Sidebar

Using JNI to Call RPG from Java

RPG
Typography
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

Wouldn’t it be nice to dump all your RPG and C code and develop all your applications in Java? That suggestion should raise a few eyebrows from discerning developers. The fact is that it’s not a completely “caffeinated” world yet and it’s not likely to be for quite some time. Many programmers still prefer a native 5250 user interface over a Web browser or client/server user interface, and others are chained to an OS/400 version that does not have a Java Virtual Machine (JVM). So, in order to be competitive in these markets (assuming this is your concern), you must provide support for these options for a prospective customer. Yet it could become cost-prohibitive to maintain two separate versions of your software. Additionally, until the recent release (V4R4), Java performance precluded developing serious (competitive-edge) applications. So what is a developer to do?

Ever Heard of Java Native Interface?

A little jewel known as Java Native Interface (JNI) enables you to reuse procedural code written in languages such as RPG IV or C as native methods in Java classes. That is to say, you can use RPG subprocedures as plug-ins for Java functions. The native methods, however, must be developed as ILE service program functions or procedures to be accessible using JNI. A service program is essentially a Dynamic Link Library (DLL) on the AS/400. All JNI services are provided via an AS/400 service program QJVAJNI in the QSYS library, with roughly 216 functions. But why choose JNI over dynamic program calls and a pure Java solution?

The advantage of using JNI is that both the calling program and the called program run in the same process (job) on the AS/400 system while the other methods start a new process (job). This makes JNI calls faster at startup time and less resource-intensive. However, because Java applications run in the Technology Independent Machine Interface (TIMI) and user native methods require a user address space to run, some overhead is required initially to create a user environment that uses 16-byte address pointers instead of the 8-byte pointers used below TIMI. So what does this all mean? It simply means that your reasons for using JNI should be based on more than performance.

Your reason may be the need to preserve a large investment in legacy code. However, a Java toolbox class will enable a dynamic program call, right? And, as stated,


JNI requires the native procedures to be in a service program before they can be addressed as native methods, meaning that you might have to do some reengineering of your existing code to translate it into a service program consisting of a set of subprocedures. How much reengineering you’ll have to do will be based on the modularity of your existing code. So where is the preservation?

Why Use JNI?

At this point, you should be asking yourself, “Why use JNI if I have to rework my code anyway? Why not just do a Java Toolbox program call?” There are two reasons why you would want to use JNI over a pure Java solution and a Java Toolbox program dynamic call. For one, the function required does not exist as a bindable Java option, and the Java Toolbox program call does not yield the required level of performance. (JNI does create some runtime overhead, but it is minimal compared to a Java Toolbox program call.) Another reason is that you must provide “caffeine-free” access to your application to be competitive in serving less developed IS shops (i.e., you must be able to provide a marketable solution where Java is not an accepted standard). In today’s AS/400 applications market, that means being able to provide a user interface access paradigm that can be adapted to both the older green-screen style of access and the newer browser-based access method.

However, you can’t afford to develop core functionality in some ILE native methods and then turn around and develop the same code in Java. Given that you should be addressing the same back-end database using either method, you can ensure better data integrity by being consistent in addressing and handling data with the same data access functions. Keeping features in sync between two releases is difficult enough without having multiple versions (one pure Java and one totally “caffeine-free”) of the same product. JNI allows you to code your back-office code in RPG to be accessed directly from both a Java front-end and an RPG front-end.

What’s the Plan?

You should review the following factors that will determine the amount of effort required to reengineer your existing code for JNI native methods:

• How modular is your code?

• What is the lowest level of OS/400 you are required to support?

• How much data must be shuffled back and forth?

• What is the required response time of the application?

• Must results be real-time, or is batch update allowed?

Answering these questions will determine whether only JNI-level access is needed, client/server data queues or Sockets are required (with the data queue or Socket server task running in background), or batch update is necessary. In truth, your solution will probably lie in the combination of all of these methodologies.

Constructing a Java Shell

An example application I’ve provided takes a customer number passed as an argument and uses back-end native methods (implemented as RPG subprocedures) to retrieve information from a customer master file. Figure 1 shows sample output from the execution of the Java class running in Qshell (QSH) that I will present later. My example Java application uses five native methods, developed using RPG IV, to perform necessary functions that, you


should assume for purposes of this example, could not be accomplished in Java with the same required performance or functionality. Figure 2 shows the Java class CustProcs and the five native methods (Section B). This simple application takes only one argument (custid, the customer number), parses out the integer value of this argument using parseInt (Section C), creates a new instance of CustProcs class (Section D), and finally calls each of the native methods in turn to get the required customer information that each function supplies. Note that, before any native functions can be called, the service program that contains the native methods is loaded with the System.loadLibrary method (Section A). The loadLibrary method is usually invoked in the class initializer because, much like the *INZSR in RPG, the class initializer is automatically called the first time the class is accessed. Methods are bound dynamically on the first call, and subsequent calls are as fast as statically bound calls. Note also that the object cp presented in Figure 2 (Section D) can be reused as many times as required, so you need not create a new object each time you wish to call one of the native methods again. Actually, the object cp is really not required in the example application—because there are no member variables or methods, just the static native methods I have defined—but I have included it here to avoid confusion. Those of you who have been working with Java will have already realized this. However, for purposes of demonstration, you should assume the existence of other member variables and functions requiring an object instantiation. In Figure 2, Section E, the native method calls are made inside the System.out.println function to execute and display the results returned by each of those functions. Finally, System.exit(0) shuts down the CustProcs application.

What Does the Native Code Look Like?

Figure 3 shows a code snippet of the logic necessary to implement the native functionality required by CustProcs. For example, look at the getName function.

I should first point out that you must code the NoMain H-spec keyword in Section F to avoid initialization code from being generated for your service programs. Next, I have coded a compiler directive in Section G that will enable me to use the same source code to generate both a threadsafe version of the service program and a single-threaded version for pure native applications. This is done to enable Java threads of execution to be serialized for each call instance of your native methods. (That is, program variable instances will be marked for a particular thread.) Yet you will want to avoid serialization when other RPG programs call your service program. All that is required to generate the two different binary versions is to pass the javaIncluded text for the DEFINE parameter of the Create RPG Module (CRTRPGMOD) command to generate the threadsafe version and leave it off for the pure native version. Each threadsafe binary has the same name as the single-threaded binary plus an “_r” using the same notation that IBM uses to denote threadsafe C functions. This enables both versions to reside in the same library for distribution. Service program documentation instructs programmers on the proper way to create these binaries.

Note that getName takes an unsigned integer as an input argument (Section I) to represent the customer number in the customer master file. It returns a 30-byte alpha field (Section H) that will contain the name as retrieved from the customer master file. This would be fine if not for a couple of things. For one, JNI cannot call the native methods in this manner and provide access in the other direction (access to Java classes and objects from native methods) without passing additional arguments not required by the native functions. Also, Java applications use a data encoding method (called Universal Translation Format-8 [UTF-8]) that is closer to ASCII than it is to EBCDIC. So, for a native method to understand text data passed to it, a translation from ASCII to EBCDIC must occur. Likewise, any text data (referred to as a String object) returned to the Java application must be encoded using the UTF-8 or Unicode data encoding format. So how do you handle these requirements for Java applications but not impose any superfluous requirements on your pure native applications?


Wrap It Up

Recall the reason(s) why you are using JNI. The idea is to preserve native functionality with as little modification for the JNI interface as possible. To do this, you must create a shell or JNI wrapper for the native functions. One reason for doing this is that the JVM passes two arguments that your native methods will not require when running in pure native mode: 1) a pointer to the JNI function table (which contains an array of pointers to JNI functions) and 2) a reference to a class (if the method is called from a class-static method) or a reference to an object (if the method is called from an instance of a class). After that, any arguments the native method requires are specified. Another reason for the wrapper is to provide the necessary services of data extraction or encapsulation (as in the case of a String object) and translation for textual data passed to (ASCII to EBCDIC) and returned from (EBCDIC to ASCII) native methods. Because running in pure native mode does not require data extraction (encapsulation) or translation, the wrapper serves to encapsulate only the functionality that is required for the Java application. Figure 4 shows the wrapper (CustProc_J service program) required for the getName function.

Note in Figure 4 that the name of the wrapper function for the getName function (Section J) is Java_PentaSafeSysPkg_CustProcs_getName. This four-part name (the parts are separated by a single underscore) is required by JNI and consists of Java designated as the language library, the name of the package (in my example, PentaSafeSysPkg, as shown in the first statement in Figure 2) containing the referenced native method, the name of the class (CustProcs) declaring the native methods, and, finally, the name of the native method to be called (getName).

The first argument passed (Figure 4, Section J) to the getName function is JNIEnv, followed by classParm typecast as a jobject. After these two required parameters, any native method arguments are specified. In the case of getName, all that is required is the custid typecast as a jint. For a complete list of Java reference types used in JNI, refer to the copy member JniMD_h included in the downloadable material for this article. (You can download the specified code at www.midrangecomputing.com/mc.)

What about the return value for getName? In the procedure prototype (Section J) and procedure interface (Section K) lines, I defined the return value as a jstring type. This will actually be a “reference” to the String object created with a call to the NewString JNI function. Now take a look at the procedural section. The first thing it does is assign the pointer to the JNI function table that was passed from the JVM to the basing pointer JNIEnv@ (Section M), which is associated with the Java_JNI_Env data structure in the jni_h copy member shown in the snippet in Figure 5. (The full source code, along with the SQL necessary to create and load the customer file, is downloadable from the MC Web site at www.midrangecomputing.com/mc.) You’ll need at least one pointer out of the array of pointers that is passed to create a new String object that will contain the name of the customer retrieved from getName. The first pointer in this array points to an array of pointers that point to each of the 216 functions in the QJVAJNI service program.

Before you can create the String object, you must first call the wrappered native function getName (Figure 4, Section N) and convert the returned text from EBCDIC to Unicode as required by the JNI function NewString (Section O). To accomplish this conversion, simply use the RPG IV built-in function %UCS2 that was added in V4R4. (If you are not at V4R4, you can convert the text to a straight ASCII, null-terminated string and use NewStringUTF instead; however, this does not accommodate all national languages as Unicode does.) The Unicode data is placed in a UCS2-compliant field named dNameOut (Section L) defined as a c data type. Finally, after creating the String object, you return a reference to this new object to the CustProcs Java application as shown in Section
P.


You’ll Want to Read This

There are many other JNI functions besides the ones presented in this article. For example, the GetStringChars and GetStringUTFChar JNI methods enable your native methods to extract a Unicode and UTF-8 character set string, respectively, from a String object passed to them. Integers and floats are primitives and can be passed as such to native methods. (All that you need to know is whether they are short or long.) Zoned and packed numeric fields must be converted, using a related helper class (in the AS/400 Java Toolbox), to integers and floats of the same magnitude, since zoned and packed data types are not supported by Java.

Prior to my experience with JNI, I had been warned often by many that JNI was too difficult to be implemented by mortal man. Yet I found it extremely easy. Programming by nature is a detail-oriented process, and JNI is just another tool that can be exploited to accomplish the magic you are always expected to conjure for your users. In that endeavor, you will find on the AS/400 Redbooks Web site (www.redbooks.ibm.com) a Redbook entitled Building AS/400 Applications with Java. This book was invaluable in my quest to utilize JNI to call RPG IV native methods on the AS/400. It also gives some tips on establishing your environment for compiling and running Java applications. (See my sidebar “I Was Just Following Orders” at www.midrangecomputing.com/mc.) I strongly recommend you download the PDF version of the Redbook and additional related materials and upload the save file containing a complete functioning application implementing JNI. I challenge you to take the techniques from this article and IBM’s Redbook and further explore the functionality provided by JNI on the AS/400.

References and Related Materials

• Building AS/400 Applications with Java, Redbook (SG24-2163-02)

• Essential JNI: Java Native Interface. Rob Gordon. Colorado Springs, Colorado: Prentice- Hall, 1998

• IBM AS/400 Developer Kit for Java Web site: www.as400.ibm.com/developer/java/devkit/rzaha.htm

• Java 2 SDK, Standard Edition, Documentation, Web site: java.sun.com/products/jdk/1.2/download-docs.html

> java PentaSafeSysPkg.CustProcs 133568

Customer Number: 133568

Name: Smith Mfg.

City/State: Portland, OR

Credit Limit: $1500

Discount: 5.0%

Account Status: Active

$

Figure 1: Java applications can benefit from legacy “native” application code.


package PentaSafeSysPkg;

import java.io.*;
import java.lang.*;

class CustProcs {

static
{
try {
// Load service program for dynamic binding

System.loadLibrary("CUSTPROC_J");
}

catch(Error e) { System.out.println("CUSTPROC_J not loaded!");
}

}

// Native methods contained in CustProcs Service program

static native String getName(int custid);
static native String getAddress(int custid);
static native int getCreditLimit(int custid);
static native float getDiscount(int custid);
static native String getStatus(int custid);

public static void main(String[] parameters)
{
// Parse out custid - integer
int custid = Integer.parseInt(parameters[0], 10);
// Create a new CustProcs instance

CustProcs cp = new CustProcs();
// Call each native function to get customer information

System.out.println("Name: " + cp.getName(custid));
System.out.println("City/State: " +
cp.getAddress(custid));
System.out.println("Credit Limit: $" +
cp.getCreditLimit(custid));
System.out.println("Discount: " +
cp.getDiscount(custid) + "%");
System.out.println("Account Status: " +
cp.getStatus(custid));

System.exit(0);
}

}


A

B

C

D

E

Figure 2: You can use RPG subprocedures to provide code implementations for Java methods.

H NoMain

** Compiler Include Directives
*/If Defined( javaIncluded )
H Thread(*Serialize)

/EndIf

FCustomer if e k disk Rename(Customer:CustRec)
F UsrOpn :

:

*P getName b Export

*D pi 30a
D custno 10u 0 Value

** Local function variables and return value definition.
*D custid s 7p 0

*C Open Customer
C Eval custid = custno
C Custid Chain Customer
C Close Customer
C If ( Not %Error And %Found )
C Return Name
C Else
C Return '*Error - No Name found'
C EndIf

*P getName e

*-


F

G I

H

Figure 3: Modularized back-office RPG code can be used by both Java and RPG front-ends.

H NoMain Thread(*Serialize) :

:

** Prototype for getName_().
*D getName_ pr ExtProc(
D 'Java_PentaSafeSysPkg_CustProcs+
D _getName')
D Like(jstring)
D JNIEnv * Value
D classParm Value Like(jobject)

*

D custid Value Like(jint)

*P getName_ b Export

*D pi Like(jstring)
D jniEnv * Value
D classParm Value Like(jobject)
D custid Value Like(jint)

** Local function variables and return value definition.
*D dName s 30a
D dNameOut s 31c
D nameObj s Like(jstring)

*C EVAL JNIEnv@ = jniEnv
C EVAL MyClass = classParm

C Eval dNameOut = %Ucs2(getName(custid))
C + %Ucs2(x'00')
C Eval nameObj = NewString(JNIEnv@
C : %Addr(dNameOut)
C : %Size(dName))

C Return nameObj

*P getName_ e*---------------------------------------------------------------

J

K

L

P

M

N

O

Figure 4: Each RPG subprocedure requires a wrapper to convert EBCDIC to Java data types.

D Java_JNI_Env DS BASED(JNIEnv@)

D Java_JNI_Functions...

D *

D Java_JNI_Env_filler_1... :

:

D Java_Function_Pointers...

D DS BASED(Java_JNI_Functions) :

:

D NewString@...

D * PROCPTR

:

:

D*D* jstring (*NewString)

D* (JNIEnv *env, const jchar *unicode, jsize len);

D*D NewString PR LIKE(jstring) EXTPROC(NewString@)

D env LIKE(JNIEnv@) VALUE

D unicode * VALUE

D len LIKE(jsize) VALUE


Figure 5: To use the JNI environment, you’ll need access to a copy book of data structures.


BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS

LATEST COMMENTS

RESOURCE CENTER

  • WHITE PAPERS

  • WEBCAST

  • TRIAL SOFTWARE

  • 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!

    SB Maxava PPL 5476PRACTICAL TOOLS TO IMPLEMENT DISASTER RECOVERY IN YOUR IBM i ENVIRONMENT

    CLOUD VS. ON-PREMISE?
    - COMPREHENSIVE CHECKLISTS
    - RISK COST CALCULATIONS
    - BUSINESS CASE FRAMEWORK
    - DR SOLUTIONS OVERVIEW
    - RFP BUILDER
    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

    HelpSystems

    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

    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_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

    SB_HelpSystems_WC_Generic

    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 NodeRun.com 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.

     

     

  • 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.