Welcome!

Websphere Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Sanjeev Sharma, Liz McMillan, Roger Strukhoff, Ajay Budhraja

Related Topics: Websphere

Websphere: Article

Profiles for WebSphere Application Server 6.0

Instance separation provides facility of information

The new IBM WebSphere Application Server (WAS) v6.0 software introduces the concept of Server Profiles. Profiles can be thought of as a specific server runtime environment operating within a separate instance of the JVM.

Each runtime environment has its own configuration files, logs, properties, and other attributes. Profiles can make each Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) application server runtime unique and separate from the server binaries and from other profiles. The separation of static binaries from configuration files provides a number of benefits for system administrators.

The WAS v6.0 profiles are similar to the wsinstance tool provided with WAS v5.x, but with some important differences. The wsinstance tool creates configuration files for separate JVM instances, but shares other information across instances of WAS v5.x. In contrast, profiles draw a sharp degree of separation, so much so that each profile is separately administered with its own configuration, logs, J2EE applications, and other attributes. The separation that profiles provide allows for a unique instance of WebSphere that has not been available in previous releases of WAS.

Easier Than Multiple Installs
More than one instance of the same IBM WAS product may be required on the same machine. This is often the case if the administrator desires to keep a degree of separation between applications and environments. This may be the case if you have a development group sharing the same WebSphere install instance. When using the WAS profiles, each profile runs as its own 1.4.2 JVM instance, thus providing a physical as well as a logical separation between instances of the product. This offers an advantage over multiple installs because it saves space. In addition, service updating is simpler since an administrator only needs to maintain a single set of product binaries. Profiles can also be created and deleted more easily than with whole product installs. With the separation of product binaries and profiles, it's possible for a system administrator to allow groups to have access to the profile information that defines their application server, while at the same time locking down the WAS runtime binaries.

Easier Application Updates
Another useful aspect of profiles is the staging of application updates. In this scenario, you have updated an application and wish to test it on the targeted WebSphere Application Server. The problem is that an older version of your application is already running and being used. You could uninstall the application and reinstall the new update, yet that would require you to take the application offline and then reinstall if your test fails. A solution would be to create a new profile and test it there. The test profile will be operating in its own instance of WAS and will be logically separated, thus giving you a level of security and separation should your tests fail. Of course, it only protects you while running in the context of WAS, and not if the two applications are sharing the same database or any other shared resource the two applications may access.

Figure 1 shows a typical WebSphere Application Server Network Deployment topology running with two profiles. The first is a default profile for a WAS Base instance; this profile contains information for one server. The second is a WAS Deployment Manager instance that contains two servers in the profile. Both are logically grouped within a node. A node normally corresponds to a physical computer system with a specific IP address. Associated with the application server is the embedded HTTP server, which directs requests to the application server. The embedded HTTP can be associated with a production HTTP server such as IBM's HTTP Server product based on Apache, or another third-party product.

The profile defines the characteristics of the WAS instance that is running in the context of the JVM. The profile contains all of the information that makes the server instance unique, such as port mappings, available services, data sources, JDBC providers, etc. The profile information is contained in the <WAS_ROOT>/profiles directory. Table 1 illustrates the contents of the profile directory and their functions within the WAS. A default profile is created for you when you initially install WAS v6.0.

Creating New Profiles
For one reason or another, you have decided to create a new WAS Profile. Perhaps you have two development groups that share the same install instance but have different configuration environments. Or perhaps you wish to have two versions of the same application running, but with different environments. WAS v6 supports two ways of creating a new profile: the profile creation wizard and command line.

Profile Creation Wizard
The easiest way to create a new profile is to run the Profile creation wizard tool located in the <WAS_ROOT>/bin/ProfileCreator directory. Figure 2 shows the profile creation tool that will step you through the process of creating a profile. You will need to decide the name of the profile, the directory of where the profile information will be stored, the node and hostname of the server, and any changes to the default ports. The wizard will attempt to avoid WAS port conflicts by looking at the existing configured ports. It does not attempt to look at services outside of WebSphere that may already be running on those ports during the profile creation.

Creating Profiles with the Command Line
Another way to create a profile is via the wasprofile command line. The wasprofile creation tool is located in the <WAS_ROOT>/bin directory of the application server. For Linux, the file is wasprofile.sh and for windows it's wasprofile.bat. The wasprofile command is the primary tool used to manage profiles and provides the greatest amount of flexibility. Listing 1 creates a profile called MyNewProfile.

The -profilePath specifies the location in which the profile directory should reside. Normally, profiles are placed in the profile repository directory located in <WAS_ROOT>/profiles, but this can be overridden.

The parameter -templatePath specifies the location of profile templates that will be used in creating the new profile. The profile templates directory contains a number of Ant scripts and default configurations that act as a starting point for the tool in creating a new profile. Which template is used is important when considering what instance of WebSphere you wish to create. As an example, the WAS ND version of the product supports running in three modes: standalone base application server, a managed base application server, or as a deployment manager. The specific example uses the default profile to create a standard application server.

The profile tool only supports executing one instance at a time. If you try to start another instance of wasprofile while the first one is still completing, you will receive an error message.

The -nodeName and -cellName specify the name of the node and the name of the WAS cell. A node is a grouping of servers, while a cell is a logical grouping of nodes.

The -hostName is the name of the machine on which that the profile resides.

When the profile is created, the directory structure described in Table 1 will be created in the directory location that you specified. The default profile repository is <WAS_ROOT>/profiles/. Once the profile is created, you will need to start the application server. If you used the profile creation wizard, you will have the option of starting the FirstSteps application when the profile creation is complete. FirstSteps is an easy tool to start and test your profile. You can later rerun the FirstSteps tool by going into the firststeps directory of where your profile was created.

Another way of starting your application server using your new profile is via the command line. WebSphere provides two ways of starting the application server; it is with the same command but from two different locations. The first location is the <WAS_ROOT>/bin directory. Contained here is a helper script called startServer.cmd on Windows, and startServer.sh on Linux. When starting the application server from here, you will need to specify the profile to be started. For example, if your profile was called MyNewProfile, then the command would be:

startServer.sh server1 -profile MyNewProfile







server1 is the default server name given to Application Server when the profile was created. There are a number of other commands that are contained in this directory. If you have a specific profile that you want to change the state of, then you will need to specify the -profile command. The system administrator can use the commands in the <WAS_ROOT>/bin directory to control all of the profile instances. The commands in the <WAS_ROOT>/bin directory are intended for system administrators to execute.

The other location is within the bin directory of the profile you created. If you created the profile MyNewProfile, then the startServer.sh command would be located in <WAS_ROOT>/profiles/MyNewProfile/bin. The difference here is that all of the executables stored in this directory run in the context of the newly created profile. The -profile MyNewProfile is not required to start the application server.

The reason for the difference is that the profiles can be owned by a different group aside from the system administrator who is controlling the WAS. As the owner of MyNewProfile, I may have the need to start and stop the servers in my profile, but at the same time not have the authority to start and stop servers for another profile.

Managing Profiles
The wasprofile command also supports managing profiles as well as creating them. The description below contains some of the commands that the wasprofile provides.

Deleting a Profile
When you delete a profile, it removes the named profile and its contents from the directory. Any customization or additional scripts that you may have added to the profile directory may also be deleted as well. You should use this tool rather than deleting the profile directory manually since this will prevent corruption of the profile information that WAS maintains.

./wasprofile.sh -delete -profileName profile_name | - profilePath profile_path [-debug]


Listing Additional Profiles
To list the profiles that WAS knows about, use the following command:

./wasprofile.sh -listProfiles [-debug]


To check the integrity of a profile registry:

./wasprofile.sh -validateRegistry [-debug]


Get the path of an existing profile from the name:

./wasprofile.sh -getPath -profileName profile_name [-debug]


Conclusion
Profiles in WAS v6 offer flexibility to meet growing changes in environments. With profiles it is possible to create new application servers that have a degree of separation between other J2EE applications that might be running on the server. When you create a profile, you are creating a new instance of the WebSphere Application Server that shares the same runtime binaries, yet can have a unique configuration that is separate from another WebSphere instance. The separation has advantages for setting up and maintaining your WebSphere installation.

Resources

  • Williamson, L., Chan, L., Cundiff, R., Lauzon, S., and Mitchell, C. (2005). IBM WebSphere System Administration. IBM Press.
  • WebSphere Application Server Information Center: www-306.ibm.com/software/webservers/appserv/was/library/
  • More Stories By Kevin Haverlock

    Kevin Haverlock is an advisory software engineer for IBM's WebSphere Application Server product. He joined IBM in 1995 at Research Triangle Park, NC, where he worked as a developer for the Tivoli division. In 2000 he transferred to the WebSphere Application Server organization and is currently an architect and developer for the WebSphere Application Server Express product.

    Comments (1)

    Share your thoughts on this story.

    Add your comment
    You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

    In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


    @ThingsExpo Stories
    SYS-CON Events announced today that AgilePoint, the leading provider of Microsoft-centric Business Process Management software, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 2nd International @ThingsExpo which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. AgilePoint is the leading provider of Microsoft-based Business Process Management (BPM) software products, has 1,300+ on-premise and cloud deployments in 25+ countries and provides the same advanced BPM feature set as J2EE vendors like IBM and Appian for the Microsoft .NET native environment. AgilePoint customer...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that TeleStax, the main sponsor of Mobicents, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TeleStax provides Open Source Communications software and services that facilitate the shift from legacy SS7 based IN networks to IP based LTE and IMS networks hosted on private (on-premise), hybrid or public clouds. TeleStax products include Restcomm, JSLEE, SMSC Gateway, USSD Gateway, SS7 Resource Adaptors, SIP Servlets, Rich Multimedia Services, Presence Services/RCS, Diame...
    Samsung VP Jacopo Lenzi, who headed the company's recent SmartThings acquisition under the auspices of Samsung's Open Innovaction Center (OIC), answered a few questions we had about the deal. This interview was in conjunction with our interview with SmartThings CEO Alex Hawkinson. IoT Journal: SmartThings was developed in an open, standards-agnostic platform, and will now be part of Samsung's Open Innovation Center. Can you elaborate on your commitment to keep the platform open? Jacopo Lenzi: Samsung recognizes that true, accelerated innovation cannot be driven from one source, but requires a...
    The Internet of Things will greatly expand the opportunities for data collection and new business models driven off of that data. In her session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, will discuss how for this to be effective you not only need to have infrastructure and operational models capable of utilizing this new phenomenon, but increasingly service providers will need to convince a skeptical public to participate. Get ready to show them the money! Speaker Bio: Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, has spent 16 years as a marketing, product management, and busin...
    Things are being built upon cloud foundations to transform organizations. This CEO Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo, moderated by Roger Strukhoff, Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo conference chair, will address the big issues involving these technologies and, more important, the results they will achieve. How important are public, private, and hybrid cloud to the enterprise? How does one define Big Data? And how is the IoT tying all this together?
    We certainly live in interesting technological times. And no more interesting than the current competing IoT standards for connectivity. Various standards bodies, approaches, and ecosystems are vying for mindshare and positioning for a competitive edge. It is clear that when the dust settles, we will have new protocols, evolved protocols, that will change the way we interact with devices and infrastructure. We will also have evolved web protocols, like HTTP/2, that will be changing the very core of our infrastructures. At the same time, we have old approaches made new again like micro-services...
    SYS-CON Events announces a new pavilion on the Cloud Expo floor where WebRTC converges with the Internet of Things. Pavilion will showcase WebRTC and the Internet of Things. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices--computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors – connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.
    The only place to be June 9-11 is Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo 2015 East at the Javits Center in New York City. Join us there as delegates from all over the world come to listen to and engage with speakers & sponsors from the leading Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data companies. Cloud Expo & @ThingsExpo are the leading events covering the booming market of Cloud Computing, IoT & Big Data for the enterprise. Speakers from all over the world will be hand-picked for their ability to explore the economic strategies that utility/cloud computing provides. Whether public, private, or in a hybrid form, clo...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in software-defined storage (SDS) purpose-built for Windows Servers and Hyper-V, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Gridstore™ is the leader in software-defined storage purpose built for virtualization that is designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Using its patented Server-Side Virtual Controller™ Technology (SVCT) to eliminate the I/O blender effect and accelerate applications Gridsto...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Red Hat, the world's leading provider of open source solutions, will exhibit at Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Red Hat is the world's leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage and virtualization technologies. Red Hat also offers award-winning support, training, and consulting services. As the connective hub in a global network of enterprises, partners, a...
    As the Internet of Things unfolds, mobile and wearable devices are blurring the line between physical and digital, integrating ever more closely with our interests, our routines, our daily lives. Contextual computing and smart, sensor-equipped spaces bring the potential to walk through a world that recognizes us and responds accordingly. We become continuous transmitters and receivers of data. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Andrew Bolwell, Director of Innovation for HP’s Printing and Personal Systems Group, will discuss how key attributes of mobile technology – touch input, senso...
    The Internet of Things (IoT) is making everything it touches smarter – smart devices, smart cars and smart cities. And lucky us, we’re just beginning to reap the benefits as we work toward a networked society. However, this technology-driven innovation is impacting more than just individuals. The IoT has an environmental impact as well, which brings us to the theme of this month’s #IoTuesday Twitter chat. The ability to remove inefficiencies through connected objects is driving change throughout every sector, including waste management. BigBelly Solar, located just outside of Boston, is trans...
    Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, will examine three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective storage designed to handle the massive surge in back-end data in a world where timely analytics...
    Internet of @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley announced on Thursday its first 12 all-star speakers and sessions for its upcoming event, which will take place November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in California. @ThingsExpo, the first and largest IoT event in the world, debuted at the Javits Center in New York City in June 10-12, 2014 with over 6,000 delegates attending the conference. Among the first 12 announced world class speakers, IBM will present two highly popular IoT sessions, which will take place November 4-6, 2014 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, Calif...
    The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to evolve the way the world does business; however, understanding how to apply it to your company can be a mystery. Most people struggle with understanding the potential business uses or tend to get caught up in the technology, resulting in solutions that fail to meet even minimum business goals. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO / President / Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., will show what is needed to leverage the IoT to transform your business. He will discuss opportunities and challenges ahead for the IoT from a market and tec...
    From a software development perspective IoT is about programming "things," about connecting them with each other or integrating them with existing applications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Yakov Fain, co-founder of Farata Systems and SuranceBay, will show you how small IoT-enabled devices from multiple manufacturers can be integrated into the workflow of an enterprise application. This is a practical demo of building a framework and components in HTML/Java/Mobile technologies to serve as a platform that can integrate new devices as they become available on the market.
    SYS-CON Events announced today that O'Reilly Media has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. O'Reilly Media spreads the knowledge of innovators through its books, online services, magazines, and conferences. Since 1978, O'Reilly Media has been a chronicler and catalyst of cutting-edge development, homing in on the technology trends that really matter and spurring their adoption by amplifying "faint signals" from the alpha geeks who are creating the future. An...
    The Transparent Cloud-computing Consortium (abbreviation: T-Cloud Consortium) will conduct research activities into changes in the computing model as a result of collaboration between "device" and "cloud" and the creation of new value and markets through organic data processing High speed and high quality networks, and dramatic improvements in computer processing capabilities, have greatly changed the nature of applications and made the storing and processing of data on the network commonplace.
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Aria Systems, the recurring revenue expert, has been named "Bronze Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 15th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Aria Systems helps leading businesses connect their customers with the products and services they love. Industry leaders like Pitney Bowes, Experian, AAA NCNU, VMware, HootSuite and many others choose Aria to power their recurring revenue business and deliver exceptional experiences to their customers.
    The Internet of Things (IoT) is going to require a new way of thinking and of developing software for speed, security and innovation. This requires IT leaders to balance business as usual while anticipating for the next market and technology trends. Cloud provides the right IT asset portfolio to help today’s IT leaders manage the old and prepare for the new. Today the cloud conversation is evolving from private and public to hybrid. This session will provide use cases and insights to reinforce the value of the network in helping organizations to maximize their company’s cloud experience.