Timer-Based Message Transfer Using SAP HANA Cloud Integration

  • by Dr. Volker Stiehl, Professor, Ingolstadt Technical University of Applied Sciences
  • May 23, 2016
Volker Stiehl explains how to use SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) for modeling the time-based activation of integration flows. Also see how to call an external web service by means of the Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) adapter. The use of namespace mappings clarifies how to work with several web services in one integration flow at the same time.
Learning Objectives

By reading this article you will:

  • Know how to schedule an integration flow’s execution by defining well-defined points in time when the flow has to run
  • Learn how to use and maintain the Timer Start Event as a means to schedule the integration flow’s invocation
  • Understand what is necessary to configure the Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) adapter correctly to invoke external web services
  • Figure out how namespace mappings help you to work with several web services at the same time in one integration flow
Key Concept

Enterprise service buses typically take care of routing messages received from system A reliably to system B. They are classically triggered by incoming messages. However, modern integration solutions such as SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) also support scheduled message transfers. In those scenarios, the message’s transfer is not triggered by an incoming message. Instead, a timer takes care of waking up the integration flow, which in turn actively requests data from one or more systems. The resulting response message is then forwarded to the receiver systems.

In previous articles you have already used SAP HANA Cloud Integration (SAP HCI) as the cloud-based solution to reliably transfer messages between on-premise as well as on-demand enterprise applications. So far, the integration logic executed on SAP HCI was mainly triggered by incoming messages (e.g., an order request originating from a sender CRM system that needed to be routed to various back-end ERP systems, depending on the message’s content).

However, not all integration scenarios require an incoming message to trigger their behavior. Sometimes you want to check for existing data on a regular basis (e.g., retrieving the status of a machine or related-machine data in the Internet of Things world and forwarding the information to a Business Intelligence system for further analysis, or predicting the potential failure of the machine). Those scenarios require the initiation of a message transfer on a timely basis. I’ll dive into the details on how you can achieve this using SAP HCI.

Dr. Volker Stiehl

Prof. Dr. Volker Stiehl studied computer science at the Friedrich-Alexander-University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. After 12 years as a developer and senior system architect at Siemens, he joined SAP in 2004. As chief product expert, Volker was responsible for the success of the products SAP Process Orchestration, SAP Process Integration, and SAP HANA Cloud Integration (now SAP HANA Cloud Platform, integration service). He left SAP in 2016 and accepted a position as professor at the Ingolstadt Technical University of Applied Sciences where he is currently teaching business information systems. In September 2011, Volker received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Technology Darmstadt. His thesis was on the systematic design and implementation of applications using BPMN. Volker is also the author of Process-Driven Applications with BPMN as well as the co-author of SAP HANA Cloud Integration and a regular speaker at various national and international conferences.

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