AutoMate BPA Server 9 Features & Benefits

Features


In a client-server environment, AutoMate BPA Server 9 allows rapid construction of Windows automation routines via drag and drop without any programming. The following are a list of features found in BPA Server 9.

Full Client-Server Architecture

AutoMate BPA Server 9 is a multi-tiered client server business process automation platform for Windows. It logically separates high-level workflow design from the complexity of building detailed automation routines and provides automated execution and centralized control over processes involving one machine or the entire enterprise. With comprehensive job scheduling, event-based conditions, and robust application development tools, BPA Server 9 enables organizations to streamline, manage and automate complex operations without writing a single line of code.

Multi-Machine Execution

AutoMate BPA Server 9's multi-machine execution capability is made possible in part by BPA Agents that are deployed or installed on remote machines and their facility to interact with the server component. Once installed or deployed on a machine, whether that machine is local or situated remotely, the server component can connect with the Agent via TCP/IP and notify it of what system or network events to monitor along with what tasks to execute as a result of such conditions or events occurring.

Centralized Management

The Server Management Console features a modern and ultra-intuitive interface. Capabilities include: Management of workflows, repository objects, users and agents, reporting, real-time execution status and history, and settings and properties for the server including an object inheritance engine. With centralized administration and reporting, AutoMate BPA Server 9 provides unparalleled management of workflows and IT operations. All workflow information is centrally stored on the server. Workflow performance reporting is also centralized so administrators can easily monitor operations and quickly react to any exceptions.

Repository

Objects created in AutoMate BPA Server 9, such as tasks, conditions and workflows are automatically stored in the Repository for reuse. The Repository provides a centralized location in which to conveniently store newly created objects as well as access pre-existing ones. Storing objects in the Repository does away with the tediousness of re-creating tasks or conditions each time a new workflow is created. These re-usable objects can easily be administered, modified and quickly incorporated into new or existing workflows with just a few mouse clicks.

Workflows

Graphical workflows are the cornerstone of AutoMate BPA Server 9. A workflow (or flow diagram) is a high-level graphical representation of an IT or business process, which might involve processing on multiple servers across the network. The main components of workflows include conditions, tasks, and flow control objects. Conditions are network or system events. The path a workflow takes changes based on conditions (such as the appearance of a file in a specified network share folder) that can initiate workflow execution or provide the basis for conditional event-based decision-making. Tasks, which can be simple or complex, involve the instructions for executing a series of processing steps. Tasks are created with AutoMate's award-winning drag-and-drop development tool, the AutoMate Task Builder, which eliminates the need for writing and maintaining code. Flow control objects allow for the inclusion of complex logic within the workflow and conditional branching.

Intuitive Task Construction and Debugging

The Task Builder is AutoMate BPA Server 9's easy-to-use, intuitive interface for developing automation applications. It is used to visually construct and examine the steps that an AutoMate task should carry out when it is run. To ensure that newly created tasks are working properly before they are put into production, the Task Builder also includes a variety of testing and debugging features that outputs real time information about a running task, enables the inspection of variables, datasets and other dynamic data, and many other debugging features which aids a developer in monitoring and examining tasks as they are being constructed.

Conditions

Conditions can be used to initiate workflows (i.e., start workflow A when file X appears), wait for certain events to transpire before an active workflow is permitted to proceed past a certain point (i.e., after workflow A is initiated, wait for the Notepad Window to appear before continuing), or to make a decision and conditional branch within the workflow (i.e., after workflow A is initiated, evaluate whether the Notepad Window is open – if yes, execute Task 1; if no, execute Task 2).

Active Directory

Automate BPA Server 9 contains fifteen new Active Directory actions which can aid Network Administrators and IT Technicians with their day-to-day activities by automating a variety of simple to elaborate tasks, such as bulk creation, retrieval, management and deletion of groups, user accounts and other Active Directory objects. These actions eliminate repetitive, mundane and time consuming procedures associated with Active Directory management.

FTP / SFTP

File Transfer protocol (FTP) is one of the earliest yet still most common method of transferring files across the Internet mainly due to its simplicity and cross-platform capability. The FTP module in BPA Server 9 acts as an FTP client, however, its advantage over other equivalent clients is that it has the ability to automate unattended file transfer operations. This can be beneficial to organizations that conduct daily transfers of many files or files that are significantly large in size. In such cases, FTP tasks can be created and scheduled to execute in the evening, when network traffic is at a minimum, allowing for more rapid and reliable transfers. AutoMate BPA Server 9's internal FTP engine is compatible with all FTP connection methods, particularly security-based connections. This includes both explicit and implicit FTPS (FTP Secure or FTP-SSL) that adds support for the Transport Layer Security (TLS) and the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) cryptographic protocols. Certificate Authenticity is supported for those servers that require clients to authenticate themselves using a certificate. SFTP (or Secure FTP), which uses Secure Shell (SSH) protocol is also supported. Additionally, it supports Tumbleweed Secure Transport, the industry's most secure Managed File Transfer solution.

Benefits


Automating the processes that support IT services reduce management costs and increases productivity, while improving overall performance and availability of all critical business services. As a result, automating IT processes is a key objective for businesses that are focused on controlling costs and improving IT efficiency. Some of the major benefits of AutoMate BPA Server 9 are as follows:

Ease of Use

AutoMate BPA Server 9 provides an incredibly user-friendly, yet intuitive set of interfaces allowing you to visually create, manage and execute your automated tasks and workflows without requiring programming expertise. Anyone can use AutoMate BPA to construct simple tasks, while experts will benefit from the product’s extended functionality to enable development of complex IT processes.

Error Reduction

When business and management processes are performed manually, it can cause latency and increase the risk of human error - the primary cause of downtime, which ultimately results in delayed access of data. Automate BPA Server 9 eliminates errors introduced by manually performed processes and executes repetitive tasks in a consistently efficient manner.

Management Centralization

With AutoMate BPA Server 9's remote agent capabilities, local and remote AutoMate tasks and settings can be administered conveniently from a single Server Management Console. Tasks can be executed across the enterprise by simply selecting the agent in which each task should execute via the Workflow Designer.

Code Elimination

AutoMate BPA Server 9 reduces costs and hassles associated with developing and maintaining code, scripts, and batch files and offers simplicity so non-programmers can produce intelligent automated processes without writing code.

Information Flow Acceleration

Drag-and-drop task building enables tasks to be constructed rapidly. This accelerates data flows, allowing business users and decision-makers to become more effective and efficient by delivering real-time access to accurate data.

Application Integration

AutoMate BPA Server 9 allows seamless integration of applications to better streamline operations. It can easily integrate database queries and transactions with any ODBC database, to file transfer capabilities (via FTP, SFTP, HTTP, and Windows network protocols), XML parsing and more.

See Also

Welcome

Features and Benefits

What's New in AutoMate BPA Server 9

Standard vs. Enterprise Edition

Contacting Network Automation

 

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