14.5 Application Server Development Life Cycle Recommendations

Sections Deployment Tool Environment and Application Servers raise the need to have a separate Application Server from the Deployment System. This is to prevent production systems being immediately updated as soon as a package has been built and before there has been time to test the deployment. But how does this work in practice? What steps are involved in producing and testing a deployment in a controlled manner?

The crux of the issue is that the package contains the connection details for the Application Server. Thus there can only be one Application Server for an application. But two separate places are needed to go to for Test and Production. How can it be varied?

For the first install only, the tester needs to specify on the MSI command line either:

Note that specifying an x_run parameter on the MSI command line not only changes it for the install, but it also changes the value for when the application is executed. Subsequent executions of the application will continue to use the same mechanism to access the correct packages on the correct application server.

Option (1) - a different Application Server

This option is only available from Version 13.2 onwards.

An Application Server is required on both the Deployment System and a separate Production System. Both Application Servers may be on the same machine.

The application LANSAAPP is created on the Deployment System with the Application Server name set to the Production Application Server. That is, the default behaviour is to use the Production Application Server.

Two sets of route information need to be included in the application: one for the Production Application Server and one for the Test Application Server.

The tester will then execute the first MSI using the command line. Change to the directory where the MSI is located and type <MSI filename> ASLU=TEST. For example:

LANSAAPP_1.2.3_en-us.msi ASLU=TEST

Once the package has been fully tested, it is copied to the Production Application Server.

Option (2) - a different Dummy Test Application Name

The Application Server is separate from the Deployment System. The application LANSAAPP is created on the Deployment System and copied to the Application Server but not to the x_apps\LANSAAPP directory. A separate directory is created, say x_apps\TEST and all the packages are put in there. The same ones as are in the production directory x_apps\LANSAAPP, any setup.txt file plus the new package. If there is a setup.txt file it will need to also specify APPL=TEST.

Only one set of route information is required as there is just the one Application Server.

The tester will then execute the first MSI using the command line. Change to the directory where the MSI is located and type <MSI filename> APPL=TEST. For example:

LANSAAPP1.2.3_en-us.msi APPL=TEST

Once the package has been fully tested, its copied to the Production directory on the Application Server. For example, to x_apps\LANSAAPP.