How-to: Starting with Oracle Service Bus

I will use this posting to collect my own recommendations for everybody starting with Oracle Service Bus (OSB).

– Get a formal training. Unlike SOA Suite, where 5 days of training merely scratch the surface, a good OSB training can cover most things you have to know in a week. There is a rather steep learning curve and the official documentation is slightly less brilliant than let’s say Weblogic documentation. “SOA” generally speaking involves more marketecture.

– If you are really new to OSB, then create a simple project with pipeline pairs and stages and find out the order how the actions are executed in the response pipeline. An easy challenge with at least two different approaches, yet sometimes the solution is not that obvious.

– After the training try it yourself. Develop a super simple web service, then call it through OSB, e.g. using SOAPUI or even the WebLogic admin server as a client.

Books

– Get the OSB cookbook from Schmutz and colleagues for further assistance. It’s a cookbook as it says in the title, so don’t expect a lot of explanation or too much background information. Yet it will support you doing more difficult tasks. According to an Amazon review the ebook has some problems (which well be fixed soon I hope!). I recommend it for everybody who is not working everyday with OSB. All examples worked for me so far.

– You may consider the OSB book from Davies, but I personally don’t recommend it for anybody who is not a real expert (then, why would you need a book?). At least don’t expect any simple explanations in the book.

Build

Check out Biemond’s blog posting for deploying OSB and OFM with Puppet.

 

Underlying Tech

If you need a refresher for XPath or XQuery I recommend the free and brief tutorials at w3schools.

Very readably introductions to XSD, XML Namespaces, WSDL and versioning of web services can be found in Thomas Erl’s book about web service contract design and versioning.

 

Links

– Check the following link on slideshare for the new OSB 11g features.

– Calling custom code: Java callouts and custom XPath.

Limitations of OSB

Understand the current OSB 11g limitations. It’s still using Eclipse but all the rest of Oracle SOA Suite has changed to JDeveloper already. So working with OSB and SOA Suite is a bit cumbersome at the moment (you need 2 IDEs when deploying an JCA adapter, XQuery functions differ etc.).

 

Make sure you have a good start with OSB – I personally think it’s a great product of the Oracle SOA stack!

 

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