Every developer/organization that posts bots on Bot Store is required to register. This registration is handled by the vendor registration process. Here, developers/organizations will need to enter some basic details about themselves/their organization as well as a logo/emblem that can be used on their bots. This is only a one-time process to be set up as a vendor. Bots submitted after this initial vendor registration process can all be linked to the existing registered vendor.
This is a great way for individual developers to create an online reputation for themselves as being expert bot builders. This is also a great way for organizations and service providers to showcase some of their work and possibly build a pipeline for future engagements.
For the creation of a paid bot or DigitalWorker, you’ll also need to request for a Global ID. This Global ID is used for your bot’s licensing to enforce timing for 30-day free trials and 365-day annual license subscriptions.
Use this open-source bot package structure as the starting point to build your bot or a Digital Worker. This is not optional or suggested, this is required. By establishing a consistent folder/file structure for Bot Store submissions, customers can know what folder structure to expect upon installing a new Bot Store component and where to find info about errors.
Using this structure makes it simpler to create top-quality software that is easy for Bot Store customers to use https://github.com/AutomationAnywhere/sample-bot.
Once you have downloaded the sample bot, it’s recommended that you extract it to the following directory: C:\Users\<username>\Documents\Automation Anywhere Files\Automation Anywhere\My Tasks\Bot Store\sample-bot-master. In this way, you will be set up for testing/development with the appropriate folder structure and testing path. To prepare your directory for development, you’ll need to do 2 more things:
powershell -ExecutionPolicy ByPass -File .\clear_md_keep.ps1
This should prepare your directory structure for bot development.
If you don’t already have it, Download Automation Anywhere Enterprise 11.3.3 or later as this version is required for the zip packaging process of paid bots and Digital Workers.
Your bot or your Digital Worker should follow the folder structure laid out in the sample bot and further explained below. This will be important for when you zip your bot for Bot Store submission. As you’re designing and testing your bot, note that once packaged, it will install to C:\Users\<username>\Documents\Automation Anywhere Files\Automation Anywhere\My Tasks\Bot Store\BotName-VendorName. All testing should be done replicating this folder structure.
Required Files & Folders
With the exception of the BotName-VendorName parent directory and the BotName-VendorName-ReadMe.pdf all folders/files listed below need to be named exactly as presented in the Sample Bot (and as highlighted below).
Use the following two-part naming:
Choose a name that is brief but descriptive about your bot or Digital Worker functionality, followed by your vendor name. This naming convention should be used for the parent folder name of your project as well as the name of the Read Me PDF. Your naming convention should also use Camel Case naming.
A vendor name is required to ensure unique package names, for example:
Digital Worker examples:
Readme files are critical and required for configuring a bot or a Digital Worker successfully. Use the provided Readme template on GitHub. The Readme file template contains the necessary details that a customer would need to get started with a bot or a Digital Worker. Most important – think about your audience when creating your Readme. Not all Automation Anywhere developers come from traditional development backgrounds, so make sure that your Readme includes all information that may be needed for your Bot Store submission to run properly.
You can also review the following Readme Best Practice examples:
With the release of the Enterprise client Version 11.3.3 vendors have the option to protect ATMX and MBOT files within a paid bot or Digital Worker so that customers or other users who download and install the bot or Digital Worker will not be able to read those files.
To start with code protection, register as a vendor if you haven’t done so already. Once registered, you’ll be able to request for a Global ID used for your bot, as well as include the Getting Started Kit which includes specific step-by-step guidance on code protection for both MBOT and ATMX files.
During the packaging process, you have an option to choose which files to protect while creating the zip package using Enterprise client. The zip package for paid bots and Digital Workers need to include these files.
ATMX files that need to be protected should be listed in the ATMX Protection Info.txt file. One file per line such as ‘file1.atmx or folder1\file1.atmx’ (in the case you are using sub-directories from the My Tasks parent)
MetaBot files that need to be protected should be listed in the MBOT Protection Info.txt file. One file per line and there can not be any subfolders, examples will be ‘file1.mbot’ or ‘file2.mbot’.
License management is required for paid bots and Digital Workers. License management enforces timing for 30-day free trials and 365-day annual license subscriptions. When requesting a Global ID, developers can expect to receive a Getting Started Kit which includes specific step-by-step guidance on integrating license management with your code.
The zip package for paid bots and Digital Workers must include a License Info.txt file, which needs to contain a Global ID (generated from the vendor registration process). To get started with License management and request your Global ID, go to the Bot Store Global ID Request Form.
The final step in preparing your bot or digital worker is the packaging process. Before packaging though, please make sure to check through the “Bot File & Folder Structure” section (step 2) before packaging.
In order to properly package your bots (free or paid) or Digital Workers to be submitted to Bot Store, create the zip package using Version 11.3.3. If you’re creating a free bot, this process will correctly package your bot and dependencies. If you’re creating a paid bot, this process will correctly package your bot as well as enable license management and code protection via the creation of a manifest file.