We have recently completed a project to create a single search interface to retrieve both Documentum and SharePoint content. This post will present a high-level overview of other SharePoint search interface alternatives and why we chose the integration approach.
Documentum and SharePoint Integration Alternatives
Typically Documentum clients looking to expose content from Documentum in SharePoint have a couple of alternatives:
- MyDocumentum for SharePoint – The first alternative comes from EMC. This product allows for search/retrieval and other Documentum functions from within SharePoint – see more detail from our review here.
- Microsoft SharePoint 2010 Indexing Connector for Documentum – This approach comes from Microsoft and allows Documentum content to be spidered to be added to the search. More detail here.
In addition to packaged components, we have seen clients implement these additional alternatives:
- OpenSearch – As detailed in a previous post, OpenSearch is supported by Microsoft to provide a federated search against multiple repositories.
- Documentum Publishing – Many clients “push” certain content from Documentum to SharePoint. OpenMigrate, our open source migration tool, supports this scenario.
Combined Search Issues with common approach
For our project, we found that none of the previous approaches really fit our needs for the following reasons:
- We needed one search for both SharePoint content and Documentum (eliminated MyDocumentum)
- We were concerned about Documentum overhead/performance in regards to a spider crawling Documentum (eliminated MS Indexing Connector)
- We wanted to preserve security of Documentum access based on Documentum ACL (eliminated MS Indexing Connector and Documentum Publishing)
- We wanted one search result list with capability of sorting/parsing by meta-data (eliminated OpenSearch)
In writing this post, the detail expanded past the typical blog post into more of a whitepaper. Look for a more detailed whitepaper available next week as well as a recording of the alternatives.
Documentum and SharePoint Integration Approach
We decided to leverage Microsoft SharePoint development tools (ASP .Net) combined with our OpenContent web services to build a dual searching application as a web part within SharePoint. Highlights of the approach include:
- Complete leverage of both SharePoint and Documentum security model
- One search against both repositories
- Results merged into a table that supports paging, filtering and sorting consistent with SharePoint Lists and Libraries.
- Content streamed from Documentum repository (or cache) leveraging user’s credentials.
- Ability to add search for document type specific meta-data
A preliminary screencam available now in our learning zone. Look for more detail and a potential open source offering next week.
Please feel free to share your comments as well.