Remote DAR install

A usual challenge when trying to automate Documentum operations is how to streamline the installation of dar files. These are done via a huge application (composer, basically a customized eclipse) that teams usually mount into some container / server to run these intalls.

However, there’s a simpler way to get this to work: by using a REST endpoint.

1. Create a method to run the dar intall from the content server by running a command line script:

java -Ddfc.keystore.file=$DOCUMENTUM/config/dfc.keystore -Ddar=$1.dar -Dlogpath=/tmp/darinstaller.log -Ddocbase=$2 -Duser=dmadmin -Ddomain= -Dpassword=dmadmin -cp $DM_HOME/install/composer/ComposerHeadless/startup.jar org.eclipse.core.launcher.Main -data $DM_HOME/install/composer/workspace -application org.eclipse.ant.core.antRunner -buildfile $DM_HOME/install/composer/deploy.xml

Note that this is an example where we’re willingly ignoring the user/password authentication as this will be delegated to the REST call.

2. Create a REST extention point to run this. This a simple example of the controller class:

public ContentfulObject createObject(@PathVariable("repositoryName") final String repositoryName,  @RequestBody final InstallDarInfo createObject,  @TypedParam final SingleParam param,  @RequestUri final UriInfo uriInfo)
        throws Exception {

    createObject.addAttribute(new Attribute("object_name",createObject.getDar()));

    ContentfulObject result = sysObjectManager.createSysObjectUnderParentFolder(createObject, "/Temp/installDAR", true, param.getAttributeView());

    Map<String, Object> params = Collections.singletonMap(ViewParams.POST_FROM_COLLECTION, (Object) true);  

    runInstallDARMethod(repositoryName, result.getId(), (String)result.getAttributeByName("object_name"),"/Temp/installDAR") ;
    return (ContentfulObject) getRenderedObject(repositoryName, (ContentfulObject)result, param.isLinks(), uriInfo, params);

private void runInstallDARMethod(String repository, String objectId, String fileName, String folderPath) throws DfException {

    String dqlMethod="execute do_method with method='m_InstallDAR', arguments='"+ objectId + " " + fileName + " " + repository + " " + folderPath + "', launch_async=true, run_as_server=true";
    this.queryEngine.execute(QueryResultItem.class, dqlMethod+";", QueryType.QUERY, 0, 100);

As you can see, this simply takes the file attached to the REST call, stores it on a temporary folder on the repository, and then calls the method to run this.

With this, you can also handle something that, if you’ve played with Documentum cloud images, you might have already realized that OT engineers do not know: The additional artifacts that come with DAR files (install parameters, locales, referenced dar files, etc. The usual stuff “nobody” uses in the real world). Also, you can process several files (ie: zip file containing everything needed to install), you can store the output log, return the log, use different build files depending on your needs, etc.

However, this still presents a challenge: you need to deploy this on DCTM-REST and create a method to run the script that needs to be placed on the CS.

So, is there anything else we can do? Yes 😀

From a couple versions back (20.x?) Documentum has included a JMS servlet to run DAR installs (InstallDarServlet). This is a rather “simple” class that basically receives a couple of parameters (repository, user, login ticket and an object_id from a dar file existing in the repository) and it will run a simple dar install. This servlets presents “great room for improvement”, so you can create a class with the same name and package, copy the code (so you don’t break whatever OT is using this for) and then add a handler for a multipart REST message which does everything we’ve discussed before and then replace this class on the CS. By doing this you will get:

  1. Simplest deployment for deploying DAR files automatically (just replacing one class and restarting JMS, as the servlet is already present on web.xml)
  2. You really don’t need to store anything on the repository, this can be run synchronously (be aware of long running DAR installations) and return the whole log, or you can store everything in the repository as audit trail.
  3. You can handle install parameters, locales, referenced dar files, etc. (which again, seems something that OT engineering have never heard of, who really uses locales? everyone loves systems on English :D)
  4. You can control the access to this servlet via user/password, by allowing only certaing IPs to call it and using trusted login to install DAR files, etc

2 thoughts on “Remote DAR install

  1. >> String dqlMethod=”execute do_method with method=’m_InstallDAR’, arguments='”+ objectId + ” ” + fileName + ” ” + repository + ” ” + folderPath + “‘, launch_async=true, run_as_server=true”;

    Welcome to the bizarre world of backdoors 🙂 You are allowing arbitrary user to upload DAR into repository and install it.


  2. When I was a developer, I used to drop Jenkins war into JMS. With that my deployment pipeline could work with the install owner rights, and run Headless Composer, API & DQL scripts.

    I suppose if I had to work with Documentum cloud images, THEN I would write my own container to hook into the CI/CD pipeline and deploy it as a sidecar to main Documentum Server containers


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.