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Customization Options for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure

In this series covering what to consider before your Oracle EBS migration, we’ve covered various topics you should consider before beginning your Oracle Fusion implementation. As we’ve mentioned, your business likely uses several systems to manage the various departments and products you sell. These systems need a way to connect so that your business does not lose out on valuable data.

In this installment of our series, we will examine two key aspects of your migration planning: Customization and Integration. When migrating from EBS to an Oracle Cloud-based solutions, you have a lot of additional extensions or customizations you can add from Oracle’s vast product network. It’s important to understand what your options are and how the customizations will integrate with other parts of your business.

Key factors in choosing customizations

As with every step in this series, the key to success here is pre-planning and forethought. Take inventory of any customizations you have in your existing E-Business Suite setup. Ask yourself two questions: 1) do you need these customizations? And 2) are they compatible with Cloud infrastructure? Keep in mind the platform’s best practices and the potential impact of future Cloud upgrades.

Oracle offers various tools for customizing and extending Cloud ERP. The choice of tool depends on several factors, and decisions must be made based on these factors and any additional constraints discovered during the design phase.

These are the most commonly used tools that we see:

Visual Builder Studio (VBS)

Using VBS, we can create a new App User Interface (UI), which is an application that includes a UI component in the form of Visual Builder pages and flows. Before you select VBS as your tool to create extensions, read the documentation and ensure it fits all your requirements. Read more about VBS.

VBS is the recommended option for customizing and extending user interfaces on top of Fusion SaaS Data and is included as part of the SaaS license. Your test environment will be automatically provisioned with one instance of VBS per cloud account by default.

Visual Builder Cloud Service (VBCS)

In some use cases, natively provisioned VBS within your Fusion Cloud Applications cannot be used for customizations. In such cases we leverage VBCS. It is a PaaS product available as part of Oracle Integration Cloud(OIC).

There are multiple factors that can lead to this decision, let’s look at the difference between VBS and VBCS:

Visual Builder Service (SaaS Embedded) Visual Builder Cloud Service (Part of OIC)
You cannot connect to external DB and create custom business objects (tables). You can choose to connect to DBaaS or ATP and create business objects.
Add PLSQL logic in Database layer if needed.
You cannot connect to external rest services directly unless they are unauthenticated. This includes OIC Rest APIs as well.
(Note: this can be indirectly achieved using groovy scripting)
Access to External secured rest services is available.
Every extension/New App in VBS is contained within a Project that Git Repository and CI/CD (Build Jobs) are integrated tightly and supported There is no built-in Git Repository and CI/CD support
VBS and Fusion applications are pre-federated and needs no additional step VBCS needs to be federated for the applications to be embedded in FA and accessed via FA SSO
VBS is integrated with FA, all extensions developed can be deployed as APP UIs and later into fusion apps A VBCS app can be integrated to FA using Page integration/Composer through sandbox
You cannot create custom URL for your VBS app. It will be accessed using FA URL only. You have an option to use custom URL with certain restrictions.
You cannot create applications with custom look and feel. It’s restricted to FA (Redwood) You can customize the application based on your need. It can be accessed externally and added to an external application as well. It runs independently

Oracle Application Express (APEX)
APEX is an enterprise low-code application development platform that comes with the Oracle Database. This is another popular choice of tool for creating extensions for Oracle Fusion applications.
While VBS/VBCS are preferred and recommended tools, in some instances APEX can be a better choice for you, especially while migrating your EBS instance to Cloud ERP. One of the common use cases is when you already have custom APEX pages in your current EBS environment, and they are also needed in your new cloud ERP environment.

Java cloud service
If you have worked with EBS for a long time, you may know about using Java cloud service and Oracle Application Development Framework (ADF) applications. This is an outdated method and is not a recommended choice.

What to Know About Integration

We’ve mentioned several times in this series that integration plays a crucial role in the effectiveness and efficiency of Cloud ERP systems. Integrations allow these systems to connect seamlessly with other software applications, platforms, and services, enhancing their functionality and providing a more comprehensive solution for businesses.

Oracle Integration Cloud (OIC) is the recommended middleware tool to develop low code integration solutions. There are other options like MuleSoft, Boomi and standalone Java/PLSQL applications. However, OIC currently offers multiple out of box adapters that help you to connect to Oracle E-Business Suite and Cloud ERP in a fast and efficient way.

Directional Integration
Oracle Cloud ERP Integrations are generally in either Inbound or Outbound in nature. Let’s discuss various mechanisms available in cloud ERP for each of the integration types.

Inbound integration:

In cases of inbound integrations, data flows into Oracle Cloud ERP from an external source. Below are the different ways to import data into Oracle Cloud

  • File-Based Data Import is used initially for data migrations and for integrations that involve bringing data in batches.
  • Oracle provides SOAP web services to import data programmatically.
  • Oracle has a growing list of Restful web services that allow you to import data using standard HTTP methods. This is generally the recommended method for real time integration.
  • OIC provides an out of box ERP Cloud adapter which internally uses oracle standard SOAP and REST web services. If a web service is not part of the adapter, they can always be configured as standard REST/SOAP adapter and used in your OIC integration.

Outbound integration:

In cases of outbound integrations, data flows from Oracle Cloud ERP to an external source. Below are the different ways to export data from Oracle Cloud

  • Use REST APIs to integrate Low Volume Real Time Transactions or Master Data values like employees, customers, suppliers, vendors and more.
  • If REST APIs are not available for your requirement, SOAP Web services are another option to integrate real time data between oracle cloud ERP and external systems.
  • Business Events can be used to capture real time transactions when OIC is used as middleware platform for building integration. Prerequisite for this route is that seeded business event needs to exit for your use case. Oracle currently doesn’t have the capability to create custom business events.
  • Business Intelligence (BI) Cloud Connect is recommended when there is a need to extract medium to high volumes of data.
  • BI report can be developed to extract data in certain cases. This needs to be the last option when your data extraction requirement is not met by an API and the volume of data involved is low.


In the forthcoming installment of this blog series, we’ll delve into how Apps Associates can aid in expediting and streamlining integration development by leveraging several pre-built OIC solutions we’ve developed.