Category: PeopleCode

Step-by-Step: App Engine for Testing PeopleCode

This is a how-to post that I intend to refer back to from time to time.  The goal is to create a simple Application Engine program into which we can drop some PeopleCode and see how it works.  Assuming we don’t need any of the online pieces, this is much easier than going through all of the steps to create a page and register it so we can see it online.

Step 1: Create a new Application Engine Program

In Application Designer, click Ctrl + N or use the File > New menu option.  This will open the “New” dialog, and you can choose Application Engine program from the list.

You new program should look like this:

Step 2: Disable Restart

This step is very important.  If you don’t disable the restart and your program crashes, you will have to go through a few extra steps before you can rerun it.

First, click on the properties button while your program is in focus (you can also use the File > Definition Properties menu):

This should bring up the Properties dialog.  Then, go to the Advanced tab.  Check the “Disable Restart” option.

Step 3: Add an Action

First, click on the “Step 1” step to select it.  I usually click anywhere in the gray, and this should turn it black.

Next, click on the Add Action button, or you can use the Insert > Action menu.

Finally, change the type from SQL to PeopleCode.

Step 4: Save the program

At this point, you need to save before you can add PeopleCode.  You can use Ctrl + S, click on the Save icon on the toolbar, or you can use the File > Save menu.

Step 5: Enter the PeopleCode

First, open the PeopleCode program by double clicking anywhere on the gray of the PeopleCode action.  Or, you can right click on it and choose the “View PeopleCode” option.

Next, you will probably want to open a file to show output from your PeopleCode testing.  You can use this PeopleCode:

Local File &log;
&log = GetFile("c:\temp\log.txt", "W", "A", %Filepath_Absolute);

Then, you can print to that file with the writeline() method.  For now, we will just print Hello, World.

&log.WriteLine("Hello, World!");

Finally, you will probably want to close your file:


Here is what it all looks like:

Make sure to save once you make these changes.

Step 6: Run the Program

Again, after you have saved, go back to the main program window where you can see the Main section, Step 1, and your new PeopleCode action.  Then, click the run icon.

In the dialog, Check the Output log to file and uncheck Run Minimized.  The output log to file allows you to see what happened.  Otherwise, the window will close before you see what happened.  The run minimized isn’t a big deal, but if the program doesn’t run minimized you see it pop up and go away better.  When the program goes away, you know it is done running.

Finally, when it is done, check the output.  If you used the paths that I did your output should be in the c:\temp directory.  You should have two files.  The first, is the main output from the program.  Check this to make sure the program ran to success:

The second is the log that your PeopleCode created.  For now, it should just say, “Hello, World”.


Here is another one of those technologies that I would love to play with but have to wait for a client that actually needs it: JSON.  I found Jim’s post on JSON very interesting and would love to have the need to come back to it.

One other solution that might be worth considering is this library for Java.  You would have to compile it and place it on the class path, but you could access it from PeopleCode.  Or, I wonder if it would be worth implementing the library in a PeopleCode Application Package?

And in conjunction, you can’t mention JSON, without mentioning jQuery.

JDBC From PeopleCode — Disadvantage/Advantage

Jim Marion’s post on JDBC made me think a little more.  (By the way, thanks, Jim, for linking me.)  The one disadvantage about accessing the PeopleSoft database via JDBC is that you have to supply the password to make the connection.

I have thought about trying to read the password from the application server or batch server configuration file, but if I remember right it only has the connect id and the connect password.  With the connect password, I might be able to use it to read the Access id and password from the database, but I have would have to be able to unencrypt it.

One advantage that SQL Server might have is that you can use Window’s security.  Assuming that the account running the application server or batch server has access to the database, you could just use the integrated security instead of an actual user name or password.

The advantage that JDBC has is that you don’t have to know the number of fields/columns that you want until run time.  With both the SQL object and SQLExec, you have to have a variable for each field you return or a return that contains all of those fields.

For example, I am trying to loop through a group of tables in a linked server and copy all of their fields to a table in the current database.  I have a problem using INSERT … SELECT, and I have to read the values in and then write them out.  I can’t figure another way to do it other than use JDBC.

Please correct me if I am wrong on any of this.  Maybe these thoughts will give someone else an idea that I overlooked.

Step By Step Virtual PS Install: Database Creation

This is a continuation of my virtual PeopleSoft installation.  In this step, we will create the database in an already installed Oracle Database system.  So, this assumes that the Oracle Database software is already installed.  Loading the PeopleTools data will be covered in the next step.  To see the complete list of steps, click here.

Read More

Deleting Files from PeopleCode

We have an interface file that we want to delete for security reasons once we have processed the file.  But, deleting it from the Application  Engine was not as straight-forward as I would have thought.

This does not work:

RemoveDirectory("c:\temp\mytextfile.txt", %FilePath_Absolute);

So, Java to the rescue — this does:

Local JavaObject &javaFile;
&javaFile = CreateJavaObject("", "c:\temp\mytextfile.txt");

Update (8/20/2014):

Back when I wrote this post, I missed seeing the .Delete() method of the File API object.  That would be the better way to make this work.  Here’s an example:

Local File &file;
&file = GetFile("c:\temp\mytextfile.txt", "W", "A", %FilePath_Absolute);

(Thanks Tim and Andrew for pointing this out.)


Determine Last Update Date of a File

We have had trouble with our interface picking up the wrong file.  The client thinks they have put the file in the right place, but the server is looking at a different file for some reason.  Placing the date/time in the standard output helps identify these situations.  Here is how you can do that:

Local JavaObject &javaFile;
Local JavaObject &javaFormat;

&javaFile = CreateJavaObject(“”, “c:\temp\myFile.txt”);
&javaFormat = CreateJavaObject(“java.text.SimpleDateFormat”, “yyyy/MM/dd hh:mm:ss aa”);
MessageBox(0, ” “, 0, 0, File Timestamp: %1”, &javaFormat.format(&javaFile.lastModified()));

Writing to Access Databases

We are thinking about connecting to an Access database for one of our interfaces.  Here is some PeopleCode that I threw together to make sure that it was possible.

I tested the code in a VMWare instance with HCM8.9/Tools 8.46, Windows Server 2003.  The instance did not have Microsoft Access installed, and I changed the path (c:\temp\AccessTest.mdb below) to a network (UNC) path where the computer had Access installed.

Local JavaObject &class;
Local JavaObject &connection;
Local JavaObject &driverManager;
Local JavaObject &statement;

&class = GetJavaClass("java.lang.Class");

&driverManager = GetJavaClass("java.sql.DriverManager");
&connection = &driverManager.getConnection("jdbc:odbc:Driver={Microsoft Access Driver (*.mdb)};DBQ=c:\temp\AccessTest.mdb;DriverID=22;READONLY=false");
&statement = &connection.createStatement();
&statement.executeUpdate("insert into tblTest(TestMessage) values ('testing')");

Hope it helps.


PeopleTools Tip: PeopleCode Dump

Application Designer has an option to search through the text of the code, but it takes way too long to search the whole system on a regular basis. Thankfully, Application Designer also has a way to dump all of the code to a text file.

From Application Designer, choose Edit > Find In…

Next, enter a semicolon(;) for the search text and check the option “Save PeopleCode to File”

Important: This will take a long time and a lot of memory to finish. So, increase your virtual memory and let it run overnight. If you have a team of developers, have one person do the dump and put it on a network location where everyone can view it.

If you don’t enough memory, you may get an error message like this:

If so, go to the control panel and open the System icon.  Go to the Advanced tab and click the Settings button under performance.  Under the “Advanced” tab in the performance options dialog, change the virtual memory.  The steps to increase the memory might be slightly different depending on your flavor of Windows.