Mar 08

Since Sun Microsystems started the Java Business Integration specification work, and subsequently started releasing the OpenESB platform and components around 2006, until Sun was acquired by Oracle around 2010, I published a number of blog articles dealing with different aspects of the JBI-based technologies embedded in the OpenESB, GlassFish ESB and Java CAPS/JBI. I lost interest in the topic when Sun acquisition was completed and it became clear to me that the JBI specification will not be supported by Oracle other as part of the legacy Java CAPS/JBI and the GlassFish ESB products. Around the same time there was a fair bit of activity around the OpenESB community aimed at working out whether and how OpenESB can be picked up by the community, perhaps development branch forked so it can be controlled by the community, etc.. Since I did not expect that effort to lead anywhere I stopped following these discussions and eventually OpenESB mailing lists to which I was subscribed disappeared to be replaced by others to which I did not subscribe.

I never went back to my original blog articles to see if they are still implementable and whether the software used in them is still available. Needless to say some articles can no longer be implemented as written and the links to the OpenESB / GlassFish ESB distributions which I provided in my articles no longer lead anywhere useful.

Recently I had an occasion to look at some of the articles and it occurred to me that perhaps they can be updated if OpenESB is available somewhere, so people can still try them. I did put a fair bit of effort into the articles and it is such a waste to have the solutions unimplementable. I went looking for OpenESB distributions to see if they are available, what state they are in, and whether anyone cares. It turned out that LogiCoy ( maintains and develops OpenESB, at least one distribution of which is publically available, and I know some of the people at LogiCoy who are working on this platform. I understand from them that a new release, v2.3 (of which a Beta version is available at the community site – will be officially released sometime this month. Once the release is available I will come back to this article to provide the link to it and perhaps to the installation documentation.

In the spirit of “Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris” ( I decided to have a look at my JBI articles and release updated versions using the OpenESB distribution released to the community by LogiCoy’s. This will happen as time and motivation permit.

In this article I am listing articles which I may get around to updating to work with LogiCoy’s version of OpenESB, and their status (Not started, Updated, Never to be worked on again). This blog entry is available at…_v0.1.0.pdf.


May 28

I notice that people used to the eGate/Java CAPS way of doing things, when looking at migrating to the SOA Suite for HL7 messaging, are trying to reproduce the pattern “HL7v2Adapter?JMS Queue”. This is not necessary when using SOA Suite but can be done if one insists. This article walks through the process of implementing this pattern using Oracle SOA Suite 11g R1 PS3.

The process will follow these steps:
1. Obtain and configure the QBrowser tool for JMS browsing
2. Obtain and configure the HL7 Sender tool
3. Create two WebLogic JMS Queues to be used in the solution
4. Create and deploy a HL7 v2 Inbound Trading Partnership Agreement
5. Submit HL7 v2 messages and inspect them in the corresponding JMS Queue
6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 for another inbound stream

The cmplete article, which can be found at, will demonstrate that Oracle SOA Suite B2B HL7 infrastructure can be configured to receive message streams over multiple inbound MLLP channels and deliver each stream to a distinct JMS destination, much as eGate and Java CAPS solutions used to do.

Apr 08

The Oracle SOA Suite 11g R1 B2B functionality can be used for HL7 v2.x delimited messaging, both inbound and outbound. I have a series of articles which provide step-by-step instructions for developing HL7 v2.x delimited messaging solutions for processing inbound and outbound messages, with varying ACK patterns –

This article discusses how an A19 Query processing solution can be implemented using the SOA Suite 11g R1 PS3.
We have a client sending a HL7 v2.3.1 A19 QRY request, asking for demographic details for a patient specified by an ID. The HL7 v2.3.1 A19 ADR response will carry a PID segment with basic demographics. The client identifies itself with MSH-3 (Application ID) of “A19QRY” and MSH-4 (Facility ID) of “CLI1”. The query processor is identified by the client with MSH-5 (Application ID) of “A19ADR” and MSH-6 (Facility ID) of “GWYQ”.

The complete article is to be found at



Dec 29

New release, v0.7, is available – see link below for downloadable archive. Throughput masurements were added. Manpages were updated.

I spend considerable time working with HL7. In the past I used SeeBeyond ICAN and Sun Java CAPS products, and OpenESB with HL7 Binding Component,  to rapidly create MLLP senders and receivers for the HL7 solutions I was building and testing. I also tried, at various times, 7 Scan, Interface Explorer and more recently HL7 Browser. For the blog articles I am writing on HL7 I need simple tooling that allows me to send HL7 v2 delimited messages from a file to a MLLP listener and receive acknowledgements, receive HL7 messages from a sender and retrun acknowledgements, and recently to combine multiple sender message streams into a single stream, with correct acknowledgement handling. The tooling has to be free for me to distribute with the projects and the articles and to use in my day job as well.

Not finding anything that would fit the bill, and that would work reliably enough, I developed my own tools.

I embellished the basic sender a bit so I could send multiple messages, one after the other, from a file, delay between successive sends, generate MSH-10, replace MSH-3-1, MSH-4-1, MSH-5-1 and MSH-6-1, and increase timeout for acknowledgements.

The tools are all old fashioned command line tools – no graphical user interface.

CMDHL7Listener – man page:

CMDHL7Sender – man page:

CMDHL7Proxy – man page:

Deprecated Distribution:

Current Distribution:

Release 0.5 and 0.7 are free to use by anyone for any purpose and will stay that way. There may not be future releases 🙂
I used HAPI 1.0.1 libraries for HL7 processing –

Jun 19

As Sun Microsystems, and SeeBeyond before it, Oracle provides support for integration of systems which use HL7 v2.x messaging. Unlike Sun, and SeeBeyond before it, Oracle treats HL7 messaging as Business to Business exchanges (B2B) and uses the B2B part of the Oracle SOA Suite to accomplish the task [1].

In this article I develop and exercise a simple Oracle SOA Suite 11g B2B infrastructure-based HL7 v2 Receiver project for an ADT A01 message and use Message tracker to view messages, message states and messaging performance.

The complete article, 02_Oracle_SOA_Suite_HL7_inbound_example_v0.2.1.pdf, can be found at

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Jan 12

The HL7 v2 standard mandates the use of acknowledgments to ensure message delivery, critical in Healthcare. There are the “Original Mode” acknowledgments and “Enhanced Mode” acknowledgements. Within the enhanced mode acknowledgments there are “Accept Acknowledgements” and “Application Acknowledgements”.

This Note walks through development of two BPEL Module-based solutions that cooperate in generating and processing Enhanced Accept Acknowledgments using HL7 v2.3.1 messages. This discussion should apply to any v2.x, greater then v2.2, where the Enhanced Mode acknowledgments were introduced. In addition, the solutions are used to illustrate receiving HL7 BC ACK generation, when receiving an invalid HL7 message.

The Note, Processing_Explicit_HL7_AcceptAcks_v1.0.0.0.pdf, can be found at
The associated GlassFish ESB v2.2 Projects,, can be found at

Jan 09

GlassFish ESB v2.2 was released in late December/early January 2010. This release brings a number of design-time improvements in handling HL7 v2 messages. Some of these have been on my and other people’s wish lists for years.

HL7 v2 structure nodes use full names, rather then acronyms like MSH.1.
In BPEL, mapping can be performed at message, segment, component, subcomponent and field level.

These improvements are noteworthy enough to warrant a note, GFESBv22_HL7_Handling_Improvements.pdf, at

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Jan 08

When working on the HA solutions discussed in my HA blog entry I realized that it will be difficult to work out whether messages are delivered in order, as was required, and whether any are missing. I got over the issue by ensuring that my test data was prepared in such a way that messages in each test file had increasing, contiguous sequence numbers embedded in the message. For HL7 v2, which is the messaging standard with which I dealt, I used MSH-10, Message Control ID field. I wrote processed messages and acknowledgments to files whose names embedded MSH-10 Message Control Id, with the sequence number, so breaks in sequence and out of order messages could be readily detected.

With multiple message files containing between 1 and 50,000 messages, adding a sequence number to each message by hand was clearly out of the question.

I put the GlassFish ESB to use. I constructed a file-to-file BPEL module project to read each test file and to prepend a sequence number to each message’s MSH-10 field. The only snag was how to get a sequence number that would start at 0 and increase by 1 for each message, such that each BPEL process instance would get the next sequence, and that messages would be written to the output file in order.

This note discusses how I went about accomplishing the task.

The complete note, GFESBv22_EphemeralSequenceGenerator_v1.0.0.0.pdf, is to be found at:

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