ProData Updates Database Utility
Published: March 25, 2008
by Alex Woodie
ProData Computer Services recently launched version 8 of Database Utility (DBU), its flagship DB2/400 database utility for programmers and power users. With DBU 8.0, System i programmers will enjoy using the tool in the latest Eclipse-based development environment, and will also benefit from several new search functions, commands, and output options. The capability to migrate DDS source to SQL will also be particularly useful for some DBU users.
DBU is a popular and handy utility that makes it easy for programmers, administrators, and users to view and access any file in DB2/400 (sometimes actually referred to by its IBM-given name, DB2 for i5/OS), without programming. The software was originally designed as a replacement for IBM's native DB2/400 database utility, called Data File Utility (DFU), but since then it has evolved to tackle tasks in many other areas. In recent years, ProData has spun the successful DBU franchise in new directions by introducing special versions of DBU tailored for specific roles, including DBU On-Demand, which provides temporary access to the tool at a discounted rate; DBU RDB, which extends the products features to Oracle, MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, and IBM's DB2 UDB databases (also available as a plug-in with DBU 8.0); RDB Connect, which provides connectivity between i5/OS-based applications and the relational databases supported by DBU RDB; and DBUnifier, which is used to quickly create database maintenance applications.
With version 8, ProData is keeping the DBU ball rolling with the improvement of previously available features, and the introduction of some entirely new capabilities. An existing feature that has been improved upon with DBU 8.0 is support for accessing the software from within integrated development environments (IDEs). ProData long ago recognized that it was desirable, in many cases, for users to accomplish their DB2/400 development and maintenance tasks from within the comfort of a graphical IDE.
With DBU 8.0, ProData is responding to this demand by delivering graphical plug-ins that give users all the features of DBU for several IDEs, including WebSphere Development Studio Client (WDSc), the new Rational Developer for System i, and any other Eclipse-based IDE. Further, ProData has delivered a plug-in for DBU RDB that gives System i programmers access to non-System i data (Oracle, SQL Server, MySQL, etc.) from their IDE of choice. Of course, users can continue to access DBU from a green screen, if they so choose.
Version 8 brings a number of new features to the core DBU engine that benefits both graphical and green-screen users. For starters, there are new search functions, including an SQL syntax-based search to go along with the basic search using traditional i5/OS nomenclature. Users can easily toggle back and forth between the two search modes, which will be useful for System i shops that have introduced more SQL into their environment.
New data export options have also been added to DBU's search menu, allowing users to export the results of a search in several different formats, including as physical files, as a comma delimited text file, or as an XML file. Upon using this function, the user will be prompted to select, or name, a physical file where the search results will be saved. Or, if using a comma delimited file or XML, the user will be prompted to provide an IFS file.
Users are also provided with a new export field option that allows them to create a new DDS or SQL source member from an externally described file. Other new features with this release include the capability to view database triggers associated with physical files, new record duplication functionality, and new key field arrangement controls.
DBU 8.0 is available now. The software supports all versions of the operating system between OS/400 V4R2 and i5/OS V6R1. For more information and pricing, see www.dodbu.com.
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