COMING SOON: DCM240 – DCM 14.5 Essentials

COMING SOON: DCM240 – DCM 14.5 Essentials

Audience



This course is recommended for Dimensions CM (DCM) users and administrators.


Description



This course provides the concepts and skills to work with major new themes and functions in DCM 14.5, Topic Streams, Shelves, Pulse Agents.

The course includes standard workflows descriptions and best practice.

 

Course Content

This course covers the following areas:

  • Topic Streams

  • Pull Requests

  • Rebasing

  • Rehoming

  • Code Reviews

  • Peer Reviews

  • Basic and Advanced workflows

  • Pulse AgentsAgent Capabilities

  • Agent variables

 

Course features

  • Developed with Micro Focus ART
  • Self-paced, with tracking and graded exam
  • Interactive software simulations with voice-over and closed captioning
  • Online resources include exercise scenarios and process workflows

 

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What's new in Visual Studio Integration in 14.5

Topic Streams and Pull Requests

Topic Streams are great when you want to make isolated changes, experiment and re-integrate them later into your mainline stream. They work together with Pull Requests – a type of review that allows to evaluate a set of changes and orchestrate their automatic integration into the target stream.

From Visual Studio integration you can create a topic stream with New > Topic Stream command:

When creating a new topic stream you can choose an option to reuse your existing solution work area by rehoming it. Rehome will convert your existing work area and align it with the new stream, it is faster than fetching to a clean work area.

After the topic stream is created you can access its pull request from the Dimensions Explorer:

Using the pull request you can review and approve the changes made in a topic stream. Depending on Dimensions Pulse settings, an automatic merge to the target stream may happen.

Pull requests are also accessible from the Reviews panel:

View enhancements

Baselines panel now has the same design as the requests panel:

Streams and Projects panel also updated, now it supports search and can show recent and favorite streams or projects:

 

Themes support for request properties:

Reorganized main and context menu commands for better usability, reviewed and updated toolbar and context menu icons:

 

 

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How to view a ModScript log file without using remote desktop connection

ModScript, at least since version 11.3, added a new "Log" object with methods to allow sending text to a log file in the SBM "Application Engine\Log" directory.  To view these messages you need to start a "Remote Desktop Connection", aka "Remote Console" or RDP to the AE server and view the log file in the "Application Engine\log" directory.  Previously, this kind of logging was done using the "Ext.LogInfoMsg" call which sent the message to the AE server's Windows Application Event log.  To view these log messages, you also had to "remote" into the AE server, then use the Windows Event Viewer to view the Application Event log.  That level of access can make some clients or server administrators nervous.  In some conditions, the developer may not have any access to SBM servers.

Fortunately, there's a way to create a log that doesn't require any remote access to the AE server, outside of IIS.

Some basic "one time" setup is necessary to allow this capability. Have someone with "administrator" privileges on the SBM AE server do the following steps:

  1. "remote" into the SBM AE server
  2. "CD" to IIS's "inetpub\wwwroot" directory.
  3. Create a subdirectory under "inetpub\wwwroot" for the ModScript log files.  In this example the name of the subdir is "AE-Logs".
  4. Use the Microsoft Sys Internals "junction" tool "junction" to create a file junction from "inetpub\wwwroot\AE-Logs" that is targeted at a subdirectory (which the "junction" command will create) under the App Engine's "Log" directory.  In this example the name of the subdir under "Application Engine\Log" is called "inetpub_AE-logs".

junction  "C:\inetpub\wwwroot\AE-logs"   "F:\Program Files\Serena\SBM\Application Engine\Log\inetpub_AE-logs"

Now your ModScript can use the following calls to create a Log file in that new subdir.  Make sure that the name of the log file you create has a file extension that IIS will handle, like ".txt" or ".htm".  On my system, IIS will not handle a file with the ".log" extension.  I can probably change that by making changes to the IIS settings.

var my_IIS_log Log() ;
my_IIS_log.Open("inetpub_AE-logs/ModScript_log.txt");
my_IIS_log.SetWantTimeStamp(true);
my_IIS_log.Message( LogLevelConstants.AVERAGE, "0 param call to my_IIS_log.Message" );
my_IIS_log.Message( LogLevelConstants.AVERAGE, "3 param call to my_IIS_log.Message : Reporting Level={0} : File={1} : IsOpen={2}" , my_IIS_log.GetReportingLevel() , my_IIS_log.GetFileName() , my_IIS_log.IsOpen() );

 

View the log in a browser:

https://-MY-AE-SERVER-/AE-logs/ModScript_log.txt

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What’s new in Visual Studio integration in 14.4

In 14.4 release Visual Studio integration has seen a lot of improvement. The focus of the changes was improving usability, discoverability and modernizing the look.

Redesigned Dimensions Explorer

We’ve made significant investment into updating the look and usability of Dimensions Explorer, previously known as Serena Explorer. It’s a single place where you can read current solution state, access views and operations. It eliminates ambiguity and clearly displays current solution context.

Often used as a starting point to begin work, Dimensions Explorer provides hints and informs about next steps:

    

Themes Support

Themes are available in Visual Studio 2012 and newer, and Visual Studio integration views now react to theme changes on the fly.

Light theme

Blue theme

Dark theme

Integrated Peer Review Process

With Dimensions CM Pulse, peer review process is very easy. It is a powerful tool to review changes, make comments, view code annotations and collaborate. It is accessible from Visual Studio Integration with Reviews panel. You can switch between different display modes and work with reviews inside the IDE.

 

Reviews panel

Doing code review:

Repository Browser

Ever wanted to view repository structure? Easy to do with Repository Browser view. Navigate folders, view file content, and see who made the changes.

Repository browser

Better Requests View

Completely redesigned Requests view displays requests in a usable, easy to find way. Three view selectors allow switching between display modes. Type text in the search field to narrow down the list of requests. Search works for any of the visible columns. Its look and feel is consistent with Reviews panel, and it’s very easy to use.

Go from a request to a review:

Support for .dmignore files

New deliver wizard now supports specification of ignore rules via .dmignore files. Use context menu command to edit rules.

 

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New Search Features in SBM 11.5

Check out these exciting enhancements to the Search feature in SBM Work Center, available to you starting in SBM 11.5.

Regular Expressions

Work Center now supports searching for work items using a regular expression, which is a powerful search method that utilizes pattern matching to help you find work items. To search using a regular expression, select the RegEx option on the Work Center search page, and then enter your search query. For a list of operators that are available, refer to the SBM Work Center Guide or help.

Advanced Search

Have you ever used Advanced Search in User Workspace, and wished the same feature was available in Work Center? Well, now it is.

What’s cool about Advanced Search is that you can search all kinds of tables in addition to the primary table (if you have the appropriate privileges): auxiliary tables, archived tables, and notes/attachments. 

For example, let’s say I want to sort through all of the string IDs in the IDM application that have to do with the calendar. I select String IDs from the Search in Table list (see above), and then enter “calendar” as my keyword:

Here are my results: 

URL Attachments

While Advanced Search enables you to search notes and associated attachments, the main keyword search now enables you to search the names and addresses of attached URLs.

Below, you can see that I searched for items containing the keyword “Micro Focus.” In my results, all items with the attached URL named “Micro Focus” appear.

Search Results

Lastly, you can now choose how many fields you want to appear in each row of your search results. This option is available in your user profile on the Search tab:

If I set this to 5, then 5 fields will appear in a row in my search result:

Conclusion

We hope these search features make your SBM life easier and more efficient. Happy searching!

 

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New Administrative Changes View in SBM 11.5

In SBM, it’s useful to be able to analyze administrative changes, especially when you suspect changes to the system may have caused setup or security issues. In previous releases of SBM, you would have to query the TS_ADMINCHANGES and TS_ADMINCHANGESVALUES tables in the database to view these changes. Now in SBM 11.5, you can easily view administrative changes within Application Administrator.

The Administrator Changes view (available under the More category) displays the type of change made, the timestamp of the change, the administrator who made the change, the affected table name and record, and the value that was changed. Here’s an example of some of the changes you might see:

Click in the Changed Values column to view the prior value and new value.

To filter the list of changes, click Filter. Let’s say I want to view all changes that have been made involving the user Kathy. In the Record Name field, I enter “Kathy.”

Here are my results:

To see which privilege changed for Kathy, I can click Changed Privileges in the Changed Values column. Now I can see she was granted the Remote Administration privilege.

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New @user Mention Feature Available in SBM 11.5

You may already use a “mention” feature in other applications you use—it’s an easy way to catch another person’s attention within the context of a post. Wouldn’t it be handy to be able to do that from a work item in SBM?

Starting in SBM 11.5, you can. In an item’s text field or note, simply type “@” followed by the user’s login ID, and the user will be sent an e-mail notification.

For example, let’s say my team is collaborating on a particular issue, and we’ve met to discuss the issue and assign action items. I’ll add a note to the issue and mention the applicable users by typing @laura and @rhadika (highlighted below).

Once I add the note, Laura and Rhadika will each receive an e-mail notification similar to the following:

Handy, right? This means I don’t have to send a separate e-mail from the issue; I can just notify the users within the context of my note.

 

How does this work behind the scenes? SBM now provides a new “Any [item] mentioned user” notification and associated rule with every process app. Within the rule is a new Mentions operator. The default notification is set up so that when the current user is mentioned in a text field or note, a notification is sent to that user.

You can use this notification as-is or create a custom notification and rule that use this new Mentions operator.

 

To make sure that users receive a notification when they’re mentioned, subscribe them to the notification on the Subscriptions tab:

That's all there is to it!  Once you subscribe your users, make sure to let them know that they can now mention other users in text fields and notes.  When they thank you for the info, you now have a great pun to use as well. 

Recent Comments
David Sheaffe
Is this new feature 'predictive' - in that when you start typing @... - it will start displaying the users that match the letters ... Read More
Wednesday, 19 December 2018 9:09 PM
Jeremy Vorndam
Hi David. The @user feature is not predictive in SBM 11.5; however, R&D has an enhancement to add that functionality in a future ... Read More
Wednesday, 19 December 2018 10:10 PM
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Micro Focus Deployment Automation Plugin Template

Micro Focus Deployment Automation Plugin Template

One of the unique and maybe best features of Micro Focus Deployment Automation is its architecture that allows you the ability to create your "plugins" with limited coding knowledge. In this post we look at an example template that you can use to create your own plugins.


I have placed the template over on GitHub, to get started you will need to clone the repository using the following command:

git clone https://github.com/sda-community-plugins/plugin-template.git

This is a fully documented template that can use to make your own Micro Focus Deployment Automation plugin from. It illustrates how to achieve the following in your own plugin:

  • prompt for and retrieve the value of all types of properties in a step
  • set a property output for a step
  • check if your step is running on Windows or Unix/Linux
  • execute a command line program
  • call a REST API
  • parse the output of command line programs to determine success or failure
  • use the plugins-commons library to simplify your code
  • upgrade a plugin's version when adding or renaming properties and steps

Additional product documentation is provided in the Integration Guide. It is recommend that you read Chapter 7 in this document before you start writing your own plugin.

Creating your own plugin

To create your own plugin, copy or clone this repository and then update the following files and directories:

  1. pom.xml
    change the artifactId, name and description elements for your own plugin.

  2. src\main\groovy\:
    create any new groovy classes you want to use across multiple plugin steps here

    see ExampleCLIHelper.groovy and ExampleRESTHelper.groovy for some examples.

  3. src\main\zip\:
    create a new .grooyy file for each step you create.

    add an entry into plugin.xml for each new step (see below).

  4. src\main\groovy\zip\plugin.xml:
    change the element to refer to your plugin's id and name.

    change the element's attribute if you have released your plugin before (or installed it into Deployment Automation) and are now creating a new version.

    change the element.

    change the element to where you want your plugin to appear in the workflow designer palette. It is recommended that you try and keep it in the structure that has already been created.

    add additional elements making sure that the element refers to the new file you have created for your step.

  5. src\main\groovy\zip\info.xml:
    this file is only used for documentation purposes but you can change the information in here for completeness.

  6. src\main\grooy\upgrade.xml:
    you need to add entries in here when you create a new version of your plugin so that existing processes can be upgraded successfully you can specify new steps, renamed steps or properties - see the example provided

Building the plugin

To build the plugin you will need to clone the following repositories (at the same level as this repository):

mavenBuildConfig

plugins-build-parent

air-plugin-build-script

and then compile using the following command:

mvn clean package

This will create a .zip file in the target directory when you can then install into Deployment Automation from the System\Automation page.

 

 

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DA New Feature: Property Picker

DA New Feature: Property Picker

 

The following blog post describes a simple but highly effective enhancement that has been introduced in Deployment Automation 6.2.1.

 

The new Property Picker feature now available in Deployment Automation 6.2.1.

This simple enhancement brings 2 benefits

1.      Reduces errors caused by mis-typing a property value

2.      Gives an overview of the properties currently available