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Pre-Requisites

You expect to know how to create and modify tables in Excel (without formulas) but you as a business analyst don’t have to know anything about Java or Maven to create and test your decision models.

How to Download Evaluation Version

Click on the button below, sign in with your email, and after email confirmation, you will be able to download a free evaluation version valid for 30 days:If/when you commit to use OpenRules as your operational decision manager, you may purchase OpenRules Subscriptions.

What To Do After Download

So, you downloaded one zip-file “OpenRulesDecisionManager_8.1.0.zip”. When you unzip it to your hard drive, you will have the OpenRules workspace “openrules.samples” that contains everything you need to learn how OpenRules decision models are organized, how to build, test, and deploy them, and finally how to develop your own  operational decision models. 

To install the latest OpenRules Decision Manager, you need to  double-click on the file “openrules.samples/openrules.config/install.bat” from your File Manager. Make sure that you have an internet connection as the installation will download different related products made freely available for download by their respected authors. The installation may take up to 1-2 minutes based on your connection speed displaying all downloadable files at the “black” screen. There should be no red messages and the successful installation will show at the end

Configuration Project “openrules.config”

The folder “openrules.config” includes:

    • All Java libraries (jar-files in the sub-folder “lib”) needed to build and run decision models
    • Apache Maven Wrapper (mvnw nad .mvn)
    • Standard batch files “build.bat” and “createProject.bat” (and their corresponding sh-files for Linux and Mac).

You may double-click on “createProject.bat” when you want to create a new project with your own name (it will be similar to the project “Hello”).

Decision Model Projects

The folder “openrules.samples” contains many sub-folders with various decision model projects, such as “Hello“, “VacationDays“, “UpSellRules“, and many others, which are ready to be built, executed, and analyzed. Typically a decision model such as “VacationDays” contains:

    • The rules repository in the folder “rules” with several Excel files:
        • DecisionModel.xls with the Environment table that refers to all Excel files that compose this decision model
        • Glossary.xls with the table Glossary that describes all goals, sub-goals, and other decision variables distributed between different business concepts
        • Rules.xls with decision tables that implement business logic for all goals and sub-goals
        • Test.xls with tables that describe your test cases.

A rules repository can be organized differently, e.g. keeping everything in one xls-file like in the sample “UpSellRules” or a library of decision models like in the sample “LoanOrigination”.

    • Two model-specific configuration files:
      • project.properties with different model-specific parameter, e.g here are typical properties for the model “VacationDays”

      • pom.xml used by Maven to build and run this project. You only need to make sure that <artifactId>VacationDays</artifactId> uses the correct project name that is usually the same as the project name.
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    • Three batch files:
        • run.bat to build run the decision model
        • clean.bat to clean up all files that were automatically generated during previous builds of the decision model
        • build.bat is similar to “run.bat” but will build and test the decision model only once.

Build and Run Decision Models

You can build and test a decision model by a simple double-click on the file “run.bat“.  If you make any changes in your Excel tables or configuration files, it will automatically re-build the model before running its tests. If it finds any errors, it will display them using the business terms pointing to the corresponding places in your Excel files.

After the successful build, “run.bat” will test your model against test-cases described in the file “Test.xls”.  When you execute the decision model, along with a user-friendly execution protocol, the Decision Mamanger produces the same explanation reports in the HTML format as the classic OpenRules BRDMS does – see the generated folder “report“. Some decision models (e.g. HelloJava) use data instances created not in Excel but using the existing Java classes. 

You may do all work with “openrules.samples” using the standard File Manager or import all projects to your favorite IDE such as Eclipse.

Deploy Decision Models as AWS Lambda Functions

You may deploy your tested decision model “VacationDays” on AWS cloud as AWS Lambda function using “VacationDaysLambda/deployLambda.bat” as described here.

Deploy Decision Models as RESTful Web Services and Docker Image

The sample project “VacationDaysSpringBoot” demonstrates how to deploy your tested decision model “VacationDays” as a RESTful Web Service and then to convert it to a Docker image

To similarly deploy other sample projects or your own decision models, you just need to copy the supporting bat-files and properly adjust “project.properties”.

3rd party Products

OpenRules Decision Manager uses the following 3rd party Open Source products:

Java Oracle GPL
Apache Maven Apache Software Foundation Apache Software License
Jakarta POI Apache Software Foundation Apache Software License
Mustache RightTime, Inc. Apache Software License
Jakarta Commons Apache Software Foundation Apache Software License
Jackson JSON FasterXML, LLC Apache Software License

AWS SDK Java

Amazon

Apache Software License
SLF4J QOS.ch MIT License
ANTLR4 Terence Parr and Sam Harwell BSD License

Licenses for all these products allow free usage and distribution on the open source basis.