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April 19, 2014: Volume 16, Number 16|
April 12, 2014: Volume 16, Number 15
April 5, 2014: Volume 16, Number 14
March 29, 2014: Volume 16, Number 13
March 22, 2014: Volume 16, Number 12
March 15, 2014: Volume 16, Number 11
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Big Blue was widely expected to trot out the new entry Power Systems machines based on its Power8 processors next week, but it looks like the company wanted to make sure that the machines had a day of their own rather than being a part of the broader discussion about big data and cloud at the Impact2014 shindig that IBM is hosting next week. The interesting bit of news for IBM i shops is that there are five new Power8 systems, but only two of them are certified to run IBM i.
The TR8 updates for IBM i 7.1, announced last week and available June 6, were once again stacked with DB2 for i appropriations. That's good news for the growing number of SQL advocates in the IBM midrange community. If you are not yet onboard with SQL, for data access and/or data definition, you are falling behind in modern skills, tooling, and programming framework. This kind of stuff is leading the way in IBM's Technology Refresh program.
When it comes to colossal IT screw-ups, there may be no better way to infamy than to bungle an application modernization project involving an IBM mainframe, AS/400, or other legacy host. It may not be the fastest approach, considering the years that are typically involved, but it will successfully leave the customer millions in the hole and feeling utterly helpless about the future. Miten Marfatia, CEO of legacy application modernization specialist EvolveWare, shared his secrets to avoiding the headlines.
There is no two ways about it. The declining sales of IBM's Power Systems line is a cause for concern at the company and is as troubling in some ways as the drop in the company's sales of X86-based machinery and various kinds of storage arrays. Many IBM i shops buy all of this gear from Big Blue, and they may be wondering what kind of commitment IBM has for the long term with any of these platforms, given the diminishing revenues.
If you thought your IBM i server was completely immune to the Heartbleed vulnerability, think again. On Friday, IBM issued a security bulletin directing customers to upgrade their Power Systems firmware with a patch for the Heartbleed vulnerability in OpenSSL.
As the announcement of IBM i 7.2 dawns, the introduction of IBM i 7.1 has its four-year anniversary. Although IBM guards its estimates of companies that have moved to 7.1, it is an optimistic guess that half of the IBM i installed base has made that move. How many of the 7.1 shops are housing Javaheads is also unspoken. But 7.1 was a milestone for Java developers because the Classic Java Virtual Machine was no longer supported.
Central Semiconductor needed Web applications that its customers could access from desktops and mobile devices. The customers were engineers searching for semiconductor devices and the search needed to be fast and easy and the navigation smooth. "My goal is to give people a tool to find what they're looking for quickly. If customers can find the product they're looking for, hopefully they'll order a sample and be happy with the product," says Web developer Rob Binetti.
The Power8 system announcements might be right around the corner, but IBM has not forgotten about customers using its current machines based on Power7 and Power7+ processors. As part of the trickle of announcements on April 15 that saw Technology Refresh 8 for IBM i 7.1 roll out, Big Blue made some enhancements to the enterprise-class machines and put out a bunch of Ethernet and storage controller adapters.
If you haven't heard of Arpeggio Software, you're missing out on cool stuff for your IBM i server. The latest batch of mostly free goodness comes in the forms of ARP-SMS, which provides an IBM i interface for sending messages via the Short Messaging Service. It's also gearing up ARP-AUTH, which uses that SMS function to implement two-factor authentication on your lovely, lonely server.
The Power8 server announcements have been on the horizon since last August, when IBM first started giving out details about the chips that will be at the heart of the new systems. Since that time, as is usual, IBM has been warning customers that it will be withdrawing some older iron from its sales catalog, and it did so again recently.
HelpSystems last week debuted Robot/NETWORK Web UI, the first of what is expected to be many mobile interfaces for its extensive IBM i product suite. The company also announced the acquisition of Network Automation Inc. (NAI), which develops the AutoMate line of workflow mapping and automation software.
Making the application code and tending that code as systems, conditions, and other code around it all change eats a big part of the IT budget at most companies. And the analysts at Gartner say there is a methodical way to rein those costs in and have the funds available to apply to other projects.
In the first part of this series I discussed why I thought that RPGers should care about the new free-form support. Since you may have seen other articles on the basics of this support, I thought in this tip I'd focus on a few examples of how existing D-specs are converted to the new format so you can see how it all works.
Virtual tape library (VTL) software maker Tributary Systems is now supporting Network Data Management Protocol (NDMP) with a new release of its Storage Director VTL offering, which works with IBM i and other server types. The version 4.2 release also brings other NAS and data-pinning capabilities designed to streamline backups.
Multimillion-row tables are more and more common in IBM i shops these days. Querying those monsters can be a strain on the system. Fortunately, IBM gave us some help in DB2 for i 7.1.
Last issue, I started outlining how to set up an IBM i incident management plan, going through four of the seven elements that are crucial for IBM i monitoring and response. This issue, let's finish up and discuss the final elements an IBM i incident management template should provide.