Sidebar

AnyMail/400

Collaboration & Messaging
Typography
  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times

How many different E-mail systems are there? One hundred? Two hundred? No one knows for certain. Despite the hype about standardization in the industry, E-mail-the lifeblood of electronic communications-continues to be a cesspool of conflicting formats, protocols, and services. As users of these services, we can stand it only as long as our primary correspondents are all using a compatible service. But as WANs and the Internet absorb more and more electronic traffic, our ability to send and receive the really important stuff through E-mail suffers.

IBM's AnyMail/400 is designed to change all of this. Instead of worrying about who's on which service or wondering which protocol is needed, AnyMail is designed to provide transparent mail delivery across the spectrum of competing mail services.

Don't confuse this astounding capability with simple text-based E-mail, such as the little break messages that periodically flit across our screen and interrupt our work. The AS/400's capacity for handling E-mail with the AnyMail facility encompasses the entire spectrum of digital communications, including voice, video, multimedia, graphics, and fax.

What is AnyMail/400?

AnyMail/400-officially AnyMail/400 Mail Server Framework (MSF)-is a new integrated facility under V3R1 which enables the AS/400 to become a true, transparent mail server. What is a mail server? It is, in essence, an electronic postman, dutifully delivering electronic communications to its customers. On the AS/400, AnyMail/400 allows the AS/400 to send, receive, and forward any electronic communications from anyone, anywhere. This includes foreign mail distribution services, such as Lotus Notes, cc:Mail, and Microsoft Mail.

This is the mail server we've been looking for. Nobody else has a similar service yet. But you still may be asking "What does that mean to us on the AS/400?" Should we even care about E-mail and the services it provides? Before we look at AnyMail/400 in depth, let's quickly explore the possibilities that an AS/400 mail server might provide.

An AS/400 Mail Server

The significance of a mail server on the AS/400 stretches beyond its ability to send and receive mail. For an organization that's invested in AS/400 technology, it may be the fastest, most efficient, and cost-effective manner to leverage office automation.

Why? Because there is a large installed base of networked AS/400s. These networks make use of System Network Architecture Distribution Services (SNADS) to conduct electronic communications, stretching MIS services across town or across country. SNADS is a workhorse that seamlessly interconnects warehouse and distribution centers to central offices and manufacturing facilities. Chances are, if your organization has more than one AS/400, you probably already have a SNADS network in place.

At the same time, there are many remote offices busy interconnecting their desktops and using PC-based LAN products such as Lotus Notes, cc:Mail, or Microsoft Mail. Many sites use OfficeVision/400 for basic mail communications on the AS/400, and some other service for communicating on the PC LAN.

So let's ask the $64,000 MIS question: What would it take to merge these mail services? What would be the advantage? What would be the cost?

Enter the concept of the mail server. By giving the AS/400 transparent mail server capabilities, AnyMail/400 makes the preexisting SNADS facilities a truly viable communication channel to mail servers on LANs.

The mail server can absorb and encapsulate a packet of foreign mail at one end of the network and transparently deliver it at the other. Even more impressively, it can absorb the foreign packet and deliver it in a format acceptable to a different mail service (see 1).

The mail server can absorb and encapsulate a packet of foreign mail at one end of the network and transparently deliver it at the other. Even more impressively, it can absorb the foreign packet and deliver it in a format acceptable to a different mail service (see Figure 1).

The resulting capability is theoretically quite astounding. Companies can leverage their previous investments in AS/400 SNADS communications by making those distribution facilities transparently available to other servers. At the same time, the capacity to distribute and translate mail from differing mail services is significantly enhanced.

A Look at the AnyMail

Framework

So, OK. Maybe an AS/400 mail server is a good idea. What's it gonna cost?

Surprise! If you have V3R1, you've already got it! AnyMail/400 is not a traditional mail distribution product. It's an integrated facility of OS/400 under V3R1. Secondly, it's not a hunk of code with a preset function, but a framework that is configurable and extensible.

AnyMail/400 is actually a set of mail-related functions that provide open and flexible interfaces to support other mail services. These functions create, queue, and distribute the AnyMail/400 (MSF) message information by exiting to individually configured utility programs.

Let's peek at how this works.

As AnyMail/400 absorbs a message packet-from Office/400, SNADS, or another service-it uses an API called Create Mail Message (QzmfCrtMailMsg) to construct an MSF message. This message consists of information about the mail packet itself, including who sent the message, where it's going, and what attachments are included. Other information defines formats and protocols (see 2).

As AnyMail/400 absorbs a message packet-from Office/400, SNADS, or another service-it uses an API called Create Mail Message (QzmfCrtMailMsg) to construct an MSF message. This message consists of information about the mail packet itself, including who sent the message, where it's going, and what attachments are included. Other information defines formats and protocols (see Figure 2).

AnyMail walks the AnyMail/400 message through a series of steps (3), always in a prescribed manner, until the message is either delivered (4), forwarded, or logged as "undeliverable."

AnyMail walks the AnyMail/400 message through a series of steps (Figure 3), always in a prescribed manner, until the message is either delivered (Figure 4), forwarded, or logged as "undeliverable."

It's the AnyMail/400 message itself that controls this process of routing. As the message packet traverses the framework, the message is used as an instruction tag at various junctions. These junctions-called exit points-are configurable doorways to launching separate processes, routing delivery, or even modifying the AnyMail/400 message or its mail packet.

Exit point doorways are not predefined. Instead, each one is configured with a specific activating program. IBM calls these activating programs snap-ins to indicate how they are implemented within the framework.

It's a Snap

A snap-in can be a third-party program or a program created in-house. AnyMail/400 already ships with SNADS and Office-Vision/400 snap-ins for processing the mail from these services. Other snap-ins, for the mail service of your choice, can be created by anyone with the appropriate skills. IBM provides a complete set of APIs, with documentation, to enable these snap-ins.

A snap-in can interrogate an AnyMail/400 message packet and then perform some appropriate processing against the mail packet it contains. When the snap-in program has completed its task, it can change the MSF message data before returning control back to the AnyMail/400 framework.

The processing steps are grouped logically by their mail macroprocesses: addressing, predelivery, delivery, and management. Each macroprocess is associated with exit points where the appropriate snap-ins might reside. There are ten of these exit points. Let's walk through them to get a flavor of how this all pulls together.

List Expansion

The first exit point within the framework is called List Expansion (QIBM_QZMFMSF_LST_EXP). In this step, any distribution list found in the MSF message packet is exploded into its contingent parts.

This can be an iterative process, as one distribution list may contain secondary and tertiary distribution lists. For instance, a packet addressed to "Midrange Computing" may contain secondary distribution lists such as "Editorial Department," "Art Department," or "Accounting Department." The List Expansion exit point has built in iterative capabilities so that embedded distribution lists are continually exploded until the entire structure is exhausted.

Address Resolution

The next exit point of the framework resolves the individual addresses that have to be placed in the message packet. For instance, the Address Resolution (QIBM_QZMFMSF_ADR_RSL) exit point snap-in program might resolve the address of "Tom Stockwell," whose mail box is in a Microsoft Mail server attached to a LAN connected to the AS/400.

This mapping snap-in program may also use an API to supplement the mail packet with new information, such as a list of envelope processing instructions, that can be used by other snap-ins further down the chain of functions.

Envelope Processing

The snap-in executed at the Envelope Processing (QIBM_QZMFMSF_ENL_PSS) exit point should reformulate the address so that it will be accepted by the destination mail service.

For instance, if mail was sent to "Stockwell,Thom/Midrange," it might be reformatted to "This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." so it could be forwarded to an E-mail server across the Internet.

This Envelope Processing exit point is where the transparency of AnyMail/400 can obtain its most significant power as a mail server. The algorithms that are designed into the user-written or third-party snap-in programs for envelop processing are the keys to the intelligence of the overall service.

Attachment Conversion

The Attachment Conversion (QIBM_-QZMFMSF_ATT_CNV) exit point allows a snap-in to convert separately described mail attachments. For instance, if a graphic file in PCX format is attached to a mail packet destined for "TMSTOCK@IBM," the snap-in could convert that graphic to a BMP format. The list of potential conversion functions is limited only by the power of the snap-in program.

Security and Authority

The Security and Authority (QIBM_-QZMFMSF_SEC_AUT) exit point validates the sender's authority prior to the actual delivery of the packet. For instance, if mail packets from the sales department need to be screened before they are sent to the shipping department, they may be checked at this exit point prior to the actual attempt at delivery.

Local Delivery

The Local Delivery (QIBM_-QZMFMSF_LCL_DEL) exit point is where a snap-in program will make the actual delivery on the local AS/400 system.

Message Forwarding

Message Forwarding (QIBM_QZMFMSF_-MSG_FWD) is the exit point at which delivery to another system takes place, provided the Address Resolution snap-in has correctly identified the recipient's address. In our previous example, this is where the snap-in would physically pass off the "Tom Stockwell" message to the Microsoft Mail server on another machine.

Nondelivery

Packets that cannot be delivered or forwarded can be identified and processed at the Nondelivery (QIBM_QZMFMSF_NON_-DEL) exit point. The snap-in placed at this exit point may transmit an "undeliverable" notification back to the sender, build a dead-letter queue, or resend the packet through another round of MSF routing after modifying the address.

Attachment Management

The Attachment Management (QIBM_-QZMFMSF_ATT_MGT) exit point allows a snap-in to manage any attachments that were referenced by the primary AnyMail/400 message. For instance, it might identify exactly where to store the files associated with an attachment at the local delivery point, or it might identify what to do with the trailing attachments of messages that were forwarded to another service.

Accounting

The Accounting (QIBM_QZMFMSF_ACT) exit point is where any requirements for an audit trial would be handled. The snap-in placed here might break down the mail handling activities for purposes of tracking misplaced or misaddressed MSF messages. This information might also prove useful for handling a plethora of accounting functions, such as audit trails, traffic flow, and chargebacks. If, for instance, the performance of the system were brought into question, the snap-in at the Accounting exit point might be used to identify exactly where the process is bottlenecked or in trouble.

Tracking and Testing

There are two more exit points used for tracking and testing the framework flow-QIBM_QZMFMSF_TRK_CHG and QIBM_QZMFMSF_VLD_TYP. These exit points are configurable so that-as a message flows through the system-information about the process can be debugged. As you can imagine in such an extensible environment, AnyMail/400 can become quite a convoluted algorithm as packets are routed, rerouted, transformed, and delivered. Without these configurable exit points, the framework could quickly become an unmanageable tangle of logic.

Configurability-What's the Limit?

If you got lost examining this framework structure, take heart. All of the exit points do not necessarily need to be configured or implemented with snap-in programs. For instance, the implementation of the SNADS snap-ins-which come preconfigured with AnyMail/400 in V3R1-uses only six of the available exit points. But if you need these functions, AnyMail/400 has the scope to handle your requirements.

By the same token, configuring an exit point for a particular snap-in program doesn't necessarily preempt or limit that exit point for use by a second or third program. For instance, just because AnyMail/400 comes precon-figured to handle SNADS doesn't mean you'd have to disable that part of the framework to handle Microsoft Mail messages. Each exit point can initiate multiple snap-in programs, and up to 1,024 snap-in programs can reside at each exit point. That translates to 102,400 possible exit point snap-ins residing on the system, a number far exceeding any probable use.

But that's not all. In order to identify which mail packet belongs to which mail service, the framework's structure for assigning types to messages is of necessity exceedingly robust.

When a new group of mail service snap-ins is added to the system-to add, for instance, the ability to handle Microsoft Mail or Lotus Notes-the new service must run some routines to "configure" AnyMail/400. This configuration process uses an AS/400 API, which requires the new service to establish message types in the internal message table of AnyMail/400: one for Address Type, one for Mail Message Type, one for Envelope Type, and one for Attachment Reference Type. These codes become the type codes used by AnyMail/400 to uniquely identify the mail service source.

Each one of these types can support up to 128 different entries. To place this typing structure in context, AnyMail/400 will support the simultaneous routing of up to 128 different mail services.

If you have difficulty believing that the AS/400 could handle such traffic, you need only look at the structure in which AnyMail/400 has been implemented within OS/400.

AnyMail/400 in QSYSWRK

AnyMail/400 does its work within the QSYSWRK subsystem and is started with an autostart job entry called QZMFECOX. Load V3R1 and you'll find the autostart job there, running its preconfigured snap-ins for SNADS and OfficeVision/400.

You can view the framework exit points using the Work with Registration Information (WRKREGINF) command. As shown in 5, this will allow you to see the registered exit points and to explore a bit deeper into the programs it's running. AnyMail/400 can also be manually started or stopped using the Start Mail Server Framwork (STRMSF) and End Mail Server Framework (ENDMSF) commands.

You can view the framework exit points using the Work with Registration Information (WRKREGINF) command. As shown in Figure 5, this will allow you to see the registered exit points and to explore a bit deeper into the programs it's running. AnyMail/400 can also be manually started or stopped using the Start Mail Server Framwork (STRMSF) and End Mail Server Framework (ENDMSF) commands.

One might imagine that a mail server handling up to 128 different mail services might tax the resources of the CPU. If throughput or performance to delivery becomes an issue, there's a job description called QZMFSJBD in QSYS which controls the number of jobs that are started in the QSYSWRK subsystem. If mail delivery begins to slow down, you can increase the number of AnyMail/400 jobs by modifying this JOBD with the WRK-JOBD command. By creating the capacity to run AnyMail/400 as multiple entities within the QSYSWRK subsystem, it's really pretty simple to scale the use of AnyMail/400 to the actual traffic it's experiencing.

The Future of AnyMail/400 MSF

IBM has great hopes for AnyMail/400. In the lab and at various beta sites, they have Lotus Notes working quite well through AnyMail/400, and this fact-along with IBM's recent agreement to purchase the Lotus Corporation-indicates that Rochester is serious about the capabilities of AnyMail/400. If it's really as easy to use as IBM claims, we'll be seeing a number of new third-party products making use of the facility.

How third-party software houses implement the framework with their own snap-ins will be an interesting development. All of the AnyMail/400 APIs are clearly documented in the API Reference manual, and the process to implement a new mail service should be-for most programmers-a "snap." With the new implementation of TCP/MIME under V3R1, we should soon start seeing Internet E-mail snap-ins to make the AS/400 a real player in the mail server arena.

Thomas M. Stockwell is a senior technical editor for Midrange Computing.

Reference

AS/400: AnyMail/400 Mail Server Framework Support (SC41-3411, CD-ROM QBKAOD00).

AnyMail/400

Figure 1: AnyMail/400 Mail Server Framework


AnyMail/400

Figure 2: Encapsulation of Foreign Mail Service Mail


AnyMail/400

Figure 3: AnyMail/400 MSF Exit Points and Snap-Ins


AnyMail/400

Figure 4: Delivery to Foreign Mail Service


AnyMail/400

Figure 5: Work with Registration Information


Thomas Stockwell

Thomas M. Stockwell is an independent IT analyst and writer. He is the former Editor in Chief of MC Press Online and Midrange Computing magazine and has over 20 years of experience as a programmer, systems engineer, IT director, industry analyst, author, speaker, consultant, and editor.  

 

Tom works from his home in the Napa Valley in California. He can be reached at ITincendiary.com.

 

 

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.