RPG Rocks! A Musical Tribute to IBM i Developers

Today I found myself singing the “old-timey” tune Side by Side with the lyrics “on my i.”

I had to laugh—a LinkedIn post for the Summit Deep Dive Workshops had tapped into my musical memories from the RPG & DB2 Summit events. As one of the Summit organizers, I had a front-row seat to each and every performance.

If you’re up for a laugh today, too, check out RPG Rock — A Retrospective for IBM i Developers. In it, Paul Tuohy spins a tale of how Ted Holt and Alan Seiden roped in Steve Will, Barbara Morris, “roadie” Liam Allan, and many other IBM i-loving musicians to memorialize the life of an IBM i developer through music. You’ll find a few key segments linked below.

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Using SSH Keys with VS Code for IBM i

VS Code for iTo make our IBM i servers more secure, our system administrator has configured our SSH services to require public key authentication rather than password-based logins. To comply with this security policy, we also set up our Visual Studio Code for i connections to use SSH keys.

This article explains how to set up an SSH key with Code for i.

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PHP_FCGI_MAX_REQUESTS Solves Job Cleanup Issues

One of PHP’s strengths is that each PHP job or process cleans itself up after every request. This makes PHP very reliable and stable.

On occasion, though, an extension may have a bug that leaks memory or causes other problems over time. If that happens, PHP’s FastCGI settings provide a solution.

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IBM i API Examples Using RPG, Node.js, PHP, and Python

The Toronto User Group recently invited Alan to speak with them about how to implement secure, flexible APIs to connect IBM i applications to other systems.

Using several real-world code examples written in various free tools and languages—including RPG, PHP, Python, and Node.js—Alan demonstrated how others send and receive data safely using their favorite language paired with IBM i business logic. This video contains the details.

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From i to z

Breaking out of the silo

IBM-wise, I’m a switch hitter. I’ve worked on both IBM i and IBM z/OS (as well as IBM z/VM, but that’s another story).

IBM i and z/OS have identical missions of reliable, unimpeachable data center operations. The two differ in focus, which I depict here using broad generalizations:

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IBM TechXChange Conference 2023

IBM TechXchange in Las Vegas Sept. 11-14, 2023, should be quite the bash. Attendance will include a few thousand IBM customers, IBM Champions, and IBMers, as well as an assortment of well-wishers, hangers-on, and the merely curious.

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Next Generation Free-Form RPG with Susan Gantner

Earlier this week we shared how one of our clients successfully transitioned the maintenance of an important System 36-era application from busy RPG developers to a younger web developer interested in learning RPG. The heart of their strategy? Converting their fixed-format RPG code to more modular RPG Free Form.

At the same time, Susan Gantner was presenting a session on using free-form RPG with the clear message that moving to RPG Free Form is critical to bringing new talent to IBM i development.

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Celebrating Another Year of iChime

iChimeHaving just celebrated the 35th anniversary of the origins of the IBM i platform, it’s time to celebrate another milestone: the fourth year of iChime, the online meeting of IBM i friends begun by Charles (Charlie) Guarino in 2020 as a way to stay connected during the pandemic.

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RPG Trek, The Next Generation

RPGLEOur client “Bruce” was discussing the RPG talent shortfall and how to get the next generation on board to write and maintain legacy RPG code dating back to the 1980s in a recent iChime meeting.

Bruce had a System 36 manufacturing application written in fixed-format RPG. The system was solid and users were satisfied. But Bruce knew that he had to modernize the code for ease of maintenance and to expand the developer talent pool for future applications.

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How to Resolve Yum Command FTP Errors on IBM i

While installing packages from IBM’s original open source repository, ibm, users may encounter errors, including:

  • [​Errno 12] Timeout on: ftp://public.dhe.ibm.com/software/ibmi/products/pase/rpms/repo/repodata/repomd.xml: (28, ‘Connection time-out’) Trying other mirror. Error: Cannot retrieve repository metadata (repomd.xml) for repository: ibm. Please verify its path and try again.
  • [​Errno 14] FTP Error 451 – server did not report OK, got 451 Trying other mirror
  • [Errno 14] FTP Error 550 – Access denied: 550 Trying other mirror

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