Help/Systems Supports Windows with i OS-Based Job Scheduler
June 9, 2009 Alex Woodie
Help/Systems last week unveiled an update to its cross-platform job scheduler, Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise, that supports Microsoft Windows Server operating systems. The update follows the introduction of Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise less than three months ago, and allows Help/Systems customers to monitor and control jobs on Windows servers using the same i OS-based software they use to control jobs on their System i, Unix, and Linux servers.
Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise is a special version of Help/System’s popular i OS-based job scheduler, Robot/SCHEDULE, that was launched in March. The Enterprise version allows i OS (i5/OS) shops to manage their AIX, Solaris, and Linux servers using the same basic job scheduling software they use to monitor and launch jobs on the System i (Power Systems) server. Instead of requiring users to go out and provision a third-party job scheduler that most likely ran on an X86 server, the company’s thinking went, why not run the cross-platform job scheduling workload on the organization’s most secure and scalable server, the iSeries (AS/400)?
However, when Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise was first introduced, it lacked support for the most popular non-IBM i computing environment in use today: the Intel-based Microsoft Windows Server operating system. With Windows servers used in 70 to 80 percent of all System i (i5) shops, that left a considerable amount of non-i OS (OS/400) server jobs outside the providence of Robot/SCHEDULE.
Help/Systems addressed that functional gap last week with the update to Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise. The company now includes agents that deploy to Windows servers. These agents monitor file and job activity on the Windows server, and communicate with the primary Robot/SCHEDULE component, which resides on the System i server, to receive jobs. Agents are managed via the Robot/SCHEDULE Agent Manager.
The introduction of Windows support means Windows users can take advantage of Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise’s advanced job scheduling features and interfaces, including job schedule forecasting, the Schedule Activity Monitor (SAM), and the Job Schedule List.
Users can create job schedules in a number of ways, including time-based and event-based schedules. With event-based scheduling, jobs are automatically started based on the status of an event. For example, a file arriving on a Windows server can launch a process on another Windows server, which can then start a job on a System i server, Help/Systems says. Other types of events recognized by the software include the creation, deletion, or modification of a file or directory; whether a file is growing; or when a process starts or ends.
Robot/SCHEDULE Enterprise also supports and integrates directly with other Help/Systems products, including Robot/ALERT, the Robot/CONSOLE message center, and the Robot/NETWORK status center, providing additional new functionality for Help/Systems’ Windows customers. For more information, visit the company’s Web site at www.helpsystems.com.