Free QCachegrind Enables Application Profiling for PHP Developers

IBM i developers now have an alternative to proprietary data visualization tools to pinpoint potential bottlenecks in PHP and Node.js code. QCachegrind, an open source tool developed by KDE, turns raw application profiling data into meaningful graphs and visualizations that highlight a program’s most time-consuming functions.

Welcome Back, MariaDB!

Getting Started with MariaDB on IBM i

MariaDBMySQL and MariaDB have long been databases used in the Linux world for popular web apps in PHP and other languages. The collective development components—Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP—are often called the LAMP stack. When PHP was released on IBM i in 2006, the combination of IBM i, Apache, MySQL and PHP became known as the iAMP stack.

Read more

Porting Extensions to PHP 8

open phpPHP 8 has been the biggest change to PHP in years. While PHP 8’s JIT compiler gets most of the publicity, more significant to most developers would be PHP 8’s changes that encourage better coding practices. PHP 8 pushes developers to use clearer syntax and is stricter with problematic code.

While the PHP runtime itself has improved, what about extensions such as ibm_db2? What changes do extension developers need to make to adapt to PHP 8? As maintainers of the ibm_db2 and PDO_IBM database extensions, we’ve learned what it takes to make PHP extensions compatible with PHP 8.

Read more

Getting Started with SSH for IBM i

SSH for IBM iSecure Shell (SSH) provides the best environment for installing, managing, and running open source software on IBM i. Among SSH’s advantages over QSHELL and QP2TERM: IBM i’s SSH command line works just like SSH on Linux or Windows, helping the IBM i platform appeal to younger developers and admins. Supporting a wide range of Unix programs and open source software, such as git, SSH is our go-to terminal interface for open source and PASE. This article covers how to set up SSH and use it to connect to IBM i servers.

Read more

Q&A: IBM i ODBC Driver

Stephanie Rabbini

I recently caught up with Seiden Group CTO Stephanie Rabbani about the ODBC driver that’s quickly becoming standard for open source and web connections on Db2 for i.

Read more

RPM Package Signing

RPM package signingIn our current work with RPMs, we’re adding digital signatures to our PHP packages to enhance their security.

Package Signing ensures the integrity of a package at rest by detecting and deterring tampering. A package is signed with a private key, which is then validated by the public key provided by the package builder and installed by the user. This technique complements TLS encryption, which guards against tampering and snooping in transport.

Read more

How-To Video: The Zen of Using PHP without Zend Server

Just one year away from end-of-life for no-charge Zend Server “Basic”—and six months after the release of license-free Community PHPmany IBM i shops face an important decision:

“Do we upgrade to a paid Zend Server license,
or do we migrate to RPM-based PHP?”

At a recent MAGiC User Group webinar, Alan Seiden and Richard Schoen teamed up to present a tutorial and demo on how to get started with Community “RPM” PHP, sharing several tips picked up during client migrations.

Read more

Integrate Python into CL and RPG on IBM i

python trainingPython has been gaining momentum for building utility applications on IBM i, such as creating/reading Excel files, data transfer, process automation, calling REST APIs such as Salesforce and ServiceNow, and application monitoring.

Although some have said that Python would become the “new CL,” one limitation remains. While Python can easily call CL, RPG, and COBOL programs, calls in the other direction—from CL, RPG or COBOL to Python—required extra effort.

In this post we will introduce you to the PYRUN command, from Richard Schoen’s open source PythonOniLibrary (https://github.com/richardschoen/PythonOniLibrary), which makes it easy for traditional CL and RPG programs to call Python utilities and use their output. Read more

Liam Allan Joins Seiden Group

Liam AllanWhen IBM i development pros first meet Liam Allan, they’re captivated by the unrestrained enthusiasm he exhibits for their favorite platform. His excitement over what can be accomplished with IBM i technology leaves people refreshed and inspired.

Those who have had the pleasure of working with Liam know that his energy and intelligence are only the beginning of what he has to offer. He also possesses exceptional skill AND the depth of understanding required to turn his ideas into reality.

Read more

Free encryption for Node.js on IBM i

Let's EncryptWhen you browse a secure web site or API whose address starts with “https,” what makes the site secure? The site uses a special certificate, provided by a trusted Certificate Authority (CA), to prove that it is legitimate. Until recently, IT shops had to pay for these certificates and generate them manually.

In the last few years, Let’s Encrypt has earned the thanks of technology professionals. Let’s Encrypt, a CA run for the public’s benefit, offers certificates at no charge, along with scripts to generate and regenerate certificates as needed, reducing the effort of keeping certificates up to date, and keeping sites secure.

Read more