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InfoQ Article: Incorporating Enterprise Data into SOA

The majority of today's SOA design techniques are centered around definition of services. They use 1service-oriented decomposition, based on the business processes, enterprise business/functional model, required long term architectural goals and reuse of the existing enterprise functionality. This approach usually incorporates one of the most important assets of the modern enterprise - enterprise data as an afterthought. In this article we will revisit a typical SOA architecture, outline the complexities of dealing with the enterprise data and discuss several design patterns for incorporating of this data into SOA implementations.

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The article starts off explaining the typical layers in an SOA, followed by some of the issues related to data access:
  • Consolidation of data between multiple applications.
  • Ownership of enterprise data by services.
  • Interface definitions
Boris then presents several patterns for incorporating enterprise data into SOA implementations:
  • Aligning enterprise data support with the business services
  • Enterprise data access as a business service
  • Enterprise data bus
Boris concludes:
As the scope of SOA implementations expands from limited in scope departmental implementations to enterprise-wide undertaking the issues of enterprise data access are quickly starting to become one of the most important implementation issues. If not architected correctly from the very beginning, enterprise data access can become a major problem down the road. Design patterns presented in this article define different approaches to dealing with the enterprise data in the SOA environment along with the drawbacks and advantages of each approach.

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