Things changed considerably in version 8 when Informatica introduced the Informatica Platform as “technical” basis for all future developments. The Informatica platform consists of a heap of web server applications (Tomcat / Apache) plus a good lot of Java libraries (so-called JAR files, JAR = Java Archive).
Since version 8.0, each PowerCenter Repository Service is executed by one Repository Server, which in turn spawns one Repository Agent process to maintain the actual repository database. The communication between clients and repository takes place via the Repository Service which hands over those requests to the Repository Agent process. So, for each running PowerCenter repository service there is always exactly one Repository Service process and one Repository Agent process.
The “organizational” basis for working with the Informatica platform is the Informatica Domain, a combination of:
The Informatica platform as its technical realization.
A relational database holding all data needed for a domain, known as Domain Repository (accessed via JDBC).
User IDs. When an Informatica domain is first created, a master user ID named Administrator is automatically created in the domain. User IDs can either be defined only within the domain itself (so-called “native” user IDs) or be imported from some LDAP server. Since version 10.4, importing from more than one LDAP server is possible
Application Services (such as PowerCenter repository services or integration services).
PowerCenter has been embedded into the Informatica domain through three application services:
The Repository Service (executed by the repository server executable, repserver on Unix/Linux and exe on Windows).
The Integration Service (executed by the PMServer executable, pmserver on Unix/Linux and exe on Windows).
The Web Service Hub (executed by some Java classes).
The biggest change from the “technical” point of view in version 8.5 was that the user base is no longer defined within the PowerCenter repository. Instead, all users are defined within the Informatica domain. So each time a user wants to work in some repository, the user ID and the password are first handed over by the respective client tool (e.g. the PowerCenter Designer) to the domain which checks whether the user ID is authorised to connect to that repository; if this check succeeds, the user will then be connected to the repository service, otherwise an error message is displayed on the screen.