What is UiPath?
We can develop software robots (also called bots) using UiPath that mimic human actions and perform tasks just like a human would do. Unlike humans, bots produce rapid results without making errors. Thus, UiPath can help organizations to convert their boring, repetitive tasks into an automation process and allow humans to focus on other tasks that require human intelligence or intervention.
- UiPath is primarily used to perform automation for Windows desktop tasks.
- UiPath provides easy to use user interface with drag and drops support.
- UiPath is used to automate redundant tasks and reduce/remove human intervention from such tasks.
- UiPath provides a standard Studio version with all premium features which has a trial period of 60 days.
- UiPath also has a Community Edition, which is free and includes most of the Studio version features.
History of UiPath
UiPath is currently one of the top leading global software companies providing a platform for robotic process automation. It was first introduced in early 2005 by the Romanian entrepreneurs, Daniel Dines and Marius Tirca. The company started its journey from Bucharest, Romania. Later, it was expanded to several countries worldwide.
In April 2020, UiPath was declared the top tech company and the 2nd in overall growing companies by the Financial Times 100.
Why use UiPath
There are various automation tools such as Automation Anywhere, Blue Prism, Pega, etc. However, they are made according to industry standards, but UiPath has a slight advantage over them. This is because when it comes to desktop automation, UiPath is most effective amongst them.
Some other key aspects that explain why we should prefer UiPath are listed below:
- Desktop automation is a unique feature of UiPath compared to other automation tools.
- UiPath can handle remote desktop applications easily.
- Data handling processes and techniques are far better in UiPath as compared to the other automation tools.
- UiPath is completely flexible and compatible with scraping techniques.
- Writing logic and methods are better in UiPath when compared with other automation tools in the RPA market.
The architecture has mainly three UiPath components - UiPath Studio, UiPath Orchestrator, and UiPath Robot, along with the database servers and the browser components:
- UiPath Studio is a GUI based dashboard used to create automation workflow for the tasks to be automated.
- The software robots or bots are used to execute the automated steps or activities as specified.
- Orchestrator is the medium that acts as the interface between UiPath Studio and software robots. It helps to manage the automation tasks.
The architecture can be classified in the following two parts:
- Client-side and server-side detailing
- Three Layered detailing
Client-side and Server Side Detailing
Here, the term client-side includes such components of UiPath that can be directly accessed by the user or developer. It generally includes UiPath Studio, Robot, Browser, and UiPath Agent.
Besides, the server-side includes the backend tasks of UiPath. When a user creates activities or workflows, they are stored in the databases. UiPath orchestrator selects the appropriate functions and instructs the software robots to perform the specified tasks as per the code. Also, the logs and stats of the robots are part of the backend. Logs are helpful for analyzing the performance of robots and find errors.
Three Layered Detailing
The architecture of UiPath can be explained by classifying the components into the following three layers:
Client Layer: The client layer consists of those components of UiPath that are assessable to the users. For example, UiPath Studio, Robots, Browsers, UiPath agent, and executors. By using these components, a user or a developer can design and develop various tasks to be automated. The tasks can be executed with the help of software robots. This layer is also known as the presentation layer.
The UiPath robot contains the following two components:
- UiPath Agent Service: In UiPath, this service acts as the mediator between the client-side and the server-side of UiPath. All the details and information are communicated over the agent. Also, the messages are logged into the Orchestrator and then transferred to the SQL server.
The service can also be used to check all the available tasks in the system tray. Additionally, it can modify system settings and allow existing tasks to start/stop.
- UiPath Executor Service: This service is used by software robots to execute the specified tasks under a Windows session.
This is the second and most important layer of UiPath architecture. All server details are displayed in the server layer. The server layer mainly includes the UiPath Orchestrator. When the robots are completely developed to execute the tasks, the entire project can be uploaded on the server. The project can be executed on multiple systems with the help of an Orchestrator.
The Orchestrator controls the entire project. It monitors project activities, schedules software robots for execution, and generates summarized reports based on filtered requirements. It helps to orchestrate software robots to continue executing repetitive tasks. With its web-based management system, it helps our project to meet project requirement, service levels and timelines.
This layer mainly consists of database servers. All the configuration details of the robots are stored in this layer. The configuration details include different user's data, their respective robots, assigned tasks, logging information, and asset details, etc. All these details are entered by the users in the Orchestrator.
Besides, the persistency layer is also responsible to keep the log details updated by the UiPath agent services. These logs are stored in elastic search. The logs are mainly helpful for finding errors and rectify them. The process-level data is generally stored in the relational database management systems such as SQL Server. This makes searching for logs easier from the huge quantity of data.
The persistency layer also takes care of queues and the tasks in queues.
UiPath has several features and functionalities, such as:
Hosting Options: UiPath can be easily hosted on cloud environments and virtual terminals, making this tool flexible with cloud platforms.
Application Compatibility: Because of greater compatibility with web and desktop applications, UiPath supports a wide range of applications and activities. Having both web and desktop applications include more benefits for automation.
Centralized Repository: Because of the centralized repository, multiple users can handle or control software robots simultaneously.
Security: Security is one of the leading features of UiPath. UiPath has included many security features and continuously adding more through frequent updates:
- UiPath includes settings for account lockout that protects users from brute force attacks.
- If the user logs in across different machines, the tool will automatically detect and end the previous login session. It means that the same login credentials can stay active in a single system at a time, which increases security.
- UiPath restricts the auto-submission of data across web browsers for all of the orchestrator credentials input boxes. This feature protects user data and improves overall security.
- UiPath has implemented stealth mode that can be used to execute tasks in the background. This hides the execution from the screen and executes the tasks silently.
Advanced Screen Scraping Solution: UiPath has advanced screen scraping feature that can work with various applications such as Java, SAP, .Net, Flash, PDF, etc. With advanced screen scraping solutions, users can achieve maximum possible accuracy than other automation tools present in the market.
Reliable tool for Modeling Business Processes: UiPath offers several reliable tools to increase automation capabilities and excellence with model business processes.
Scalability and Robustness: The tool is robust and scalable and comes with:
- Efficient and effective debugging support and exception handling systems.
- Artificial intelligence handling for regular applications such as excel, PDFs, Outlook tasks, etc.