Perhaps every ALM user knows that switching to a new version is a difficult process. This article will discuss a new utility that will make life easier for administrators. In the first part we will talk about the capabilities of the utility, which is called ALM Robot. In the second part we will discuss the features of working with her.
As soon as a decision is made to switch to the new version, it is necessary to plan the time-consuming and time-consuming process well. This task is especially difficult in the case of a large number of projects. The administrator must manually restore projects on the new environment, perform verification, repair and update operations for each project. All these operations require the physical presence of the administrator in his workplace. If you need to perform other tasks or go to lunch, the process will be delayed. The work of the entire organization may be suspended.
To speed up the process of transition to new versions, the latest version of ALM has a new utility, ALM Robot. It is part of the site administration and allows you to update a large number of projects at once. Also added functionality that makes the transition easier and more convenient.
ALM Robot is part of the product and does not require additional installations or settings. All that is required to start the transition process is a working ALM server with a previous version. Let's talk about the possibilities of ALM Robot in detail.
ALM Robot is launched from the menu in the Site Administration:
After running ALM Robot, we see the Dashboard:
There is complete information on all activities and their status. Visually, in color, the percentage of projects that have successfully transferred to the new version and those that are less successful is displayed.
ALM Robot allows you to perform 2 types of operations: Upgrade and Undo checkout. Upgrade is a simple and straightforward operation, but it has one interesting feature.
The number of projects that will be parallel in processing depends only on the administrator’s decision. Naturally, it is necessary to take into account the performance of the system. How this is regulated, we'll talk a little later.
I think many administrators are faced with how difficult it is to transfer all entities to the check in (returned) state on projects with version support before the transition to the new version. The process will be especially laborious in case of a large number of users in different time zones. Now ALM Robot can easily do this operation! Operation Undo check out (return to the previous state) will take only a few minutes and the project will be ready for the next step. There is one requirement - the user who runs Undo check out must be a project administrator. It is not required to add it to each project, for this there is a special parameter. Then ALM Robot will do all the work itself.
For convenience, the Dashboard implements a sorting and filtering mechanism. By default, the sorting is done according to the status Running => Pending => Finished => Aborted, but you can select any other field. The filter allows you to see only activities of interest to the administrator using one or more fields.
Another useful ALM Robot feature is email alerts. In parallel with the Upgrade, the administrator can perform other tasks or go to lunch. As soon as the process is completed successfully or with errors, the administrator will receive an email notification. To use this feature, no special settings are required in ALM Robot. It is enough to set up email notifications in ALM and activate them in the ALM Robot itself.You can enter an unlimited number of recipients by separating their email addresses ";"
A number of auxiliary functions are available on the main page:
- You can pause a task with two possible outcomes: wait until the end of the current task is completed or you can interrupt the process, even if the project is damaged.
- You can delete tasks from the Dashboard
- You can update the information on the Dashboard (automatically it happens every 30 seconds)
- You can open the documentation if you need additional details.
Clicking on the Activity ID will open a window with additional information about this task:
Here you can see the status of each project, progress, dependencies and duration. Each point displays a specific operation, the name of which can be seen by moving the cursor to a point.
The colors of the dots also matter:
- White - the process has not yet begun
- Gray - the process was successful
- Blinking is a process in progress.
- Red - the process ended with errors, all subsequent points will also be red, as the process was suspended
The set of operations for each project may be different. Consider all possible:
- Deactivate is the first step to upgrade to a new version for each project. If the project is already deactivated, this step will be skipped.
- Undo check out - For projects with Version Control enabled, all retrieved entities will be returned.
- Copy projects repositories - if this option was selected, project repositories will be automatically copied to the new server.
- Restore project - you no longer need to edit dbid.xml to restore projects manually, ALM Robot itself will restore the project, domain and users.
- Remove from origin - as soon as the project is successfully restored on the new version, it will be deleted from the source server. This is necessary in order not to damage the project after the restoration on the new server.
- Upgrade is the main process, which includes classical verification, repair and upgrade to a new version. No need to worry, as ALM Robot uses the classic update mechanism, but does it in parallel for several projects.
- Activate - if the project was active before the migration, it will be activated on the new version after the transition is completed
Now we are familiar with the basic features of the ALM Robot. In the future, we consider them in more detail.Author: Sergey Goncharenko, Leading Specialist, HPE ALM Testing Group