Install the Full Distribution on an IBM WebSphere Server Liberty

This section will describe how you can install Camunda Platform 7 and its components on an IBM WebSphere Application Server Liberty. To perform the Camunda Platform 7 installation on WebSphere Liberty you will need the following:

Reading this Guide

This section provides examples for Camuna Platform 7.17.0-ee. If you are installing a patch version please replace the version numbers in the examples with the patch version you are using.

Throughout this section we will use a number of variables to denote common path names and constants. You don’t have to create these variables in your environment. They are just used in this guide to make it more readable.

  • $WAS_DISTRIBUTION represents the downloaded Camunda Platform distribution for the IBM WebSphere Application Server, e.g., camunda-ee-ibm-was9-7.17.0-ee.zip.
  • $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR points to the IBM WebSphere Liberty server configuration directory like wlp/usr/servers/camundaServer.

The distribution is available at the Camunda enterprise release page. You will be asked to enter the credentials you received during the trial or subscription process.

To fully install Camunda Platform 7 on WebSphere Liberty, you need to configure the following components:

  1. Camunda EAR and shared libraries
  2. Datasource
  3. Work Manager
  4. Optional components: Camunda web apps, REST API, etc.

Server configuration

WebSphere Liberty relies on Liberty features to make servers lightweight and composable. A Liberty server configuration is centralized in a single server.xml file that exists in the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR folder.

WebSphere Liberty vs Open Liberty

Camunda Platform 7 requires certain Liberty features that are only available in the WebSphere Liberty edition. As a result, Open Liberty is not supported by Camunda Platform 7.

Java EE Liberty features support

Liberty supports multiple Java/Jakarta EE versions through features with multiple versions (ex. cdi-1.0, cdi-1.2, cdi-2.0, etc.).

Camunda Platform 7 doesn’t support Java EE 6, Java EE 7, or Jakarta EE 9+ features since they don’t provide all the APIs required to run Camunda Platform 7 correctly.

We recommend using Java EE 8 Liberty features to run Camunda Platform 7 on WebSphere Liberty.

If you decide to mix Liberty features from different Java EE versions, check the Java EE feature combinations page to ensure that the all the features are inter-compatible.

This guide will show you what to place in the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR folder, and what to add in the server.xml file to successfully install Camunda Platform 7 on WebSphere Liberty.

At the end of the installation, your Liberty server folder should have the following structure:

wlp/usr/servers/
|-- camundaServer/
      |-- lib/  <-- The shared libs
           |-- camunda-engine-7.17.0-ee.jar
           |-- java-uuid-generator-XX.jar
           |-- mybatis-XX.jar
           |-- joda-time-XX.jar
           |-- ...
           |-- JDBC_DRIVER.jar
      |-- apps/ <-- EAR & WAR applications
           |-- camunda-ibm-websphere-ear-7.17.0-ee.ear
           |-- ..
      |-- server.xml <-- configuration file

Furthermore, when your Liberty server is fully configured for Camunda Platform 7, the server.xml file should have the following content:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<server description="camunda server">

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>jdbc-4.2</feature>
    <feature>concurrent-1.0</feature>
    <feature>heritageAPIs-1.1</feature>
    <feature>mdb-3.2</feature>
    <feature>jca-1.7</feature>
    <feature>ejbRemote-3.2</feature>
    <feature>jndi-1.0</feature>
    <feature>servlet-4.0</feature>
    <feature>bells-1.0</feature>
  </featureManager>

  <!-- To access this server from a remote client add a host attribute to the following element, e.g. host="*" -->
  <httpEndpoint id="defaultHttpEndpoint"
                httpPort="9080"
                httpsPort="9443" />

  <!-- Automatically expand WAR and EAR files -->
  <applicationManager autoExpand="true" />

  <!-- Default SSL configuration enables trust for default certificates from the Java runtime -->
  <ssl id="defaultSSLConfig" trustDefaultCerts="true" />

  <!-- JDBC library definition -->
  <library id="camundaJDBCLib">
      <fileset dir="${server.config.dir}/lib" includes="db2jcc-*.jar" />
  </library>

  <!-- Camunda libraries definition -->
  <library id="Camunda">
    <fileset dir="${server.config.dir}/lib" includes="*.jar" />
  </library>
  <bell libraryRef="Camunda"/> <!-- used to enable SPI detection -->

  <!-- Datasource Configuration -->
  <dataSource
      id="CamundaBpmDataSource"
      jndiName="jdbc/ProcessEngine"
      type="javax.sql.DataSource"
      isolationLevel="TRANSACTION_READ_COMMITTED" >
      <jdbcDriver
          javax.sql.DataSource="com.ibm.db2.jcc.DB2SimpleDataSource"
          libraryRef="camundaJDBCLib"/> <!-- reference to the JDBC library defined above -->
      <properties.db2.jcc
          databaseName="${database.name}"
          serverName="${database.host}"
          portNumber="${database.port}"
          user="${database.username}"
          password="${database.password}"/>
  </dataSource>

  <!-- work manager definition - the jndiName value must remain the same -->
  <managedExecutorService id="camunda-platform-jobexecutor-WM"
                          jndiName="wm/camunda-bpm-workmanager"
                          contextServiceRef="DefaultContextService">
    <concurrencyPolicy max="4" maxQueueSize="5" maxPolicy="strict"/>
  </managedExecutorService>

  <!-- required for correct ExecutorService configuration -->
  <!-- the values of the jndiName and id attributes must have these values  -->
  <connectionFactory jndiName="eis/JcaExecutorServiceConnectionFactory">
    <!-- this element must be added - required for correct classpath scanning -->
    <properties.camunda-bpm-platform.camunda-ibm-websphere-rar />
  </connectionFactory>
  <activationSpec id="eis/PlatformJobExecutorActivation">
    <!-- this element must be added - required for correct classpath scanning -->
    <properties.camunda-bpm-platform.camunda-ibm-websphere-rar />
  </activationSpec>

  <!-- applications definition -->
  <enterpriseApplication id="camundaBpmPlatform"
                         name="camunda-bpm-platform"
                         location="${server.config.dir}/apps/camunda-ibm-websphere-ear-7.17.0-ee.ear" >
    <classloader commonLibraryRef="Camunda"/>
  </enterpriseApplication>

</server>

The Liberty directory location documentation provides more details on the file structure of the WebSphere Liberty application server, and the Liberty server configuration section provides information on all the possible configuration elements of a server.xml file.

The sections below provide more details for each configuration section of the server.xml.

Required components

To correctly install Camunda Platform 7 process engine, you need to perform the following steps:

  1. Configure the Camunda shared library.
  2. Configure the Camunda Platform EAR deployment.
  3. Configure a datasource.
  4. Configure the work manager.

Camunda shared library

The Camunda shared library is used by all the Camunda Platform EAR and WAR-packaged applications, as well as any process applications you may deploy. As such, it’s one of the core components of the Camunda Platform 7 installation, and it is important to configure it correctly.

To configure the Camunda shared library, you need to perform the following steps:

  1. Add the .jar artifacts from the $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/lib/ folder to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder.
  2. Add the bells-1.0 feature to the server.xml.
  3. Define a library element in the server.xml.
  4. The library#id attribute should be set to Camunda.
  5. All the .jar artifacts should be included. See the Liberty shared lib page for more details.
  6. Define a bell element in the server.xml.
  7. The bell#libraryRef attribute should be set to the value of the library#id attribute, i.e. Camunda.

Once you perform all the steps, the server.xml should have the following content:

<server>

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>bells-1.0</feature> <!-- used to enable SPI  -->
  </featureManager>

  <!-- Camunda libraries definition -->
  <library id="Camunda">
    <fileset dir="${server.config.dir}/lib" includes="*.jar" />
  </library>
  <bell libraryRef="Camunda"/>

</server>

WebSphere Liberty SPI discovery

WebSphere Liberty doesn’t perform SPI discovery by default. Since Camunda Platform 7 uses SPI for certain features, you need to enable SPI discovery by adding the bells-1.0 Liberty feature, and use the bell element in the server.xml to specify any shared libraries that rely on SPI.

Camunda Platform EAR

The camunda-ibm-websphere-ear is a Java EE application enterprise archive (EAR) providing the Camunda Platform services. It contains an embedded rar module. This camunda-ibm-websphere-rar module is a JCA Resource Adapter providing the jobexecutor service to the Camunda Platform.

You need to perform the following steps to install the EAR archive on WebSphere Liberty:

  1. Add the camunda-ibm-websphere-ear-7.17.0-ee.ear from the $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/ folder to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/apps folder.
  2. Add the servlet-4.0 Liberty feature to the server.xml.
  3. Define an enterpriseApplication element in the server.xml.
  4. Reference the Camunda shared library in the enterpriseApplication inside the server.xml.
  5. The Camunda shared library is referenced by adding a classloader element.
  6. (optional) Configure location of the bpm-platform.xml file.

After performing the steps above, the server.xml should contain the following:

<server>

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>servlet-4.0</feature>
  </featureManager>

  <!-- EAR application definition -->
  <enterpriseApplication id="camundaBpmPlatform"
                         name="camunda-bpm-platform"
                         location="${server.config.dir}/apps/camunda-ibm-websphere-ear-7.17.0-ee.ear" >
    <classloader commonLibraryRef="Camunda"/>
  </enterpriseApplication>

</server>

Note that if you decide to change the value of the enterpriseApplication#name attribute, you should adjust the properties elements defined in the Work manager configuration.

You can check the Liberty enterpriseApplication docs for more details on how to configure an EAR application deployment.

Datasource

Camunda Platform 7 requires a datasource that will be used by the process engine. To provide a datasource in WebSphere Liberty, the following steps need to be performed:

  1. Create the database schema and tables
  2. Configure a JDBC driver library and a datasource in the server.xml

Create the database schema and tables

In the default Camunda Platform 7 configuration, the database schema and all required tables are automatically created when the engine starts up for the first time. If you do not want the database schema and tables to be automatically created, you have to perform the following:

  1. Create a database schema for the Camunda Platform yourself.
  2. Install the database schema to create all required tables and default indices using our database schema installation guide.

When you create the tables manually, you have to configure the engine to not create tables at startup by setting the databaseSchemaUpdate property to false (or, in case you are using Oracle, to noop). In WebSphere Liberty, this is done in the bpm-platform.xml, located in the $WAS_DISTRIBUTION\modules\camunda-ibm-websphere-ear-7.17.0-ee.ear\camunda-ibm-websphere-service.jar\META-INF\ folder.

Configure a datasource

Camunda Platform uses one or multiple process engines which must be connected to a datasource. To configure a datasource in WebSphere Liberty, you need to perform the following:

  1. Add a JDBC driver library to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder.
  2. Add the jdbc-4.2 and jndi-1.0 Liberty features to the server.xml.
  3. Define a JDBC shared library in the server.xml.
  4. Configure a datasource element in the server.xml.
  5. Set a JNDI name for the datasource element in the server.xml.

For example, to use an DB2 database as the datasource, you should first place the DB2 JDBC driver .jar archive in $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib. Next, you should add the following to the server.xml file:

<server>

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>jdbc-4.2</feature>
    <feature>jndi-1.0</feature>
  </featureManager>

  <!-- Specify JDBC shared library -->
  <library id="camundaJDBCLib">
    <fileset dir="${server.config.dir}/lib" includes="db2jcc-*.jar" />
  </library>

  <!-- Configure datasource -->
  <dataSource
      id="CamundaBpmDataSource"
      jndiName="jdbc/ProcessEngine"
      type="javax.sql.DataSource"
      isolationLevel="TRANSACTION_READ_COMMITTED" >
    <jdbcDriver
        javax.sql.DataSource="com.ibm.db2.jcc.DB2SimpleDataSource"
        libraryRef="camundaJDBCLib"/>
    <properties
        URL="${database.url}"
        user="${database.username}"
        password="${database.password}" />
  </dataSource>
...
</server>

WebSphere Liberty provides more details on configuring a datasource and shared library definition.

Note that you may configure multiple datasources used by different process engine instances. See the User Guide for details.

Datasource JNDI name

In the XML code snippet above, you can see that the datasource JNDI name was set to jdbc/ProcessEngine. This is the default datasource JNDI name used by the process engine.

The JNDI name of the datasource must be equal to the name used in the datasource-Element of the process engine(s) configured in the bpm-platform.xml file.

Work manager

Camunda Platform uses a Job Executor to support asynchronous execution. To integrate the Camunda Platform Job Executor with WebSphere Liberty, Camunda relies on the CommonJ Work manager.

The Camunda Platform Job Executor integration with Liberty requires the following Liberty features:

  • concurrent-1.0
  • heritageAPIs-1.1
  • mdb-3.2
  • jca-1.7
  • ejbRemote-3.2
  • jndi-1.0

To correctly configure the Camunda Platfom 7 Job Executor in WebSphere Liberty, you need to define the following elements in the server.xml file:

  • managedExecutorService - used to configure the thread pool.
  • connectionFactory - used to correctly instantiate a JCA connection factory for the executor service.
  • activationSpec - used to correctly instantiate an MDB activation specification.

The server.xml should look like the following example:

<server>
  <featureManager>
    <feature>concurrent-1.0</feature>
    <feature>heritageAPIs-1.1</feature>
    <feature>mdb-3.2</feature>
    <feature>jca-1.7</feature>
    <feature>ejbRemote-3.2</feature>
    <feature>jndi-1.0</feature> <!-- if not already added -->
  </featureManager>

  <!-- work manager definition -->
  <managedExecutorService id="camunda-platform-jobexecutor-WM"
                          jndiName="wm/camunda-bpm-workmanager"
                          contextServiceRef="DefaultContextService">
    <concurrencyPolicy max="4" maxQueueSize="5" maxPolicy="strict" runIfQueueFull="false" />
  </managedExecutorService>

  <!-- required for correct ExecutorService configuration -->
  <connectionFactory jndiName="eis/JcaExecutorServiceConnectionFactory">
    <properties.camunda-bpm-platform.camunda-ibm-websphere-rar />
  </connectionFactory>
  <activationSpec id="eis/PlatformJobExecutorActivation">
    <properties.camunda-bpm-platform.camunda-ibm-websphere-rar />
  </activationSpec>

</server>

Concurrency policy attributes

You can use the following attributes of the concurrencyPolicy element to configure the CommonJ Work manager:

Property Default Value Explanation
max 4 Specifies the maximum number of threads that are available in this work manager used by the JobExecutor.
maxQueueSize 5 Specifies the size of the work request queue. The work request queue is a buffer that holds scheduled work objects and may be a value of 1 or greater. The thread pool pulls work from this queue. If you do not specify a value or the value is 0, the queue size is managed automatically. Large values can consume significant system resources.
runIfQueueFull false Specifies the action that is taken when the thread pool is exhausted, and the work request queue is full. This action starts when you submit non-daemon work to the work manager. The value should be set to false.

Required values

The following JNDI names and IDs are mandatory, and shouldn’t be changed:

Configuration element Required Value Explanation
managedExecutorService#jndiName wm/camunda-bpm-workmanager The JNDI name of the Work Manager.
connectionFactory#jndiName eis/JcaExecutorServiceConnectionFactory The JNDI name of the JCA ConnectionFactory used by the JobExecutor service.
activationSpec#id eis/PlatformJobExecutorActivation The ID of the MDB activationSpec used for passing Jobs to the JobExecutor.

Furthermore, to correctly activate, the connectionFactory and activationSpec elements must contain the following empty XML sub-element:

<properties.camunda-bpm-platform.camunda-ibm-websphere-rar />

In the code snippet above, the camunda-bpm-platform segment of the properties element is defined by the name attribute of the Camunda Platform EAR application, while the camunda-ibm-websphere-rar is the name of the EAR JCA Resource Adapter camunda-ibm-websphere-rar module, and shouldn’t be changed.

Optional components

This section describes how to install optional components. None of these are required to work with the core platform.

Cockpit, Tasklist, and Admin

The web application archive that contains Camunda Cockpit, Camunda Admin, and Camunda Tasklist resides under $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/webapps/camunda-webapp-ee-was9-7.17.0-ee.war in the IBM WebSphere Application Server distribution archive.

You need to perform the following steps to install the WAR archive on WebSphere Liberty:

  1. Add the camunda-webapp-ee-was9-7.17.0-ee.war from the $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/webapps/ folder to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/apps folder
  2. Add the jaxrs-2.1 Liberty feature to the server.xml
  3. Define a webApplication element in the server.xml
  4. Reference the Camunda shared library in the webApplication inside the server.xml
  5. The Camunda shared library is referenced by adding a classloader element.

After performing the steps above, the server.xml should contain the following:

<server>

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>jaxrs-2.1</feature>
  </featureManager>

  <!-- applications definition -->
  <webApplication id="camundaBpmPlatformWebapps"
                  name="camunda"
                  startAfterRef="camundaBpmPlatform"
                  location="${server.config.dir}/apps/camunda-webapp-ee-was9-7.17.0-ee.war" >
    <classloader commonLibraryRef="Camunda"/>
  </webApplication>

</server>

You can check if everything went well by accessing Cockpit, Admin, and Tasklist via /camunda/app/cockpit, /camunda/app/admin, and /camunda/app/tasklist or under the context path you configured.

You can check the Liberty webApplication docs for more details on how to configure a WAR application deployment.

REST API

The Camunda REST API WAR file resides under $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/webapps/camunda-engine-rest-7.17.0-ee-was9.war in the IBM WebSphere Application Server distribution archive.

You need to perform the following steps to install the WAR archive on WebSphere Liberty:

  1. Add the camunda-engine-rest-7.17.0-ee-was9.war from the $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/webapps/ folder to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/apps folder.
  2. Add the jaxrs-2.1 and beanValidation-2.0 Liberty features to the server.xml.
  3. Define a webApplication element in the server.xml.
  4. Reference the Camunda shared library in the webApplication inside the server.xml.
  5. The Camunda shared library is referenced by adding a classloader element.

After performing the steps above, the server.xml should contain the following:

<server>

  <!-- Enable features -->
  <featureManager>
    <feature>jaxrs-2.1</feature> <!-- if not already added -->
    <feature>beanValidation-2.0</feature>
  </featureManager>

  <!-- applications definition -->
  <webApplication id="camundaBpmPlatformRestApi"
                  name="engine-rest"
                  startAfterRef="camundaBpmPlatform"
                  location="${server.config.dir}/apps/camunda-engine-rest-7.17.0-ee-was9.war" >
    <classloader commonLibraryRef="Camunda"/>
  </webApplication>

</server>

You can check the Liberty webApplication docs for more details on how to configure a WAR application deployment.

Camunda Connect plugin

Add the following artifacts (if not existing) from the folder $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/lib to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder:

  • camunda-commons-utils-$COMMONS_VERSION.jar

In order to activate Camunda Connect functionality for a process engine, you need to register a process engine plugin in the Camunda Platform configuration as follows:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<bpm-platform ... >
  <process-engine name="default">
    ...
    <plugins>
      ... existing plugins ...
      <plugin>
        <class>org.camunda.connect.plugin.impl.ConnectProcessEnginePlugin</class>
      </plugin>
    </plugins>
    ...
  </process-engine>

</bpm-platform>

Note that this requires a custom bpm-platform.xml file.

Camunda Spin

Add the following artifacts (if not existing) from the folder $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/lib/ to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder:

  • camunda-spin-core-$SPIN_VERSION.jar
  • camunda-commons-utils-$COMMONS_VERSION.jar

In order to activate Camunda Spin functionality for a process engine, you need to register a process engine plugin in the Camunda Platform configuration as follows:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<bpm-platform ...>
  ...
  <process-engine name="default">
    ...
    <plugins>
      ... existing plugins ...
      <plugin>
        <class>org.camunda.spin.plugin.impl.SpinProcessEnginePlugin</class>
      </plugin>
    </plugins>
    ...
  </process-engine>
  ...
</bpm-platform>

Note that this requires a custom bpm-platform.xml file.

Groovy scripting

Add the following artifacts (if not existing) from the folder $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/lib/ to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder:

  • groovy-$GROOVY_VERSION.jar
  • groovy-jsr223-$GROOVY_VERSION.jar
  • groovy-json-$GROOVY_VERSION.jar
  • groovy-xml-$GROOVY_VERSION.jar
  • groovy-templates-$GROOVY_VERSION.jar

GraalVM JavaScript integration

Add the following artifacts (if not existing) from the folder $WAS_DISTRIBUTION/modules/lib/ to the $SERVER_CONFIG_DIR/lib folder:

  • graal-sdk-21.1.0.jar
  • icu4j-68.2.jar
  • js-21.1.0.jar
  • js-scriptengine-21.1.0.jar
  • regex-21.1.0.jar
  • truffle-api-21.1.0.jar

Process Applications

After installing a Process Application (PA) in your IBM WebSphere Liberty Server, which does not include the Camunda Platform dependencies, you must reference the previously created “Camunda” shared library with the Process Application deployment.

Your Process Application deployment in the server.xml file should look like the following example:

<server>

  <!-- process application definition -->
  <application id="camundaPA"
               type="..."
               name="camunda-process-application"
               startAfterRef="camundaBpmPlatform"
               location="${server.config.dir}/apps/camunda-process-application.ear" >
    <classloader commonLibraryRef="Camunda"/>
  </application>

</server>

You can check the Liberty application docs for more details on how to configure an application deployment.

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