VOIP Implementation Is "Top-Down"

IT Infrastructure - Other
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP), or broadband telephony, allows users to make telephone calls over a data network like the Internet, converting voice into a digital signal that is then reassembled back into voice. It uses existing lines coupled with software running on the PC to run calls through the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN).
At first, the technology was pushed into niche markets such as international voice calling. Later, multi-office businesses began to use it for inter-company calling.

"We initially put VOIP in for five-digit calling nationwide, and it still operates for this function," Grant Thorton's national manager of telecommunication Kevin Lopez said from his Oak Brook, Illinois-based office. "Now, we have begun installing IP soft-phones and have unified messenger in place as well."

Larger Enterprises First to Adopt VOIP


Big technology players have brought telephony technology to market in the last few years to widen their net and service customers like Grant Thorton, offering products such as unified messenger, which manages voice, email, and fax messages using either a telephone or a multimedia personal computer.

The birth of these value-added services is a reflection of the overall growth in the telecommunications industry. Earlier this year, research by the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) reported a 7.9% growth in U.S. telecommunications revenue, surpassing the amount of growth in the industry over the past three years. As well, Frost & Sullivan reported that by 2008 the VOIP market could grow to more than 16.5 million residential users, specifically.

This growth reflects VOIP's adoption into the mainstream market and consumer demand for VOIP, believes Michael O'Hara, Microsoft's general manager for service provider business. Larger enterprises, however, are currently adopting IP private branch exchanges (PBXs) "because they have the IT expertise to deploy and manage the solutions."

Director of VOIP Services for AT&T Mike Barca said that in 2004 the company's customers were just dabbling in the technology. His company was asked to provide an environment where businesses and their staff could test the technology first "because it was difficult for them to plan out any type of migration." This year, his customers are getting ready to migrate office locations compared to solely Greenfield environments by creating a hybrid traditional/VOIP environment throughout the organization. "A lot of these new IP service providers look for that flash-cut, for that Greenfield environment," Barca explained. "But that's not the how the majority of our enterprise customers operate. They are going to be in a hybrid environment for quite some time as they move their services over to IP."

Regulators and Lobbyists Debate VOIP Regulation


This trend toward companies deploying VOIP has gained the attention of federal regulators. For example the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is currently discussing VOIP's reliability and its ability to replace traditional telephony services.

These ongoing discussions have stalled since the 2005 resignation of FCC Chairman Michael Powell. President Bush designated Chairman Kevin J. Martin only a few months ago on March 18, 2005, and the industry now awaits his policies on VOIP regulation.
"We are looking at a lot of issues," spokesman for the FCC's Wireline Competition Bureau Mark Wigfield said about the commission's plans for regulating VOIP. "[This includes] how it should be defined; who should have jurisdiction; a requirement to provide 911 and disability access; and how it fits into the conventional structure of inter-carrier compensation as well as universal service in rural areas."

Tech lobbies are also concerned with these issues. Nick Kolovos is the director and counsel of Government Relations for the Information Technology Industry Council (ITIC). The ITIC is pushing for a policy focused on asserting federal jurisdiction, "eliminating regulatory burdens and supporting universal and public interest services" (including U.S. 911 and Europe's 999). The ITIC also supports consumer protections from misleading and deceptive advertising "so consumers can make informed choices about what they are receiving and what their options are."

Education about VOIP, its flaws, and user responsibility came to the forefront recently when Texas sued one of the largest residential providers of VOIP after a customer couldn't reach 911 emergency services using a Vonage connection. It was a service that was offered; all users had an option to sign up for 911 access for an additional fee. It began a regulatory discussion throughout the community over state versus federal authority on VOIP services.

Kolovos said that because of the nature of the technology, it would be "nearly impossible to regulate on a state-by-state level." Because VOIP is a telephone call broken down to packets and those packets travel over the IP network, they cross a number of jurisdictional boundaries. Providers across the globe would then have at least 50 jurisdictions and 50 different sets of regulations. "How would you end up trying to regulate that and attach some sort of pricing scheme or economic stipulation?" Kolovos questioned. "Beyond that, we are not only talking about providers in the United States; they can be located anywhere in the world."

As of now, the FCC is moving toward VOIP as "an unregulated service," according to FCC spokesperson Wigfield. "Initiatives are underway," he noted. "Where they go is up to the new chairman and the support he gets from other commissioners." Kolovos agrees and adds, "It should be regulated as little as possible."

VOIP may become an unregulated service, but one looming question is fair accessibility. Universal service is still an unresolved issue that neither the FCC nor the industry seemingly has any answers to, placing part of the blame on broadband's limited reach into rural areas. In Kolovos' opinion, under the universal service umbrella, it is often still a matter of accessibility to broadband. Other public safety service questions--including the absence of 911 services and law enforcement access (lauded as a major flaw in the technology)--result because VOIP does not tie users to a geographical location. To an emergency dispatcher, it appears as if the call is coming from a home location even if the caller is actually in another state.

Microsoft's O'Hara said the challenge in a voice environment is that a user becomes an IP address. "I could be sitting in London with a Boston number because of the mapping of the IT addresses," O'Hara explained. "When calling 911 or 999 in have to specify where you are."

A user must realize that, in most cases, a landline will be needed during an emergency unless a location can be verbally specified. "It is a whole mindset change as you move into the VOIP arena," he said. "You have to think that you're location-independent."

AT&T's Barca concurs. For now, his company offers its traditional landline services that offer the security of 911 access, coupled with VOIP. "911 services we are building allow you to configure your service and put in a location," Barca said about a current project not yet released to the public. "You can also change it when you log on; this way, if you dial a 911 service, it knows where you are."

"No doubt it can be worked out," Kolovos optimistically noted. "The best approach is giving industry time to develop those technologies, instead of having a government mandate that requires them to develop it a certain way."

As far as FCC regulation, it may be awhile. "The Hill is gearing up on this issue, and I think that the bills that are being contemplated take a minimal regulatory approach," said Kolovos. "Whether something gets passed or not is another matter." Microsoft's O'Hara thinks regulations will move forward based on current consumer demand, and they are actually "favorable as they stand today to allow these deployments to go ahead." In his opinion, regulators have an incentive. VOIP offers an effective way to create local competition because a broadband connection creates a shared-line environment automatically. "We believe it fuels competition and a lot of people to compete with features."

Advantages and Disadvantages of VOIP Implementation

When it comes to the value of VOIP, providers like Microsoft tout the pros of implementation, such as cost-effectiveness. But there are also weaknesses in the technology: quality control, public safety, and the aforementioned accessibility to universal services. "Other cons are bandwidth allocation and controlling call quality," opined Grant Thorton's Lopez.

Still, many Fortune 500s continue to use the technology--for example, AOL, Comcaste Cable, and Grant Thorton. Kolovos said the business incentive is the bottom-line savings resulting from being able to deploy an enterprise-wide dialing plan. The ability to customize applications is another advantage, he said, which can allow access to voicemail over the Internet and special programming for the disabled. "It is an array of customized applications that can benefit businesses," he said. "It streamlines things."

O'Hara added that the main benefits of implementing VOIP are reduction of voice services costs and delivery of "value-added services like presence, instant messaging, and collaboration." Enterprises can recognize cost savings that result from moving internal voice traffic from a separate voice-only network to the local IP network. "I would say 30% is a good approximate reduction in cost," claimed O'Hara. An initial cost is preparing the workforce to deploy the technology. "You are going to have retraining. You are moving your phone service away from traditional phone engineers into more of an IT environment. So there is a transitional cost there."

Another set-up cost revolves around the requirement for costly local IP network upgrades or legacy PBXs that have not reached the end of their useful life. Small- and medium-sized businesses have not adopted VOIP as widely as a result. The implementation is "top down" noted AT&T's Barca. Fortune 500s start the trend. They look for a place to test it out, often their branch offices or Greenfield locations because they have to invest in new equipment anyway, Barca clarified. So they use that location to test out VOIP. "It's easier for them," he said. "There is no initial or embedded type of equipment they need to worry about."

Cost savings is the impetus for implementation, agreed Juniper Networks Senior Solutions Marketing Manager Scott Heinlein. "Many of the deployments to date are multi-site businesses that are looking to save toll or long-distance costs for intra-company calling."
However, adding real-time applications such as voice requires a much higher level of network device performance, he continued. Network devices must be able to support the small packet sizes of voice with very minimal latency, jitter, or packet loss--too much of any will render voice communications inoperable. That is why, according to Heinlein, all switches, routers, and firewalls must be analyzed to determine whether they can handle voice traffic. "Many times, this step is overlooked, only later found after voice quality suffers significantly," he said. "One solution is that Multiprotocol Label Switching
(MPLS) technology can be used at the network level for traffic engineering sufficient bandwidth throughout the IP network. At the network device level, sub-second stateful failovers should be supported by the device so that existing calls are not impacted when a network device fails."

Heinlein said staffers should be prepared for retraining to address these issues, both those covering data or voice converged network and IT. They must also be ready for the inevitable: VOIP implementation often leads to staff reductions. "However, the skill set requirements might change since personnel that understand both data and voice are ideal for managing the network."

"Too much of either data or voice experience isn't good," added Grant Thorton's Lopez. "A well-rounded individual with knowledge of voice and data should be able to deal with most issues."

Microsoft's O'Hara explained that businesses must first determine whether they want to manage their VOIP service themselves or purchase hosted VOIP services from an operator. "If the business is deploying a premise-based solution such as an IP PBX, they will require a knowledgeable IT staff to deploy the server, install the software, move/add/change/or delete user extensions, install patches, and troubleshoot problems," he said.

Cost considerations for a premise-based solution, O'Hara said, include purchasing server hardware, IP PBX software licenses, and IP telephones (or adapters that allow you to use regular telephone handsets) and pre-installation costs such as evaluating and potentially upgrading the local IP network. Businesses interested in deploying a premise-based VOIP service need to determine whether their internal IP network can support voice in addition to their current data traffic. They also must take into account possible growth in both voice and data traffic levels. "While it is expensive to rewire and upgrade a wired network, there are wireless alternatives today that offer businesses more cost-effective options for network implementations," he said.

Pundits Debate VOIP Data Security

Another concern is the security of data. Dr. Shashi Phoha, director of the Information Technology Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, has spoken publicly about her concerns with VOIP--such as ease of hacking, fraud, and abuse.

So is VOIP secure? Heinlein said adding voice onto the data network introduces security risks that must be addressed. "Security threats include PBX hacking, toll fraud, eavesdropping of phone conversations, DDos/DoS attacks, compromising the data network by allowing incoming calls to enter the network, and many others," he listed. "It is critical that increased security is implemented to ensure the business network is not compromised."

On the other side of the coin, O'Hara said there is a sufficient focus on security in the networks today; they can exist and happily proliferate and grow. "My experience is that we are not seeing security issues with the technology," he said. "However, you never say never."

It was the network they turned to for security, instead of invention, when Grant Thorton installed VOIP in 2001. "Security is something in this day and age we just have to live with in every way," said Lopez. "Each business must assess the threat and deal with it in a way they feel best."

While the industry sorts out the myriad issues still associated with the effectiveness in the technology, many agree this is the beginning of the end of traditional telephone lines, especially if issues of universal and 911 services are worked out. "Traditional phone service, as we know it, is diminishing," ITIC's Kolovo said. "And what we will have five to 10 years from now will be completely different."

Mary Rose Roberts is a Chicago-based freelance writer and a masters of science, journalism candidate at Roosevelt University, Chicago. She can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



Support MC Press Online





  • Mobile Computing and the IBM i

    SB ASNA PPL 5450Mobile computing is rapidly maturing into a solid platform for delivering enterprise applications. Many IBM i shops today are realizing that integrating their IBM i with mobile applications is the fast path to improved business workflows, better customer relations, and more responsive business reporting.

    This ASNA whitepaper takes a look at mobile computing for the IBM i. It discusses the different ways mobile applications may be used within the enterprise and how ASNA products solve the challenges mobile presents. It also presents the case that you already have the mobile programming team your projects need: that team is your existing RPG development team!

    Get your copy today!

  • Automate IBM i Operations using Wireless Devices

    DDL SystemsDownload the technical whitepaper on MANAGING YOUR IBM i WIRELESSLY and (optionally) register to download an absolutely FREE software trail. This whitepaper provides an in-depth review of the native IBM i technology and ACO MONITOR's advanced two-way messaging features to remotely manage your IBM i while in or away from the office. Notify on-duty personnel of system events and remotely respond to complex problems (via your Smartphone) before they become critical-24/7. Problem solved!

    Order your copy here.

  • DR Strategy Guide from Maxava: Brand New Edition - now fully updated to include Cloud!


    Download your free copy of DR Strategy Guide for IBM i from Maxava today.


  • White Paper: Node.js for Enterprise IBM i Modernization

    SB Profound WP 5539

    If your business is thinking about modernizing your legacy IBM i (also known as AS/400 or iSeries) applications, you will want to read this white paper first!

    Download this paper and learn how Node.js can ensure that you:
    - Modernize on-time and budget - no more lengthy, costly, disruptive app rewrites!
    - Retain your IBM i systems of record
    - Find and hire new development talent
    - Integrate new Node.js applications with your existing RPG, Java, .Net, and PHP apps
    - Extend your IBM i capabilties to include Watson API, Cloud, and Internet of Things

    Read Node.js for Enterprise IBM i Modernization Now!


  • 2020 IBM i Marketplace Survey Results


    This year marks the sixth edition of the popular IBM i Marketplace Survey Results. Each year, HelpSystems sets out to gather data about how businesses use the IBM i platform and the IT initiatives it supports. Year over year, the survey has begun to reveal long-term trends that give insight into the future of this trusted technology.

    More than 500 IBM i users from around the globe participated in this year’s survey, and we’re so happy to share the results with you. We hope you’ll find the information interesting and useful as you evaluate your own IT projects.

  • AIX Security Basics eCourse

    Core Security

    With so many organizations depending on AIX day to day, ensuring proper security and configuration is critical to ensure the safety of your environment. Don’t let common threats put your critical AIX servers at risk. Avoid simple mistakes and start to build a long-term plan with this AIX Security eCourse. Enroll today to get easy to follow instructions on topics like:

    • Removing extraneous files
    • Patching systems efficiently
    • Setting and validating permissions
    • Managing service considerations
    • Getting overall visibility into your networks


  • Developer Kit: Making a Business Case for Modernization and Beyond

    Profound Logic Software, Inc.

    Having trouble getting management approval for modernization projects? The problem may be you're not speaking enough "business" to them.

    This Developer Kit provides you study-backed data and a ready-to-use business case template to help get your very next development project approved!

  • What to Do When Your AS/400 Talent Retires

    HelpSystemsIT managers hoping to find new IBM i talent are discovering that the pool of experienced RPG programmers and operators or administrators is small.

    This guide offers strategies and software suggestions to help you plan IT staffing and resources and smooth the transition after your AS/400 talent retires. Read on to learn:

    • Why IBM i skills depletion is a top concern
    • How leading organizations are coping
    • Where automation will make the biggest impact


  • IBM i Resources Retiring?

    SB HelpSystems WC GenericLet’s face it: IBM i experts and RPG programmers are retiring from the workforce. Are you prepared to handle their departure?
    Our panel of IBM i experts—Chuck Losinski, Robin Tatam, Richard Schoen, and Tom Huntington—will outline strategies that allow your company to cope with IBM i skills depletion by adopting these strategies that allow you to get the job done without deep expertise on the OS:
    - Automate IBM i processes
    - Use managed services to help fill the gaps
    - Secure the system against data loss and viruses
    The strategies you discover in this webinar will help you ensure that your system of record—your IBM i—continues to deliver a powerful business advantage, even as staff retires.


  • Backup and Recovery Considerations for Security Data and Encrypted Backups

    SB PowerTech WC GenericSecurity expert Carol Woodbury is joined by Debbie Saugen. Debbie is an expert on IBM i backup and recovery, disaster recovery, and high availability, helping IBM i shops build and implement effective business continuity plans.
    In today’s business climate, business continuity is more important than ever. But 83 percent of organizations are not totally confident in their backup strategy.
    During this webinar, Carol and Debbie discuss the importance of a good backup plan, how to ensure you’re backing up your security information, and your options for encrypted back-ups.

  • Profound.js: The Agile Approach to Legacy Modernization

    SB Profound WC GenericIn this presentation, Alex Roytman and Liam Allan will unveil a completely new and unique way to modernize your legacy applications. Learn how Agile Modernization:
    - Uses the power of Node.js in place of costly system re-writes and migrations
    - Enables you to modernize legacy systems in an iterative, low-risk manner
    - Makes it easier to hire developers for your modernization efforts
    - Integrates with Profound UI (GUI modernization) for a seamless, end-to-end legacy modernization solution


  • Data Breaches: Is IBM i Really at Risk?

    SB PowerTech WC GenericIBM i is known for its security, but this OS could be more vulnerable than you think.
    Although Power Servers often live inside the safety of the perimeter firewall, the risk of suffering a data leak or data corruption remains high.
    Watch noted IBM i security expert Robin Tatam as he discusses common ways that this supposedly “secure” operating system may actually be vulnerable and who the culprits might be.

    Watch the webinar today!


  • Easy Mobile Development

    SB Profound WC GenericWatch this on-demand webinar and learn how to rapidly and easily deploy mobile apps to your organization – even when working with legacy RPG code! IBM Champion Scott Klement will demonstrate how to:
    - Develop RPG applications without mobile development experience
    - Deploy secure applications for any mobile device
    - Build one application for all platforms, including Apple and Android
    - Extend the life and reach of your IBM i (aka iSeries, AS400) platform
    You’ll see examples from customers who have used our products and services to deliver the mobile applications of their dreams, faster and easier than they ever thought possible!


  • Profound UI: Unlock True Modernization from your IBM i Enterprise

    SB Profound PPL 5491Modern, web-based applications can make your Enterprise more efficient, connected and engaged. This session will demonstrate how the Profound UI framework is the best and most native way to convert your existing RPG applications and develop new modern applications for your business. Additionally, you will learn how you can address modernization across your Enterprise, including databases and legacy source code, with Profound Logic.

  • Node Webinar Series Pt. 1: The World of Node.js on IBM i

    Profound Logic Software, Inc.Have you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application.

    Part 1 will teach you what Node.js is, why it's a great option for IBM i shops, and how to take advantage of the ecosystem surrounding Node.

    In addition to background information, our Director of Product Development Scott Klement will demonstrate applications that take advantage of the Node Package Manager (npm).

  • 5 New and Unique Ways to Use the IBM i Audit Journal

    SB HelpSystems ROBOT GenericYou must be asking yourself: am I doing everything I can to protect my organization’s data? Tune in as our panel of IBM i high availability experts discuss:

    - Why companies don’t test role swaps when they know they should
    - Whether high availability in the cloud makes sense for IBM i users
    - Why some organizations don’t have high availability yet
    - How to get high availability up and running at your organization
    - High availability considerations for today’s security concerns

  • Profound.js 2.0: Extend the Power of Node to your IBM i Applications

    SB Profound WC 5541In this Webinar, we'll demonstrate how Profound.js 2.0 enables you to easily adopt Node.js in your business, and to take advantage of the many benefits of Node, including access to a much larger pool of developers for IBM i and access to countless reusable open source code packages on npm (Node Package Manager).
    You will see how Profound.js 2.0 allows you to:

    • Provide RPG-like capabilities for server-side JavaScript.
    • Easily create web and mobile application interfaces for Node on IBM i.
    • Let existing RPG programs call Node.js modules directly, and vice versa.
    • Automatically generate code for Node.js.
    • Automatically converts existing RPGLE code into clean, simplified Node.js code.

    Download and watch today!


  • Make Modern Apps You'll Love with Profound UI & Profound.js

    SB Profound WC 5541Whether you have green screens or a drab GUI, your outdated apps can benefit from modern source code, modern GUIs, and modern tools.
    Profound Logic's Alex Roytman and Liam Allan are here to show you how Free-format RPG and Node.js make it possible to deliver applications your whole business will love:

    • Transform legacy RPG code to modern free-format RPG and Node.js
    • Deliver truly modern application interfaces with Profound UI
    • Extend your RPG applications to include Web Services and NPM packages with Node.js


  • Accelerating Programmer Productivity with Sequel


    Most business intelligence tools are just that: tools, a means to an end but not an accelerator. Yours could even be slowing you down. But what if your BI tool didn't just give you a platform for query-writing but also improved programmer productivity?
    Watch the recorded webinar to see how Sequel:

    • Makes creating complex results simple
    • Eliminates barriers to data sources
    • Increases flexibility with data usage and distribution

    Accelerated productivity makes everyone happy, from programmer to business user.

  • Business Intelligence is Changing: Make Your Game Plan

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericIt’s time to develop a strategy that will help you meet your informational challenges head-on. Watch the webinar to learn how to set your IT department up for business intelligence success. You’ll learn how the right data access tool will help you:

    • Access IBM i data faster
    • Deliver useful information to executives and business users
    • Empower users with secure data access

    Ready to make your game plan and finally keep up with your data access requests?


  • Controlling Insider Threats on IBM i

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericLet’s face facts: servers don’t hack other servers. Despite the avalanche of regulations, news headlines remain chock full of stories about data breaches, all initiated by insiders or intruders masquerading as insiders.
    User profiles are often duplicated or restored and are rarely reviewed for the appropriateness of their current configuration. This increases the risk of the profile being able to access data without the intended authority or having privileges that should be reserved for administrators.
    Watch security expert Robin Tatam as he discusses a new approach for onboarding new users on IBM i and best-practices techniques for managing and monitoring activities after they sign on.

  • Don't Just Settle for Query/400...

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericWhile introducing Sequel Data Access, we’ll address common frustrations with Query/400, discuss major data access, distribution trends, and more advanced query tools. Plus, you’ll learn how a tool like Sequel lightens IT’s load by:

    - Accessing real-time data, so you can make real-time decisions
    - Providing run-time prompts, so users can help themselves
    - Delivering instant results in Microsoft Excel and PDF, without the wait
    - Automating the query process with on-demand data, dashboards, and scheduled jobs

  • How to Manage Documents the Easy Way

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericWhat happens when your company depends on an outdated document management strategy?
    Everything is harder.
    You don’t need to stick with status quo anymore.
    Watch the webinar to learn how to put effective document management into practice and:

    • Capture documents faster, instead of wasting everyone’s time
    • Manage documents easily, so you can always find them
    • Distribute documents automatically, and move on to the next task


  • Lessons Learned from the AS/400 Breach

    SB_PowerTech_WC_GenericGet actionable info to avoid becoming the next cyberattack victim.
    In “Data breach digest—Scenarios from the field,” Verizon documented an AS/400 security breach. Whether you call it AS/400, iSeries, or IBM i, you now have proof that the system has been breached.
    Watch IBM i security expert Robin Tatam give an insightful discussion of the issues surrounding this specific scenario.
    Robin will also draw on his extensive cybersecurity experience to discuss policies, processes, and configuration details that you can implement to help reduce the risk of your system being the next victim of an attack.

  • Overwhelmed by Operating Systems?

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericIn this 30-minute recorded webinar, our experts demonstrate how you can:

    • Manage multiple platforms from a central location
    • View monitoring results in a single pane of glass on your desktop or mobile device
    • Take advantage of best practice, plug-and-play monitoring templates
    • Create rules to automate daily checks across your entire infrastructure
    • Receive notification if something is wrong or about to go wrong

    This presentation includes a live demo of Network Server Suite.


  • Real-Time Disk Monitoring with Robot Monitor

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericYou need to know when IBM i disk space starts to disappear and where it has gone before system performance and productivity start to suffer. Our experts will show you how Robot Monitor can help you pinpoint exactly when your auxiliary storage starts to disappear and why, so you can start taking a proactive approach to disk monitoring and analysis. You’ll also get insight into:

    • The main sources of disk consumption
    • How to monitor temporary storage and QTEMP objects in real time
    • How to monitor objects and libraries in real time and near-real time
    • How to track long-term disk trends



  • Stop Re-keying Data Between IBM I and Other Applications

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericMany business still depend on RPG for their daily business processes and report generation.Wouldn’t it be nice if you could stop re-keying data between IBM i and other applications? Or if you could stop replicating data and start processing orders faster? Or what if you could automatically extract data from existing reports instead of re-keying? It’s all possible. Watch this webinar to learn about:

    • The data dilemma
    • 3 ways to stop re-keying data
    • Data automation in practice

    Plus, see how HelpSystems data automation software will help you stop re-keying data.


  • The Top Five RPG Open Access Myths....BUSTED!

    SB_Profound_WC_GenericWhen it comes to IBM Rational Open Access: RPG Edition, there are still many misconceptions - especially where application modernization is concerned!

    In this Webinar, we'll address some of the biggest myths about RPG Open Access, including:

    • Modernizing with RPG OA requires significant changes to the source code
    • The RPG language is outdated and impractical for modernizing applications
    • Modernizing with RPG OA is the equivalent to "screen scraping"


  • Time to Remove the Paper from Your Desk and Become More Efficient

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericToo much paper is wasted. Attempts to locate documents in endless filing cabinets.And distributing documents is expensive and takes up far too much time.
    These are just three common reasons why it might be time for your company to implement a paperless document management system.
    Watch the webinar to learn more and discover how easy it can be to:

    • Capture
    • Manage
    • And distribute documents digitally


  • IBM i: It’s Not Just AS/400


    IBM’s Steve Will talks AS/400, POWER9, cognitive systems, and everything in between

    Are there still companies that use AS400? Of course!

    IBM i was built on the same foundation.
    Watch this recorded webinar with IBM i Chief Architect Steve Will and IBM Power Champion Tom Huntington to gain a unique perspective on the direction of this platform, including:

    • IBM i development strategies in progress at IBM
    • Ways that Watson will shake hands with IBM i
    • Key takeaways from the AS/400 days


  • Ask the RDi Experts

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericWatch this recording where Jim Buck, Susan Gantner, and Charlie Guarino answered your questions, including:

    • What are the “hidden gems” in RDi that can make me more productive?
    • What makes RDi Debug better than the STRDBG green screen debugger?
    • How can RDi help me find out if I’ve tested all lines of a program?
    • What’s the best way to transition from PDM to RDi?
    • How do I convince my long-term developers to use RDi?

    This is a unique, online opportunity to hear how you can get more out of RDi.


  • Node.js on IBM i Webinar Series Pt. 2: Setting Up Your Development Tools

    Profound Logic Software, Inc.Have you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application. In Part 2, Brian May teaches you the different tooling options available for writing code, debugging, and using Git for version control. Attend this webinar to learn:

    • Different tools to develop Node.js applications on IBM i
    • Debugging Node.js
    • The basics of Git and tools to help those new to it
    • Using as a pre-built development environment



  • Inside the Integrated File System (IFS)

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericDuring this webinar, you’ll learn basic tips, helpful tools, and integrated file system commands—including WRKLNK—for managing your IFS directories and Access Client Solutions (ACS). We’ll answer your most pressing IFS questions, including:

    • What is stored inside my IFS directories?
    • How do I monitor the IFS?
    • How do I replicate the IFS or back it up?
    • How do I secure the IFS?

    Understanding what the integrated file system is and how to work with it must be a critical part of your systems management plans for IBM i.


  • Expert Tips for IBM i Security: Beyond the Basics

    SB PowerTech WC GenericIn this session, IBM i security expert Robin Tatam provides a quick recap of IBM i security basics and guides you through some advanced cybersecurity techniques that can help you take data protection to the next level. Robin will cover:

    • Reducing the risk posed by special authorities
    • Establishing object-level security
    • Overseeing user actions and data access

    Don't miss this chance to take your knowledge of IBM i security beyond the basics.



  • 5 IBM i Security Quick Wins

    SB PowerTech WC GenericIn today’s threat landscape, upper management is laser-focused on cybersecurity. You need to make progress in securing your systems—and make it fast.
    There’s no shortage of actions you could take, but what tactics will actually deliver the results you need? And how can you find a security strategy that fits your budget and time constraints?
    Join top IBM i security expert Robin Tatam as he outlines the five fastest and most impactful changes you can make to strengthen IBM i security this year.
    Your system didn’t become unsecure overnight and you won’t be able to turn it around overnight either. But quick wins are possible with IBM i security, and Robin Tatam will show you how to achieve them.

  • How to Meet the Newest Encryption Requirements on IBM i

    SB PowerTech WC GenericA growing number of compliance mandates require sensitive data to be encrypted. But what kind of encryption solution will satisfy an auditor and how can you implement encryption on IBM i? Watch this on-demand webinar to find out how to meet today’s most common encryption requirements on IBM i. You’ll also learn:

    • Why disk encryption isn’t enough
    • What sets strong encryption apart from other solutions
    • Important considerations before implementing encryption



  • Security Bulletin: Malware Infection Discovered on IBM i Server!

    SB PowerTech WC GenericMalicious programs can bring entire businesses to their knees—and IBM i shops are not immune. It’s critical to grasp the true impact malware can have on IBM i and the network that connects to it. Attend this webinar to gain a thorough understanding of the relationships between:

    • Viruses, native objects, and the integrated file system (IFS)
    • Power Systems and Windows-based viruses and malware
    • PC-based anti-virus scanning versus native IBM i scanning

    There are a number of ways you can minimize your exposure to viruses. IBM i security expert Sandi Moore explains the facts, including how to ensure you're fully protected and compliant with regulations such as PCI.



  • Fight Cyber Threats with IBM i Encryption

    SB PowerTech WC GenericCyber attacks often target mission-critical servers, and those attack strategies are constantly changing. To stay on top of these threats, your cybersecurity strategies must evolve, too. In this session, IBM i security expert Robin Tatam provides a quick recap of IBM i security basics and guides you through some advanced cybersecurity techniques that can help you take data protection to the next level. Robin will cover:

    • Reducing the risk posed by special authorities
    • Establishing object-level security
    • Overseeing user actions and data access




  • 10 Practical IBM i Security Tips for Surviving Covid-19 and Working From Home

    SB PowerTech WC GenericNow that many organizations have moved to a work from home model, security concerns have risen.

    During this session Carol Woodbury will discuss the issues that the world is currently seeing such as increased malware attacks and then provide practical actions you can take to both monitor and protect your IBM i during this challenging time.


  • How to Transfer IBM i Data to Microsoft Excel

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic3 easy ways to get IBM i data into Excel every time
    There’s an easy, more reliable way to import your IBM i data to Excel? It’s called Sequel. During this webinar, our data access experts demonstrate how you can simplify the process of getting data from multiple sources—including Db2 for i—into Excel. Watch to learn how to:

    • Download your IBM i data to Excel in a single step
    • Deliver data to business users in Excel via email or a scheduled job
    • Access IBM i data directly using the Excel add-in in Sequel

    Make 2020 the year you finally see your data clearly, quickly, and securely. Start by giving business users the ability to access crucial business data from IBM i the way they want it—in Microsoft Excel.



  • HA Alternatives: MIMIX Is Not Your Only Option on IBM i

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_GenericIn this recorded webinar, our experts introduce you to the new HA transition technology available with our Robot HA software. You’ll learn how to:

    • Transition your rules from MIMIX (if you’re happy with them)
    • Simplify your day-to-day activities around high availability
    • Gain back time in your work week
    • Make your CEO happy about reducing IT costs

    Don’t stick with a legacy high availability solution that makes you uncomfortable when transitioning to something better can be simple, safe, and cost-effective.



  • Node Webinar Series Pt. 1: The World of Node.js on IBM i

    SB Profound WC GenericHave you been wondering about Node.js? Our free Node.js Webinar Series takes you from total beginner to creating a fully-functional IBM i Node.js business application.
    Part 1 will teach you what Node.js is, why it's a great option for IBM i shops, and how to take advantage of the ecosystem surrounding Node.
    In addition to background information, our Director of Product Development Scott Klement will demonstrate applications that take advantage of the Node Package Manager (npm).
    Watch Now.

  • The Biggest Mistakes in IBM i Security

    SB Profound WC Generic The Biggest Mistakes in IBM i Security
    Here’s the harsh reality: cybersecurity pros have to get their jobs right every single day, while an attacker only has to succeed once to do incredible damage.
    Whether that’s thousands of exposed records, millions of dollars in fines and legal fees, or diminished share value, it’s easy to judge organizations that fall victim. IBM i enjoys an enviable reputation for security, but no system is impervious to mistakes.
    Join this webinar to learn about the biggest errors made when securing a Power Systems server.
    This knowledge is critical for ensuring integrity of your application data and preventing you from becoming the next Equifax. It’s also essential for complying with all formal regulations, including SOX, PCI, GDPR, and HIPAA
    Watch Now.

  • Comply in 5! Well, actually UNDER 5 minutes!!

    SB CYBRA PPL 5382

    TRY the one package that solves all your document design and printing challenges on all your platforms.

    Produce bar code labels, electronic forms, ad hoc reports, and RFID tags – without programming! MarkMagic is the only document design and print solution that combines report writing, WYSIWYG label and forms design, and conditional printing in one integrated product.

    Request your trial now!

  • Backup and Recovery on IBM i: Your Strategy for the Unexpected

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413Robot automates the routine tasks of iSeries backup and recovery, saving you time and money and making the process safer and more reliable. Automate your backups with the Robot Backup and Recovery Solution. Key features include:
    - Simplified backup procedures
    - Easy data encryption
    - Save media management
    - Guided restoration
    - Seamless product integration
    Make sure your data survives when catastrophe hits. Try the Robot Backup and Recovery Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Manage IBM i Messages by Exception with Robot

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413Managing messages on your IBM i can be more than a full-time job if you have to do it manually. How can you be sure you won’t miss important system events?
    Automate your message center with the Robot Message Management Solution. Key features include:
    - Automated message management
    - Tailored notifications and automatic escalation
    - System-wide control of your IBM i partitions
    - Two-way system notifications from your mobile device
    - Seamless product integration
    Try the Robot Message Management Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Easiest Way to Save Money? Stop Printing IBM i Reports

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413Robot automates report bursting, distribution, bundling, and archiving, and offers secure, selective online report viewing.
    Manage your reports with the Robot Report Management Solution. Key features include:

    - Automated report distribution
    - View online without delay
    - Browser interface to make notes
    - Custom retention capabilities
    - Seamless product integration
    Rerun another report? Never again. Try the Robot Report Management Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • Hassle-Free IBM i Operations around the Clock

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413For over 30 years, Robot has been a leader in systems management for IBM i.
    Manage your job schedule with the Robot Job Scheduling Solution. Key features include:
    - Automated batch, interactive, and cross-platform scheduling
    - Event-driven dependency processing
    - Centralized monitoring and reporting
    - Audit log and ready-to-use reports
    - Seamless product integration
    Scale your software, not your staff. Try the Robot Job Scheduling Solution FREE for 30 days.

  • ACO MONITOR Manages your IBM i 24/7 and Notifies You When Your IBM i Needs Assistance!

    SB DDL Systems 5429More than a paging system - ACO MONITOR is a complete systems management solution for your Power Systems running IBM i. ACO MONITOR manages your Power System 24/7, uses advanced technology (like two-way messaging) to notify on-duty support personnel, and responds to complex problems before they reach critical status.

    ACO MONITOR is proven technology and is capable of processing thousands of mission-critical events daily. The software is pre-configured, easy to install, scalable, and greatly improves data center efficiency.