Tech Talk Live #124 Q&A

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Tech Talk Live #124 Q&A

Community Manager
Community Manager
2 0 113

Here are the answers to the questions raised on the day and for those we didn't have time to address. 

# Question Answer
1 How can I see & buy the product? By contacting the Alfresco Solution Engineer team or your Alfresco account executive
2 How can I see & try the product?

On our official APA documentation website.

https://www.alfresco.com/abn/process-automation/docs/

3 Does buying APA product include Content Cloud, or do customers need to buy it separately? APA comes in addition to ACS in Alfresco cloud. APA cannot be used without our Content Sevices platform.
4 Are there/Will there be any sample models or applications that ship with APA? Yes, we are working on packaging some sample projects in APA modelling app so that new users can learn from these examples and copy them to start their own project.
5 What is the difference between APA and APS? APA is Alfresco cloud/PaaS only. APS for On-prem or Private cloud. APA has a deeper integration into ACS, designed as a single system. Cloud Native Application builder. Richer set of connectors. APS still available for pure process cases.
6 Would it work within a private VPN? Currently on Alfresco PaaS only
7 is the On premise option available in future? Yes, but not with specific dates yet
8 Will CMMN, Case Model Manager Notation, be implemented in future? We will have a case designer, but not certain yet if CMMN is the correct one
9 Will Activiti Community development continue? Yes. APA is based on Activit 7 core, so development will continue
10 I assume then that external users within a process will need an Alfresco account before being able to interact with it in that way (e.g. uploading passport image). You can support external users, but they need to be setup in Identity Service first
11 Can external users perform a task e.g. upload to a process or approve something without being a registered user? Yes that is possible to involve external users in a workflow to perform tasks.
12 How easy is it to call external systems if there's no connector available? APA includes a generic REST connector to interact with any external REST endpoints
13 Is all information from within the process/form available to share with an external system? Yes, we have two ways: ReST connector or use a database connector for external data source
14 Can you write data transformers in APA or do you host these outside of Alfresco? You can use our script service to perform some data transformation. We also provide an AWS Lambda connector to execute code externallly in a sererlessa approach.
15 Does AlfPS/ACS support automatical cleaning up of certain sensitive data such as passports? It turns out that our AWS Comprehend connector can be used to detect personally identifiable information (PII).
16 Is this Modelling Application / Process Automation functionality available with Community Edition? APA is enterprise Only. There is a Modelling App in the community, but it does not offer all capabilities demonstrated today
17 Apart from the UI and cloud only, what is the new inovation in APA?  Ease of building solution and automating Enteprrise use-cases; Powerful event driven automation. Low code application design and generation; much stronger integration with Content, including content modelling
18 Is there a list of the available connectors? 

Yes, all the out-of-the-box connectors are listed part of our product documentation. 

https://www.alfresco.com/abn/process-automation/docs/model/connectors/

19 It seems like a very powerful tool. I assume this is a product add-on to an Alfresco license, as opposed to being included with. Yes APA is an add-on to ACS in Alfresco Cloud. It needs to be purchased.
20 Does APS have the same capabilities like APA ? APA and APS are 2 different products that share some of the BPMN capabilities but APA is focusing on building content-centric solutions. Thus it offers more capabilities desgned to manage content and process.
21 Will APA be available to non PaaS deployments? That is part of our longer term roadmap.
22 What about the Analytics part, does it come Out of the Box? APA will provide a bridge with Elasticsearch in order to push all the process data into an external ES server.
23 Are proceess definition interoperable between aps and apa and community editions?

We are working on a feature to allow import of process models from APS into APA.

It will be available in the next version and we will continue to iterate on it to support more models such as forms, dmn and the entire project model.

24 There was discussion that ACS7 will be released with the next version of process. Has the roadmap changed? No that is correct. APA is leveraging ACS v7 in PaaS.
25 ACS is integrated with APA. Does ACS be on cloud, or it can be on premise? Yes APA is interracting wiith ACS on Alfresco Cloud. It does not work with an ACS on-prem.
26 Can i process in alfresco cloud and move the docs back to my on premise system? That is not supported.
27 Is the ACS instance included with APA, or you can use your own ACS? You cannot use your own ACS on-prem but if you have ACS on Alfresco Cloud then you can add APA to it.

 

Speaker's slide deck.

If you missed the talk you can find it, & more, at the Alfresco Community Events page.

About the Author
My own background is in Java and PHP development. I’ve previously worked with Alfresco and more recently with Open Source software such as Joomla & Magento as a freelance developer.