Zend Puts Out Beta PHP Tools for OS/400 V5R3
December 4, 2006 Timothy Prickett Morgan
As promised, Zend Technologies is diligently doing the job of back-porting its PHP language and related Zend for i5/OS tools to OS/400 V5R3. This year, as we all know, Zend delivered a freebie version of the PHP tools for i5/OS V5R4, but given that maybe only 15,000 or so people have V5R4, this limits the appeal of PHP on the System i5 platform and its predecessors. Which is why Zend and IBM are working together on a port to OS/400 V5R3, which probably has four or five times as many users.
Last week, Jim Dillard, the IBM alliance manager at Zend, said that the beta of Zend for i5/OS that is compatible with OS/400 V5R3 is now available for download. (You can get it here, in fact.) This version, V1.6.0, runs on both OS/400 V5R3 and i5/OS V5R4. The code has changed since the production release on V5R4, so you should read the release notes before you plunk it onto your machine.
Zend for i5/OS include the Zend Core PHP language, the Zend Studio development tools for creating and managing PHP applications, and the Zend Platform runtime for supporting PHP applications on i5/OS V5R4 and now OS/400 V5R3 servers. The Zend Core bits of the package are what make PHP integrate into the features of OS/400 and i5/OS. Specifically, they include the ibm_db2 and odbc extensions to PHP that let PHP talk to DB2/400. Zend Core also includes support for PHP 5.1.6 and the Apache Web server on i5/OS V5R4 and OS/400 V5R3, and has a fully functional PHP toolkit, a Web administration tool, and a tool to set up Zend for i5/OS on the AS/400, iSeries, and System i5 servers.
Dillard also said that Zend and the open source Mantis bug tracker and help desk software, which is written in PHP, would be ported to the i5/OS and DB2/400 stack over the next few weeks. If you want to help out on the project, contact Dillard at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Mantis” in the subject line of the email.