Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Oracle Mobile Cloud Service - External SOAP Service Connector

These days everything is about MCS/MAF. I'm also looking into this new area, but I'm trying to mix traditional ADF topics and new things. Who knows may be MCS/MAF is a new big thing and its good time to learn it. I was testing how it works to define my own custom SOAP connector to calculate currency conversion rate.

MCS developer portal allows to create and use new connector. Special wizard helps to complete this task, just click on large CONNECTORS icon:

There is new option available to create new SOAP/REST connector:

Wizard reminds me JDEV interface, steps are similar as to generate SOAP connection in JDEV. You need to provide SOAP WSDL URL, name and description:

If create action is successful, General step is displayed with SOAP connector general details:

Port step provides information required when you would like to call SOAP service through the connector in custom code:

There is no security and in the last step I can test it. I'm checking for conversion rate from EUR to USD in the payload. Mobile backend should be specified to test connector SOAP call. I would understand Mobile backend something like Application Module in ADF BC, it is required to group business logic and expose interface:

SOAP service is invoked and I can see the response:

Connector is tested through mobile backend. Later in the diagnostics section we could see invocation statistics:

Next step would be to include connector call into custom API.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Smart Combo Box LOV Based on Description Attribute

I had a question from blog reader for my previous post about smart Combo Box LOV - Smart Combo Box LOV with Filter. Reader was asking if it is possible to define Combo Box LOV on description rather than ID attribute. ADF BC out of the box allows to define LOV on readonly description attribute. I had a post about it - Defining the LOV on a Reference Attribute in Oracle ADF 11g. Today I will test and describe how the same can be applied for Combo Box LOV in ADF 12c.

If you want to define Combo Box LOV on description attribute, first thing to do is to create Association between main EO and EO from where description attribute should come:

Based on association we can define left outer join and bring description attribute to the main VO:

Description attribute is readonly, since it comes from join:

Combo Box LOV should be defined directly for this readonly description attribute. We should return description and key - both attributes. ADF BC would display description on UI, but it would return key attribute in the background:

Combo Box is set to filter initial list based on criteria, same as in previous blog mentioned above:

UI implementation contains LOV Combo Box mapped with JobTitle attribute:

This is how it looks on UI. LOV Combo Box displays description attribute and in the background it updates JobId. Same works in both table and form UI:

Combo Box LOV displays multiple attributes and rows are filtered based on initial View Criteria:

Download sample application -

Friday, September 25, 2015

Master-Detail Pattern Implementation in ADF 12c Alta UI

ADF 12c and Alta UI change the way how we used to implement UI in ADF. Let's take a look into Master-Detail. Before Alta UI usual implementation for Master-Detail would be based on vertical layout with master on the top and details below. Alta UI provides different patterns like left-right, bottom-top for Master-Detail implementation - Oracle Alta UI Patterns. I would recommend to watch a demo from Shay Shmeltzer, he explains how to build left-right Master-Detail - Developing Your First Oracle Alta UI page with Oracle ADF Faces. In my post I'm taking a step further and explaining how to manage Master-Detail relationship between different regions.

Here you can watch a demo of sample application developed for today post:

Country list on the left acts as a menu. User can select any country and this will force regions displayed in the central area to refresh and show information based on selected country. I'm keeping regions in synch without Contextual Events, using simple solution described in this post - Simple (Effective) Refresh Approach for ADF Regions.

Selection changes in Menu region trigger list filtering in Employees Directory tab:

Detail data displayed in Profile tab is also filtered. In the top block is displayed additional information for Master record. Employees from selected country are displayed in the form with navigation controls. Overview block displays information about all employees from selected country:

If country selection is changed, detail data is refreshed to stay in synch:

Administration tab contains table with pagination support, also filtered based on Master record change in countries:

Countries menu block is implemented in separate region. Selection listener is overwritten to process menu item selection:

Listener updates session scope variable with a key of selected country. Region refresh approach is implemented based on the method described in the post mention above:

Content region is implemented by TF with a router. Here we check if Country ID TF input variable is not empty and execute detail records filtering:

Country ID is defined as TF input parameter:

Session scope variable updated by Countries menu listener is set as a input value for region parameter. Each time when session scope variable is changed (new country is selected), region with such input parameter will be refreshed:

Region will be refreshed, only if Refresh property will be set to ifNeeded:

It might be enough to reload only one region. If another region contains PPR supported components (tables, forms) - data can be reloaded automatically with ChangeEventPolicy = ppr set for iterator:

Download sample application -

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Use Case of Auto Re-Execute Functionality in ADF BC

There are use cases, when data in DB is changed by background processes and we would like to display to the user latest data available. Very common implementation for this use case is to re-execute ADF iterator and VO each time when Task Flow or UI screen is accessed. Obviously this works, but performance would suffer - usually there is no need to re-fetch data each time, it must be re-fetched only when changes are detected in DB. ADF BC provides out of the box such functionality - it can detect changes in DB and re-execute VO through Database Change Notification. Make sure to grant CHANGE NOTIFICATION system privilege to the data source user.

Auto refresh functionality for ADF BC VO is working when DB pooling is disabled in AM tuning. This would mean you should use Auto refresh carefully and plan dedicated AM's.

I'm going to describe the use case and how you could benefit from VO auto refresh. Here is the example of typical ADF Task Flow with initial Method Call to re-execute VO and fetch fresh data from DB. In the next step UI fragment is rendered, where recent data is displayed:

This is how it works on UI. Departments TF is accessed by pressing Departments button in Employees table screen. This will trigger Execute action call in Departments TF and force VO to reload:

List of Departments will display recently fetched data from DB:

Each time when Departments TF is opened, VO executes SQL query and re-fetches data. This can be observed from the log:

While this works fine, it is not great from performance perspective. We should improve it by using VO auto refresh functionality. Change default activity in TF to UI fragment, we don't need to invoke VO re-execute:

Select AutoRefresh=true property in the VO settings, this will enable DB listener event for this VO and will force re-execution only when it is required:

We are ready to test it. Change Department Name column value:

Navigate to Departments from Employees table:

New data will be displayed automatically in Departments list, even without invoke initial Execute operation. If you would open the same TF, when there were no changes in DB, it will load data from cache, without re-executing VO and re-fetching the same data rows:

Download sample application -

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

ADF BC Inline View Criteria for Hierarchical Search

ADF BC View Criteria allows to implement Inline View Criteria to execute hierarchal search. This is especially useful, when you have Master-Detail relationship and want to filter Master records, based on attribute value from Detail. Keep in mind, Inline View Criteria for hierarchical search would not work, if VO is based on custom SQL query. It works only with declarative VO's.

This is how View Criteria with detail search option looks like. If there is View Link available, you can select depend VO from the list of attributes. JDeveloper automatically sets Inline View Criteria option and you can select any attribute from detail VO. All criteria attributes will be rendered in the single search block on UI:

Inline View Criteria is created based on View Link:

Make sure not to use custom SQL based VO, Inline View Criteria would work only with declarative or not custom SQL based VO:

Search filters Master results (departments), based on Detail filtering (employees). I'm searching for employees with salary greater or equal to 12000. This query returns only those departments, where employees with such salary are available:

If I search with lower salary, more departments are present in the result:

Download sample application -

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

ADF Alta UI 12c Responsive Layout Template

Alta UI in ADF 12c with combination of Tablet First template provides support for responsive UI. Often you would like to implement extra functionality for responsive layout, not available out of the box. I'm going to describe in this post, with very practical example, how this can be achieved. I will implement desktop and tablet view support with adjusted menu structure and header.

Tablet First template is shipped with ADF 12c and provides different facets (UI blocks) where developer could implement menu, content, header and footer. We could use CSS media query to dynamically react to the screen changes and adjust facets accordingly. In order to use CSS media query in the template, we need to have access to the Tablet First template code. This is easily achievable by creating custom UI template, based on out of the box Tablet First template. In the template creation wizard select Copy Existing Template option, this will copy template source code and you could adjust it:

This allows to save time and implement CSS media query in the template. If screen size is less than 950px, we are going to render narrow layout and vice versa:

Header area is going to be rendered for larger screens only, to save screen space on smaller ones. Wide style is assigned for the header block, this means with narrow CSS style it will stay hidden:

Wide CSS style is assigned to the core structure of the template - menu block, end and central block are displayed here:

Narrow CSS style is set to render UI structure suitable for tablet screen. Menu width is fixed to 30px, limiting size available for the menu:

Let's take a look at page based on the template. We are using different facets, but same regions are being reused in different UI blocks. Menu block for wide and narrow UI is using same region. This allows to reuse business logic, no matter on what screen UI is being rendered:

Same applies for central content block, same regions are being reused for wide and narrow UI.

ADF UI with narrow layout designed for tablet:

User clicks on menu icon and panel drawer loads menu list:

Wide layout renders menu on the left and it also displays header block:

Not only a list, but also editable form can be displayed pretty nicely with narrow layout:

Download sample application -