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BizAgi, the Latin American BPMS company, have just released a new low-cost edition of their runtime BPMS server, called Xpress. This new release also coincides with a new release of their Process Modeler. The third part of this release has seen BizAgi revamp their website to provide a complete online service to their customers from sales information to product manuals to forum pages to licence purchase.
BizAgi Xpress Edition is designed for departmental solutions or for small and medium sized businesses. It has a restriction of a maximum number of 100 users being supported. Like the standard and enterprise editions it works with the Process Modeler which provides a very high degree of support for BPMN (according to a BPMfocus article around 90% of BPMN Notation is supported by the runtime environment). Otherwise it is full BPMS with a drag and drop Forms Designer, a business rules engine, SOA integration capabilities, an execution engine, a web work portal and business activity monitoring. In the case of the latter capability, all the analytics has been rewritten in Microsoft Silverlight, which was found to be more flexible than the previously used Abode Flash. The database provided with Xpress Edition is Microsoft’s SQL Server Express and is used not only for the repository but also for the activity monitoring data.. The only missing capabilities are that there is no support for clustering or fault tolerance support. The edition runs on Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Windows XP and Vista. You need a separate CAL (Client Access License) for each individual person (“User”) that accesses or uses the server software. The price for each perpetual CAL is €120, which includes 1 year’s maintenance, and there is a minimum of 10 users. The renewal license to cover maintenance for subsequent years is only €20. Alternatively you can take a subscription license which is only €40 per user.
One of the things I really like is the dynamic diagram which steps through the development process. In step 1, you define or edit the business process. Step 2 involves the definition of the data that will be used by the complete process. The 3rd step is to define the forms that you need. This is done by dragging and dropping from the information held in the database. Step 4 is where you define the business rules. This is based on X-Path access to the data model. Step 5 is where you define the users of the process; what BizAgi calls the “Performers”. In the 6th Step you define the integration points with existing applications. The final step is to execute the process you have just defined.
The other editions provide fault tolerance and clustering support as well as a separation of the data model and the BAM data. The Standard Edition runs on the Windows environment, whilst the Enterprise Edition is J2EE complaint platform. Xpress users can migrate their models to either of these editions with ease.
I am really impressed with the thought that has gone into this new edition, which makes it even easier for organisations to adopt and exploit the business potential of BPM.