Kisco Locks Down IBM i Report Distribution
October 28, 2020 Alex Woodie
Users will gain more control over how their IBM i spool files are distributed and displayed, with a new release of WebReport/i, which is Kisco Information Systems’ spool file utility automatically reformatting and distributing spool files.
WebReport/i can reformat IBM i spool files in a variety of different ways. It can change them into HTML, RTF, PDF, XLS, XLSX, TIF or CSV formats, and it can also distribute them via HTTP, FTP, email, Google Drive, Dropbox, and even fax.
With Release 14, which was unveiled earlier this month, Kisco has shored up the security of the product. Specifically, when posting reports on an internal intranet to enable users to access reports through a Web browser, the software now only allows authorized users to view certain reports.
Rich Loeber, the president of Kisco Information Systems, explains how it works:
“Each user is authorized for a specific application or to several applications,” Loeber tells IT Jungle via email. “When reports are placed into the intranet, they are also coded as to what application they are associated with. When a user signs into the intranet, they only see the reports that are associated with the applications they are permitted to see.”
The new release also gives users more control over how reports are shown. Initially, Kisco defaulted to date sequence, Loeber says. “But customers wanted to be able to see the reports by report title or by application code,” he says. “We also added an option to show the list in inverse sequence. On date sequence, this puts the most recent reports at the top of the list.”
FTP remains a popular method for sharing files, and it’s one that’s supported by WebReport/i. With the new release, Kisco is now allowing users to specify which port number on the IBM i server to use during the transfer of converted spool files.
On the email front, Release 14 delivers a new “quick email test option” designed to help users more easily diagnose email problems. Also, when sending a report to a user using email, Kisco is giving the option for the email body text to be rendered using HTML. Finally, the company is providing new PDF scaling options when sending spool files as PDF email attachments.
The IBM i server typically is the source of the most important information going into reports. But it is not uncommon for customers to combine data from multiple sources. To that end, Release 14 of WebReport/i gives customers the ability to insert PDF, XLS, TXT, or other files onto the intranet for delivery purposes.
“These can come either from spool files or from any other suitable source,” Loeber says. “These are coded as to application like the spool files so that they are presented to only those users so authorized.”
Kisco has been selling WebReport/i for more than two decades (it used to be called WebReport/400). During the COVID-19 pandemic, Loeber has dropped the price of a WebReport/i (or WebReport/i PDF) license from $2,305 for a single partition to $2,195, which will be valid through the end of the year. For more information or a free 30-day trial, see the company’s website at www.kisco.com.