Axional Integration Bus is an Enterprise Services Bus (ESB) that provides connectivity and data transformation services between separate applications, facilitating the integration of the entire organization information.
It’s a framework with a set of technologies providing communication services between mutually interacting software applications in a service-oriented architecture (SOA).
- Axional IB transforms complex architectures in an integrated environment, implementing the connectivity between systems, virtualizing processes and managing the interaction between services and applications
- The integration tools will allow you to connect to a vast variety of heterogeneous applications and Web services, without requiring a complex point to point connectivity.
Axional IB provides the tools that allow the implementation of a truly service-oriented architecture, integrating multiple data sources and bringing access to services and data using both SOA protocols and non-SOA protocols. It includes a big collection of connectors ready to use for quickly integrating heterogeneous data sources like applications, files, mobile devices, messaging systems and data bases.
Two models can be used to integrate data between separate applications and systems: Vertical model and Horizontal model.
Vertical model is aimed for the integration of applications to support a specific industry, like healthcare, financial, pharma, etc. For those industries, the integration is based in pre-defined standards tailored to each industry. For example, HL7 or HIPPA for Healthcare, GS1 for Retail or GSTP for Financial.
- It allows the connectivity with virtually any information providing technology using the connectors of the tool: SOAP, REST, TCP/IP, FTP, e-mail and data bases.
- The access to any process, report, document or data structure can be offered as a SOA service to be consumed by others systems or applications.
- The processes can be executed directly or scheduled for automatic execution using the Task Manager include in Axional Studio.
- It allows to route, transform and virtualize services, redirecting the connection requests made by external systems to the appropriate services offered by Axional Studio.
- It provides several security mechanisms to be included in the services creating a secured environment that uses the same access policies and rules defined in Axional Studio.
- Processes can be streamlined by building logical blocks using an interpreted XSQL programming language.
- It provides a flexible, simplified and standardized integration architecture to support the business needs in an easy and simply way.
Axional IB is used as a cornerstone to build a service-oriented architecture (SOA). It facilitates the visibility of relevant information and the access to functionalities sometimes hidden inside the external applications.
Axional IB synchronizes data, objects and documents with external systems. Using Axional Studio and its framework, you can build a reliable and secured system to both access to external services and to provide access to internal services:
- For message-producing applications: It allows to build a catalog of services and provide access to external applications.
- For message-consuming applications: Using the connectors, applications can access to data located in external services.
- For data transformation: Data can be transformed as needed to facilitate the integration between local or remote applications.
The combination of connection and transformation services is what makes Axional IB as a full enterprise integration bus.
Axional IB can register the SOAP, TCP/IP or FTP connectors to give the external applications the required access to resources of applications integrated in Axional Studio environment. At the same time, the Bus can register processes and tasks to allow them the access to external applications and integrates their services.
Axional IB has a wide range of built-in connectors to handle the messages flow to connect and interact with the services offered by the applications (external or internal). Most of those built-in connectors can operate either as a client or as a server. In the first case they connect to other servers and in the second they publish the services that can be accessed by external applications.
There are two main groups of connectors:
- Web services connectors
- Generic connectors
Web services connectors
This type of connectors allows the integration with any application which exposes a SOAP based interface for the services. The agility to declare and integrate the SOAP services, converts Axional IB in a Web Services Pathway.
Application services (APP)
Application services (APP) This connector is used mainly to integrate the infrastructure or architecture services. It is tailored to invoke messages related to complex applications, for example connecting servers and mobile devices. Typical uses of this connector is getting users definition (roles, privileges or access rights,…), obtaining system/hardware characteristics or configuration, getting an application Menu, etc.
Process oriented services (OBJ)
Process oriented services (OBJ) Is the regular connector used to invoke web services. For any software object (document, data structure,…) a web service can be defined to allow its access. The service can be invoked by another application (or even by an human user). When the connector is used in server mode, the Bus integrates automatically any object created by Axional Studio. This feature enables the capability to publish as a service any process, report, workflow or data access defined in Axional modules.
Transaction oriented services (XML)
Transaction oriented services (XML)This connector is used when an application has to perform a transaction in a remote system involving several intermediate steps. For example, recording an invoice in a remote system usually requires to send the heading followed by the item lines. By using this connector, the Bus ensures the calling application that the transaction is fully performed or either completely rolled-back.
A high level of abstraction is used for the XML syntax of the messages, simplifying the definition of the connections.
Database oriented services (SQL)
Database oriented services (SQL) It enables the connection to multiple data bases from different vendors, allowing the execution of simultaneous SQL queries over them. The connector uses JDBC technology to connect to any data base server, regardless of the DB vendor and perform remote SQL queries.
TCP/IP connector: This connector enables the use of TCP/IP servers that redirect the received client applications requests to a self-declared Java classes in the Bus. The connector automatically declares the services and creates the required background structure to handle the simultaneous requests of multiple client applications.
The client TCP/IP connector enables the connection to TCP/IP servers and generate a data interchange flow through the connecting channel created.
FTP connector: Specifically designed to load/unload files from a FTP server. The connector is based on TCP/IP protocol, therefore it can access any server that offers this service from Internet. It can work together with the ETL module processing the downloaded files in streaming mode and performing operations of data transforming on-the-fly without waiting to the full download to process the entire file.
The FTP server integrated inside Axional BI allows the publication of virtual file structures of Axional applications as a file structure downloadable by external FTP clients. This feature is especially useful for document management.
e-mail connector: This connector has two main functions. In the first place it can manage the e-mail sending using a SMTP mail server. On the other hand, it can read and analyze e-mails sent from mail servers using protocols POP or IMAP.
HTTP connector: With this connector, applications can send to or receive information from a HTTP server using HTTP or HTTPS protocols. This type of connection is useful when the applications needs to recover web pages or when there is a requirement to integrate with a server lacking SOAP services.
REST connector: The Representational State Transfer (REST) is a style of software architecture suitable for distributed systems. The connector provides a simple way to receive JSON / HTTP and expose a REST API. Since REST is not self-defining like SOAP is (via the WSDL), REST was always more complicated to create and manage. The Bus provides the standard GET, PUT, POST & DELETE methods, as well as the capability to build the business logic.
BUS BUILT-IN SERVICES
BUS BUILT-IN SERVICES
The built-in services are like an operational framework that manage and eventually transform data or messages that travel across the Bus. Using those services, users can include business functionality inside the Bus in addition of taking advantage of the connectivity offered by the connectors.
The built-in services are:
- Digital signature manager
- Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) service
- Report generator/distributor
- Business logic engine
Digital signature manager
This service allows the digital signature of documents using digital certificates. The certificates are stored in a secured data base using the highest security standards.
Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) service
This service is based in a transformation engine working in streaming mode. This engine uses abstract objects that can be easy defined, to execute complex data transformations. The objects are extensible to facilitate its definition using a XSQL language. To add power to those objects, the service includes more than 300 predefined transformation functions. Those functions allows the users to define easily complex data flows and event-based workflows.
The XSQL language allows the definition of complex rules to transform the raw data. Some examples are:
- Data validation. Includes cross validation between several columns.
- Encoding free-form values (e.g., mapping texts to codes).
- Deriving a new calculated value.
- Anonymizing values for data privacy requirements.
- Transposing columns/rows.
- Aggregation functions.
Users can add their own custom-built transformation functions using the same XSQL language.
This service uses an engine to automatically generate and distribute multiple reports. Formats can be PDF, Microsoft Offices or plain files. The documents templates are defined and stored in a catalog. A data structure containing the document’s arguments/parameters and the report addressees manages the engine to generate and distribute the reports. The data structure is received through the bus and the generated reports are sent using the Bus connectors.
Using this service, at the end of a closing period, an organization can generate thousands of personalized reports and distributed them to the associated recipients.
Business logic engine
This engine is managed by a set of user defined rules. The rules can apply business logic operations and even complex algorithms to the data flow. The rules are defined using an interpreted and extensible language based on XML definitions.
Axional IB is a high performance oriented tool. Applications can not only integrate in a reliable, scalable and with simply maintenance, but also they achieve excellent performances. This is a critical point when there is a requirement to process high volumes of messages in a small fraction of time.
To help developers to fine-tune their application, the Integration Bus includes a Testing environment to perform stress tests. This environment uses a Load Simulator and a Performance Monitor that can generate messages flows (constant, random or Gaussian flows) to verify the stress limits of the application.