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MIS Systems Thread, SIF enabled applications in Technical; To some extent I can understand why some companies produce an agent (or have commercial relationship with someone to do ...
  1. #31

    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    To some extent I can understand why some companies produce an agent (or have commercial relationship with someone to do one) and you buy into that rather than give open access into the inner workings of their systems. To some extent it is saying "There is a way to get data out in an easy and standard way, it costs x amount and we know there is good dev and support for it. What you do with it once it hits the ZIS is your business and feel free to be as open source as you want with that bit".

  2. #32

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    The thing is, I can currently do that with SOAP to pull data out of SIMS and store it in an intermediate database and use it as I wish http://www.beaconhillcott.net/ but to increase the use of SIF and ZIS would it not be better to empower programmers access to the interface by creating open source libraries or via WSDL which everyone can share. If you do want to put a price tag on your connection you could have a switch to turn that feature on if required. I've also begun creating access indirectly to Moodle via SOAP/WSDL using the REST library I created. With the intermediate glue between the two systems I'm able to keep users and classes up to date. Obviously I would like to use SIF but at present it means there would be a large development process to overcome which some already have covered.

  3. #33
    penfold_99's Avatar
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    @bantonia

    Which document are you reading as SIF has support for SOAP and WSDL? I believe it was added in 2.4 or 2.5 of the infrastructure specification. I will double check.

    We support the OpenZIS project in the UK and are currently using OpenZIS, what issues are you facing? OpenZIS only support the classic HTTP infterface and not SOAP.
    We work closely with Chris Whitley the original developer, development has slowed recently as Chris is contracted else where.

    Quote Originally Posted by bantonia View Post
    Open specification is one thing but open source is quite another factor which needs to be addressed to enable the proliferation in use of the specification.
    I disagree, use of the standard is not dependant on the end product being open source. The cost/benefit trade off needs to be in the interest of the supplier so they choose to adopt SIF.
    If its not then irrespective of the products being open sourced supplier wont adopt it.

    If you are developing for multiple MIS and require writeback then SIF is the only viable option to save money as you dont need to partner with all the MIS suppliers.

  4. #34

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    SIF Version 2.5, extract in an earlier post states, but in my translation, "We're not going to bother with SOAP and WSDL as it's too much hassle". The problem is development time is going to be increased and errors introduced if each vendor creates their own flavour of the messaging system.

    Anyway, it's all academic without access to a working ZIT to test against.

    The sql scripts which had interesting spelling of "archive", for I think, 3 of the table names, which I hope is reflected in the code, these tables had been truncated removing the "archeve" (note the spelling) so duplicate tables were trying to be created. So got around that problem by adding on the incorrectly spelled extension to those tables.

    After configuring Apache with 2 virtual sites using the information from Installation OpenZIS UK, I know it's a different flavour of Linux, I use OpenSuSE, I eventually opened a browser to see a login box. I quick trawl through the database to find a username and password to find admin admin to eventually hit "Authentication server is unreachable". Looking at the Apache logs it's trying to find a file in the root of the ADMIN_SERVER directory called "index" however the only file there of any import is index.php. Ok, have a look through the .js files and find the code where the "index" reference is used and change it to "index.php". Good, got further, it says "Connecting Sending data". However it never completes. Looking in the "logs" directory in the .xml file created there it says "login is not a recognised .....", or something like that. Anyway, editing the beginning of the same .js file to by-pass the authentication I do get to a configuration interface.

    So that is where I'm at. Until I get any further SIF is on the shelf.

    P.S.
    The error in the "recordshelf-log.xml" file was
    Invalid controller specified (login)

    and the file I was editing "mainExt.js" line 228
    Last edited by bantonia; 23rd April 2012 at 02:08 PM. Reason: Added P.S.

  5. #35

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    It appears there is confusion within the 2.5 SIF documentation one states, extract from the first pdf on page http://specification.sifinfo.org/Imp...ation/us/2.5/:

    To do so and to meet the final requirement of a Web Service per [WSARCH], the use of SOAP messages, would require redefinition of much of SIF using SOAP messages. The SIF Association's Web Services Task Force has determined that this exercise has little value currently, given SIF's precisely defined transport layer and installed base. The task force has left it as a future task how to best leverage Web Services in the future of SIF's infrastructure, if at all.

    Whereas further down the same web page a link to a zipped archive of WSDL files.

    Has someone not proof read the pdf or am I getting the wrong end of the stick?

    Anyway, OpenZIS still non-functional.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by bantonia View Post
    It appears there is confusion within the 2.5 SIF documentation one states, extract from the first pdf on page http://specification.sifinfo.org/Imp...ation/us/2.5/:

    To do so and to meet the final requirement of a Web Service per [WSARCH], the use of SOAP messages, would require redefinition of much of SIF using SOAP messages. The SIF Association's Web Services Task Force has determined that this exercise has little value currently, given SIF's precisely defined transport layer and installed base. The task force has left it as a future task how to best leverage Web Services in the future of SIF's infrastructure, if at all.

    Whereas further down the same web page a link to a zipped archive of WSDL files.

    Has someone not proof read the pdf or am I getting the wrong end of the stick?
    I have put a request in the the SIF association for clarification on the documentation.
    I believe SOAP and WSDL could be covered under the SIF Global Web Services Implementation Specification 2.5 and SIF Global Web Services Implementation 2.5 Developer’s Toolkit.
    Once I have an answer I will post it here.

  7. #37

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    Cheers.

    I assume as this is fairly new that OpenZIS would not support SOAP and WSDL anyway although any new server needs to implement 2.5 and any older servers would need that function added.

    It appears from the 59 page pdf document that servers will need to support both SIF and SOAP message types and therefore translate between the two.

  8. #38

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    Finally got a working OpenZIS, thanks to the help of Christopher Whiteley.

    Ok, can anyone let me know how do I get access to the SIMS SIF Agent, if there is one?

    Or do I have to modify my current Web Service access into SIMS via CommandReporter.exe to be compatible with SIF?
    Currently it uses SOAP calls, passing the command line to the Web Service and sends an array of data in a SOAP message back to the client, at least it would have read access.

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by bantonia; 26th April 2012 at 12:21 PM.

  9. #39
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    @bantonia

    I have had a reply back from the SIF association about the documentation query.
    It was a case of the text being missed and not updated before being release and its now being updated. Many thanks for spotting this.

    The section will now read.
    C.9 SIF and Web Services
    With the addition of Web Service support in the SIF v2.5 specification, it is now possible to write a “pure” SIF web service which:
    • Supports a defined SIF Application WSDL interface for receiving asynchronous, Events, Requests and Response methods over the SOAP transport
    • Acts as a web client of the a set of ZIS web services, which also support SIF-specified WSDL interfaces over the SOAP transport, and which together encapsulate the ZIS functionality
    • Can seamlessly and transparently interoperate with other SIF applications, whether they are web services themselves, or pre-existing SIF v2.x HTTP/S based applications.

    The details of this support are contained in the SIF Global Web Services Implementation Specification volume of this release.
    The two transport layers are covered in the following documentations.

    SIF Global Infrastructure Implementation Specification 2.5 = Classic HTTP Transport
    SIF Global Web Services Implementation Specification 2.5 = SOAP Transport

    The WSDL is included in the Developer Toolkit http://specification.sifassociation....loperKit-3.zip and http://specification.sifassociation..../SIF_ws2p5.pdf

  10. #40

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    Sorry, just another little niggle.

    I'm trying to access the 1.4 schema on http:/specification.sifassociation.org/implementation/UK/1.4/XSD/SIF_Message.xsd but it says "The page cannot be found".

    I've found that NetBeans can create Java classes and artefacts through JAXB by reading the XSD schema file. Looking at the 2.5 schema, which is a US schema (I think), it almost works, there is a problem only parsing CalendarDateTime. Anyway, as the UK is currently version 1.4, where can a copy of this file be accessed apart from the above URL which does not work?

  11. #41

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    Ignore my ramblings, found a zip file! Although the URL above does not work. JAXB in NetBeans created Java SIF source code without error!

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by bantonia View Post
    Ignore my ramblings, found a zip file! Although the URL above does not work. JAXB in NetBeans created Java SIF source code without error!
    It would be better to use 1.2 as its the version that has been implemented in the real world.

    The open-adk project needs to catch up as that only supports 1.2. The adk or agent development kit has been used by most suppliers to support Sif in their application.

  13. #43

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    1.2 works if you choose the single file non-annotated versions.

    What is the difference between the SIF_Message and DataModel schemas?
    Last edited by bantonia; 28th April 2012 at 12:20 AM.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by bantonia View Post
    1.2 works if you choose the single file non-annotated versions.

    What is the difference between the SIF_Message and DataModel schemas?
    SIF_Message is the transportation layer schema, it covers how the sif agent talks to the zis.

    The Data Model schema governs what data can be sent.

  15. #45

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    Hi,

    I created a SIF_Ping message, following the information and example SIF_Message from SIF Implementation Specification (United Kingdom) 1.2 - Messaging and SIF Implementation Specification (United Kingdom) 1.2 - Architecture. I have also created an Agent entry in the OpenZIS server and have used the SIF_SourceId in the message I'm trying to test. Looking at the contents sent through wireshark, all the headers are present and correct and the XML message itself follows the pattern in the example except in three places, the Version and xmlns attributes are swapped round, there is no space in the SIF_Ping (ie <SIF_Ping/>) and there is an additional <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> before the message itself, which is included in the size of the message. However all I get in reply is the XHTML page to log into the server. I could tweek the message text after it has been marshalled but at present it is being sent as is.

    Any clues would be appreciated.

    I'm not using any security at present, there is no data being accessed. The OpenZIS server is set to 1.2.

    Regards
    Last edited by bantonia; 30th April 2012 at 02:01 PM.

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