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BCD's WebSmart Presto Instantly Web Enables System i 5250 Applications with No Coding

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Users can keep their System i relevant by instantly Web enabling all their green screen applications to modern browser based applications with the new WebSmart Presto from Business Computer Design (BCD). Presto is BCD's newest offering that instantly modernizes 5250 applications while offering a flexible pricing model.

Modernization means many things, and now System i shops can simplify their entire modernization process by selecting integrated components from one integrated suite. Users select one component, several integrated components, or BCD's complete ClearPath Modernization suite. They can select the components they need now and have the option of adding others if and when their business needs change.

BCD has introduced WebSmart Presto as a new solution designed to accelerate and simplify 5250 application modernization. WebSmart Presto will be available in June for general availability. It uses advanced Web enabling technology to instantly create a browser-based interface over all RPG and COBOL applications.

The new modern look with improved UI meet the requirements users and management are increasingly demanding. Web enabling is more cost effective and faster to implement than rewriting applications. Presto includes a development environment giving users full access to the Web enabled screens to customize the UI and extend the screens by adding advanced functionality.

BCD, a market leader of System i and multi-platform application modernization software has developed WebSmart Presto as completely non-invasive to existing green screen applications. 5250 applications are deployed to the Web with no changes to RPG, COBOL, or DDS source code and no need to recompile any programs. Users do not even need to have the display file source since existing programs are completely unaffected. In a matter of minutes all 5250 applications can become instantly Web enabled.

Out-of-the-box and in less than an hour users can install Presto and have all green screen applications and menus Web enabled. Users simply start the pre-configured Apache Web server instance, enter an IP address, and they are up and running. 5250 screens are dynamically presented as Web pages with absolutely no 5250 OLTP as it uses 100 percent batch processes.

According to Duncan Kenzie, CTO of BCD's software development group, "It is hard for many organizations to justify the resources and effort needed to completely rewrite applications in RPG CGI, Java, .Net, or PHP. In most cases people aren't looking to make a drastic change to their applications. These applications have been in production for years and their users are comfortable with them. They do, however, want improvements like browser based access and UI changes including drop-down boxes, images, Google maps, calendars, and the ability to navigate through applications using a mouse instead of a keyboard, all of which are very important for new users. We've made it very easy for them to accomplish this with Presto."

Evolves With Your Needs

While Presto instantly creates a Web-based UI for 5250 green screen applications, its value in terms of re-engineering user application environments doesn't stop there. Presto is extremely flexible and allows users to further enhance their Web-enabled screens at their own pace, the company says.

Presto enables users to go as far as they choose or as far as their current skills allow. Presto includes a Windows-based IDE that offers full control and access to the client-side code to integrate new UI elements such as pop-up calendars, item images, drop down boxes, hover-overs, Google maps, graphs and more. Global options including skins for the look and feel of screens, and function key appearance options allow users to enhance all 5250 screens in a single operation. Presto provides significantly faster results than tools that simply Web-enable screens one at a time. By providing users with full access to the HTML of the automatically Web enabled screens Presto lets users extend the applications further by adding AJAX and SOA / Web Services functionality. Users can also add data from other sources, servers and databases.

Presto can be the base tool for organizations using the System i to get on the road to simplified modernization. Users can go even further with BCD by combining Presto with WebSmart PHP or WebSmart ILE to create new System i and multi-platform Web applications. Users can add other integrated BCD modernization solutions including; Nexus Portal for controlled and secured access to applications and documents for users, clients and trading partners; Clover Query for real-time Web query and drill-down report development, and Catapult for automated report and document distribution with Web archiving and indexing. With BCD it's now possible to start with instant Web enablement and advance to complete Web application and business process modernization using an integrated suite of products supported by one vendor.

A Global and Enterprise-Class Solution

Presto supports multiple languages. Organizations with applications deployed around the world can use it to modernize their System i applications across the entire enterprise. Presto also provides "environments," which are sets of global settings for a group of programs and screens on a client system that would typically comprise an application. Environment versioning allows ISVs and Business Partners for example; to make a single application have multiple customized presentations so each client can have a separate, tailored environment.

Presto does not require any additional software or middleware. All end users need to run Presto Web enabled applications is a browser. No PC client is needed. Presto uses the free HTTP server powered by Apache that is included with every System i.

Application Frameworks Included with Full Featured Portal

BCD offers Nexus Portal (license-free portal for unlimited users with paid annual maintenance) with Presto. While it is an option, it is strongly recommended as Nexus integrates with Presto and includes tight security with controlled access to applications and documents. End-users only see the applications and content they are authorized to see. The portal provides secured single point access while becoming a secured front end to Presto Web enabled applications and others. The Web menu system helps integrate Web enabled applications with existing Web pages or apps. Nexus also includes value added portlets such as a Executive Dashboards, Spool file viewer, PDF creation, Calendars and Enterprise Content Management (ECM) that allows scanned documents, images, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, invoices to be added, secured and shared.

Innovative Pricing Options

BCD offers unique licensing options including "base licensing." This is a fixed price by tier and includes a certain number concurrent seats for each tier making it a more affordable way to license. Users can add more seats at a lower cost. "Concurrent licensing" provides for ordering a specific number of concurrent seats and clients may add more when needed. "Unlimited user licensing" is for organizations with a lot of end-users and it is very affordable in comparison to basic concurrent licensing. To see which licensing works best for you, call BCD.

If you have questions on WebSmart Presto or would like to schedule a live Web demo or attend a Webinar, contact BCD at 630-986-0800, or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

ClearPath Modernization Suite

WebSmart Presto is a component of BCD's ClearPath Modernization Suite. Modernization means different things to different people and BCD is the only System i vendor who offers a family of award winning integrated modernization components that allow users to build their own customized solution. Visit www.bcdsoftware.com/clearpath for details. (Take BCD's modernization profile and receive a free customized modernization report www.bcdsoftware.com/profile and a $1,000 BCD software certificate).

Modernization Means Different Things to Different Shops

BCD has introduced a simplified and more affordable way for IBM System i shops to meet their modernization objectives by selecting specific components from a suite of award winning integrated modernization solutions to meet their needs.

Modernization means different things to different people; to some it means instantly converting legacy applications to Web applications, to others it means re-purposing legacy applications by adding new functionality, SOA, and Web Services without changing any programs. To some it means creating brand new System i or multi-platform Web applications using ILE RPG or open source PHP. Other see modernization as building and implementing a Web portal for secure access to enterprise applications and documents for employees, clients and trading partners, and for others it means creating real-time Web reports, drill-down queries and executive dashboards, some see it as automating report distribution with Web archiving and indexing. Yet many see it as a combination of these needs.

Modernization does mean many things, and now System i shops can simplify their entire modernization process by selecting integrated components from one integrated vendor suite. Users select one component, a couple of integrated components or BCD's complete ClearPath Modernization suite. They are in control as they select the components they need now and have the option of adding others if and when their business needs change.

"BCD has been planning this integrated modernization suite for quite some time now and with the addition of WebSmart Presto for instant Web enabling, we now cover all the modernization components clients need making ClearPath truly unique," said Eric Figura, BCD's director of sales and marketing. "Nexus Portal is the centerpiece for all of BCD's ClearPath modernization components. And we offer Nexus license free with paid annual maintenance. This makes it both a very easy decision for our clients and a great starting point in their modernization process. With no other true System i portals in the market other than IBM's WebSphere portal, Nexus is very well received. In comparison, Nexus is easier to install, has a much smaller footprint, and is license free for unlimited users," Figura said.

"Modernizing with solutions that communicate with each other and dealing with one single vendor who assures seamless support for your customized solution makes this a very smart choice," Figura said. "It's a choice that will save organizations significant time and money because BCD's ClearPath components are engineered to work together and are affordably priced. And unlike some other offerings, users only pay for the components they need," he said.

BCD's ClearPath Modernization Suite is a complete solution that fully modernizes System i applications and business processes. BCD has integrated six, nearly all award-winning solutions, to form their suite. Now users can start with just the solutions they need and add other components as their business needs expand. BCD lets everyone prove each component on their system, on a free trial basis to confirm they are on the right path. And offer excellent savings, the more integrated solutions selected, the greater the savings.

BCD's integrated ClearPath Modernization Suite includes these solutions:

WebSmart PHP and WebSmart ILE: Rapid Web application development tools for creating System i and multi-platform Web applications and Web services. Apps can be hosted on your System i, Linux, Unix or Windows and access DB2, MS SQL Server and MySQL databases.

WebSmart Presto: Instant Web-enabled 5250 green screen applications with no code changes and Zero 5250 OLTP.

Nexus Portal: Secure single point Web access to your Enterprise information. Build Web portals for clients, employees and partners to access applications, executive dashboards, documents, calendars, Web menus, spool file viewer and more.

License-free Clover Query: Real-time System i Web queries, reports and graphical drill downs that can be created by end users or programmers.

SmartCharts: Create Web accessible flash charts and graphs (pie, bar, gauges, funnels, KPIs) over DB2 and other data for graphical representation of data.

License Free Catapult: Automated report and document distribution with Web archiving and indexing. Create PDFs, Excel, add Form Overlays, Split reports, Email, Fax and Print and more. Learn more at http://www.bcdsoftware.com/clearpath.

KMR Systems Experience

Michael G. Galligan, KMR Systems' president and CEO, and an IBM VIP member (Vertical Industry Program), had this to say about his experience with BCD and BCD's ClearPath Modernization Suite.

"KMR Systems considered many System i modernization approaches before making the strategic decision to go with BCD. Their ClearPath integrated modernization suite offers state of the art products that made our offerings cutting edge. We're now providing modern solutions to satisfy the needs of our Union and Benefits clients across the country. Our new modernized application suite, which preferably runs on the secure and reliable System i, allows us to outperform our competitors on other platforms. We now have an open source product that expands our capabilities through sharing with other open source products. We're extremely happy with the excellent support from BCD, and as an added bonus, the cost was reasonable."

Users may take BCD's online Modernization Questionnaire at http://www.bcdsoftware.com/profile to help understand which ClearPath components they will need to achieve their modernization goals. Based on user answers, BCD will create and send a customized modernization report, including the ClearPath components they'll need to achieve their goals, along with costs, possible professional services and promotional incentives.

For questions about ClearPath Suite, or to schedule a live Web demo or attend a Webinar, please contact BCD at 630-986-0800, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About BCD

BCD is one of the most successful software organizations in the IBM System i space. BCD has proudly received 35+ industry awards for software excellence. They have 30 years of experience in the IBM midrange marketplace and to date over 10,000 organizations have licensed over 30,000 BCD software solutions worldwide. BCD is a member of IBM's System i ISV Advisory Council and is an IBM Advanced Business Partner. All of BCD's key solutions are included on IBM's System i Developer Roadmap and are IBM Server Proven.

Business Computer Design (BCD)

BCD is a Quadrant Software company and one of the most successful software organizations in the IBM i marketplace. The companies have a combined 60 years in the IBM i marketplace and have successfully helped thousands of organizations worldwide modernize. Together, Quadrant and BCD help customers maximize their investment in IBM i with their industry leading web development, mobilization, spool file beautification and document distribution tools. Their customers and partners around the world are leaders in key markets such as finance, manufacturing, transportation, retail and healthcare.
Quadrant and BCD are part of the Quadrant group of companies that also includes Netlert, which develops an Avaya call center performance analysis solution, and SoftBase, which provides application testing and tuning solutions for IBM's DB2 database utilizing the OS/390 and z/OS operating systems.
For more information, please visit http://www.bcdsoftware.com
and http://www.quadrantsoftware.com.


 

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