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Workflow - Show progress on Website as flow runs

Created: 28 Aug 2012 | 3 comments

So I have a DC shutdown workflow that would allow us to cleanly shutdown all our servers in a special order for a DR test. I have already built a bunch of dynamic filters in NS that make sure servers are shutdown in the correct order based on their role and some other custom entry we do. The workflow loops through each one of these filters and pings the computers one at a time in the list and schedules a shutdown task. If they are down I want to display (UP DOWN) on a web page next to the computer name in that group. Once all computers are down it will move to the next group and so on till all system are down.

My question is, do I need to do anything special to display the results "real time"? I was thinking I could use the grid component with the Ajax refresh to update the table. However then when do I call the actual shutdown\ping steps in the workflow?

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AnaMan's picture

This is not so easy because you neet not only to refresh the web page but also a status variables. To update variables value a model must be executed. The problem is that most models in forms are executed in isolated data context what makes impossible to change outer variables state.

To control cyclic page refreshing you can use Page Refresh Check Component - essencial is not to exceed executionTimeout for a request set in IIS config.

To control variables state you can use some kind of external storage for variables (native message exchange, data base etec.). Also a good idea seems to be using a web session data - suitable components are provided.

So my idea (not tested wink) is:

  1. Use Page Refresh Check for cyclic page refreshing and updating externally stored statuses.
  2. Show current statuses in grid populated with values from externally stored data.
noodleNT's picture

I was thinking I could store the data in a ORM like we did in "LAB EM L06: Using Workflow 7.1 to Build Automated IT Processes Advanced Lab: Data Management" at vision this summer.

Why use page refresh when the you can put it in the AJAX dynamic window?

AnaMan's picture

I'm not sure what you mean by AJAX dynamic window - a Dynamic Update Panel web control or something different?

Nevertheless, to update visual controls on web page the values of data which are presents must be updated. What would be an event that tells web page to refresh displayed data? Click, timer or external request?

Then, web page must get somehow new values of displayed data? These are variables in process. They can be changed by embedded model execution or by web service call when they are exposed. How did you plan to update value of the process variables?