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Blog Posts by Category: Tech Talk

Upcoming BPA Feature: Advanced Workflow Capabilities Using Agent Groups

3/3/09 • by marjo martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

One of the many new features that will be introduced in the upcoming release of BPA Server version 7.0.8.0 is the concept of Agent Groups. An Agent Group is essentially a single element that contains a collection of two or more agents within a logical group. Agent Groups can be used in place of individual agents within a workflow. This allows a single trigger condition the ability to set off tasks assigned to numerous agents in one workflow. This also provides a single task the ability to execute on multiple agents simultaneously. Additionally, Agent Groups allow the workflow to wait for and/or test for a condition to be true on any one machine in the agent group. This article will outline how to create Agent Groups and explain their properties and behavior in a running workflow determined by the type of object each Agent Group is applied to.

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Using Functions to Extend AutoMate's Capabilities

2/2/09 • by marjo martinez, in Tech Talk 1 comment

AutoMate encompasses a VBA-compatible engine designed to extend the functionality available in AML (AutoMate Markup Language), the primary internal language used by AutoMate. It allows multi-line BASIC scripts to be included in a task with the use of the BASIC Script action and allows all built-in Visual Basic functions to be used as an expression in any step of a task. Furthermore, AutoMate also includes a large collection of additional functions that extend the functionality of the AutoMate Scripting Engine beyond the capabilities of what the basic VBA-compatible engine provides. These functions are collectively referred to as "AutoMate Extended Functions."

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Using Conditions to Enhance Workflow Operations

1/5/09 • by marjo martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

In AutoMate BPA Server 7, conditions, formerly known as triggers, are objects that can initiate the execution of workflows or tasks based on system and application events that occur in your network. The evolution from triggers to conditions is mainly due to workflows which have been introduced in BPA Server 7. Conditions are much more powerful than triggers because - in addition to initiating workflow execution - they can also provide conditional decision-making at the workflow level.

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How to use the Expression Builder

11/21/08 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments
Image for blog post

The AutoMate Expression Builder is a valuable tool used to assist in the creation and examination of expressions. An expression, in a programming, is a combination of variables, constants, functions and operators that represents a particular value. Many procedures or actions that one might want to perform with expressions are already contained in AutoMate's list of available actions. However, expressions can be used to further expand the capabilities of an action or add more intelligence to a task due to its ability to resolve dynamic data during task execution. The Expression Builder essentially incorporates all of the elements needed in order to create a properly formatted expression for use in any step of an AutoMate task.

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Repository Management

10/27/08 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

AutoMate BPA Server 7 is comprised of three major elements: the Server, Agent and Development clients. The Server is the center of communication between connected Agents and the Development clients. It is also the "repository" of all information and objects concerning the creation, modification, management, organization and execution of each and every automated process.

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Property Inheritance

9/30/08 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

Introduction

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BPA Server 7 Reports

9/5/08 • in Tech Talk 4 comments

Overview

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BPA 7 Task Builder Overview

7/29/08 • in Tech Talk 0 comments

The Task Builder is used to visually construct and test the steps that a task should carry out when it is executed, whether done manually or triggered by an event or condition. The Task Builder can be accessed from the Server Management Console in two ways:

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BPA Server 7 Management Console (SMC) Overview

6/27/08 • in Tech Talk 0 comments

The SMC provides the interface for centralized management and administration and allows you to graphically manage all elements of the AutoMate BPA Server including workflows, the Repository, users, and agents. You can also create reports and set options.

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Workflow Control

3/28/08 • by Ricardo Castaneda, in Tech Talk 0 comments

With AutoMate BPA Server 7, automation developers have a new layer of logic they can add to processes at the Workflow level. Flow Controls - including arrows and the Evaluation object - are decision-making tools that provide flexibility and determine the path a workflow will take. For example, if the result of a task is successful, the next step in the workflow will be different than if the result is a failure. Flow controls connect tasks, events, and conditions together to make the workflow a cohesive unit.

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AutoMate BPA Server 7 Installation Instructions

2/27/08 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

Automate BPA Server 7, in addition to the powerful capabilities found in AutoMate 6, provides more enhanced features and actions. The most significant of these include a client/server design to automate business processes involving just one machine or an entire network. The result is that the BPA Server 7 architecture is comprised of three major components: the Server, the Agents, and the Development Tools, which can be installed on the same machine or on separate machines. This article will provide illustrated instructions and important notes regarding the installation of BPA Server 7, whether the separate components are installed on a single machine or on different machines.

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AutoMate BPA Server Agent Deployment

11/16/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 1 comment

AutoMate BPA Server works hand-in-hand with AutoMate Agents in order to execute workflows and perform tasks across a network environment. The Agent's main purpose is to perform triggering, workflow, and task execution, either locally or on a remote machine. An Agent has no graphic user interface. It simply resides on the machine and quietly runs in the background until it is called upon by BPA Server to execute a workflow or complete a task. Agents also detect conditions that can initiate workflows, so communication between Server and Agents works in both directions.

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Account Control Panel

10/22/07 • by Marjo, in Tech Talk 0 comments

The Account Control Panel is a powerful and secure web-based interface which allows you to access your account information online twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

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User Resource Center

9/21/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

The AutoMate User Resource Center "A Different Kind of Product Support Web Site"Support All Day............... Seriously All Day

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Debug Window

8/13/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

The Debug Window of the AutoMate Task Builder supplies a large amount of information about the task being constructed. Its purpose is to assist a developer to properly diagnose a task that generates an error or is generally not running properly. It provides a simple means to examine the contents of variables, inspect the states of any watches that were set, view labels and attachments or observe what each step may (or may not) have done during task execution. The Debug window contains six views which are separated by tabs. This article will provide a comprehensive description of each available Debugging tool.

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Automating Desktop Interactions

7/25/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

AutoMate is certainly the ideal tool to use when it comes to automating the procedure of interacting with controls within a window or navigating through a webpage, application or other types of interfaces. AutoMate includes numerous interactivity related actions that can impersonate any mouse or keyboard activity as well as virtually any form of desktop interactions performed manually.

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Logon Options in Depth

6/25/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 1 comment

AutoMate's Logon options contain the settings that are used to run a managed task in diverse situations. It can specify how the task should run depending on the current state of the machine, whether it is logged on, logged off or locked.

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Variables vs. Constants

5/18/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

A variable is a named storage location that can contain data which, if needed, may be modified during task execution. In this manner, variables can be used to represent and store dynamic data that may be different each time the task is run. Each variable has a name that uniquely identifies it. Variables can be used to represent data in a task that may be different from system to system.

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Remote Administration

4/24/07 • by Marjo Martinez, in Tech Talk 0 comments

Remote Administration provides the capability to directly manage an AutoMate client from any machine on a TCP/IP network where the AutoMate Task Administrator is running. Once connected to a remote AutoMate, a user can add, remove, modify and debug managed tasks and enable / disable task triggering on the remote machine.

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