-based tool to create and upgrade SOA/BPM Domain with specific configuration and topology
      • SCM – WLST, bash, and ant-based tools for tenants to perform deployments and configuration updates
platform management work streams1
Platform Management: Work Streams
  • Each Work Stream:
      • Releases versionable artifacts, each new release containing latest updates
      • Involves regression testing before the releasing artifact
      • Catalogs compatibility with artifacts from other Work Streams - Our way of saying “you have to be on version/patch X of the binaries to use configuration/topology Y”
agenda4
Agenda
  • BPM at Thomson Reuters
  • Plan: PaaS Approach & Overview
  • Build: Architecture & Implementation
  • Run: Platform Management & Operations
  • Lessons Learned
lessons learned
Lessons Learned
  • Build a team with strong WebLogic administrator, and engineers who “get BPM and SOA”
  • Establish strong relationship with Oracle Product Management, Oracle Support, and use partner help
  • Don’t overinvest in engineering in areas that aren’t your core-competency (e.g. monitoring tools, automation tools, dynamic elastic clustering, etc.)
  • Let your customers shape your governance regime, and over time