16 Oracle User Messaging Service

This chapter describes Oracle User Messaging Service (UMS).

This chapter includes the following topic:

16.1 User Messaging Service Overview

Oracle User Messaging Service enables two-way communication between users and deployed applications. Key features include:

  • Support for a variety of messaging channels—Messages can be sent and received through Email, IM (XMPP), SMS (SMPP), and Voice. Messages can also be delivered to a user's SOA/WebCenter Worklist.

  • Two-way Messaging—In addition to sending messages from applications to users (referred to as outbound messaging), users can initiate messaging interactions (inbound messaging). For example, a user can send an email or text message to a specified address; the message is routed to the appropriate application which can then respond to the user or invoke another process according to its business logic.

  • User Messaging Preferences—End users can use a web interface to define preferences for how and when they receive messaging notifications. Applications immediately become more flexible; rather than deciding whether to send to a user's email address or instant messaging client, the application can simply send the message to the user, and let UMS route the message according to the user's preferences.

  • Robust Message Delivery—UMS keeps track of delivery status information provided by messaging gateways, and makes this information available to applications so that they can respond to a failed delivery. Or, applications can specify one or more failover addresses for a message in case delivery to the initial address fails. Using the failover capability of UMS frees application developers from having to implement complicated retry logic.

  • Pervasive integration within Fusion Middleware: UMS is integrated with other Fusion Middleware components providing a single consolidated bi-directional user messaging service.

    • Integration with Oracle BPEL—Oracle JDeveloper includes pre-built BPEL activities that enable messaging operations. Developers can add messaging capability to a SOA composite application by dragging and dropping the desired activity into any workflow.

    • Integration with Oracle Human Workflow—UMS enables the Human Workflow engine to send actionable messages to and receive replies from users over email.

    • Integration with Oracle BAM—Oracle BAM uses UMS to send email alerts in response to monitoring events.

    • Integration with Oracle WebCenter—UMS APIs are available to developers building applications for Oracle WebCenter Spaces. The API is a realization of Parlay X Web Services for Multimedia Messaging, version 2.1, a standard web service interface for rich messaging.

16.1.1 Components

There are three types of components that make up Oracle User Messaging Service. These components are standard Java EE applications, making it easy to deploy and manage them using the standard tools provided with Oracle WebLogic Server.

  • UMS Server: The UMS Server orchestrates message flows between applications and users. The server routes outbound messages from a client application to the appropriate driver, and routes inbound messages to the correct client application. The server also maintains a repository of previously sent messages in a persistent store, and correlates delivery status information with previously sent messages.

  • UMS Drivers: UMS Drivers connect UMS to the messaging gateways, adapting content to the various protocols supported by UMS. Drivers can be deployed or undeployed independently of one another depending on what messaging channels are available in a given installation.

  • UMS Client applications: UMS client applications implement the business logic of sending and receiving messages. A UMS client application might be a SOA application that sends messages as one step of a BPEL workflow, or a WebCenter Spaces application that can send messages from a web interface.

In addition to the components that make up UMS itself, the other key entities in a messaging environment are the external gateways required for each messaging channel. These gateways are not a part of UMS or Oracle WebLogic Server. Since UMS Drivers support widely-adopted messaging protocols, UMS can be integrated with existing infrastructures such as a corporate email servers or XMPP (Jabber) servers. Alternatively, UMS can connect to outside providers of SMS or text-to-speech services that support SMPP or VoiceXML, respectively.

16.1.2 Architecture

The system architecture of Oracle User Messaging Service is shown in Figure 16-1.

For maximum flexibility, the components of UMS are separate Java EE applications. This allows them to be deployed and managed independently of one another. For example, a particular driver can be stopped and reconfigured without affecting message delivery on all other channels.

Exchanges between UMS client applications and the UMS Server occur as SOAP/HTTP web service requests for web service clients, or through Remote EJB and JMS calls for BPEL messaging activities. Exchanges between the UMS Server and UMS Drivers occur through JMS queues.

Oracle UMS server and drivers are installed alongside SOA or BAM in their respective WebLogic Server instances. A WebCenter installation includes the necessary libraries to act as a UMS client application, invoking a server deployed in a SOA instance.

Figure 16-1 UMS architecture

Description of Figure 16-1 follows
Description of "Figure 16-1 UMS architecture"