Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Run Oracle VBCS Application on Your Own Server

Latest VBCS release brings an option to export VBCS application and run on your own server (or different cloud provider). This is a truly strong step forward for VCBS. Read more about it in Shay Shmeltzer blog post. If you decide to keep running VBCS app within VBCS itself, then you get additional functionality of VBCS Business Services, Oracle Cloud security, etc. out of the box. If you export VBCS application and run on your own environment, these features are not included, but then you don't need to pay for VBCS Cloud runtime when hosting the app. It is great to have alternatives and depending on the customer either one or another of the use cases would work.

One of the use cases - customer even don't need to have its own VBCS instance. We could develop Oracle JET app in our VBCS instance, export and deploy it in the customer environment. Later we could provide support for version upgrade.

I have exported sample VBCS app with the external REST service call (REST service). Deployed app on our own server. You can try it yourself -

I must say it is simple to export VBCS app, no hassle at all. Make sure VBCS app you are exporting is set with anonymous access (this will disable Oracle Cloud security model). You will need to implement security and backend secure calls yourself:

Next go to REST service control and specify Bypass Proxy option (this will enable direct REST service call from VBCS app, bypassing Oracle Cloud proxy service). Important: to work with Bypass Proxy option, REST service must be invoked through HTTPS:

Nothing else on VBCS side. Next need to push application code to Oracle Developer Cloud Service Git repository and build artifact which can be exported. I suggest reading Shay Shmeltzer blog post about how to proceed with VBCS and Oracle Developer Cloud Service setup.

In VBCS do push to Git for the selected app:

If it is the first time with Oracle Developer Cloud Service, you will need to set up (refer to Shay post mentioned above) a build job. Create build job configuration, point to Git repo:

Provide a set of parameters for the build job:

Add Unix Shell script to the build job. This script will execute Node.js NPM command to run vb-build job to construct artifact which can be exported and deployed in your own environment. It is important to make sure that property values used in the script match property values defined in the build job earlier. To execute npm command, make sure to use Oracle Developer Cloud Service machine with Node.js support:

Run the job, once it completes and if there are no errors, go to job artifacts and download optimized.zip - this is the archive with VBCS application you can deploy:

Important: when exported VCBS application is accessed, it loads a bunch of scripts and executes HTTPS requests. There is one request which slows down VBCS application initial loading - call to _currentuser. It is trying to execute the _currentuser request on VBCS instance, but if the instance is down - it will wait until a timeout and only then will proceed with application loading. To fix that, search for _currentuser URL in the exported code and change URL to some dummy value, so that this request will fail immediately and will not keep VBCS application from continue loading:

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