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What are sforce enabled, stand-alone applications?

The published Sforce API allows me to develop code that accesses data in a application database. This is quite different from being able to develop an entirely different application (for airline crew scheduling for instance), to deploy it on the sforce platform and hence make it available to the world at large as a hosted service. My reading of Sforce is that it is intended to support these kinds of "orthogonol, sforce-enabled, stand-alone applications" but I do not see any direct support for this at this point. Maybe I don't understand what is meant by sforce-enabled, stand-alone applications. Maybe we are still talking futures ... Can someone shed some light on this? Thanks in advance.

mike kreadenmike kreaden

Sforce in its current release supports composite application development for any purpose.  This is where the developer wishes to leverage the value inherint in the service and deliver a value added service to their constituents. 

Our partners - BEA (WebLogic), Microsoft (Office 2003), Dreamfactory and AboveAll Software - all have solutions which will allow you build and deploy custom applications today with sforce.

Future releases of sforce will allow you add custom entities to the current data model, add custom tabs the interface, and ultimately leverage the presentation model for for your custom application deployment.  It should be noted that we have no plans for developer code to run in our server environment - we are working on allowing the developer to host client-side application components (ActiveX, Dreamfactory, JavaScript, XHTML, XSLT, etc.) which could be referenced within our delivery model for a configured page.

We are working on a roadmap to be published on in the near term, which will address what we are doing, and when you can expect specific features from us.

Mike Kreaden

Message Edited by mike kreaden on 06-16-2003 03:33 PM


Will the mechanism that you are referring to for extending configured pages be a proprietary one?  I'm particularly interested in finding out if there are any plans to support proposed standards such as Web Services for Interactive Applications and/or Web Services for Remote Portals as a means of integrating interactive web services into Salesforce-delivered web pages?

mike kreadenmike kreaden

We are currently looking at providing an iFrame hook on our pages, including any custom tabs.  I will provide more information to the forums, as it becomes available.

WSRP is beyond the scope of how we are envisioning supporting external applications (no server side code is envisioned for sforce).


Thanks Mike.

I guess with an IFrame hook we would be able to reference our application in order to present whatever information we want within the frame.  To do so, however, our application would have to first authenticate the user if there is no session previously established with our app.  Do you happen to know if there is going to be any support added for being able to do this in a nicer way than our login page appearing within the inline frame?


mike kreadenmike kreaden

You will likely need to pass credentials over with your original request.  We are looking into supporting Web Integration Link invocation as a POST (in addition to GET).


Mike, I'm not sure if I'm understanding your reply correctly...

If a user has just logged into Salesforce through the regular Salesforce UI, his browser will not have a session established with our application (since there has been no communication with our application up to this point).  The first time that he accesses a Salesforce page that has in inline frame which references one of our application's pages, our application would recognize that there is no session and would redirect to its login page rather than showing the requested page.  In your reply, you are suggesting that this can be avoided if we send credentials over with that initial request -- Do you mean here that the inline frame mechanism will provide the means for sending over the credentials?

You also mentioned Web Integration Links in your reply.  Would I be correct in taking this to mean that the inline frame mechanism is an extension of the existing Web Integration Link functionality?  It sounds like how it might work is that I would set up a Web Integration Link that can be shown inside an inline frame rather than having a user manually-invoke the link by clicking on it to open up the link in a separate window.

Thanks in advance.