When Oracle introduces ICF in OIM 11g R1 PS1 then few questions which might have come to everyone’s mind:
- What is ICF?
- How it is related to OIM?
- Where will we use it?
- Why should we use it?
- Would it be hard to build?
- Would it be hard to learn?
Same questions came to my mind as well. After couple of months, finally I got some time to write a blog entry on this.
ICF is nothing but Identity Connector Framework. It’s not a new name in the world of information technology. It’s a connector (not exactly a connector itself, we can call it as a methodology) which can be used to integrate separate applications together or which can be used to build different connectors for different target systems. It is an independent piece of code which can be used anywhere.
It has two parts, Connector SPI and Connector API. SPI consists of different interfaces which can be implemented when we build ICF APIs.
In OIM, we have to write different custom connectors for Provisioning and Reconciliations. We can leverage ICF Features while creating custom connector with less efforts. Few OOTB connectors are also available with ICF like GoogleApps, Database User Management, OID, OUD etc.
It takes very less time to build custom connector as compare to our legacy methods. It comes with other benefits as well which I am going to explain in a separate blog entry. Nothing is hard to learn, it’s just a matter of time. I am sure when you start using it, you’ll love it as it saves so much time while building the OIM components.