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Workflow workbench:

A new version of Workflow Workbench adds new capabilities. Most importantly version
3.0 adds the ability to schedule workflows amongst themselves. In the previous
releases Workflow Workbench was capable of creating an optimal schedule of the
individual sessions within one single workflow. For a lot of users this was not enough,
there was a need to schedule workflows amongst themselves instead of scheduling
sessions within a single workflow.

Select Multiple Workflows

Workflow Workbench version 3.0 has the ability to load multiple

workflows and schedule these workflows in the most efficient way.Dependencies that
might exist between multiple workflows can be assigned simply by drawing links from
one workflow to the next. In the same way as when scheduling sessions thenumber of
parallel streams can be selectedbefore the calculation of the optimal layout of
If you haven’t done so already signup on the community part and download the
newest version. With the download comes a 10 day free trial license.
Session Memory Calculation
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Performance improvement can be achieved on different levels. There
is database tuning, improvement of themapping, work at session level and of course
at workflow level. One aspect of tuning is the differentmemory settings on session
level. There are two settings regarding memory in a session, namely:
DTM Buffer Pool Size;
Default Buffer Block Size.
DTM Buffer Pool Size defines the amount of memory that the Integration Service uses
as Data Transformation Manager buffer memory. The buffer is used to swap data into
and out of the Integration Service. Setting this buffer pool size correctly can improve
performance during momentary slowdowns. There is an optimum for this setting, just
increasing it will initially lead to a performance improvement but will level
off. Informatica recommends a default DTM Buffer size of 12.000.000 bytes. Workflow
Workbenchcan now automatically calculate the optimum for this memory settings, in
correspondence with the buffer block size. Workflow Workbench will only change this
settings when the recommended amount of buffer memory is more than the default
recommended by Informatica.
Buffer Block Size depends on the record size of the different source and target
tables that are used in the mapping. Ideally the buffer can transport 100 rows at
once. Workflow Workbench will go through all the source and target tables in a
mapping and calculate your ideal buffer block size based on the largest record size
definition within both sources and targets. Again the recommended size of 64.000
bytes is taken into account. The buffer block size is only increased when the optimal
size exceeds this recommended size.
Workflow Workbench will calculate these memory settings for you, and
can export them to the Informatica Workflow Manager.
An Optimization Example
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The goal of this article is to show what Workflow Workbench can do to improve an
Informatica Powercenter Workflow. The example will focus on changing a sequential
workflow on a 4 processor machine in such a way that it makes optimal use of the
underlying hardware.
The hardware used is a 4 processor Windows 2003 Server, running SQL Server 2005
as the database engine. As both the Operating System and the database require (at
least) a processor each, there really are 2 processors left for the Informatica service.
The Project
The initial table contains 8.7 million records with addresses. This table will be used as a
source to extract all the records from three major cities, namely Amsterdam, Rotterdam
and Den Haag. From the three tables created containing the cities mentioned above,
the city name will be removed in the next session. A final session will be used to
repopulate the city name removed in the previous session with the help of a recode
table created in a separate (one time) session. So what needs to happen is:
1. Extract all the records from one city from the initial table.
2. Delete all the city names from the table that has been created in step 1
3. Create a lookup table from the initial table with postal code and city (only once)
4. Populate the city field deleted in step 2 with a lookup table created in step 3
Initial Setup
The initial design of the workflow contains all the sessions in sequential order, one
session after the other. The lookup table created in step 3 above only needs to be
created once, the rest of the steps are repeated 3 times for every city extracted from
the initial table.

The average runtime for this sequential workflow is 44 minutes and 45 seconds.

Calculating the New Workflow

Now that I have the workflow loaded into Workflow Workbench I can continue to create
the new optimal workflow.
First step is to select the tasks that I want to include in my calculation. In this case I
want to include all my sessions in one single group. If you have for example decision
tasks in your workflow you’ll need to create different groups; you typically don’t want to
true and false branch of a decision in the same group.
Second step is to select the number of processors that are available to the Informatica
service (2), hit the “Create Schedule” button and sit back. Once the calculation has
been done (1 second in this case) you’ll have two additional screens: one that
shows the new workflow and one that shows the new workflow in aGantt chart showing
the relationship between the sessions and how they are divided on the different
The windows with the new workflow will also contain a prediction of the runtime for the
new workflow. For the workflow at hand the estimate was a runtime of 29 minutes and
22 seconds. Let’s implement the new workflow and see for ourselves.
Implementing the New Workflow
When looking at a simple workflow I could choose to just redesign my Informatica
workflow according to the one displayed in the New Workflow window. If the workflow
is more difficult however redesigning the workflow could be a daunting and error prone
Luckily this can be automated. The workflow as designed in the Informatica Workflow
Manager can beexported to an xml format. This format can be read by Workflow
Workbench. The adjustments to the workflow will be done and Workflow Workbench
will export a new xml document that in turn can be read by the Informatica Workflow
Manager. This is a save way to rewrite the workflow without the need of write access to
the Informatica repository.
After a few runs of the new workflow we have an average of 33 minutes and 22
seconds for the newly created workflow. This means that purely by reorganizing the
original workflow a workflow has been created that’s running 26% quicker than the
original one. The conversion from old- to new workflow took less than 5 minutes to
accomplish. A quick peek at what this would bring us if 3 processors would be
available, gives an improvement of close to 50%.
Watch us on YouTube
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YouTube now features a video that shows how Workflow Workbench can help you to
improve the performance of an Informatica Powercenter Workflow.
Workflow Workbench has joined Microsoft BizSpark
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Workbench is proud to announce that we have been admitted to the Microsoft BizSpark
Microsoft BizSpark is an innovative new program that unites Startups with
entrepreneurial and technology resources in a global community with a common goal
of supporting and accelerating the success of a new generation of high-potential
Beta Program Open
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Our beta program has still some space for additional

subscribers. Joining the beta program will give you an early view on what will be
included in the next version. As a member of the beta program you also have the
opportunity to give us early feedback and have close contact with our development
team to voice your requirements.
If you are an existing Informatica Powercenter customer and are interested to see what
Workflow Workbench could do for your organization please contact us and join our
beta program.