Restriction‐based fragmentation of business processes over the cloud

Slim Kallel, Zakaria Maamar, Mohamed Sellami, Noura Faci, Ahmed Ben Arab, Walid Gaaloul, Thar Baker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Despite the elasticity and pay-per-use benefits of cloud computing (aka fifth utility computing), organizations adopting clouds could be locked into single cloud providers, which is not always a “pleasant” experience when these providers stop operations. This is a serious concern for those organizations that who would like to deploy (core) business processes on the cloud along with tapping into these two benefits. To address the lock-into concern, this paper proposes an approach for decomposing business processes into fragments that would run over multiple clouds and hence multiple providers. To develop fragments, the approach considers both restrictions over owners of business processes and potential competition among cloud providers. On the one hand, restrictions apply to each task in a business process and are specialized into budget to allocate, deadline to meet, and exclusivity to request. On the other hand, competition leads cloud providers to offer flexible pricing policies that would cater to the needs and requirements of each process owner. A policy handles certain clouds' properties referred to as limitedness, non-renewability, and non-shareability that impact the availability of cloud resources and hence the whole fragmentation. For instance, a non-shareable resource could delay other processes should the current process do not release this resource on time. During fragmentation, interactions between owners of processes and providers of clouds happen according to two strategies referred to as global and partial. The former collects offers about cloud resources from all providers, while the latter collects such details from particular providers. To evaluate these strategies' pros and cons, a system implementing them, as well as demonstrating the technical feasibility of the fragmentation approach using credit-application case study, is also presented in the paper. The system extends BPMN2-modeler Eclipse plugin and supports interactions of processes' owners with clouds' providers that result to identifying the necessary fragments with focus on cost optimization.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
JournalConcurrency and Computation: Practice and Experience
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jul 2019


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