Migrate Your 5250 Emulator Settings to ACS 1.1.2
June 25, 2013 Alex Woodie
The new Access Client Solutions (ACS) bundle of tools became generally available as part of IBM‘s refresh of the OS refresh in late May. One of the biggest changes IBM made between the tech preview and the GA release is the capability to migrate your existing 5250 settings–including all of your custom macros–into the new Java-based emulator.
ACS is the new Java-based member of the IBM i Access product family that IBM delivered last year as a technology preview along with IBM i 7.1 Technology Refresh (TR) 4.
Thousands of IBM i pros ran the beta through its paces and gave IBM feedback on the product, which provides an emulator for Mac OS, Linux, as well as Windows. In late May, IBM announced the general availability of ACS version 1.1.2 as part of the refresh of IBM i 7.1 TR6. (TR6, of course, shipped in February, but refreshes of refreshes are now part of te IBM i roadmap.)
In the beta of ACS, users had to hand-code all of their macros into the emulator, which is a version of the well-worn Personal Communications (PCOMM) product. That wouldn’t cut it for real-world users, so IBM responded to the beta tester complaints by building a macro migration utility into the tool. This feature is still in beta, according to the release notes.
This release also allows users to import all of their .kmp, .ws, .bch, and .pmp files from IBM i Access for Windows into ACS. Users moving from IBM i Access for Windows can also bring all their colors and fonts into their new ACS environment.
Management of emulator and printer sessions is another aspect of ACS, and IBM made several enhancements to the Session Manager with the GA release. ACS users can now import and migrate old PCOM configuration objects. It also gives users the capability to export configurations to IBM i Access for Windows and the “Windows Application Package” version of ACS, according to release notes.
Other new features delivered with this release include support for making SSL the default encryption method for new configurations, as well as support for TLS 1.2. Administrators also gain the capability to create customized packages that limit the functions available to users. IBM also tweaked the software to reduce the product’s memory footprint by making an optional cache available.
There is also mention of FIPS compliance in the release notes, which we presume refers to FIPS 140-2 validation that’s required of any data or application management tool used by government agencies and contractors.
To download the technology preview of ACS 1.1.2, go to www-03.ibm.com/systems/power/software/i/access/solutions.html. Production copies of ACS can be acquired from the Entitled Software Support (ESS) website under 5761-SS1 or 5770-SS1. The software requires the same IBM i Accss Family license (5761-XW1 or 5770-XW1) in order to use the 5250 emulation and data transfer features.