DFS Object service consumer #1

In a previous post, I introduced web service support in the EMC Documentum platform for the Microsoft-oriented developer. (BTW, sorry for the time lapse since that post to this one–busy getting an important set of products ready for on-time release. :-) ) In this post, I will focus on such support as provided with DFS via the .NET assemblies (aka productivity layer) within the DFS SDK.

Let’s build a simple Windows Forms application using Microsoft Visual Studio 2008. The purpose of this application will be to retrieve the object name from a piece of content in a Documentum repository associated with a particular object id:

After launching Visual Studio, choosing File | New | Project… and creating a new Windows Forms Application project called ObjectServiceConsumer_PL, go to the Solution Explorer, select the References node under the project, right-click and choose Add Reference…

Navigate to your DFS SDK installation and select the set of .NET assemblies that support the DFS Object service. For example, I tend to install the SDK directly under my C: drive; so, I navigated to C:\emc-dfs-sdk-6.5\lib\dotnet:

(Yes, I’m using a pre-release version of DFS 6.5 for this example, but I’m not using anything that isn’t available in DFS 6.0 SP1–this is a very simple example by design.)

The result under the References node should be as follows:

If you’re already developing with .NET 3.5, you may notice that a couple of .NET 3.5 assemblies are missing in the above view. That’s because I decided to target .NET 3.0 for this example since I don’t require anything more from Windows Communication Foundation since its first release (i.e. DFS supports WCF “v1″ in .NET 3.0).

At this point, verify that you will be able to access an instance of the DFS Object service from your application. That is, deploy emc-dfs.ear file via the standalone DFS installer or with the Content Server installer. Launch your browser of choice and retrieve DFS Object service WSDL (e.g. http://localhost:8080/services/core/ObjectService?wsdl). You should see the service contract in your browser.

Return back to Visual Studio, double-click Form1.cs, after building the dialog shown above, double-click on the Retrieve button. This will tell Visual Studio to transition from (Windows Forms) designer mode to code editing mode.

Implement your button click handler as follows:

string repositoryName = txtbxRepoName.Text;
string userName = txtbxUserName.Text;
string password = txtbxPwd.Text;
string objId = txtbxObjId.Text; // e.g. a document id of 09123456789abcde

    ContextFactory contextFactory = ContextFactory.Instance;
    IServiceContext context = contextFactory.NewContext();
    RepositoryIdentity repoId = new RepositoryIdentity(repositoryName,

    context = contextFactory.Register(context); // Module and ContextRoot from app.config
    ServiceFactory serviceFactory = ServiceFactory.Instance;

    IObjectService objectService =
        serviceFactory.GetRemoteService<IObjectService>(context); // Module and ContextRoot from app.config

    ObjectId objectId = new ObjectId(objId);
    ObjectIdentity objectIdentity = new ObjectIdentity(objectId, repositoryName);
    ObjectIdentitySet objectIdentitySet = new ObjectIdentitySet(objectIdentity);

    PropertyProfile propertyProfile = new PropertyProfile();
    propertyProfile.FilterMode = PropertyFilterMode.SPECIFIED_BY_INCLUDE;

    OperationOptions operationOptions = new OperationOptions();

    DataPackage dataPackage = objectService.Get(objectIdentitySet, operationOptions);

    List<Property> properties = dataPackage.DataObjects[0].Properties.Properties;

    if (properties != null)
        properties.ForEach(delegate(Property property)
                                   if (property.Name.Equals("object_name"))
                                       lblObjName.Text = property.ToString();

    Console.WriteLine("Successfully retrieved object name for object id" + "'" + objId + "': " + lblObjName.Text);
catch (Exception ex)
    lblObjName.Text = "<error>";
    Console.WriteLine("Failed to retrieve object name with exception " + ex.Message);
    Console.WriteLine("Your cleanup logic goes here.");

As noted above in code comments, you should add an Application Configuration File item to your project. After doing so, open the new app.config file in Visual Studio, select its contents and paste (overwrite) them with the contents copied from the sample App.config file in the DFS SDK (i.e. C:\emc-dfs-sdk-6.5\etc\config\App.config). Be sure to modify data relative to your running DFS Object service instance (e.g. ModuleInfo element attributes like port).

You should now be able to build your application and run it. When you enter a valid object id for the specified repository connection, you should see the object name replace “<tbd>” on the dialog.

Obviously this is a trivial sample. However, as I mentioned this is be design, since what I want to do next is contrast this sample with the same goal implemented without DFS SDK .NET assemblies (i.e. using just Visual Studio, its WCF designer and DFS WSDL/XSD content).

You can download the Visual Studio 2008-based solution for today’s sample here.

Next: Using DFS WSDL/XSD (sans DFS SDK .NET assemblies) from Visual Studio…