So just to clarify: It is not so much the edge agent itself that is critical to this process. You mention it because you have heard it can get calls from the server in network mode. But the capability it uses to achieve this is one you’d like exposed on our customization toolset somehow to allow you to take advantage of it - correct? if we allowed you to push a notification directly to a browser client you’d be perfectly happy correct?
The edge agent is a work around for browser sandbox security. As such Epicor is taking responsibility for opening up a potential security hole for a web applications. We are very sensitive to how we are handling security within the edge agent and the capabilities we are adding. In general we think of it as temporary and if a browser develops support for a capability we would remove it from the edge agent.
Just my personal opinion on this today but I think it is a much harder sell to Let customers use our secure tunnel to the operating system to do ‘whatever they want’ vs reversing the communication channel between client and server but staying within the browser sandbox.
I would suggest if you want both you don’t combine them in ideas. I could be wrong of course but that would be my recommendation.
And I personally would not use the Edge client for this. The browser supports this capability already with Progressive Web Apps and Service Workers. When one installs a PWA, a Service Worker is created when the browser loads - not when you go to the site. This opens a channel for the UI and sits in the middle of all communication with the site. If you have accepted Notifications for a site, you may have noticed this already. When you open an empty browser, you will find several tasks already running in the Task Manager. The processes, one per site, can intercept messages and update the UI in an async fashion providing a method for notifications without having have to install a local client.
On the other hand, tasks like server printing would be an excellent use of the Edge client. ALL Epicor users would benefit from this architecture - not just cloud users. Having an Edge client that acts like the current System Agent is a perfectly acceptable way of linking to local resources like printers. An edge client would also be good as a gateway from ERP to download files to a repository like DocStar or SharePoint. Microsoft uses this model for Application Proxy service, Azure Arc, etc., but this is for server-style tasks and not an agent for each and every client for client-based tasks.
Having to install a client of some kind on every computer defeats the purpose of moving to the browser. We might as well go Electron or WebView2 like MS Teams is doing.
I know. It’s a different paradigm than our old client server model. I think we may want to look at what other cloud services (Microsoft, SalesForce, etc.) have done instead of trying to make the cloud act like on-prem again.