Thursday, 13 December 2012

UKOUG Conference 2012

I recently attended the 2012 UKOUG PeopleSoft event at the Birmingham ICC in December and sat through some excellent presentations on subjects such as technical solutions for onboarding staff, implementing Work Centers, a fascinating insight in the PeopleSoft User Experience (UX) team from Oracle's Harris Kravatz,  making PeopleSoft work on mobile devices and securing PeopleSoft applications and data. In addition I had some great conversations with some old and new friends about new things they were trying and planning to do.  Networking is always great value.

I presented on Pivot Grids in PeopleTools at the end of the 2nd day which you can access here .

If you prefer... you can catch a more interactive Oracle version here. (Although this official Oracle video doesn't show how to build one).

Thursday, 4 October 2012

OOW Day 4

There's normally 9.30 sessions but not this year. Maybe someone worked not that early morning sessions after the Oracle party were not a great idea.

So BIG thanks to everyone that turned up for my session with Russell Broom (Oracle HCM development) on Properly Enhancing PeopleSoft Applications. Over 100 people and a real responsive group. Thank you for listening.  All the slides will be up on my blog soon along with all the application designer project code.

OOW Day 3

Well it's the end of Day 3 (day 4 if you count Sunday) at oracle OpenWorld 2012 and the PeopleSoft sessions are buzzing with customers and partners, the demo pods are alive with discussions with the product experts and talk of upgrades, new implementations.  This is the value of these events - People!

PeopleSoft Update Manager

So, according to my interpretation of one of today's sessions the way in which PeopleSoft plan to deliver product updates is changing.  PeopleSoft Update Manage (PUM)  is a new tool for identifying, analysing, planning and deploying updates.  Part of this process involves Oracle releasing a fully updated application all set to run in a VirtualBox machine.  This will be main available for download every 8 weeks and will be a complete, fully updated and ready to run PeopleSoft system.  Nice!

This downloadable PeopleSoft Image (PI) will ony be available for Apps 9.2 but the new method of identifying, packaging and applying updates will be available for any release.

Read about it in the PeopleTools 8.53 RVP

and this My Oracle Support document says it all 1465172.1

Change Assistant will continue to be the software used to apply these packages and from 8.53 it will include features such as three way PeopleCode compare and merge, compare reports can be run as part of a CA job and support from the new PUM delivery model.

PeopleTools 8.53 Beta Panel

Oxfam is taking part in the PeopleTool 8.53 beta programme along with with other customers and partners - Boeing, Intrasee, GreyHeller and Succeed Consulting.  Jeff Robins (PeopleTools Strategy) hosted a panel session feature 4 of these.  The big message?  Well it's early days of the beta testing but

1) The infrastructure, install and setup is all very familiar and worked very well
2) The delivered VirtualBox appliance means you get a demo system up and running in under 20 mins.

PeopleTools Tips and Techniques

Then it was off to hear Oracle's Jim Marion with his ever popular session on PeopleTools Tips & Techniques.  From low level PeopleCode tips to high level sys admin helpers this is one slide deck to try and get hold of when they're published.  Much of what Jim's teaching here is in his book and he continues to demonstrate the power of the PeopleTools development framework.

Want to know the best way to clear out all the values in a PeopleCode aray?

&array.len = 0;

Of course.... simple really.  One of his big messages here was "know the language".

My day ended with this in the classic Mel's Diner.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

OOW Day 2

Before word gets out about me I need say it here.... Yes.. I did go to a vegetarian restaurant last night.  Food was great and the company of friends I was with made the evening.   We did talk about work, of course.... specifically "how to secure your PeopleSoft web server on the public internet".   The company I work for has some interesting challenges in this respect which I may blog about in more detail sometime.  If you're interested in security and auditing then the ERP Firewall product from GreyHeller is well worth a look.

Greg Kelly and Keith Collins (Oracle Security and IB)
Today (Tuesday) I've been in a great Integration Broker Security session with Greg Kelly and hardcore C++ programmer Keith Collins. Both of these legendary PeopleSoft blokes really know there stuff.  Lookout for more REST based support in 8.53 and security options.  The slides for this presentation has a great couple of diagrams describing the "waterfall" path when messages are negotiating authentication.  here's one of them....

Waterfall integration broker authentication
Discovered from Keith how to send integrations from one PS system to another without the need for the originating OPRID to exist in the target.  That's a new blog entry once I get home and try it out.

Everyone wants to know when PeopleTools 8.53 is out.  Well, of course, no one from Oracle is saying BUT it sounds like it won't be this year.  Last session of the day is a look at 8.53 in action by Russell Broom (HCM) and Christine Libby (FSCM) both Senior Apps Architects at Oracle.  Of all the many new features and enhancements in 8.53 to choose from this is what the focused on in this 50 min. session.

Russell Broom (Oracle Development)

Example for Activity Guide 1
Example for Activity Guide 2

  • Related Actions and Content.  These are configurable in PI and have been extended from 8.52
  • Activity Guides.  This is new for 8.53 and is PIA configurable means of implementing a guided procedure/process using bound components, iScripts and even external content.  Instances of a particular pass through the process can be saved and tracked.    On boarding a new employee with the need to reference many different components would be a great use case for this.  They utilise Work Centres and contain navigation buttons and instance state management.  (see Guide 1 & 2 pics above)
  • Pivot Grids.  These arrived in 8.52 but have had some significant improvements made with smart filters, drilldown in grid and the ability to include Related Actions.  Nice!
Is that enough for today?  More tomorrow with news of Oracle SES in PeopleTools and hopefully more of a clue to the GA of 8.53.

PS Checkout these street musicians.  These guides played like this for about 20 mins.  As an ex drummer myself this level of drumming is pretty impressive.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

PeopleTools Roadmap

Jeff Robbins takes us for a trip through upcoming 8.53 new features.

1) Activity Guide framework

2) Enhanced Pivot Grids

3) Branding capability now available in PeopleSoft Interaction Hub

4) PeopleSoft Update Manager

5) Regular delivery of fully functioning and patched PS Apps in VirtualBox virtual machine.

6) Secure by default

7) Enhanced support for OEM

8) Support for multiple instances of PeopleSoft on Exalogic

Best bet is to download the PeopleTools Release Value Proposition for all the details.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Mobile apps for PeopleSoft

First session of the conference was a fast paced. zero fear Jim Marion from Oracle giving a live demo of how to build mobile applications that work with PeopleSoft.
STEP ONE.  Publish PeopleSoft CI as a web service. Jim covered WSDL and REST.
STEP TWO. Use jDeveloper to build app using ADF Mobile.
Jim covers this in his great book PeopleSoft Tips and Techniques and blogs often on this and other helpful subjects.
Great start to the conference.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

San Francisco Art

Just when I thought the day was done i got an email from local boy Chris Heller of GreyHeller about a dance group with a difference.  From ropes down the side of the Renoir Hotel on Market Street.  Amazing

Got my OOW conference pass

After 2 days of comprehensive insight into New and Future Oracle products and technology at the ACE Briefings, I'm now in downtown San Francisco.

It's Saturday and I've collected my conference pass. Something like 50,000 others will do the same over the next 48 hours.  This is a big event.

My first session tomorrow will be to go and join The Salvation Army heroes from Harbor Light rehab centre to worship God. It's not what this conference is all about but it is what I'm all about.  Then it's back to Moscone West 3009 for 2.15 to hear my good friend Jim Marion speak on PeopleSoft and mobile apps. You can bet this will be good.

The lobby of the hotel is huge and it seems to be a popular place to hang out. Might have something to do with there being free wireless internet here.

More tomorrow.

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Oracle ACE Briefings

Honoured to be at Oracle HQ (Redwood Shores) for the Oracle ACE briefings.  In  a room full of some pretty awesome tech heads looking forward to getting the inside track on Oracle developments and sneak previews of OpenWorld big announcements.  I'll blog what I can.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Letter to OOW delegates from Paco Aubrejuan

Paco Aubrejuan (Oracle Senior Vice President, PeopleSoft) spells out the PeopleSoft focus at Oracle OpenWorld this year.

PeopleTools 8.53 Beta Programme

Very excited to be part of the PeopleTools 8.53 Beta programme.  Can't say a lot at the moment as under NDA but RVP document is available and gives a good insight into new features and the focus of this release.

Loving what the PeopleTools developers are doing with Pivot Grids in 8.53.

Watch this space.....


Monday, 20 August 2012

Oracle OpenWorld 2012

I'm honoured to be asked to speak alongside Russell Broom from Oracle on the subject of enhancing PeopleSoft applications.

CON9197 - For PeopleSoft PeopleTools Developers: A Guide to Properly Enhancing PeopleSoft Applications
Thursday 4 October at 11:15.
Moscone West - Room 3011

Add this session to your schedule.

Hope to see al my usual friends and some new ones at this great conference.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

PeopleTools 8.53 Release Value Proposition

So here's what might be in the 8.53 release planned for later this year (normally GA coincides with OpenWorld - late October).

PeopleTools 8.53 RVP

Friday, 27 April 2012

PeopleSoft in Windows 2008

If you run PeopleSoft application servers on Windows 2008 then you should be aware of this issue. I hope you find it useful.


Pagelets that render Query output or pagelets that do any kind of XSLT processing of content will throw an error under cterain conditions.  The error is

Error executing pagelet.

Detailed error description:

An error has occurred while trying to perform the XSL transformation. This is because either (1) the DataSource did not return valid XML or (2) the XSL for transformation is invalid.


I discovered a few things in analysing this problem....

1) When PeopleTools renders Query content into a pagelet it does an XSLT transformation.  This transformation requires read/write access to the folder path specified in  %TEMP% environment variable.
2) The %TEMP% environment variable is set when you start the application server domain and is set to be the same as the user that ran PSADMIN (ie the current logged in users setting of %TEMP%).
3) Windows 2008 by default has the User temporary folders per session = TRUE.  This has the effect of assigning a unique temporary folder to each user that logs in by suffixing the %TEMP% variable with a number.  This folder is deleted when the user logs out.

So, you can see that if you start the application server with User temporary folders per session = TRUE then the application server has it's %TEMP% directory set to a path that will eventually disappear when the user that ran PSADMIN logs out. If the path does not exist then peopleTools has no place to place temporary files when it does the XSLT processing . . . and .... you get an error.


The workaround to this is to set User temporary folders per session = FALSE.  This is not really a solution as you will still end up with the %TEMP% variable set to the SAME as the current logged in user and this could be a different user to the one that application server processes will run under (determine by the Oracle Proc Mgrs service user).  Oracle are aware of this and when I hear of a planned resolution I'll post here.

Navigation = Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Terminal Services > Remote Desktop Session Host Configuration

Thursday, 1 March 2012

PeopleTools 8.52 popup prompts

A new feature in PeopleTools 8.52 are popup modal prompts.  These are automatically enabled wherever the PeopleCode PROMPT function is used.  You most often see this in Query Manager prompts.

One of the UI bugs we've found is that if the prompt contains a date field then when the user clicks the date picker the popup calendar is obscured.

This is targetted for patch 07 but if you can't wait for this then here's the fix. It is a customisation to a PeopleTools object but that's the nice thing about PeopleTools. When you need a fix and can't wait for the patch then you can generally fix it yourself.

Add this JavaScript code to HTML object PT_CALENDARSCRIPT at the end of function openDate_%FormName. This will adjust the size of the popup window AFTER the user clicks the calendar date picker.  I give all the credit for this code to Steve of the best Javascript developers I know in the PeopleSoft community.

OXF_activeElem =;
var id ="_")[1];
var OXF_obj = "ptModFrame_" + id;
var OXF_shad_frame = "ptMod_" + id;
var OXF_width = 0;
var OXF_height = 0;
if (typeof id !="undefined")
var OXF_Shad_Width = top.document.getElementById(OXF_shad_frame).scrollWidth;
var OXF_Shad_Height = top.document.getElementById(OXF_shad_frame).scrollHeight;
var OXF_elem = document.getElementsByName(OXF_activeElem)[0];
if(OXF_Shad_Width < (OXF_elem.offsetLeft + OXF_elem.scrollWidth+ document.getElementById("fullCalendar").scrollWidth + 30))
 OXF_width = OXF_elem.offsetLeft + OXF_elem.scrollWidth+ document.getElementById("fullCalendar").scrollWidth + 30;
else {OXF_width = OXF_Shad_Width; }//end if scrollWidth
if(OXF_Shad_Height < (OXF_elem.offsetLeft + OXF_elem.scrollWidth+ document.getElementById("fullCalendar").scrollWidth + 30))
 OXF_height = top.document.getElementById(OXF_obj).scrollHeight + document.getElementById("fullCalendar").scrollHeight ;
else {OXF_height = OXF_Shad_Height;}//end if scrollHeight
if(OXF_width != OXF_width || OXF_height != OXF_Shad_Height)
 MTop().ptDialog.resizeModalDialog(id, false, OXF_width, OXF_height);

Thursday, 16 February 2012

2012 UKOUG & EMEA PeopleSoft Conference

Still places left at this important day for all PeopleSoft customers and partners.  A chance to meet and hear from key Oracle PeopleSoft staff - Marc Weintraub (Apps Strategy), Jeff Robbins (PeopleTools), Amira Morcos (Finance) and more.  Great networking opportunities and chance to meet partners and exhibitors. And after conference social sponsored by Succeed .

Check out the agenda here and register here (free if you're a UKOUG member).

See you there.