For a component to be run as part of a solution or to be run using VIP Executor (To submit the required feature) the VIP flow must be added to a server.  This process makes the activity available to be used by modeller.

The steps to add the process to the server are:

  1. Copy the flow to the physical server that will be running the flow

  2. Add the definition of the flow to modeller (There are three different methods – see later)

N.B.       The VIP flow once added must remain the same physical location, for example "C:\VIPTDM\MasterFileController\" has been added as a process to server BIGONE.
N.B.       You can submit the same solution component on another server as long as the file location are the same.  Remember if you have a flow that has been changed it must be copied to all other servers otherwise you will get inconsistent results.

Adding the VIP definition to a server

Before you add a process (component) to a server check to see if the process has already been added.

Follow Profile/Automation Servers/Select your server

The server processes are unique by name, if it exists it may be easier to just add or modify any parameters.

Example server processes.

To add processes click on Add File

Method 1 – add the .vip.json file

Select the file with the suffix .vip.json

Enter the name of the process (remember It is unique – so the same VIP flow can be added as a different process by creating a different name)

Once you get to the parameters – click on the x, any non-important arguments (Ones without notations will be removed)

Example vip.json flow parameters.

With this method you have to go into each field and define attributes one by one.  It is easier to define these form attributes using an Excel spreadsheet.  See method 2

Method 2 – Using an Excel definition file

If the flow is being shipped as part of a solution, it will most likely be included in an Excel spreadsheet.

Example Add processes Spreadsheet
This spreadsheet contains the standard name and the parameters along with their descriptions, defaults, and form attributes.

Example Parameters sheet
Some of the parameters contain substitutions, starting with a ?  These will be substituted by the VIP Server job engine when being submitted.  For example:

?workdir will be changed to the unique folder name on the server associated with the job

?jobid will be changed to the modeller job number

Method 3 – Using the automationcontrollermastertemplate.xlsx file

When you install a server there a number of default VIP flows shipped.  These flows are contained in a starter spreadsheet.

This spreadsheet is run initially and can be updated and rerun to reinstall the standard flows.  Check in this sheet to see if the VIP flows (components have been included)

Example: AutomationControllerMasterTemplate

Some processes may be shipped but can be marked as inactive.  Set these to Y if you wish to activate them for use in a solution – then apply the new sheet to the server.

Click Edit the server to update the master template

Making Processes available to Flows

Once a process is available you can test it by running it from the VIP Executor menu

Example submission of process

Some processes may not be suitable to be submitted using this method, but it is good practice to make sure it runs correctly.

You must now associate the process with a Test Data Catalogue.  Find the process and click on QuickStart to set up a Test Criteria and Optionally an allocated test so you can test that it runs correctly.

Click on QuickStart

Understanding Parameters in Models

It is important that you know how parameters flow down to the final execution of the flow.  If you do not set a parameter the default from the next level down will apply.  The precedence order is as follows:

  1. The Model variable assigned to the automation activity

  2. The default of the Test Criteria parameter

  3. The process default variable

  4. The VIP flow default parameter

Also remember, not all VIP Parameters are exposed up into the process definition, just as not all process definition parameters are used by associated Test Criteria.

When you run a process, check the logs to see what variables are being used in the final process.