Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Create an Excel spreadsheet from a CL program

It has been possible to create a Microsoft compatible Excel spreadsheet using SQL since the last Technology Refreshes. In my example I demonstrated how you could do this within a RPG program.

A few months have passed and I have been asked how to do the same within a CL program. With a minor change I will show it is possible.

Let me start by showing the code for this program:

Monday, June 24, 2024

RPGPGM.COM-unity ribbons in the UK

Last week I was at i-UG's i-Power2024 conference, in the United Kingdom. This gave me another opportunity to hand out some RPGPGM.COM-unity ribbons.

What is the RPGPGM.COM-unity? You will have to click on this link to learn what it means, and see who I gave ribbons to.

Friday, June 21, 2024

Happy birthday to IBM i

Today marks the 36th anniversary of the launch of the AS/400 server and the OS/400 operating system on June 21, 1988.

Over this time the server has evolved, with the change from CISC to RISC chips and the improvements in chip technology, to become the IBM Power server. The operating system has been rewritten several times to include the latest evolving technologies to become IBM i, which is not the only operating system that can run on a IBM Power server.

What we have today is not AS/400 and OS/400, even though everything we could with them we can do today with the modern server and operating system.

I think I did a good job describing this history last year, for the 35th anniversary. If you are interested in learning more what AS/400 was, and what it has become, read the story here.

Happy birthday IBM Power and IBM i! May you have many more!

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Using SQL table function to lookup SQL codes

It has always been a bit of a bind to look up what a SQL codes means, to be able to discover what error or warning Db2 for i is giving me for a SQL statement I have executed. There is a message file, QSQLMSG, where I can convert the SQL code into a message id and then look in the message file for the message texts:

SQL code -501 = Message id SQL0501


With the technology refreshes for IBM i 7.5 TR3 and 7.4 TR9 comes a table function where I can pass it the SQL code, and the results include all the information I desire:

  • Message id
  • Message text
  • Second level message text

Friday, June 14, 2024

New Technology Refreshes available today

Today the PTFs for the latest Technology Refreshes, IBM i 7.5 TR4 and 7.4 TR10, become available.

There are three sets of PTFs you need to download:

  • General PTFs for the Technology Refresh
  • Database PTFs (SQL)
  • RPG PTFs

The numbers for these PTFs are different for the two releases. These are the numbers I have found so far:

IBM i 7.5 TR4 IBM i 7.4 TR10
General TR PTFs
Database PTFs SF99950   7 SF99704   28
RPG PTFs 5770WDS SJ00650
TGTRLS(V7R4M0): 5770WDS SJ00653
5770WDS SJ00635

I cannot wait to start trying all the new features and functions. When I do, I will write about them on this website.

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Eleven years and still going

Another year has passed, and this blog is now eleven years old. It is still a labor of love, and I want to continue to bring you the news about IBM i and IBM Power, and the best examples of using IBM i. I am grateful to all of you for visiting this site, and especially to you who have reached out to me with their feedback and encouragement.

On the personal side I was grateful to be recognized by IBM as an IBM Champion for Power for the fourth year.

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

List unused virtual devices

This was a first: I was asked by the auditors for a list of virtual devices that had not been used in the past six months. In all my years of dealing with auditors this was the first time I had been asked this question.

It is not a big deal to get this information. All virtual devices are just device descriptions, object type '*DEVD', with the object attribute of 'DSPVRT'. As they are objects I can get this information from the SQL Table function OBJECT_STATISTICS.

What columns of data am I interested in?

  • Object's attribute
  • Object's name
  • The date the object was created
  • The date the object was last used
  • Object's description

My SQL statement to retrieve the data the auditors are interested in would be:

Tuesday, June 4, 2024

Withdrawal of support for some development tools

In an announcement made last month, May 2024, IBM announced the withdrawal of a number of their products and tools for IBM power and IBM i, effective April 30, 2025.

Included are the following IBM Rational Development Studio for i Application Development Toolset tools:

  • Report Layout Utility (RLU)
  • Screen Design Aid (SDA)
  • File Compare and Merge Utility (FCMU)
  • Advanced Printer Function (APF)
  • Character Generator Utility (CGU)
  • Data File Utility (DFU)

You can read the announcement here.

I have reached out to an IBM Business Partner and asked them does this mean that these tools will still work, just they we will no longer get support for issues with them. When I receive a reply from them I will post it here.

I don't think that IBM will stop these tools from working. SEU has been off support for years, but you can still use it (if you must).