IIUG E-News, November 2001

by

International Informix Users Group (IIUG)
www.iiug.org
E-newsletter
Volume 8 – November, 2001


TOPICS:

I. LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT
II. IIUG NEWS AND EVENTS: IIC Conference Feedback, SIG/Advocacy Group Changes, The New IIUG Advisory Council, IIUG Focus on LUGs, Recent Changes to IIUG Software Repository, Bi-Weekly Alert Archive Available
III. BOARD NEWS: New Board Members Welcomed
IV. INFORMIX NEWS AND EVENTS: New 9.3 System Administration Certification, IBM Remote DBA, IBM Informix White Papers Now Available, New Restore Utility
V. CLOSING AND CREDITS:

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I. LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT

A new letter from Fred Hubbard, recently re-confirmed as President of IIUG, has been posted on the IIUG web site. This is certainly a “must read” state- of-the-union address by Fred for all IIUG members at this most significant juncture in our history. In addition to highlighting the recent accomplishments that secure a bright future for the IIUG, Fred outlines the new programs that gives the IIUG “a lot to be excited about.” Find out how you can help to continue the momentum that has been generated by visiting the web site and reading Fred’s address at:

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II. IIUG NEWS AND EVENTS

IIC Conference Feedback – Paul Mosser

Feedback from October’s IIC conference in Las Vegas has been very positive. For example, long-time IIUG member and IBM Informix partner Peter Wages recently posted the following to the CDI news group:

“The basic message I got out the IBM/Informix conference is IBM’s pledge to continue to support the Informix customers with their Informix products. I got this message…

  • When the IIUG and leadership met with several IBM executives the Sunday before the conference.
  • Monday evening, when the IIUG Leadership met with Janet Perna, the head of IBM Data Management, for a dinner and reception.
  • Tuesday, when Janet Perna addressed the conference. (Note: the address for a replay of the webcast is www-4.ibm.com/software/data/informix/events/iic/keynote1023.html )
  • Thursday, when an independent market analyst addressed the conference.”

Peter also stated in his post that “IBM is very impressed with IIUG. It likes the IIUG’s activeness and the relationships it fosters with local users groups. The IIUG’s activeness is a demonstration of Informix customer loyalty.”

Thanks to Peter and to the many others within our member community who have made positive comments about the IIC.

SIG/Advocacy Group Changes – James Edmiston

The IIUG hosts a number of Special Interest Group (SIG) email discussion lists on our server. Please note that we’ve recently made the following changes:

  • Consolidating the D4GL-TOOLS and INFORMIX-CLIENT-TOOLS lists into one list called CLASSICS@iiug.org;
  • Splitting the ENGINES list into 2 new lists: IDS@iiug.org and XPS@iiug.org;
  • Creating a new list called OFFICE-CONNECT@iiug.org;
  • Changing the PATU list to ADMIN-TOOLS@iiug.org and modifying its description accordingly;
  • Redefining the LSDW-GROUP list to focus on data warehouse and very large data base concepts and issues without regard to product;
  • Removing old lists that were no longer applicable.

We hope the changes described above help you to benefit from user contributions. And because key IBM Data Management personnel with relevant job descriptions subscribe to many of these lists, you’ll benefit from their participation as well.

An IIUG member may subscribe to a list by logging into the member area at www.iiug.org with his or her member number, last name and email address. Once logged in, click on the Subscribe button and the checkbox next to the desired list. Once subscribed, you can send email to listname@iiug.org, where listname is the name of the list, and you’ll receive all emails generated by any other subscribers.

Other email lists supported by IIUG are:

cloudscape – Discussion about the Cloudscape product
data-modeling – Data Modeling
datablade-list – Datablades
euro-ug – European Informix Users
iiug-esp – Spanish-speaking Informix Users
informix-list – News Group feed for comp.databases.informix
lawson-sig – Informix and Lawson partnership
linux-informix – Informix on Linux
redbrick-list – Red Brick
retail-list – Issues in the Retail business
lsdw-group – Large Scale Data Warehouse
u2-list – Universe and Unidata (U2)
edu-users – Informix Users in Education and Research

For more detailed descriptions and subscription information, please log on to the members area on the IIUG web site – www.iiug.org. Click on the “Subscribe” button to view the lists and your subscription status. Email James Edmiston at James@IIUG.org with questions or comments.

The New IIUG Advisory Council – Malcolm Weallans

The new IIUG Advisory Council is up and running and has already been of considerable help to the Board of Directors. As reported previously, this worldwide group of Informix users stands ready to contribute suggestions, opinion and feedback to the Board – frequently and at short notice.

Due to its early successes, including guidance on projected conference attendance and the effect of Sept 11th on these figures, we’d like more volunteers to join and be willing to respond promptly to opinion requests and surveys and thereby help IIUG influence IBM Data Management. Most interaction will be via email.

To join the IIUG Advisory Council send an email to Ashley@IIUG.org.

IIUG Focus on LUGs – James Edmiston

The IIUG Board of Directors recently sent an email to local user groups (LUG) worldwide, offering improved support for their activities. The new commitment in each area included:

1. Local IBM Informix Sales Support:

IBM Data Management’s Sales group will name at least one Liaison to each LUG to offer promotional, logistical and content help for scheduled meetings. They hope this assistance will sustain the growth of existing groups and foster new ones.

Additionally, the IIUG Board of Directors is working with IBM Data Management to identify and educate LUGs on the new support infrastructure. The program will kick off in 2002. Stay tuned for more information.

2. Speaker Referrals and Best Practices Information:

If your group needs speaker ideas, you can request suggestions for IBM Data Management speakers from the User Group Program office by emailing UG@IIUG.org.

We also encourage LUG leaders to use the IUGLC@IIUG.org email alias to share meeting highlights and best practices among peers worldwide.

3. Use of the IIUG Server for Web Site and Email:

The IIUG web server hosts the IIUG web site and membership database. It also hosts several LUG web pages hanging off of the IIUG domain (i.e. www.IIUG.org/WAIUG). If you would like the IIUG to host your LUG web page, the IIUG Board Infrastructure committee will set up a user ID on the server that will allow you to FTP your web page files. You will still have to maintain the original HTML files and once ready for posting, send by FTP to the IIUG server.

Several LUGs already have member email lists hosted on the IIUG server (i.e. WAIUG-Members@IIUG.org). These use the Majordomo email utility, which is maintained by an administrator to subscribe and unsubscribe members to an email list under password protection.

Finally, you can also have an email alias (i.e. WAIUG@IIUG.org) that you can reference on your marketing materials and can be defined to send to specific individuals that are part of your LUG leadership. To take advantage of these services, determine the name of your web page extension off of www@IIUG.org, the name of your email list, and your email aliases name. Send these to James Edmiston – LUGNut@IIUG.org, who will reply with your passwords and instructions.

We are also planning to enable LUGs to host their member databases on the IIUG server. LUGs will be able to interface directly from their web pages and will be able to interface with the IIUG member database. Details are being worked out and will be publicized when available.

4. Meeting Promotion:

We can help you promote your events, via email, to IIUG members in your area. Send an email to LUGNut@IIUG.org with your meeting announcement and the geographical query information (country, state, city, zip, or even telephone area code). We’ll email these members to promote your event.

The IIUG Program office can also send email blasts to IBM Informix customers in your area. On a case-by-case basis and with sufficient advanced notice, the IBM Data Management Program office can also send hard-copy mailings to IBM customers and IIUG members in your area.

5. IIUG Board of Directors Representative

The IIUG Board of Directors sent members to many LUG events over the last year. For 2002, each Board member has been assigned a specific list of LUGs to support and meet with, where possible. Board Members will be contacting their assigned LUGs soon.

We’ll be using the IUGLC@IIUG.org email alias to let you know about upcoming conference calls and/or web casts to discuss these efforts in greater detail.

Finally, the IUGLC@IIUG.org email list is open to IUGLC members to share best practices, post meeting announcements, ideas and summaries. Up to two members of any LUG steering committee may participate in this discussion alias.

Recent Changes to IIUG Software Repository – Walt Hultgren

IIUG Software Repository Administrator

This is the first installment of an ongoing column in which we’ll publicize recent additions and updates to the Software Repository. This first installment covers all software received since August, 2001.

alarm_space Specialized versions of the Informix alarm and evidence shell scripts, plus a script that warns if dbspace is running low.
http://www.iiug.org/software/index_all.html#alarm_space
Submitted by: Thomas Horner 2001-11-08
dbweb-1.0.3 Web based database interrogator and remote monitor.
http://www.iiug.org/software/index_all.html#dbweb-1.0.3
Submitted by: The Famous Eric 2001-09-22
load2 Loads .unl files – can be extended to read other formats.
http://www.iiug.org/software/index_all.html#load2
Updated by: Robert Sosnowski 2001-11-28
sqlstruct Outputs a C structure corresponding to the output of a specified SQL SELECT statement.
http://www.iiug.org/software/index_all.html#sqlstruct
Submitted by: Art Kagel 2001-10-30
utils2_ak Art’s well-known collection of database administration programs.
http://www.iiug.org/software/index_all.html#utils2_ak
Updated by: Art Kagel 2001-11-01

See http://www.iiug.org/software/software_submissions.html to submit software for the Repository. Send e-mail to Software@IIUGorg if you have questions, suggestions or comments.

Bi-Weekly Alert Archive Available

In addition to the information supplied in the quarterly newsletters, the IIUG has undertaken to supply bi-weekly Alerts to provide timely notice of current happenings of interest to the IIUG community.

Since our last newsletter in August, the following Alerts were circulated:

All of our Alerts are archived on our Web server and may be accessed at: http://www.iiug.org/news/alert.html

The IIUG Alert is short, sweet and time-sensitive. Our objective is to keep you informed of the latest and most time-sensitive topics on a more regular basis than our standard quarterly newsletters.

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III. BOARD NEWS

IIUG Board Welcomes New Members

New board members, elected via our first-ever-electronic election process, were introduced to the membership during our recent Annual General Meeting. There, they were assigned to committees where they are already providing valuable service to IIUG. Jerry Hamilton and David Smith are serving on our Promotions committee. Jerry has been instrumental in reviving the St. Louis area users group, and bringing new training opportunities to that region. Jerry is also doing a qualitative survey of our Web site to improve its content. Dave has been active assisting with editorial duties on Alerts and the Newsletter. Ashley Williams and Hal Manor were assigned to the Membership committee. Ashley attended the recent Asia SAP TechEd in Brisbane and provided valuable feedback from that event to the Board. Ashley has also taken the leadership of the new IIUG Advisory Council. Meanwhile, Hal has taken an active role with our SIG lists and has provided very beneficial insight on a number of administrative issues.

As you can see, our Board rookies have wasted little time in getting involved in serving the IIUG membership.

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IV. INFORMIX NEWS AND EVENTS

Informix 9.3 Systems Administration Certification

The IBM Informix Certified Professional Program has been conducting a FREE beta testing of qualified candidates for its revised Certified System Administrator Certification Path for IBM Informix Dynamic Server Version 9. This beta test was only available until November 16, 2001. If you are not aware of this program, the following information should helpful.

What is the IBM Informix Certified Profesional Program?

The IBM Informix Certified Professional Program provides a benchmark by which you can objectively test your Informix expertise. Certification challenges your mastery of technology and reinforces the depth of skills you use in your everyday work. The result is industry-wide recognition of your Informix skills. Each of the certifications consists of a series of examinations specifically designed to validate an IT professional’s proficiency. Upon successful completion of these exams, Informix Certified Professionals receive additional benefits that keep their skills fresh, that reduce their problem resolution time, and that give them unprecedented access to technical resources and product information. More information is available at www.informix.com/certification

Other Certifications available for IBM Informix Products include:

      • Informix Certified Red Brick Administrator
      • Informix Certified System Administrator for Informix Dynamic Server
      • Informix Certified 4GL Developer

For more information, please visit: http://www.informix.com/informix/training/courses/certific/certific.htm

Please direct any questions about professional certification for IBM Informix products by e-mail to certification@informix.com

Remote DBA Services Offered by IBM Data Management

IBM Data Management recently announced the release of the Remote DBA Services pilot program with special benefits for the first organizations to sign up. The release promises “unprecedented access to experienced IBM Informix database administrators for cost-effective management of IBM Informix systems.”

The key benefits for Remote DBA Services include:

      • Deliver a consistent framework for monitoring and diagnosing problems in your systems
      • Reduce the risk and cost of managing your database operations
      • Enhance the reliability and availability of your systems
      • Improve the effectiveness of your internal resources assigned to manage your databases
      • Provide you with direct access to a team of skilled analysts experienced with managing IBM Informix environments

For full details regarding Remote DBA Services program in Norh America, call 1-800-274-8184 and select Option 3. Or call +44 (0)1784 240 333, select Option 1 in European Middle East Asia (EMEA) region. You may also visit Remote DBA Services for Informix Products to obtain an Adobe Acrobat brochure for this new service at

http://www-3.ibm.com/software/data/pubs/events/brochures.html

IBM Informix White Papers Available – Nick Desachy for Ask IBM Informix

A new and useful resource is now available for accessing the latest product- direction white papers. Version 2 of the Informix white paper is now available on the external IBM Data Management web site, accessible from each product page under the signet << Read about IBM’s commitment to xxx >> .

On each product page, a new highlighted title has been created, such as “Read about IBM’s commitment to IBM IDS”. This title links to the PDF with the details of the White Paper 2 for the specific product or group of products.

The different topics may be viewed at the following URLs:

Databases:

Performance Tools and Gateways:

Tools:

      • http://www-4.ibm.com/software/data/u2/

New Restore Utility Available – James Edmiston

The ontape and onbar utilities are great for archiving and restoring at the database instance or dbspace level, but how often have you wanted or needed to restore only a table from an archive but were unable to do so? Well, now you can!

The archecker utility included with IDS verifies ontape and onbar archives as recorded on tape. However, a special utility is available that enhances archecker to provide the ability to restore a specific table, or even rows or columns of a table. This utility was written by a handful of engineers and is available to you on the IIUG web site. It does require downloading and installing an executable that is specific to your hardware platform. Visit www.iiug.org/archeck for complete instructions and access to the necessary files for downloading.

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V. CLOSING AND CREDITS

The International Informix Users Group (IIUG) is an international organization that is designed to enhance communications between Informix and its worldwide user community. The IIUG now has over 12,000 members and has major support from the IBM Data Management division. We also help local user groups get started and promoted.

If you do not wish to receive future editions of this IIUG Alert, please click on the link below or paste it in your browser and change your “subscription” choices.

CREDITS:

Sources: IIUG Board of Directors, Nick Desachy, Walt Hultgren
Editor: David Smith, IIUG Board Member
Assistant Editors: Ron Flannery and Martha Schraer, IIUG Board Members
Contact: UG@Informix.com or Dawn Shannon at 650-926-6762

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT OF INFORMIX PRODUCTS AND THE IIUG!

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