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Power i Forecast: Smartphones and Mobile Apps, Part II

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Industry leaders give developers and IT managers their best advice on questions surrounding network access by mobile devices.

 

Mobile devices and applications seem to be sweeping the world and are presenting special challenges—and rewards—for developers. As users come to expect access to corporate networks and applications from their mobile devices, developers will be tasked with weighing in on how their companies should approach this challenge.

 

We worked with several people familiar with mobile devices and access to devise a series of questions that we posed to a number of industry experts. We published the first round of the responses in MC Systems Insight last month in the first installment, "Power i Forecast: Smartphones and Mobile Apps, Part I." Because we had so much material from respondents, we broke the article into two parts. People were asked to pick one, or more than one, question—whatever they felt comfortable answering—and give their written response. This is the second installment, represening a different set of respondents.

 

Below are the questions we asked, and many are repeated further on with their responses. We know there are others who are actively engaged in mobile development whom we didn't pulse, so please feel free to express your thoughts in a comment in the MC Forums.

 

  1. What should IT/system administrators be thinking about when considering deploying mobile apps? What kinds of costs might be incurred when operating on a 3G or 4G network? Are security risks tolerable, and how can they be mitigated?
  2. Do you think mobile devices should be standardized—perhaps company-issued—or should everyone be allowed to bring their own device (BYOD)? What implications would there be for an environment supporting BYOD?
  3. Should the mobile apps be browser-based, native—i.e., device-specific—or some version of a virtual desktop? And why?
  4. Should the development approach for the mobile device applications utilize low-level coding, high-level coding/frameworks, or one of the variations of pre-fabricated Mobile Enterprise Application Platform (MEAP) solutions? What are the factors in minimizing the developer's learning curve, maximizing productivity, standardizing skill set, etc.?
  5. What types of internal assets should be exposed to mobile device applications (databases, documents, programs, and other data sources)? Should the mobile apps be straightforward extensions of a current application or utilize new enhanced device-specific capabilities for novel solutions?
  6. Would the mobile device applications be operating only when connected to the network, or should the apps support offline processing? Would a local data store make sense under certain circumstances? How can developers reduce the complexities of data access and transfer?
  7. Is it sufficient for IT to focus on what the packaged software vendors decide to deliver for mobile app services, or should IT tailor solutions to specific business needs?
  8. Going beyond existing internal apps, what new solutions could the mobile device enable, such as BI/data discovery/analytics, location-based services, collaboration/social media, and workflow/business process improvements?

 

 

Eamon Musallam

Product Manager

looksoftware

 

Eamon Musallam: If you are considering extending your RPG- and/or COBOL-based IBM i applications for mobile devices, there are some basic steps that can help ensure success with users and management. We would recommend starting with a small subset of existing functionality in your current application that will provide some real value to some existing employees. For example, if you are a manufacturer/distributor running an ERP package, a very useful first step would be to provide users the ability to look up customer details, product information, and order status. Given that mobile devices such as smartphones typically have smaller screens, you will want to be very careful about using that real estate as sparingly as possible, only displaying the essential elements for the required function. This alone will make the application much more intuitive and easy to navigate.

 

From a technology standpoint, you will need to decide which devices to support at an early stage and [whether] you will be implementing generic browser-based apps for mobile devices or device/OS-specific apps. It is typically much easier to develop a browser-based mobile app, and in doing so you will be able to support various devices. For example, HTML5 is fast becoming the standard supported by Apple, Google, BlackBerry, Microsoft and others, and provides a rich and responsive user experience (UX).

 

Obviously, you will want to ensure your applications and data are as secure as possible. Today's mobile devices typically have support for VPN and SSL built in, which can ensure only authorized users have access to the application and keep unauthorized users out.

 

Find a technology vendor that has had success helping similar companies implement mobile solutions; it can save a lot of time and effort to learn from the experience of others rather than go it alone.

 

What should IT/system administrators be thinking about when considering deploying mobile apps? What kinds of costs might be incurred when operating on a 3G or 4G network?

 

EM: It varies worldwide, but the trend is away from unlimited to tier-based plans, as cellular providers realize they can gain larger revenues as the reliance on Internet access through cellular networks increases. In the U.S., a corporate cellular account that includes enough support for employee 3G/4G data usage is typically less than $50 per user, per month (data only).

 

Are security risks tolerable, and how can they be mitigated?

 

EM: Yes, the security features are advanced enough to provide sufficient protection, and the business benefits of providing access to applications from mobile devices typically outweigh those concerns. However security is immensely important and shouldn't be underestimated. As long as features such as user authentication, VPN connectivity, and SSL are configured correctly, then concerns about security should be minimal.

 

Do you think mobile devices should be standardized—perhaps company-issued—or should everyone be allowed to bring their own device (BYOD)? What implications would there be for an environment supporting BYOD?

 

EM: The implications are significant. There are so many devices available from different manufacturers, running different versions of mobile OS, and different capabilities, that it would be impractical to develop, test, and support every one of them, especially older (2 + years) models. The more developers take advantage of specific features or technologies that mobile devices offer, the narrower the number of devices typically supported. Even within one manufacturer this can be a challenge—for example, BlackBerry has seeded the community with many different models that vary widely in their capabilities and support. However, if the app is mobile-browser-based—and many are today—the developer should support a range of devices that would support BYOD fairly well. For example, a typical browser-based mobile app today can support iOS 4.2 + (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), Android, BlackBerry OS 6+.

 

Should the mobile apps be browser-based, native—i.e. device-specific—or some version of a virtual desktop—and why?

 

EM: It really depends on the scope and usage requirements of the applications. With the increased prevalence of 3G/4G cellular networks and Wi-Fi networks, browser-based apps that are dependent on Internet connectivity are becoming more and more acceptable. However, there are still areas and places where Internet access is not available, and as long as users have that expectation, it will often be sufficient to implement a browser-based mobile app. Device-specific applications do provide additional richness and capabilities, but typically at the cost of minimizing the devices that can run the apps and more extensive application development tasks. The tradeoff between browser-based and device-specific apps is reach versus richness. Again, the user requirements, scope, and functionality of the project will typically determine the approach taken.

 

Should the development approach for the mobile device applications utilize low-level coding, high-level coding/frameworks, or one of the variations of pre-fabricated Mobile Enterprise Application Platform (MEAP) solutions? What are the factors in minimizing the developer's learning curve, maximizing productivity, standardizing skill set, etc.?

 

EM: Before mobile development begins, it should be determined which devices will be supported and what functionality is essential. This will help determine the right technology framework/development tool to be considered for implementing the specific solution. For example, if is it determined that the mobile app will be browser-based and support both Apple iOS and Android devices, then there are tools and frameworks that would greatly assist in the development, testing, and maintenance of these applications. In this case, frameworks such as Sencha Touch and JQuery would be ideal platforms to consider.

 

What types of internal assets should be exposed to mobile device applications (databases, documents, programs, and other data sources)? Should the mobile apps be straightforward extensions of a current application or utilize new, enhanced device-specific capabilities for novel solutions?

 

EM: A good way to start mobile development is to start with something simple. Perhaps take a subset of the application that would lend itself to mobile support…a good example would be customer and order lookup from an ERP…and then implement that for mobile device consumption. It is fairly easy to implement some basic integration such as Google maps, email, and phone dialing, so those would be good candidates to start with, before taking on more advanced features.

 

Would the mobile device applications be operating only when connected to the network, or should the apps support offline processing? Would a local data store make sense under certain circumstances?

 

EM: Yes, a local data store would make sense under certain circumstances. For example, if a requirement were to be able to work offline and be available in the absence of 3G/4G or Wi-Fi, then typically a local data store would be needed to support this functionality.

 

How can developers reduce the complexities of data access and transfer?

 

EM: By eliminating it! If a developer can avoid the requirement to run offline, then the implementation becomes a lot simpler in scope.

 

Is it sufficient for IT to focus on what the packaged software vendors decide to deliver for mobile app services, or should IT tailor solutions to specific business needs?

 

EM: If the package vendor provides the capabilities required by the customer for mobile apps, then that would eliminate the need to train developers and manage the process internally, which is often very desirable from a business standpoint. However, if IT doesn't have that option or a company has very specific requirements, then they will either need to develop internally or outsource to an implementation specialist.

 

Going beyond existing internal apps, what new solutions could the mobile device enable, such as BI/data discovery/analytics, location-based services, collaboration/social media, workflow/business process improvements?

 

EM: Some simple examples beyond existing apps are Maps (location-based service) that can provide directions between current location (GPS) to an address of a customer, dialing a customer phone number directly from the screen, and email integration. Text messaging (SMS) can also be leveraged in some creative ways to send announcements or instant notifications based on some event. Beyond that, there is so much that can be achieved in terms of collaboration/social media/workflow/business process improvements, etc. It really comes down to having a vision, identifying how it can help from a business standpoint, and funding to make it happen.

_________________

 

Trevor Perry

Chief Strategist

Angus Thinks!

 

Trevor Perry: An interesting trend in these questions is what type of apps should an IT organization support on mobile devices? The answer to the question is "yes."

 

If a company standardizes on a single mobile platform, it is advantageous to leverage the power and functionality of that platform. Writing tailored applications will provide the most function- and feature-rich solutions, customized specifically for the company and the user community.

 

Where a company does not choose a particular mobile platform, delivering browser-based applications will provide the widest range of support to their user community; however, they will not necessarily take advantage of device-specific technology.

 

Some companies see their user community as separate internal and external users. External users will typically not standardize on a mobile platform, so apps they use should be browser-based. Internal user apps would be determined by the level of control over which mobile device platform.

 

Eventually, this differentiation will become much smaller. HTML5 and CSS3 already provide rich functionality that closes in on native mobile device functionality. In the not too distant future, browser-based apps will be able to perform the majority of needed business functionality that would be deployed to a mobile device.

 

More importantly, an emerging trend for mobile apps is to provide the capability to run apps on your chosen mobile device from any platform. For example, I am running a Windows app on a remote server by connecting from my Mac OSX desktop. I am able to connect to the same Windows app and run it from my Apple iOS devices, and it appears to be running native there. With this approach, companies can build apps that run on their platform of choice and leverage third-party tools to provide virtualization for the user platform of choice.

________________

 

Trevor Seeney

Technical Director

Sentinex Inc.

 

Should the mobile apps be browser-based, native—i.e. device-specific—or some version of a virtual desktop, and why? 

 

Trevor Seeney: Mobile apps should be browser-based, aka a "Web App." We have service programs that enable output to the browser. Server-side programs are written in RPG against a DB2 database. Security is standardized using IBM i user profiles with verification using the QSYSGETPH API. All familiar stuff to the IBM i developer. Using meta tags, we can optimize the Web page to the smaller canvas. With a server-side application, there are no distribution issues.

 

Should the development approach for the mobile device applications utilize low-level coding, high-level coding/frameworks, or one of the variations of pre-fabricated Mobile Enterprise Application Platform (MEAP) solutions? What are the factors in minimizing the developer's learning curve, maximizing productivity, standardizing skill set, etc.? 

 

TS: To attain wider adoption of a browser interface and a gentler learning curve, I recommend eschewing frameworks and interactive development environments in favor of the more familiar low-level coding in RPG ILE and the CGIDEV (and CGIDEV2) service programs. The novice IBM i Web developer will have enough client-side technologies to learn, such as HTML, JavaScript, and Cascading Style Sheets, etc. without having to learn a new development environment as well. 

 

Would the mobile device applications be operating only when connected to the network, or should the apps support offline processing? Would a local data store make sense under certain circumstances? How can developers reduce the complexities of data access and transfer? 

 

TS: There is a technology known as Data URLs (aka Data URI) which enables you to encapsulate a static Web page into an object that can be saved and subsequently executed on a smartphone without requiring an Internet connection. A Web site, iWebSaver.com, will [take] a flat HTML document and convert it into a Data URL which will function much like a native i app. 

 

One would use a Data URL in, say, an order-entry application where an order can be tapped into an Internet form. The email application and the browser are tightly coupled on smartphones so that the Submit button would actually evoke a "mailto:" tag that would launch the email application where the message body contains the elements of the order. Hitting the Send button would cause the email message to be placed in the Outbox, and once an Internet connection was subsequently established, the message would automatically transition to the Sent folder. A POP3 client available from www.easy400.net would retrieve the email message and save it as an IFS document, whereupon it could be posted to the enterprise order-entry application. 

 

By using the technique above, storing data on the smartphone is obviated and would simplify "data access and transfer."

____________

 

Ken Singer

CEO and Co-founder

AppCentral

 

Do you think mobile devices should be standardized—perhaps company-issued—or should everyone be allowed to bring their own device (BYOD)? What implications would there be for an environment supporting BYOD?

 

Ken Singer: I'm always surprised when I hear senior executives acknowledge that their company is bowing to the inevitable and accepting the Bring Your Own Device trend. For good or evil, they say, employees will buy their own mobile devices, install their own applications along with the ones their job requires, and use them simultaneously and seamlessly.

 

Isn't this a little short-sighted? Companies should absolutely not accept this trend. They should embrace it.

 

Let's back up a little here. Too many of the naysayers seem to have fond memories of the first wave of enterprise mobility, when companies could choose between the BlackBerry and...well, that was pretty much it. That platform had great email functionality, the necessary contact and calendaring applications (just about the only business apps that everyone needed), and reliable tech support. For purchasing decision-makers, it was a no-brainer.

 

Also, in that world, there was never any doubt about where personal rights ended and company jurisdiction began. The desktop PC belonged to the company. The laptop, even if it traveled with the employee, belonged to the company. And that first generation of BlackBerries belonged to the company—even if employees put their personal data on it and carried it everywhere.

 

As a result, companies didn't really need a separate policy for mobile devices. Sure, your personal contacts were blended with your company connections, and maybe the doctor's appointment showed up in the calendar next to a business meeting, but it was all fairly routine corporate governance. The company owned everything and "locked down" everything.

 

It's a very different world now. Today, there are literally thousands of permutations of device, operating system, firmware version, and operator. Form factors continue to emerge and evolve, while user habits and preferences undergo constant change. We're not just talking smartphones here; the explosion in tablets threatens to make a big chunk of the laptop market obsolete and introduce a whole new set of complications.


Perhaps most importantly, there are hundreds of thousands of mobile applications, with more arriving every day.

 

But the real change is even more fundamental. The unprecedented explosion in mobile functionality, combined with the increasing consumerization of IT, has changed human-technology relationships forever. The simple truth is that by sheer dint of capabilities—what we can do now that we couldn't do before—the mobile device has become a more personal computer than the Personal Computer (the PC) ever was. It's the first true technology appendage to our physical beings, an extension of our very personality.

 

This is one genie that's not going back in the bottle. In fact, ever since the phone went past the three Cs—communication, contact, calendar—it never was in the bottle.

 

So now that employees have countless choices with regard to device, operating system, carrier, and application—and have every intention of exercising those choices—what's an IT department to do?

 

There's no question that this raises a lot of questions. Some involve thorny legal issues: for example, do companies have the right to lock or wipe an employee-liable device if it also contains employer-liable applications and information? Some questions are around policy: Should companies dictate which devices and applications employees can use? Some have to do with resources: Should companies try to monitor and manage everything on every employee's device? And some, of course, just bring headaches: Should companies back up employees' personal data, images, and applications on corporate servers?

 

These are all good questions, and they deserve a fair hearing. But here's the bottom line: The new generation of app-enabled smartphones and tablets really does deliver on its potential. In a recent Forrester report, 75 percent of enterprises said they experienced increased productivity by deploying mobile apps. In fact, with the right policies and processes, companies can save time and money while avoiding management headaches.

 

IT administrators nervous about managing a bizarrely heterogeneous mobile infrastructure should also remember that they really don't need to worry about the device; it's all about the corporate applications and the corporate data. Once they can manage and secure those, they can reap all the benefits. So let's get together and figure out the best ways to do that.

 

Editor's note: The forgoing reply from Ken Singer is a summary of Ken's blog post, "Go Ahead, Bring Your Own Device," that he wrote last April for the AppCentral Web site.

 

I would again like to thank to Bill Gravelle of Boulder, Colorado, an independent consultant at TenMile Solutions, who spent time helping me formulate the questions and devising a list of respondents. I would also like to thank Paul Tuohy of System i Developer, who helped frame the topic, which will be covered in a training track planned for the upcoming RPG & DB2 Summit October 17-19 in St. Louis.

as/400, os/400, iseries, system i, i5/os, ibm i, power systems, 6.1, 7.1, V7, V6R1

Chris Smith

Chris Smith was the Senior News Editor at MC Press Online from 2007 to 2012 and was responsible for the news content on the company's Web site. Chris has been writing about the IBM midrange industry since 1992 when he signed on with Duke Communications as West Coast Editor of News 3X/400. With a bachelor's from the University of California at Berkeley, where he majored in English and minored in Journalism, and a master's in Journalism from the University of Colorado, Boulder, Chris later studied computer programming and AS/400 operations at Long Beach City College. An award-winning writer with two Maggie Awards, four business books, and a collection of poetry to his credit, Chris began his newspaper career as a reporter in northern California, later worked as night city editor for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, and went on to edit a national cable television trade magazine. He was Communications Manager for McDonnell Douglas Corp. in Long Beach, Calif., before it merged with Boeing, and oversaw implementation of the company's first IBM desktop publishing system there. An editor for MC Press Online since 2007, Chris has authored some 300 articles on a broad range of topics surrounding the IBM midrange platform that have appeared in the company's eight industry-leading newsletters. He can be reached at chriswriting@cs.com.

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  • IFS Security – Don’t Leave Your Server Vulnerable

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    Experts agree that one of the most overlooked areas of IBM i security is the Integrated File System. Available since V3R1, the IFS provides access for users carrying nothing more than a user profile and password, so it better be secure! If you believe nothing important is stored on your server's IFS, think again, because it's a conduit to many things, including the Operating System and all of your application libraries and files.
    Watch this important session to learn about securing the IFS, including:
    Why do we care about the IFS?
    Permissions versus Authority
    Root folder access
    Auditing IFS activities
    Read/Write versus *ALLOBJ
    Anti-Virus Considerations

  • Who’s Afraid of Linux on Power, AIX, and VIOS? Not i.

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    This 30-minute recording demystifies Linux on Power, AIX, and VIOS and teaches best practice techniques for maintaining and controlling critical processes and applications running on your Linux, AIX, and VIOS environments.

  • Backup and Recovery Considerations for Security Data and Encrypted Backups

    SB PowerTech WC GenericSecurity expert Carol Woodbury is joined by the newest member of the HelpSystems team: Debbie Saugen.
    Debbie is recognized worldwide as an expert on IBM i backup and recovery, disaster recovery, and high availability. For decades, Debbie has helped 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.

    Watch the webinar today!

     

  • Profound.js: The Agile Approach to Legacy Modernization

    SB Profound WC Generic

    In this presentation, Alex Roytman (CEO, Profound Logic) and Liam Allan (2016 COMMON Student Innovation Award winner) 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

    Watch this Webcast NOW!

  • The Truth About Viruses on IBM i

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    Protecting your data from viruses or malicious code is not an unfamiliar concept, but understanding how these threats can affect your Power Systems server may not be as easy to grasp.
    There are many myths about viruses and IBM i—including the belief that the system is immune. Many Power Systems managers still don’t see viruses as a risk because they see them as a Windows threat. While this was once true, today’s connected environments operate under different rules.
    It’s time to take action and protect IBM i and the network that connects to it. This on-demand webinar will help you gain an understanding of the relationships between:

    - Viruses and the integrated file system (IFS)
    - Power Systems and Windows viruses
    - PC-based anti-virus scanning vs native IBM i scanning
    There are a number of ways you can minimize your exposure to viruses. Learn the facts to ensure you're fully-protected.

  • Business Process Automation with Robot

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    Automate Process Flow Through the Data Center
    Typical “computerized” business processes are a combination of multiple schedulers, operational scripts, CL programs, and manual file checking, all backed up with the trusty runbook.
    Is there a better way to manage business processes?
    It is a common misconception that a business process cannot be automated if it’s too complicated or requires that someone verify each step. We’re here to tell you there is a better way to manage your business—process automation is possible!
    Take 30 minutes to learn the options for automating your business process flow and how they fit into your data center processing, including cases of:
    - Complex or iterative schedules
    - Event-driven dependencies
    - Multi-platform dependencies
    - Dynamically calculated parameters
    - Exception notification
    - SAP and Oracle JD Edwards EnterpriseOne integration
    How do I know business process automation is effective?
    If you have any doubts that automating complex business processes will improve your level of service, you’ll also hear a success story from the senior systems administrator at Trident Seafoods who embraced automation using the Robot solution and is reeling in the benefits!

  • Find Out Why You Should Keep Data on IBM i

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    It’s simple. IBM i is the most reliable, securable, and powerful platform to house your critical business data.
    IBM i was built for business and has added features and functionality over the years to keep up with modern business needs. You can trust it to run your business, access your data in real-time, and keep your data secure. Plus, IBM i can scale to your business and handle all of your critical data.
    Can your other platforms do that?
    We didn’t think so.
    Watch this 30-minute webinar to learn why you should keep your data on IBM i, including:
    - IBM i is reliable
    - IBM i offers fast and secure real-time data access
    - IBM i helps your business prepare for tomorrow
    Plus, we demonstrate how Sequel Data Access helps you modernize IBM i data access and meet your business needs.

  • Mobile Apps for IBM i Monitoring

    SB Halcyon WC Generic

    Overnight and weekend support can be a minefield for operations teams tasked with attempting to maintain system availability, especially when they must rely on laptop-based VPN access—where a delayed response can prove costly.
    With over 2 billion smartphone users worldwide, it’s perfectly reasonable for you to use the BYOD movement to your advantage and start managing your IT infrastructure from the palm of your hand. Watch this on-demand webinar to learn how Halcyon has modernized this crucial layer of support by introducing mobile applications for IBM i monitoring.
    You’ll hear how one company has used the Enterprise Console mobile app to provide a valuable audit trail and speed up response time. You’ll also learn:
    - The benefits of mobile apps
    - How to respond to critical messages within seconds
    - How to get notifications your way on your device
    - How to set up escalation, ensuring alerts are always handled in a timely fashion
    If your team is responsible for managing IBM i applications and services after regular business hours, you won’t want to miss this one!

     

  • Speed Up Your Manufacturing and Distribution with Paperless Processes

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    Your ERP system —whether it’s JDE World, Enterprise One, Infor, Epicor, Microsoft Dynamics, VAI, or anything else—is essential to maintaining your company’s key business information and processes. But you’re constantly generating and receiving paper and electronic documents, too, and it’s hard to keep everything straight. So, you wind up chasing documents and data around—and keeping your customers and vendors waiting.
    It’s time to make life easier and make your customers happier. With an electronic document management system, you can integrate with your ERP to keep all of your key documents and data in one spot.
    And when all of your documents are stored digitally, you can speed up your processes and get key documents (like purchase orders and invoices) approved faster.
    Watch the webinar and learn how to:
    - Integrate a document management system with your ERP
    - Capture all of your key shop floor, order, and shipment documents in one central repository
    - Improve customer, vendor, and employee response times
    - Accomplish more work without adding additional staff
    It’s time to deliver your shipments faster and keep your customers happy by streamlining your paperwork processes.

  • Dock Door Signing Made Easy

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    How long does dock door signing take your organization? Too long if you’re still using manual processes and paper.
    From generating to collating to printing to routing to signing, manual processes and paper slow down your organization—and your delivery times. Electronic documents and digital signature capture can change all of that. And your organization will be able to create, route, approve (with digital signatures), and retrieve documents faster.
    Learn how digital signature capture helps you:
    - Eliminate steps in your approval processes
    - Improve auditability
    - Reduce customer service time to resolve questions
    Plus, we’ll demonstrate how digitizing signatures and documents will reduce your organization’s costs over the long haul.

  • 5 Reasons Developers Love Robot Schedule

    SB HelpSystems WC Generic

    Why AppDev Should Embrace Automation
    Your application development team is an expensive resource that works hard to improve business processes, yet more and more IBM i shops are putting AppDev in charge of managing day-to-day system operations.
    Instead of taking their attention away from the website, business analytics, mobile, security, SQL data access, and more, streamline operations with automation and build in notifications so your teams have visibility into processing when they need it, and can manage the rest by exception.
    In just 30 minutes, our experts will show how AppDev teams can take advantage of Robot automated operations on IBM i and beyond so they can:
    - Stop programming for multi-platform job and file event dependencies
    - Stop struggling with incorrect parameter values
    - Stop wondering where to fit a process into daily, weekly, or monthly cycles
    - Stop the on-call headaches, the firefighting, and the lack of progress cycle
    - Go ahead, give your AppDev team a productivity boost!

  • Affordable Query Tool for Software Developers

    SB NGS WC Generic

    NGS’ Software Developer Kit (SDK) gives IBM i developers comprehensive query, dynamic mobile reporting, analytics and Web report design features at an affordable cost. Install and create meaningful outputs for managers in one day! Web page and portal integration, email, FTP are included.
    The $895* SDK includes a one user license, online training, user manuals, one year of software maintenance; toll-free support and online incident reporting.
    - Want to modernize beyond Query/400 and PC files transfers?
    - Need a Web reporting solution without the learning curve and overhead of DB2 Web Query?
    - Have many reporting needs, but a tight budget and small staff?
    View the demo and request a FREE TRIAL of the SDK.
    * Limited time offer.

  • Your introduction to RCAC and Authority Collection

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    IBM has provided us with two powerful and very exciting security enhancements in the last two versions of IBM i.

    Scott Forstie of IBM joins Carol Woodbury to demonstrate and describe the V7R2 feature called Row and Column Access Control (RCAC), which extends how you define which users have access to specific rows in a database file. RCAC also provides a way to mask data for all or selected users.

    The recently released V7R3 adds Authority Collection. Authority Collection provides organizations and vendors with the ability to know exactly what authority is required to perform a task, eliminating the guesswork. Gone is the need to set *PUBLIC authority on database files to *ALL or to automatically grant service accounts *ALLOBJ special authority just because you’re unsure of what authority is required.

    Watch Scott and Carol as they discuss these and other new security features delivered in V7R2 and V7R3.

  • ​Getting Started with IBM i Security: Event Auditing

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    Learn why event auditing is necessary and how to configure it
    Experts’ fears surrounding the risks associated with poor configuration were recently confirmed by the 2016 State of IBM i Security Study. Published annually, the results reveal most Power Systems lack adequate security controls and auditing measures.
    In this fast-paced webinar series, leading experts Robin Tatam and Carol Woodbury share insight into critical areas of IBM i security.
    This second session of the series introduces event auditing, with Robin Tatam covering the basics and more:
    - Why auditing is necessary
    - Determine if IBM i auditing is currently active
    - How to configure auditing with one simple command
    - What audit events are recorded (and which are missed!)
    - How high availability (HA) applications often make critical events disappear
    - Event reporting and real-time alerting

  • Getting Started with IBM i Security: Securing PC Access

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    Protect your system from unauthorized network access through readily available PC tools

    Experts’ fears surrounding the risks associated with poor configuration were recently confirmed by the 2016 State of IBM i Security Study. Published annually, the results reveal most Power Systems lack adequate security controls and auditing measures.

    In this fast-paced webinar series, leading experts Robin Tatam and Carol Woodbury share insight into critical areas of IBM i security.

    This on-demand webinar will show you how well-known services like FTP and ODBC enable users to access sensitive data without oversight or restrictions. Robin Tatam will also explain what exit programs are and how you can use them to protect your organization.

  • No Time for IBM I Security? No Problem

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    “Security” is definitely on your IT staff’s to-do list, but how often does this item get checked off?

    IT doesn’t have enough time for security—the 2016 IBM i Security Study proves it. The trouble is that data security isn’t a set-and-forget project. Data security on your IBM i requires on-going attention and expertise.

    In this on-demand webinar, you’ll learn how to save time and work more effectively. We’re cutting to the core of IBM i security by outlining the simple strategy developed by our experts.

    You’ll see a straightforward approach to understanding and addressing risk to your IBM i data. We’ll also show you how our world-class security services help people protect business-critical data when they don’t have the time, resources, or knowledge to tackle IBM i security on their own.

  • Getting Started with IBM i Security: System Values

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    Set the tone for data protection with security-relevant system values

    Experts’ fears surrounding the risks associated with poor configuration were recently confirmed by the 2016 State of IBM i Security Study. Published annually, the results reveal most Power Systems lack adequate security controls and auditing measures.

    In this fast-paced webinar series, leading experts Robin Tatam and Carol Woodbury share insight into critical areas of IBM i security.

    The series opens with an introduction to security-relevant system values.

    System values are one of the fundamental elements of IBM i security. The security system values enable you to “set the tone” of security on your IBM i, enforce password composition rules, and enable auditing. Watch this on-demand webinar to see Carol Woodbury describe these system values and provide guidance on their best practice settings.

  • Getting Started with IBM i Security: Integrated File System (IFS)

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    The IFS is one of the most commonly overlooked aspects of IBM i security
    Experts’ fears surrounding the risks associated with poor configuration were recently confirmed by the 2016 State of IBM i Security Study. Published annually, the results reveal most Power Systems lack adequate security controls and auditing measures.
    In this fast-paced webinar series, leading experts Robin Tatam and Carol Woodbury share insight into critical areas of IBM i security.
    This recorded session has Robin Tatam introducing IFS security:
    - Defining IFS
    - How the IFS is configured
    - Common IFS security mistakes
    - What a virus can do to IBM i through the IFS
    - Tracking user activity

  • ​7 Habits of Highly Secure Organizations

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    Everyone knows that cyber security is important, but getting started on the road to data protection and compliance can be confusing and intimidating. Understanding common vulnerabilities helps you focus your attention and resources on the areas that need the most help.
    We all want “best-practice” security, but what are top organizations doing to achieve and maintain it?
    Watch this webinar to learn the details about how to develop the seven habits that are part of daily life for secure organizations. You’ll learn how to:
    - Break the Ostrich Syndrome
    - Develop a Security Policy
    - Assess Current Standing
    - Perform Security Event Logging and Review
    - Use “Best of Breed” Technologies
    - Monitor for Ongoing Compliance
    - Plan for the Future
    This on-demand webinar examines what each of these habits means to IBM i, and helps you make sure that you don’t become the next security statistic.

  • An Introduction to PCI Compliance on IBM Power Systems

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    "From the world's largest corporations to small Internet stores, compliance with the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is vital for all merchants who accept credit cards, online or offline, because nothing is more important than keeping your customer’s payment card data secure.” — PCI Security Standards Council
    Complying with the PCI standard is a normal part of doing business in today’s credit-centric world. But, PCI applies to multiple platforms.
    The challenge becomes how to map the general PCI requirements to a specific platform, such as IBM i. And, more importantly, how can you maintain—and prove—compliance?
    Watch this webinar to understand:
    - How PCI requirements relate to IBM i systems
    - IBM i-specific barriers to compliance
    - How PowerTech security solutions help you fulfill PCI requirements, meet compliance guidelines, and satisfy auditors
    You’ll leave with the knowledge and confidence you need to evaluate PCI compliance requirements and prepare your IBM i system for today’s regulatory challenges.

  • Implementing Multiple Layers of Defense

    SB PowerTech WC Generic

    Your IBM i holds a massive amount of data. In most organizations, that data constitutes a mission-critical and high-value asset.

    How do you adequately protect the data residing on your IBM i, given its value to your organization? IBM has provided us with many options for protecting our data, but it’s now always clear how to select and implement the best options for your circumstances.

    This recorded webinar describes IBM i’s different data security options, along with implementation recommendations and tips for getting started. Carol Woodbury, one of the world’s top IBM i security experts, also provides considerations to help you determine how many layers of security are right for your organization.

  • 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 Generic

    Watch 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!
    Watch this Webinar Now!

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

    SB Profound PPL 5491


    Modern, 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.
    We will demonstrate how Profound UI:
    - Goes beyond simple screen-scraping to truly modernize your RPG applications
    - Uses RPG Open Access and your own RPG code and development talent to modernize
    - Supports rapid development with an easy-to-use, drag-and-drop Designer
    - Integrates with our on-the-fly modernization, mobile development, and Enterprise Modernization solutions

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

    SB HelpSystems ROBOT GenericHigh availability for IBM i has been a hot topic in 2017, jumping 20% from our 2016 survey to take the #2 seat on IT priority lists just behind cybersecurity. And no surprise with these two topics so closely tied to your most valuable asset: your irreplaceable business data.
    With major airline outages last year and the recent ransomware attacks, you 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—Tom Huntington, Matt Staddler, and Cole Ragland—deliver lively discussion around the top high availability issues of today, including:

    • 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

    There are no do-overs when it comes to your data. Once it’s gone, it’s gone...unless you have a data replication layer in place to protect it. Learn the value of these strategic solutions and how you can implement them in a hurry—watch now!

     

  • 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 5541Roses are red, your UIs are green...It's time to make your apps proud to be seen!
    Whether 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.
    In this webinar, you'll learn how you can use both Profound UI and Profound.js to:

    • 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

    This webinar will include a live product demonstration and Q&A with the presenters.

    Download and watch today!

  • 2017 IBM i Marketplace Revealed

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    IBM i is one of technology’s best-kept secrets, with little information available about what IBM i users are doing on this server. Even companies that use this technology struggle to explain to their own teams what IBM i stands for and who else is using it.
    The IBM i Marketplace Survey—now in its 3rd year—was designed to solve this problem. Watch this on-demand webinar for the exclusive results of the 2017 survey. IBM i Champion Tom Huntington is joined by a panel of technology experts to discuss year-over-year trends and new insights. The panel will discuss:

    • What other platforms do you run alongside IBM i?
    • What programming and Open Source languages are you using?
    • What are your top IT issues?
    • What version of POWER and what OS level is most prevalent?
    • Are you expanding your usage of IBM i?
    • Is IBM i a good ROI?

    The expert panel will provide industry insight and comments about the results. When the webinar concludes, you’ll get access to the full results.

  • Accelerating Programmer Productivity with Sequel

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    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_Generic

    Everyone wants a piece of your business data. But keeping up with data access requests in the era of constantly growing data is a challenge. As a result, your IT department can be overwhelmed, inundated, and constantly needing to play catch-up.
    It’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 in 2018.
    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_Generic

    Let’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 noted 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_Generic

    There’s a better way to run your queries. With an advanced query tool like Sequel Data Access, you can deliver the IBM i data your organization needs quickly and efficiently—without the hang-ups.
    In this session, we’ll address common frustrations with Query/400, discuss major data access and distribution trends, and help you understand what to look for in a more advanced query tool.
    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
    • Watch the webinar and learn why you shouldn’t just settle for Query/400.

     

  • How to Manage Documents the Easy Way

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    What happens when your company depends on an outdated document management strategy?
    Everything is harder.
    Capturing documents means scanning and filing—which takes you away from tasks that actually matter to the business. Managing documents means sorting through an endless sea of shared folders or filing cabinets—and sometimes documents can’t be found. Distributing documents means following a frustrating, manual process for routing documents internally and sending them to vendors and customers.
    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_Generic

    Get 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.

  • Monitor VIOS (and AIX) from Your IBM i

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    Virtual I/O Server (VIOS) runs on AIX and allows you to share input/output resources across logical partitions. The health of your VIOS server is critical to the performance of all your Power server partitions, so monitoring it is a must.
    Our 2017 IBM i Marketplace Survey Results uncovered a cool trend: an increasing number of IBM i shops are running AIX instances alongside IBM i on Power Systems servers. We like to see these systems playing nicely together on the same server, though it does shine a spotlight on shared resources.
    During this 30-minute recording, our experts demonstrate the new VIOS and AIX monitoring capabilities in Robot Monitor. You’ll learn about:

    • The top AIX metrics that impact VIOS
    • Real-time monitoring with dashboard displays
    • Threshold and notification options
    • Identifying trends to better allocate resources

    With VIOS/AIX running alongside IBM i, you need visibility into your entire Power environment.
    Watch now to see how Robot Monitor can get you there!

     

     

  • Overwhelmed by Operating Systems?

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    You’re responsible for looking after Windows, Linux, AIX, and VIOS, but you worry that you don’t understand their complexities well enough to make your job effective—or easy.
    No problem! Simplify the management of multiple operating systems and applications without becoming experts in each area.
    In 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 and shows how easy monitoring multiple operating systems and applications can be using point-and-click technology.

     

  • Real-Time Disk Monitoring with Robot Monitor

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    When IBM i disk space pulls its notorious disappearing act, you don’t have time to waste figuring out how the trick is done. You need to know when disk space starts to disappear and where it has gone before system performance and productivity start to suffer.
    Looking behind the curtain to keep a close eye on disk space—especially in a multi-partition environment—can have its challenges, but every good admin can have an ace up their sleeve. 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

    Start seeing through the sleight of hand and get instant visibility into disk usage. Add advance warning of potential threats and—abracadabra!—you’ll reduce the risk of disk space depletion and curb the sudden flurry of activity to clean things up.

     

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

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    Still following manual processes for extracting and transferring data across platforms? You’re not alone. Many business still depend on RPG for their daily business processes and report generation. And that leads to a lot of manual effort.
    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, you’ll see a demonstration of how data automation software from HelpSystems will help you finally stop re-keying data.

     

  • Survey Results: 2018 Top Cybersecurity Risks and Mitigation Strategies

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    Protecting your organization from cyberthreats has never been more important—or more difficult.
    IT pros have many tactics to choose from, but time (and budgets!) are not unlimited. The key is prioritizing risks and identifying the most effective ways to mitigate the danger.
    In 2018, HelpSystems surveyed more than 600 IT and cybersecurity professionals to find out what security exploits loom largest and what strategies they’re turning to for protection.
    In this on-demand webinar, our team of cybersecurity security experts analyzes results. You’ll learn about:

    • Security strategies your peers are most interested in implementing
    • How managers and executives prioritize security
    • Who is responsible for cybersecurity at organizations around the world
    • Where IT pros turn for assistance with security

    You'll also get practical tips for using this data to drive cybersecurity conversations at your organization.

     

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

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    When it comes to IBM® Rational® Open Access: RPG Edition (also known as RPG Open Access), 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"

    This Webinar features IBM i expert Alison Butterill, and Profound Logic’s Brian May and Alex Roytman.

     

    Watch the On-demand Webinar Now!

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

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    Do your users keep paperwork on their desk until it's processed?
    Are people constantly removing documents from filing cabinets?
    What happens when your company depends on an outdated document management strategy?
    Too much paper is wasted—approximately 1,000 pages per month per worker.
    Attempts to locate documents in endless filing cabinets drive your employees crazy.
    And distributing documents to customers, vendors, and business partners 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

    Plus, our experts will provide a live demonstration of how implementing a document management solution will quickly solve your paper-based problems, so you can be more

  • IBM i: It’s Not Just AS/400

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    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

     

  • TRY the One Package That Solves All Your Document Design and Printing Challenges

    SB CYBRA PPL 5382

    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. Why support 5 different products, when you can do it all with MarkMagic?

    - Drive over 450 different printer types.
    - Create invoices, statements, checks.
    - Set dynamic rules that transform output on the fly.
    - Conditionally distribute via Email, fax, or PDF.
    - Integrate with your current applications in minutes.
    - Preview printing on screen.
    - Native System i, Windows, AIX, Linux.

    Try MarkMagic today for free

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

    SB HelpSystems SC 5413

    Disaster protection is vital to every business. Yet, it often consists of patched together procedures that are prone to error. From automatic backups to data encryption to media management, Robot automates the routine (yet often complex) 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 5413

    Managing messages on your IBM i can be more than a full-time job if you have to do it manually. Messages need a response and resources must be monitored—often over multiple systems and across platforms. 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
    Keep your critical applications and data available. Try the Robot Message Management Solution FREE for 30 days.

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

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    The thought of printing, distributing, and storing iSeries reports manually may reduce you to tears. Paper and labor costs associated with report generation can spiral out of control. Mountains of paper threaten to swamp your files. Robot 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

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    For over 30 years, Robot has been a leader in systems management for IBM i. With batch job creation and scheduling at its core, the Robot Job Scheduling Solution reduces the opportunity for human error and helps you maintain service levels, automating even the biggest, most complex runbooks.
    Manage your job schedule with the Robot Job Scheduling Solution. brKey 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.

  • MS Office Connector for Query/400...FREE Trial!

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    NGS' Qport Office enables Windows users to run IBM Query/400 queries to:
    - Create and update Excel spreadsheets and Access databases
    - Create Word documents
    - Send to Windows screen and PC printers
    No query conversion is required. Works with i5/OS V5R1 & above. Installs in minutes!
    If you don’t have a budget to replace IBM Query/400, but want your users to have one click enhanced output of their queries.... Request the online license agreement and product download instructions today!
    Offer good through December 31, 2016.

  • Control and Monitor User Access from Desktop PCs (ODBC, FTP)

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    Protect your company by monitoring network traffic to your IBM i servers with the industry-leading exit program, PowerTech Network Security.
    Without visibility into IBM i's exit points, your users could be viewing, changing, or even deleting sensitive data—and you wouldn’t know!
    Network Security lets you monitor and control access to over 30 exit points, including:

    - ODBC
    - FTP
    - DDM
    - Remote command
    - Fileserve (mapped drives to IFS)
    It’s easy to set up custom access rules and get notified in real-time when security events occur.
    Stop “back door” access today. Try Network Security free for 30 days.

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

    SB DDL Systems 5429

    More than a paging system - ACO MONITOR is a complete systems management solution for your Power Systems running IBM i. Managing the complexities of today's operating systems, business applications, and networks challenges even the most knowledgeable IT professionals. The cost to an enterprise of unplanned downtime, loss of human expertise during sick leave or vacation, and system/application or environmental failure can be devastating. 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 (and staff) efficiency.