Get Connected with Remote Systems Explorer
February 21, 2007 Susan Gantner
If you are a user of Remote Systems Explorer, then you have certainly created a connection resource so you can interact with libraries, objects, and members on your System i along with jobs, commands and Integrated File System. Your connection resource contains information about which system you will interact with when using RSE or other parts of WebSphere Developer Studio Client (WDSc) and what user profile and password should be used when creating the RSE server job on the host system (that is, when activating the connection). Have you ever considered whether you need more than one connection to the same system for RSE?
You may wonder why this would be necessary. Of course, back in the bad old days when we were using SEU, we needed multiple emulation sessions in order to have multiple source members open for edit simultaneously. But one of the joys of RSE is that I can have many source members open and simply jump between them as needed. So why would I ever need multiple connections to the same system in RSE?
You may find that having multiple connections is easier or more productive than spending time changing your library list multiple times during the day. If you need to have different library lists when working with different applications (for example, packaged software versus home-grown applications) or different environments (such as development, testing, or production environments). There may also be occasions when other aspects of the environment need to be different for different projects, such as the job description for submitted jobs or even the user profile and password you use for the RSE server job.
While you certainly can dynamically change your library list for your RSE server job in many ways, if it is something that you need to do often, it may be easier or faster to simply have different connections for each of the more common library lists you are likely to need. You can then simply work with the appropriate connection for the task.
Each connection can have its own library list specifications saved with the connection by changing the properties for the connection resource which is accessed through the context menu (right click on the connection name.) To access the library list controls in the properties dialog, click on “Subsystems” in the left pane and then on the “iSeries Commands” tab on the right side. (See Figure 1 below.)
To add a library to the list, enter the library name in the entry field and press “Add.” The libraries in the list will be added to the user profile’s default library list (either first or last). Note that there is also an entry field that allows you to change the current library for the job. You can also move libraries up and down in the list. If you need even more flexibility than this over the library list, you may specify an “Initial Command.” This initial command is quite often a CALL to the same initial program that is specified in the User Profile on the host.
Sometimes, your standard initial program will need some small changes to work effectively in an RSE server job. Often, for example, a programmer’s initial program will finish with a STRPDM command, which will produce an error in a server job.
As you can see, you can easily set up exactly the library list you need for your RSE connection using this dialog. If you need to change other properties of the RSE server job for this connection (such as job description, compile in batch, replace object, and so on), click on the iSeries Objects tab in the dialog box to investigate changing those values from the defaults specified in the preferences for your workspace.
You may find that multiple connections make you even more productive than ever before when using RSE!
Susan Gantner is one of the most respected System i gurus in the world and is one of the co-founders of System i Developer, an organization dedicated to RPG, DB2, and other relevant software technologies for the System i platform. Gantner, who has worked in IBM’s Rochester and Toronto labs, left IBM to focus on training OS/400 and i5/OS shops on the latest programming technologies. She is a regular speaker at COMMON and other user groups, too. You can contact her at susan@SystemiDeveloper.com.