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Archive for July, 2012

I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › yet another big list of as400 technical, practical questions and just plain brain teasers

July 26th, 2012 Comments off
old computers are cool

Quote:
So, last night I was nosing around in the dim dark corners of an old network share on my homeserver. I stumbled across an old TXT document from the late 90's, I think. It was sitting in a text file called "AS400 brainteasers" -it's obviously old (look at the as400 model numbers question).

It was fun to scan through these questions and answers. I got a about 98% right... there were a couple where I dropped the ball and I blame that on the vintage questions and my fading senility... 

Test yourself and see if you can be classed as an AS400 specialist:

a vintage as400 server

AS400 Questions

What is the Configuration of the AS/400 system on which you have worked?
System E35(Model 9406), 24MB main memory, 3.2GB of HD and supports 49 terminals (7 Port).

How many terminals can be connected to a port?
7 terminals

What do the terms CUA and SAA stand for?
Common User Access Systems Application Architecture

What are the communication protocols supported by AS/400?


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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › yet another big list of as400 technical, practical questions and just plain brain teasers

July 26th, 2012 Comments off
old computers are cool

Quote:
So, last night I was nosing around in the dim dark corners of an old network share on my homeserver. I stumbled across an old TXT document from the late 90's, I think. It was sitting in a text file called "AS400 brainteasers" -it's obviously old (look at the as400 model numbers question).

It was fun to scan through these questions and answers. I got a about 98% right... there were a couple where I dropped the ball and I blame that on the vintage questions and my fading senility... 

Test yourself and see if you can be classed as an AS400 specialist:

a vintage as400 server

AS400 Questions

What is the Configuration of the AS/400 system on which you have worked?
System E35(Model 9406), 24MB main memory, 3.2GB of HD and supports 49 terminals (7 Port).

How many terminals can be connected to a port?
7 terminals

What do the terms CUA and SAA stand for?
Common User Access Systems Application Architecture

What are the communication protocols supported by AS/400?


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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Steve Pitcher › Battle Antivirus: Cloud vs x86-64 vs IBM Power Systems!

July 23rd, 2012 Comments off
I was given a short notice assignment this past week.  The goal was to move our cloud hosted antivirus service to an in-house solution before the end of the month.  The cloud solution was paid for until the end of July and quite expensive.  The in-house solution was already bought and paid for as part of a larger package and my task was to coordinate efforts so that IBM Lotus Domino email would send/receive filtered mail through the solution.

I had a couple of small issues with it.

First, the package solution wasn't purchased with high availability, or antivirus really in mind.  It was assumed that since we acquired the antivirus anyways then we should use it.  This solution was partly installed in our primary data center but no one had asked about the high availability site. No big deal, we could do that for a small licensing fee and a virtual machine at the secondary site.

Second, the solution would run entirely on existing x86-64 servers that are a few years old...not too out of date, but they're getting there. When you can't buy more of the same disk that's already installed you know the machine is nearing end of life.

Then the potential costs started adding up.  The primary x86-64 server needed disk.  The secondary may need memory. 

In my experience, more servers are more points of failure.  Two more VM's means two more operating systems to maintain.  More security to maintain.  There's cables and switches and other pieces of physical equipment in between the virus scanning and our IBM Lotus Domino mail servers on Power Systems. 

Also, we're in the process of phasing out servers running on x86-64 virtual machines and moving them to Power Systems.  For instance, we have a number of servers defined for a production management system originally written in MS Access.  Right now it's being converted to a PHP application with DB2 database on IBM i.  Those servers will be decomissioned within the next few months.  In fact, the only thing I think we'll be using x86-64 for is Microsoft Active Directory.

So, instead of investing in more x86-64 or looking further to the cloud, I decided on using Bytware's StandGuard Anti-Virus for Domino.  I don't give vendor plugs very often but I felt the need to write about this one.

StandGuard Anti-Virus installs on IBM i as a regular licensed program.  The Domino component is a simple plug-in with 4 NSF files.  I had the entire solution running on both Power Systems servers in no more than 40 minutes total.  No additional disk or memory needed.  No additional operating systems to maintain.  No additional points of failure.  It's a solution that plugs in seamlesssly and works out of the can with very minimal configuration. 

So...what does it cost for this simplicity?  I mean, you'd expect solutions that run on big tin to cost big money, right?

Not at all.  The Bytware solution was a far less the cost of our pre-existing cloud solution.  I can't really compare with the proposed x86-64 antivirus solution because it was purchased for another purpose, but StandGuard for Domino was less expensive than that also.  Even if it did cost more, I would have paid the difference in order to run the solution on IBM i, as any extra costs to maintain x86-64 hardware are eliminated.  Plus, StandGuard protects our Integrated File System (IFS) on IBM i so it can't be used as a host for storing viruses.

I've been a Bytware customer when I worked with a former employer and I can say their customer service is still phenomenal.  They were very helpful to not only answer my pre-sale technical questions but to make sure I had all the information, temporary license keys and download instructions right away.  Their eagerness to help me have it up and running, in my opinion, speaks volumes of their confidence in a good, solid solution. 

Power Systems wins.  I'm a very happy Bytware customer once again.


Read the original at Steve Pitcher.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › free rpg code editor for windows – Visual RPG Express

July 23rd, 2012 Comments off
free rpg3 and rpg4 code editor

I'm a big fan of WDSC7 (Websphere Development Studio Client for Windows) for my RPG/CL/DDS/SQL/whatever coding when I'm using windows.. but there are a few others out there. I would love to use IBM's RDi (Rational Developer for IBM i) but while IBM insist on charging around $900 for the program it puts it firmly out of my wallet range. Quite frankly, its such an utterly ridiculous price for a piece of software I cant ever see myself championing it.

I found this article over at Midrange News:

Quote:
Visual RPG (aka "CodeStudio") is a PC Windows XP-based editor for RPG IV, DDS, and other languages. It was original sold to AS/400 developers as a "CODE/400 for Windows" product when there was no Windows-based "CODE/400" (they only did an OS/2 version). Later it was renamed to "CodeStudio" and that trademark was purchased by a multi-national corporation and the product name was changed back to its original "VisualRPG" and provided at no-charge with no support. It uses FTP to pull down the source from the host and save it back up to the host, hence the source statement change dates are lost.

Here are the instructions (over a decade old but if they help someone out then TADA!)

AttachmentSize
RPG Code Studio Editor circa 2000ad3.37 MB


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › free rpg code editor for windows – Visual RPG Express

July 23rd, 2012 Comments off
free rpg3 and rpg4 code editor

I'm a big fan of WDSC7 (Websphere Development Studio Client for Windows) for my RPG/CL/DDS/SQL/whatever coding when I'm using windows.. but there are a few others out there. I would love to use IBM's RDi (Rational Developer for IBM i) but while IBM insist on charging around $900 for the program it puts it firmly out of my wallet range. Quite frankly, its such an utterly ridiculous price for a piece of software I cant ever see myself championing it.

I found this article over at Midrange News:

Quote:
Visual RPG (aka "CodeStudio") is a PC Windows XP-based editor for RPG IV, DDS, and other languages. It was original sold to AS/400 developers as a "CODE/400 for Windows" product when there was no Windows-based "CODE/400" (they only did an OS/2 version). Later it was renamed to "CodeStudio" and that trademark was purchased by a multi-national corporation and the product name was changed back to its original "VisualRPG" and provided at no-charge with no support. It uses FTP to pull down the source from the host and save it back up to the host, hence the source statement change dates are lost.

Here are the instructions (over a decade old but if they help someone out then TADA!)

AttachmentSize
RPG Code Studio Editor circa 2000ad3.37 MB


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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Steve Pitcher › Migrating Lotus Notes to Google Apps? No Way!

July 23rd, 2012 Comments off
Maybe I live in my own delusional world or something. 

I received an email from a vendor offering to move Lotus Notes customers to the cloud.  They showcased a case study which had a client move to cloud-based Google Apps, GMail, Google Calendar and GTalk.

The client originally had 32,000 users and 6,000 applications running on 250 servers.  Two hundred and fifty servers!  Is that what it's like in the x86-64 world?  I'm honestly not being facetious...I just don't know. 

That's 38,000 applications and mail files, so about 152 total per server.  No wonder the client was looking for a simpler solution.

A few years ago, IBM released some benchmark tests using it's then-current low-end System i model 520 and 4 Lotus Domino 6.0.3 servers.  Here's the details:

24,000 concurrent Lotus Notes mail and calendar users.
System i model 520-8966 (2 x 1.5 GHz POWER5 processors)
32 GB memory
53 x 35GB disk drives
4 partitioned Lotus Domino 6.0.3 servers.  "Partitioned" Domino on IBM i means servers running in separate subsystems, not a separate instances of the operating system.

24,000 concurrent mail and calendar users?  The average response time was 92 milliseconds.

In those benchmarks, there were bigger machines taking on 175,000 concurrent mail users but I'll compare at the low-end boxes because of the large SMB install base for IBM i.

Now tell me, do you think a modern low-end IBM Power 720 Express running IBM i 7.1 with a similar configuration could handle 38,000 users concurrently with similar response times?  You'd have to use bigger drives (35GB aren't produced anymore) and I'd personally double the memory, but I think it would.  In fact, I bet it would.  I would just love IBM to come out with some new benchmark tests using Lotus Domino 8.5.3 and modern Power7 hardware.  The combination of performance improvements in both IBM i and Lotus Domino plus the new blazingly fast Power7 systems would probably blow these results out of the water.

Am I delusional?  Or am I just using a solid, working solution that can scale to unmatched heights?  Migrate to Google Apps?  Why the heck would I do something like that?

If you're looking to leverage your existing investment in IBM, simplify management, reduce overhead/costs and consolidate your servers then you need to take a look at IBM i on Power Systems running IBM Lotus Domino.  There is no better combination.

If you're looking for a cloud-based solution, IBM has one!  It's called IBM SmartCloud for Social Business.


Read the original at Steve Pitcher.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › Android4 ICS "Background Data Restricted" message

July 19th, 2012 Comments off
droid4 is faster with coffee

I'm loving my recently updated Android4 and some of the new little touches that it adds to the Smartphone experience.

The only annoyance I've come across so far, is the background data being restricted when the phone is quietly hibernating at my desk. This is probably great for people on data usage plans but for big fat unlimited data dudes like me its a royal PITA (That does not stand for that lovely Indian Bread either). I want to be continually updated... my internet addiction demands it.

Here's the problem as reported by some other dude on some forum:

Quote:
I have a stock, non-rooted RAZR. Ever since the ICS update, I keep getting a notification of "Background Data Restricted. Click here to remove restriction. I do not have a mobile data limit set and I don't have the box checked restrict background data. Any ideas? This thing is making me crazy.

So a little bit of poking around the solution is straightforward.

The very clever SMART ACTIONS lets you restrict usage under certain conditions.

battery extender to remove background data restriction


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › Android4 ICS "Background Data Restricted" message

July 19th, 2012 Comments off
droid4 is faster with coffee

I'm loving my recently updated Android4 and some of the new little touches that it adds to the Smartphone experience.

The only annoyance I've come across so far, is the background data being restricted when the phone is quietly hibernating at my desk. This is probably great for people on data usage plans but for big fat unlimited data dudes like me its a royal PITA (That does not stand for that lovely Indian Bread either). I want to be continually updated... my internet addiction demands it.

Here's the problem as reported by some other dude on some forum:

Quote:
I have a stock, non-rooted RAZR. Ever since the ICS update, I keep getting a notification of "Background Data Restricted. Click here to remove restriction. I do not have a mobile data limit set and I don't have the box checked restrict background data. Any ideas? This thing is making me crazy.

So a little bit of poking around the solution is straightforward.

The very clever SMART ACTIONS lets you restrict usage under certain conditions.

battery extender to remove background data restriction


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › How to screen shot with Android4 [on a RAZR]

July 19th, 2012 Comments off
catch a jing style screen shot with ICS

Now that the very saucy MOTOROLA RAZR phone has finally got its (Verizon) update to Android 4.0.4 we now have the ability to capture screenshots from within native Android. .. without having to resort to rooting or installing an APP to do it for us. About bloody time too!

How to catch a screen shot

VOLUME DOWN + POWER

From the screen you want to capture - just press both buttons at same time and hold for a second+.screen shot of android smart actions

The screen image will be captured as a .PNG image and a little message will be shown on the top status bar. You can click the message icon to view/edit your image or just go into GALLERY and click MY LIBRARY.

Now all I want is the ability to capture a live video plus sound... so I can talk and show instructions on how to do something on Droid.

Love this little green fella!


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

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I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs › How to screen shot with Android4 [on a RAZR]

July 19th, 2012 Comments off
catch a jing style screen shot with ICS

Now that the very saucy MOTOROLA RAZR phone has finally got its (Verizon) update to Android 4.0.4 we now have the ability to capture screenshots from within native Android. .. without having to resort to rooting or installing an APP to do it for us. About bloody time too!

How to catch a screen shot

VOLUME DOWN + POWER

From the screen you want to capture - just press both buttons at same time and hold for a second+.screen shot of android smart actions

The screen image will be captured as a .PNG image and a little message will be shown on the top status bar. You can click the message icon to view/edit your image or just go into GALLERY and click MY LIBRARY.

Now all I want is the ability to capture a live video plus sound... so I can talk and show instructions on how to do something on Droid.

Love this little green fella!


Read the original at I THINK THEREFORE IBM-i blogs.

Categories: Blogs Tags:
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