Doraemon to the Rescue

by Xiaofang Chen on June 20th, 2011

Doraemon - you’ve seen him even if you don’t know his name, the cutest robotic cat from the future! He was my favorite cartoon character when growing up and he's going to help us today.

When attempting to visualize this (magic) migration tool from Oracle Waveset/Sun Identity Manager to Oracle Identity Manager 11g, (see previous blog entry "Grown Kittens Need a New Home"), I can’t help but to think of Doraemon. He has a 4-dimensional pocket from which he produces gadgets and tools from the future. The Take-copter (a propeller which can be attached to anything to enable flight) is my all-time favorite. So what will come out of Doraemon’s pocket if his next mission is to migrate a solution based on Waveset/Sun Identity Manager to Oracle Identity Manager?
Recently I had a chance to take a closer look at the to-be-released Sun Identity Manager/Oracle Waveset (SIM/OW) to Oracle Identity Manager (OIM) migration toolkit. Here are highlights of what I have learned.

1. OW objects that can be directly mapped to their equivalents in OIM. These will be automatically or partially migrated
Not too many surprises here. A good portion of OW objects could find direct mappings in OIM:
- Enterprise Identity Data Objects (e.g. Organization, Role, User, and Resource)
- Schema Templates and Policy Objects (e.g. IDM Schema Configuration, Email Templates, and Password Policy)
- Administration and Authorization Objects (e.g. Capabilities and Admin Roles)
- Business Logic and Process Data Objects (e.g. Process/Object Forms)

But not all features of these objects could be directly mapped to OIM. For example, dynamic variables in OW Email Templates need to be manually configured in OIM once these templates are automatically migrated. How much these OW features are used in your OW/SIM implementation will determine the amount of automatic translation that could happen.

2. OW objects with no direct equivalent in OIM. There will be a report capturing these objects and they will require manual migration
Again, this is what we expected. As a general rule of thumb, any customized XPRESS scripting will likely require re-implementation. The migration toolkit will not be able to translate XPRESS logic into SOA composites or OIM adapters or Java code underlying adapters. User Interfaces and Workflows fall into this category.

3. Audit trail / historical data. These records will not be automatically migrated
As OW and OIM employ different schema for persistence of audit records, Oracle advises customers to follow a co-existence strategy. In this approach, audit artifacts would be generated from either OW, OIM or both depending on context / need.

4. Identity Connector framework will be leveraged by the migration toolkit
Oracle plans to build both OW and OIM resource connectors on top of the new Identity Connector Framework (ICF). It’s already available to OW customers as long as they upgrade their installation to 8.1.x. This not only enables them to leverage new features and enjoy updates to the connectors provided by Oracle but also unifies the underlying infrastructure for a seamless transition by the migration toolkit.
Overall, the OW to OIM migration toolkit by Oracle is a respectable attempt at automating the migration tasks. It pays attention to details regarding product differences and focuses on identifying customizations that require manual effort to migrate. For example, the toolkit takes care of passwords and challenge questions/answers when migrating OW users such that end users won’t need to reset passwords or re-enter their challenge answers in OIM.

On the other hand, no magic tool could solve real life problems in a quick and easy way. (This was one of the lessons taught in Doraemon’s stories). Take “User Termination” use case from our previous example. The pre-migration analysis produced by the toolkit (third column in the table below) needs to be reviewed by subject-matter experts who understand both the product and the business process the product implements so as to come up with an accurate estimate of the migration effort (fourth column in below table).

And that’s how we, Identigral, are able to help. Our team combines leading expertise in various Identity Management products (especially Sun Identity Manager/Oracle Waveset and OIM) with a proven track-record for successfully delivering and migrating Identity Management solutions. Feel free to contact us if you're interested in having Identigral help you by bringing proven methodology, best-of-breed migration tools and extensive knowledge base.


Posted in Sun Identity Manager, Oracle Identity Manager, Oracle Identity Management, Change Management    Tagged with waveset, oim, sim, migration


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