Orchestrator is composed of three distinct layers: an orchestration platform that provides the common features required for an orchestration tool, a plug-in architecture to integrate control of subsystems, and a library of workflows. Orchestrator is an open platform that can be extended with new plug-ins and libraries, and can be integrated into larger architectures through a SOAP or REST API.

The following list presents the key Orchestrator features.

Persistence

Production grade external databases are used to store relevant information, such as processes, workflow states, and configuration information.

Central management

Orchestrator provides a central way to manage your processes. The application server-based platform, with full version history, allows you to have scripts and process-related primitives in one place. This way, you can avoid scripts without versioning and proper change control spread on your servers.

Check-pointing

Every step of a workflow is saved in the database, which allows you to restart the server without losing state and context. This feature is especially useful for long-running processes.

Versioning

All Orchestrator Platform objects have an associated version history. This feature allows basic change management when distributing processes to different project stages or locations.

Scripting engine

The Mozilla Rhino JavaScript engine provides a way to create new building blocks for Orchestrator Platform. The scripting engine is enhanced with basic version control, variable type checking, name space management and exception handling. It can be used in the following building blocks:

  • Actions

  • Workflows

  • Policies

Workflow engine

The workflow engine allows you to capture business processes. It uses the following objects to create a step-by-step process automation in workflows:

  • Workflows and actions that Orchestrator provides.

  • Custom building blocks created by the customer

  • Objects that plug-ins add to Orchestrator

Users, other workflows, a schedule, or a policy can start workflows.

Policy engine

The policy engine allows monitoring and event generation to react to changing conditions in the Orchestrator server or plugged-in technology. Policies can aggregate events from the platform or any of the plug-ins, which allows you to handle changing conditions on any of the integrated technologies.

Web 2.0 front end

The Web 2.0 front end allows you to integrate Orchestrator functions into Web-based interfaces, using Web views. For example, you can create Web views that add buttons to start workflows from a page in your company's Intranet. It provides a library of user customizable components to access vCO orchestrated objects and uses Ajax technology to dynamically update content without reloading complete pages.

Security

Orchestrator provides the following advanced security functions:

  • Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) to sign and encrypt content imported and exported between servers

  • Digital Rights Management (DRM) to control how exported content might be viewed, edited and redistributed

  • Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encrypted communications between the desktop client and the server and HTTPS access to the Web front end.

  • Advanced access rights management to provide control over access to processes and the objects manipulated by these processes.