Web Applications: JBWT Oracle Forms Converter

Bridge Consulting has created a tool which automatically created a Java form from a form created in Oracle Forms.
The tool allows you to abandon client / server architectures which have typically been used up to now for managing systems, transforming old data-driven applications into web applications, Java platforms, and HTML interfaces.

The result is a user interface which is rich, interactive and solid, similar to those found in client / server architectures.

Using jBWT OFC, Bridge Consulting offers a conversion service to transfer its customers to a modern, open platform on which future enterprise application infrastructure can be built.

The conversion tool is certified for ORACLE FORMS versions 6i, 10g, 11g e 12c.

The automated process delivers the full structure of the Oracle form to the Java form, returning a working object, including reading and updating data from the Database.

FACTORS TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION INCLUDE:

Blocks and their attributes, Fields and their attributes ,Relationships and their attributes ,Statement DML ,Toolbar ,LOV ,Search filter (Enter Query Mode), Units of measure

FOR THE LAYOUT, THE ORIGINAL SETTINGS MANTAINED ARE:

Single and Multiple occurrence ,Positioning between blocks ,Placement of fields in single block occurrences

IN ORDER TO ENSURE THE BASIC OPERATION OF THE MASKS, TRIGGERS ARE ALSO REPLICATED

Post-query; Pre-insert.

TO MAKE THE NEW APPLICATION FUNCTIONALLY EQUIVALENT TO THE ORIGINAL, SOME POST-CONVERSION WORK IS NECESSARY:

Layout adjustments in complex forms ;Implementing triggers not automatically converted by: ;Moving PL-SQL from the original form to the stored procedures on the DB ;Groovy rewrite if preferred;

Generated sources are independent from the original Oracle form, which will not be needed for subsequent corrective and evolutionary maintenance

THE RESULTING APPLICATIONS HAVE THE FOLLOWING CHARACTERISTICS:

Java applications conforming to J2EE standards; Usable with the main servlet engines (Tomcat, JBoss, WebLogic, WebSphere, Glassfish) HTML Interface; Compatible with all major internet browsers thanks to Google Web Toolkit (GWT); Functionally rich GUI (master-detail, tab, LOV); Conversational approach via AJAX (asynchronous validation and online computing engines); Compatible with relational databases which have JDBC drivers (Oracle, DB2, SQL Server, Sybase, Informix, MySQL, Postgres);
The application architecture complies with the most diffuse design standards:

CLIENT MODULE:

  • Is composed of a set of Java classes
  • The classes represent the design of the form and management of the events (e.g. backup, validation, etc.)
  • Communicates with the server through Ajax calls to REST services

PRINCIPAL COMPONENTS:

SmartGWT Widget JS and their custom extensions,
GWT Java to JavaScript converter ,
JSON Client-server communication,
JSNI Integration with native JavaScript .

SERVER MODULE:

Is a Java web application. Uses the Spring Framework for MVC. Offers Rest services for client interaction. Is divided into layers to separate business logic from the other components. Persistence in the database is by a DAO pattern (no ORM).

PRINCIPAL COMPONENTS:

Java base classes Java Development Kit;
Spring Framework Framework (MVC, Rest, …);
Apache Commons Java base extensions;
Jasper Reports Integrated Engine report;
Quartz Job scheduler;
Groovy Scripting language;
Jax-WS Web service.

Case History : BACK OFFICE SYSTEM FOR A POINT OF SALE

Bridge implemented a multi-company and multi-store application on Oracle Forms platform in 2004, aimed at functional coverage of the front-end area and featuring real-time data collection of cash registers and scales.

This system allows a number of large retail companies, operating across the country, to receive items, promotions and prices from centralised systems. The application was designed to feed the sales devices, print price labels and manage billing and returns.

The application can be centralized in multiple instances, each capable of holding more than one store. It is also possible to provide locally-based instances, generally recommended for large stores.

Not only this particular modular and flexible architecture allows pilots and progressive rollouts, but guarantees fast recovery on system crashing in all configurations.

Starting in 2016, the application has been converted into a web application with the support of jBWT Oracle Forms Converter, maintaining the existing functional approach and minimizing the need to train sales staff.

The conversion project involved 120 forms which are now usable in the new infrastructure.