Creating TXLife Interface in 10 Steps
Step 1 – Create a New Route or Interface
In our route file management dialog, we can see all the existing routes and interfaces in our table here. We can create new routes simply by clicking “Add Route” and then providing a name for it.
Step 2 – Build the Route
We’ll double click on this row here and open up our main eiConsole view. Here we can see the graphical automated interface assembly line consisting of 7 stages represented in each of these different columns. These stages are responsible for defining the steps to receive, transform and deliver data in our interface.
Step 3 – Identify Source and Target Systems
We can add as many source or target systems (with these buttons) as we want. Over on the source and target system stages, we can then configure names and icons to best describe what it is we’re connecting to.
Step 4 – Configure Listeners & Processors
At the listener stage, we can find a drop-down listener type. We come pre-bundled with several dozen listeners capable of handling virtually any type of connectivity. We’ll just need to pick a listener type that best describes how we’re connected that source system. Once we’ve chosen a listener type, we can provide a name and we can also provide any connectivity and settings down here. After configuring our listener, we can then add any number of processors and our process configuration stages here. Processors are responsible for doing low-level operations on data like authentication, validation, and encryption.
Step 5 – Transform the Source Data to a Common Standard
We’ll start by adding a format to best describe what it is we’re transforming to and from. Our transformation happens in two parts. The first part is a transformation module to take our non-XML format and convert it to XML. Our second part is a logical transformation using our data mapper. The data mapper is a 3-pane mapping tool. The left-hand side is going to represent our source format. The right-hand side will represent our target format – what we’re mapping to. Then, our actual mapping will be represented by a tree here in the center.
Up at the top, we have a tool palette where we can find things like iteration conditions, functions, and other useful utilities. Then we build our mapping just by dragging and dropping from each of these panels. Once we’ve completed our mapping, we can do additional testing from our testing view and ensure every facet of our mapping is working exactly as we expect. Once we’ve tested a transformation, we can save our mapping and return to the eiConsole to continue on with our flow. At this point, our message has been converted from its original format to what we expect as our canonical. We can then proceed to step 6.
Step 6 – Configure the Routing Module
The routing module is responsible for determining which target systems a given message is going to go to. We can also set up a proactive error notification in our transaction monitoring tab here.
Step 7 – Transform the Data for the Target
This will transform our canonical format to the data format specifically required by the target. We can add another format here and we can define our logical transformation here on the left-hand side, again using that same data mapper tool from before. We’ll start our mapping by reading in our source format on the left-hand side. We’ll read our target format on the right-hand side – this time using the ACORD Life Standard. Once we have our source and target formats read in, we can build our mapping again just by dragging & dropping for the left and right-hand panels. Once we’ve completed our mapping – simply save it, close our mapper and once again, return to our main eiConsole screen. We can then proceed on to step 8.
Step 8 – Configuring the Transport
The transport stage, like the listener, we can choose from a number of transport types. Here we’re going to choose an outbound HTTP POST, write the name for a transport and finally, the URL endpoint we will try and hit. Once we’ve configured our transport, we can then test our interface. Simply save it, go to mode and switch to testing mode.
Step 9 – Testing Your Interface End to End
From within our testing mode, we can start, stop or suspend a test at any stage in our interface. Here we’re going to provide a sample file that’s going to start at our source transform stage here and run all the way through our interface. Once we’re ready, we can just click Execute Test. As each stage successfully completes, we receive green checkmarks. Failed stages will receive a red X.
We can now step through and see how our data was changed at each stage in our assembly line. We can see our original JSON sample; we can see the XML representation of that; we can see our mapping to our canonical and see the results of the ACORD transformation. And then finally, for failed stages, we can get full information about what was wrong with the message. Once you’ve completed testing the interface, we can proceed to step 10.
Step 10 – Deploy Your Interface
We’ll return to the original route file management dialog and there are a number of ways we can deploy our interface via the eiPlatform from here. But we’ll show the simplest. We’ll simply navigate down to the server view, provide connectivity information to our eiPlatform server and then click connect. Once connected, we can then drag & drop our interface from this panel here to the one down here and it will still be sent to the eiPlatform and hot deploy – running immediately.
That’s it! In 10 easy steps, we’ve Illustrated how, by using the PilotFish Automated Interface Assembly Line – you can quickly configure, test and deploy an ACORD TXLife Interface.
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