- Oracle WebCenter Imaging
Oracle WebCenter Imaging (formerly known as Oracle Imaging and Process Management or Oracle IPM) is Oracle Corporation's combined document management and business process management suite, marketed as a component of the Oracle Fusion Middleware portfolio of products.
Oracle WebCenter Imaging provides organisations with a software solution focused on process-oriented imaging applications and "image-enabling" business applications, including Oracle E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft Enterprise, and many others. It enables annotation and markup of images, automates routing and approvals, and supports high-volume applications for trillions of items.
Oracle WebCenter Imaging (and it's historical variants) have been installed at thousands of customers world-wide since its inception, in a variety of industries from finance and banking, healthcare, through to construction.
- Oracle WebCenter Imaging 11g Release 1 (18.104.22.168.0) - released May 2011
- Oracle WebCenter Imaging 10g Release 3 (10.1.3.6.0) - released April 2011
Oracle WebCenter Imaging was originally developed by Optika in the late 1990s, as a workflow-enabled next generation of an imaging-only product called FilePower. The initial versions (1.0 to 1.5.1) were marketed under the name of eMedia, and with the release of version 2.0 the name was changed to Acorde. The Acorde name lasted through to version 4.0, which was the last Optika-developed release, due to a merger between Optika and Stellent in 2004, where the Optika brand was dissolved. At this point, the product was rebranded as Stellent Imaging and Business Process Management (or it's acronym of IBPM). The version numbers were aligned with Stellent versioning at the time, so the following releases were 7.5 and 7.6.
Soon after the merger, Oracle Corporation acquired Stellent in 2007, and the product was rebranded as Oracle Imaging and Process Management (IPM). The subsequent Oracle-branded version was known as 7.7 (Stellent numbering), and 10gR3 which aligned with Oracle Corporation's product line at the time.
In 2009, Brainware entered into an OEM agreement with Oracle whereby Oracle plans to embed the Brainware Distiller™ intelligent data capture software into Oracle WebCenter Imaging. This adds AP processing and intelligent data extraction into the imaging product offering. As it turns out, Oracle took a more modular approach, and integrated this technology into a new Oracle product, called Oracle Forms Recognition (OFR), which is designed to closely integrate with Oracle WebCenter Imaging.
Oracle WebCenter Imaging supports both Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server databases. In 10g versions (and below) the only core server architecture supported is Win32 or Win64, so support for the main services is restricted to Microsoft Windows Server editions, from Windows 2000 Server through to Windows Server 2008. End-user/client access for image retrieval and workflow actions is via either a Windows-based application (also known as a "production" or "thick" client) which is required for administrative functions, or two versions of a web-based client; a heavier but more featured version, or a cut-down "express" version. The Windows client is installed and kept updated from a central repository service (known as Distributed Software Management Service, or DSMS), enabling easy installation to end-user machines, and automatic updates as the central repository is updated or upgraded. The web client is ASP.NET based, so is restricted to Microsoft IIS only.
The WebCenter Imaging server consists of a number of separate highly task-focused components (known as services), which can be enabled or disabled depending on requirements, distributed over a number of physical machines to spread workload, and in most instances duplicated to provide scalability.
The 11g release has been completely rewritten as a J2EE application, which runs on Oracle WebLogic Server, so supported operating systems and architectures has been extensively improved. With the initial release (Release 1) versions, there is no direct upgrade path from previous versions, so it is for new installs only. Both client and administrative access is now performed via a web interface, and workflow functionality has been removed; the intention is to integrate the product with dedicated workflow suites, such as Oracle BPEL Process Manager. There are also no longer specific services as in previous versions, so scalability and redundancy is now handled via the clustering functionality provided by the WebLogic Server architecture.
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