IBM i computer, formerly named AS/400, iSeries, i5

Integrate Python, Node, PHP, etc. with CL & RPG on IBM i – 2023 Update

QSHONIA few years ago I introduced you to my QShell on i utility – QSHONI. QSHONI makes it easy for traditional CL, RPG, and COBOL programs to call Python utilities and other QShell/PASE utility programs (PHP, Node, Java, etc.) and directly use their output. QSHONI opened up a whole new world of integrations to open source apps from RPG, CL, and COBOL.

In this post I will update you on new features that have been added to the QSHONI utilities over the past 12 months.

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IBM i Apache Security Fixes for PCI Compliance

Apache HTTP Server ProjectA few months after we published the article Apache for IBM i: Where to Find Documentation, astute reader Paul Nicolay of Cegeka shared yet another hard-to-find Apache resource with us.

Paul recommends IBM Support’s IBM HTTP Server for i PCI Compliance page for organizations following the stringent PCI DSS security standard for accepting card payments. In addition to confirming that Apache on IBM i is a PCI-compliant web server, the page lists the IBM i PTFs required to fix known vulnerabilities.

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Why I Learned RPGLE

RPGLEWhen I told my friends  I was learning RPGLE, they thought I had gone a bit crazy. Why would I want to learn that “old” programming language?

My quest stemmed from a common issue that I experienced first hand. As a web developer, I would often hear, “The business logic is located in RPG code and we don’t know what it does. We will have to wait and ask the RPG programmer to explain it to us before we can continue with the project, but that person is too busy now.”

Or worse yet, “We are completely redoing our ERP system because we can’t find RPG programmers.”

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Automate SFTP Transfers Using ‘expect’

IBM iA programmer asked recently how to automate their password-based SFTP transfer. How does one automate SFTP or any task that typically requires user interaction?
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Tips for Fast, Reliable Open Source on IBM i

Open source continues to gain traction in IBM i shops, and for good reason. It excels at delivering new interfaces and functionality for RPG and COBOL applications, plus it broadens the talent pool for your development team.

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Use IBM’s Apache Directive Finder Instead of Google

Apache HTTP Server ProjectWhen it comes to finding information on HTTP Server for IBM i (based on Apache), Google is NOT the way to go!

Recently Calvin did a web search for Apache’s ServerUserID directive. It returned old forum posts that could have taken anyone down a rabbit hole—a waste of time at best.

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Requests for Enhancement are now “IBM Ideas”

IBM iIBM i users have a new way to request enhancements from IBM. The Request for Enhancement (RFE) site has been replaced by the IBM Power Ideas Portal.

I immediately noticed an advantage of the new portal—we can now share links without requiring the recipient to log in! The new site seems faster, too.

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What’s in Your ODBC Driver?

ODBC with Db2 for IBM iSince IBM announced Yum support for installing the IBM i Db2 ODBC driver, as documented in our recent tutorial, users can update their driver more easily.

To help users determine what’s changed, IBM maintains a list of fixes and enhancements for each IBM i ODBC driver release.

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IBM Announces IBM i 7.5 and 7.4 TR6

IBM iThe May 3, 2022 announcement of IBM i 7.5 and IBM i 7.4 TR6 gave us a lot to unpack. It rolled up many enhancements from previous TRs, then threw in a new subscription option for IBM i and a new modernization framework called Merlin.

If you’re running Seiden’s CommunityPlus+ PHP, no worries. It’s compatible with IBM i 7.5.

Here’s a collection of the articles and podcasts we found to be most informative for IBM i application development teams.

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New IBM i extension for PHP

PHP on IBM iOne of the open source components we’ve built at Seiden Group is a new extension to enhance PHP’s integration with IBM i.

Although most business requirements are met by the existing ibm_db2 and PDO_ODBC extensions plus the PHP Toolkit, the new php-ibmi makes it easier to accomplish several (formerly) difficult or impossible tasks—especially for tool vendors, and when troubleshooting.

We’ve built six functions thus far, with the possibility of more in the future. Let us know what you think.

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