News Briefs and Product Shorts
IBM Announces New SOX Compliance Service
IBM is selling access to its Lotus Workplace for Business Controls and Reporting (WBCR) software to help companies comply with Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, it announced at Lotusphere last week. The new service, which is being called IBM Flexible Hosting Solutions, WBCR Service, provides companies with Web-based access to WBCR, which is a portal-based collaborative application designed to help companies assess their internal controls. By using IBM Global Service data centers and personnel instead of running the software on their own Domino servers, IBM says, companies can save money while still gaining access to the sophisticated WBCR software. WBCR runs only on AIX and Windows 2000 operating systems, and currently costs $28,875 for a 25-user license. Pricing for WBCR as a service was not immediately available.
Wavelink Bolsters Availability of Wireless Terminal Emulation Suite
Wavelink recently launched a new version of its wireless emulation suite for OS/400, z/OS, and Unix hosts that, the company says, offers better reliability and addresses the problem of dropped connections, affecting many warehouse radio frequency environments. One of the new features bolstering reliability in Emulators 5.0 is the new session take-over capability in the Wavelink Avalanche component, which will make it easier for administrators to diagnose, troubleshoot, and correct issues from afar. Wavelink also says that new connection management and failover features on the server and client components of Emulators will help it to avoid dropped connections caused by poor radio frequency network coverage. Security has also been bolstered in the new release, thanks to the addition of end-to-end SSL encryption. Finally, new radio frequency identification (RFID) development tools have been added to the Wavelink Studio component of the suite. Wavelink claims it is the only provider of RFID programming tools that interoperates across a wide range of platforms from multiple vendors, enabling developers to write their application once and run it across many RFID-enabled systems. The Kirkland, Washington, company says that 10 of the top 12 retailers in North America, and more than 80 percent of the top retailers in the United Kingdom, use its mobile middleware solutions.
Farabi's HostFront All Ready for Windows XP SP2
Farabi Technology, a developer of software for accessing mainframe, OS/400, and Unix hosts from Windows PCs, recently announced that its HostFront software is now compliant with Microsoft's Windows XP Service Pack 2. The firewall and other security features put in place by Windows XP SP2 cause problems for many older programs, particularly the host access software present on millions of desktops around the world (see "Programs 'Seem' to Break Under Windows XP SP2, Microsoft Says"). Farabi, based in Montreal, Quebec, said that tests demonstrate XP SP2 compatibility with the latest releases of its software, which are the Version 3.5.3 or later releases of HostFront for the Mainframe, HostFront for the AS/400, and HostFront for Unix.
Union Tank Car Licenses Spreadsheet Server for Infinium
The Union Tank Car Company, of Chicago, will be gaining new accounting capabilities, thanks to Global Software's Spreadsheet Server for Infinium, the software company announced last week. Global's Spreadsheet Server products enable users to work with OS/400-based ERP data directly through Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, thereby eliminating training and rekeying issues, and gaining significant new reporting capabilities. "With Spreadsheet Server there is no need for complex proprietary financial reporting software packages that are difficult to implement and cost a fortune," says Paul Parise, director of accounting at Union Tank Car Company. The company is one of the largest designers, manufacturers, and marketers of railroad tank cars. "The Tank Car People" currently operates a fleet of about 85,000 of its tank cars and plastics hoppers, and has also sold many of its cars to bulk liquid shippers.
DYS Analytics Launches New Tool to Clean Up Domino Databases
DYS Analytics, a Massachusetts developer of performance tools for Domino and Exchange environments, launched a new application called CONTROL! Usage Investigator at the Lotusphere conference in Florida last week. As part of the Part of the DYS CONTROL! 4 suite, the CONTROL! Usage Investigator helps IT staff make Domino applications run more efficiently by identifying and retiring inactive and seldom-used databases and user accounts. In addition to regaining precious processor and storage resources on Domino servers, CONTROL! Usage Investigator helps to regain network bandwidth by managing replicas of Domino databases more efficiently. One of the early users of CONTROL! Usage Investigator is Henkel KgaA, a German manufacturer and vendor of home-care and personal-care products and industrial adhesives. "We are looking to purge many stale databases that are no longer needed, and thereby free much needed server disk space," says Reiner Gratzfeld, the company's manager of collaboration and Web solutions.
New $400 Thin Client from Wyse the Size of a Paperback Book
Thin client terminal maker Wyse Technology recently launched a very slim Windows CE-based thin client, called Winterm S30. Equipped with Advanced Micro Devices Geode GX processors, it is three times faster than the company's previous Windows CE-based thin client, while its integrated video card offers excellent graphics capabilities to reduce eyestrain, Wyse says. The Winterm S30 starts at $399 and is about the size of a paperback book, enabling it to be mounted practically anywhere, including under a desk or on the back of an LCD monitor. The terminal offers a full array of serial and USB ports, and can connect to practically any back-end system, thanks to 15 resident terminal emulators, as well as Citrix and Microsoft RDP for Windows emulation, and Internet Explorer for Web connectivity.