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How does the Exchange integration work?

Exchange integration is currently only available for installed on-premise customers. This will be availalble for customers using the cloud version during 2016.

 

Exchange integration makes two-way data synchronization of events and meetings possible between VisionFlow and Exchange/Outlook. For this integration to work a protocol called EWS (Exchange Web Services) is used.

 

Please note that:

  • For EWS to work all users that are set as owners on tasks needs to Exist in Exchange for activities/events to be created correctly i.e. they cannot be external users.

 

Below you can find some common use cases:

 

  • If you create a meeting in Outlook then an issue will be created in VisionFlow. It will be created in the workspace/project that is specified in the integration settings for EWS import. Exchange will make a call to VisionFlow and create the issue
  • If you create an All issues with start and stop date becomes visible for the issue owner in Outlook
  • Issue/meeting data is kept the same in both systems. If you update an issue/meeting in VisionFlow it updates the event/meeting in Outlook with the same information. This works for fields:
    • Title
    • Description
    • Start and Stop date
    • Participants

 

  • If you remove a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to VisionFlow and remove the issue there, if you have permission to do so. For example, if you are the owner of an issue/meeting
  • If you update a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and make similar changed in the associated issue
  • If you add a participant to a meeting in Outlook then Exchange make will a call to Visionflow and the user with that email will be added to the associated meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you remove a participant from a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the user with that email will be removed from the associated meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you create an absence appointment (status Away) in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and works schedule exception will be created for the user with email of the calendar.
  • If you remove an absence appointment (status Away) in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated works schedule exception will be removed for the user with email of the calendar.
  • If you change status of an absence appointment (status Away) to another status in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated works schedule exception will be removed for the user with email of the calendar and will be created a meeting for that user and it will be connected to the appointment in Outlook.
  • If you change status of a meeting to Away status in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated meeting will be removed from the owner's calendar, and works schedule exception will be created for that user and it will be connected to the appointment in Outlook
  • If you create an issue with start/date fields in a project that was specified as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to create associated meeting in the calendar of the user who is the owner of the meeting in Visionflow
  • If you remove an issue in a project that was spicefied as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to remove associated meeting in the calendar of the owner of the meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you will change owner of an issue in a project that was specified as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to remove associated meeting from the calendar of the previous meeting owner, create new meeting in calendar of new owner of the meeting and connect the visionflow meeting new meeting in Exchange.
  • If you will update an issue in a project that was spicefied as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to export changes to the associated meeting in the calendar of the owner of the meeting in Visionflow.

 

For the above use cases to work users in VisionProject must have the same email address as the account in Exchange. EWS synchronizaion also must be switched on in the General --> Settings --> Integrations --> EWS

Configuration of Exchange

 

There are two levels of managing EWS - properties file and db table ExchangeWebservicesSettings

1) visionproject.properties

ews.enabled=false - set true to enable on this VP instance (makes ews settings visible)

ews.synch.enabled=false - set true to enable real time ews synchronisation, must be set only on one node on cluster to prevent high load on exchange and concurrency between synch processes. This node must be same where jobs are running.


2) EWS settings

 

- Project to import to - default project to import appointments into

- Projects to export from - list of projects which issues will be used imported/synchronised with Exchange
- URL of exchange server - exchange server url (usually ends with ews/Exchange.asmx)
- Username of EWS user - username in exchange for user having impersonation right
- Password of EWS user - password for the exchange user 
- Chunk - amount of appointments per one synch request (paging size)
- Synchronisation is running - if real time syncronisation import/export is on (must be unselected to allow bulk import/export execution)
- Is active - if the setting is active now  
- Hide title and description in private items during import - if on title and description in private importing appointments will be replaced by general values
- Replace title to generic during import - if on title and description in importing appointments will be replaced by general values

- Threshold value for recurrence prevetions - it's timeout in seconds when the appointment inExchange shouldn't be edited since the last edit to make sure that changes are imported to VisionFlow.

 

Import/export - are available if setting is inactivated

- simple import - import of all appointments for specified period
- full import - import all appointments - starts as one-time job. Also can start on server up if setting is inactivated and it was not started previously (last import date is null)
- export - full export of meetings from the projects specified in export projects list  and WSE of users for the company

 

  ews.enabled ews.synch.enabled settings: Is active settings: Synchronisation is running
Bulk import true - true false
Bulk export true - true false
Sync import true true true true
Sync export true true true true

 

Settings before testing:

 

1) Configuration before real-time sync

 

url,
username and password (user must have Impersonate role in exchange),
select default project to import to from exchange and set of projects to export to exchange,
chunkSize - number in range 1-512,
Synchronisation is running - true
Is active - true
click Save.
Note: for now sync can start not right after the saving - we have job starting every 20 minutes that finds users that should have subscription, so the fastest way is to restart the server


2) Configuration before import/export

 

same configuration as for real-time sync expect "Synchronisation is running" - it must be unchecked
Note: stopping of subscription doesn't work for now because of bug in ews-java-api (need for update), so it will be better to restart server if you uncheked "Synchronisation is running" before it.

 

Some simple cases:

 

precondition - user in VF should have email af account in Exchange, EWS sync must be switched on.

 

  • If you create a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to VisionFlow and create an issue in the project specified in VF settings for import
  • If you remove a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to VisionFlow and remove the issue there, if you have permission to do so
  • If you update a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and make similar changed in the associated issue
  • If you add a participant to a meeting in Outlook then Exchange make will a call to Visionflow and the user with that email will be added to the associated meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you remove a participant from a meeting in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the user with that email will be removed from the associated meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you create an absence appointment (status Away) in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and works schedule exception will be created for the user with email of the calendar.
  • If you remove an absence appointment (status Away) in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated works schedule exception will be removed for the user with email of the calendar.
  • If you change status of an absence appointment (status Away) to another status in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated works schedule exception will be removed for the user with email of the calendar and will be created a meeting for that user and it will be connected to the appointment in Outlook.
  • If you change status of a meeting to Away status in Outlook then Exchange will make a call to Visionflow and the associated meeting will be removed from the owner's calendar, and works schedule exception will be created for that user and it will be connected to the appointment in Outlook
  • If you create an issue with start/date fields in a project that was specified as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to create associated meeting in the calendar of the user who is the owner of the meeting in Visionflow
  • If you remove an issue in a project that was spicefied as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to remove associated meeting in the calendar of the owner of the meeting in Visionflow.
  • If you will change owner of an issue in a project that was specified as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to remove associated meeting from the calendar of the previous meeting owner, create new meeting in calendar of new owner of the meeting and connect the visionflow meeting new meeting in Exchange.
  • If you will update an issue in a project that was spicefied as export project in EWS Settings of Visionflow, and the issue is connected to a meeting in Exchange, Visionflow will make a call to Exchange to export changes to the associated meeting in the calendar of the owner of the meeting in Visionflow.

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