OpenESB Review

Good integration, and you can easily track processes from end-to-end

What is our primary use case?

I began to use it as an integration platform for Healthcare, but then I realized it was more than that. I began to use it as a service BUS and implementing Business Processes in other sectors, like Public Administration.

As an integration platform for Healthcare, I use it because it comes with an HL7 V2 Binding that makes it easy to integrate MLP/R7 inside the BUS.

As an enterprise services BUS, it's a perfect tool to implement infrastructure services (audit, logging, user notifications, etc) and use it on your existing platforms.

How has it helped my organization?

One of the most valuable features is being able to implement business processes while keeping track of the design from BPMN to a BPEL Implementation. Before using it, business processes involving multiple systems were like a black box to me. They were difficult to analyze, and now, thanks to OE BPEL and Casa editor, is easy to understand its implementation.

Regarding HL7 V2, not having to implement an MLP server or client and let the BUS to assume this responsibility alloy me to focus on the process implementation.

It is helpful being able to have a services catalog, and it is easy to use/reuse for all my organization projects.

What is most valuable?

The independence from the protocol invoking the services from it's implementation, making it possible to invoke the same service using different protocols (HTTP/FTP/JMS/FILE) and also being invoked directly inside the BUS without any additional protocol.

Last year I also began to use the Enterprise Version, and the out of the box integration with ELK form both technical and business monitoring. It is amazing.

Technical monitoring allows you how to build an amazing ELK dashboard, out of the box with information on time-response, request content, activity response time, etc.

What needs improvement?

The Studio is a good tool based on NetBeans, but some of its features have to be improved, liked local schemas management.

As an additional feature, I would request an inline XSLT editor. It does not have to be a full WYSIWYG XSLT editor, bus it should make it easy to use or implement simple XSLT without needing to use an external tool.

Regarding HL7, it has a basic HL7 FHIR Support thanks to the new REST BC, but some features have to be added to make it easier to use OE as a FHIR facade.

Regarding its management, a web console being able to synchronize distributed instances would be great.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using OpenESB over the last eight years. I began to use it when I was project manager at a Hospital, when the organization face new challenges to open their systems to external systems (like other hospital or patients) and when the number of internal integration with other systems, make it necessary to use a tool designed to achieve that goal. As we worked on healthcare, the availability of an HL7 V2 connector and HTTPS security support, were key features to to choose OpenESB.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I did not use another similar solution prior to this one.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The Community Edition is a full product you can use in production, it does not have limitations like other alternatives. For example, not including HTTPS on Mirth.

Using the Enterprise edition is just required when I need Enterprise monitoring, on Enterprise deployments.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I have tried Mirth and InterSystems Ensemble (now Iris).

What other advice do I have?

It's important to understand what a Business Service is before using it.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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