IIUG Insider (Issue #69) March 2006

Highlights: Inaugural Malaysian LUG meeting a huge success

Welcome to the International Informix Users Group (IIUG) Insider! Designed for IIUG members and Informix user group leaders, this publication contains timely and relevant information for the IBM Informix community.



Editorial Back to top

It is spring for some IIUG members and autumn for others. This is the meaning of International in the IIUG.

The IDUG/IIUG conference in Tampa is behind the corner. Make sure you read about it in the conference corner so you can find out what is in it. I hope it will convince those of you are in doubt to attend. Our European conference is still far but we are working hard to make it happen. Stay tuned – we will keep updating you monthly.

Once again I am asking you to help me making the Insider a better newsletter. Send me your stories, comments, requests and, if possible, technical articles. Look at the Insider as a personal letter from a friend and take a few minutes to reply.

Gary Ben-Israel
IIUG Insider Editor
IIUG Board of Directors

Why you cannot afford to miss IIUG/IDUG NA Conference in Tampa Back to top

Over ten years ago I attended the first Informix conference in… ok the mind is going – was it San Francisco or San Jose? No matter, the point is that I have been to each and every Informix conference, and now that the IIUG has teamed up with IDUG for the second time to produce THE premier database conference under the IBM Information Management brand, I can tell you that this event is not to be missed. Last year I had some reservations about whether the IIUG was doing the right thing in joining up with IDUG. During the months leading up to the Denver conference in May 2005 I was hesitant, but the great Conference Planning people at IDUG and former IDUG President Sandy Smith assured me that the Informix people would be welcomed with open arms, and sure enough, we certainly were!

At the conference in Denver last year I was very impressed with the professionalism and the wonderful job the Conference Planning Committee did. The comments I received from the many Informix attendees that I spoke with were overwhelmingly positive – from “This was the best Informix Technical event I have ever been to” to “Can’t wait for next year!” Well next year is almost upon us, and the IDUG Conference Planning Committee headed up by Joe Burns, together with Cindy Lichtenauer from the IIUG, have some truely great events planned, including a just confirmed, special Informix speaker that is not on the schedule.

Having been to each and every Informix conference since the first year, I know from experience that the conferences provide knowledge that cannot be gathered anywhere else. I have heard that these events are expensive, but I could never put a price on what I have learned over the years – the tips, tricks, and special knowledge that gets passed on at these events by fellow Informix DBA’s and application programmers. It costs less to go to this single event than an entire week of Informix training from IBM, and not only will you learn more and pick up more tips and tricks, but you get to meet other people who do the same kind of work that you do and these individuals become good friends who continue to share their knowledge over the years.

See you all in Tampa…..

Stuart Litel
International Informix Users Group

Highlights Back to top

Inaugural Malaysian LUG meeting a huge success

The Inaugural Malaysian LUG meeting, held on the 23rd of March, was a huge success. The one day event, attended by 93 developers and DBA’s, gathered to hear Mark Scranton and Danilo Novelli as they focused on Informix and the Service Orientated Architecture, The Informix Roadmap and a half day ‘deep dive’ into IDS 10.

Meeting chairman Liew KN (http://www.mydbsolve.com/) was very enthusiastic about the response. “Everyone was very excited about the event. They had all registered by 8:30am and stayed till after the formal meeting finished at 5:45pm that evening. What was really appreciated was the ability for people to network and share ideas.” Liew went on to describe some of the ideas they have for future events. “The main thing is that we want to hold the next event on the weekend so that more people can attend”. He said there was also a lot of discussion about moving the event around the country and working with other LUG’s in the region. Liew said that IBM was very positive about the outcome and “they will make sure to continue to sponsor & organize future Informix events together with MyIUG”.

The MyIUG contact is:

Liew Kim Non +6012 – 288-5423 (Mobile)
+603 – 780-30295 (Office)
DB Solve Technologies Consulting Sdn Bhd.

Conference corner Back to top

IIUG/IDUG NA Conference, Tampa May 7-11, 2006

IDUG 2006 – North America
May 7-11, 2006
Tampa, Florida, USA

Hello International Informix User Group Members,

You don’t want to miss the IDUG/IIUG North America Conference May 6-11, 2006 in Tampa Florida.

Last year’s conference was great. This years will be even better and jam packed with more Informix content!

Here are just a few of the highlights:

4 Informix Tracks with 50+ technical sessions on the Informix product line.

Here are a few examples:

  • Point in Time Table Level Restore
  • Taking Advantage of IDS 10 Features
  • Using IDS V10 on Linux Kernel 2.6
  • DataBlade Developer Session
  • Understanding New and Sparsely Documented Onstats
  • Enterprise Replication – Deep Dive
  • Application Development
  • Java Development
  • Development with PHP
  • Backup/Restore Architecture and New Functionality

You can see the full schedule at:


6 half day Educational Seminars:

  • Mark Scranton – IDS 10 Internals, and using Server Studio
  • John Miller – Performance Tuning Informix Database Engine
  • Jonathan Leffler – The Internals of DBD::Informix
  • Art Kagel – Advanced IDS Setup from Disk to Engine Optimization
  • Lester Knutsen – Informix SQL Performance Tuning
  • Darryl Priest – Using Perl, DBI & CGI With Databases

7 Informix User Feedback Opportunities:

UFO’s will provide an opportunity for conference attendees to give feedback on the usage and usability of Informix products and services at IDUG/IIUG 2006 North America. These User Feedback Opportunity (UFO) sessions, open to all registered attendees, will solicit your opinions via product usability testing, demos and Q&A formats.

IDS 10.00: Explore existing functions

This session will allow you to see a few of IDS10.00 features in action. See what new Enterprise Replication (ER) Templates we introduced and see how much easier it is to set up ER replicas. Also, check out how to use Table Level Restore to recover an accidentally dropped table. Learn about the prerequisites and the individual steps performed during a table level restore. Participants should have some experience with ER and/or backup and restore.

IDS 10.00: Explore performance enhancements

Have a look at the many performance enhancements now in IDS 10.00. Features that improve performance are Configurable Page Sizes, Create/Drop Index Online, Enhancements to Buffer Pool Management, Full Outer Join, Fast Restart, Shared Memory greater than 4 GB, Dynamic Setting of OPTCOMPIND, and more. Come take a first-hand look. Participants should have at least 2 years of experience with IDS.

Test migration to DB2 or Informix using the Migration Toolkit (MTK)

Interested in migrating your database to Informix? MTK is a free utility that can help. Come to this session and perform a test migration from one of our supported source databases to either DB2 or Informix. We’d like to hear your thoughts about the usability of the MTK, and about any enhancements that might enhance the migration experience. If you are currently planning or have completed such a migration, we’d like to hear about your issues and experiences in the areas of supported SQL constructs, source target and target DBMS combinations or migrating your applications to use the new database. What went well and what did not? Participants should have some interest or experience performing a database migration to DB2 or Informix.

4GL to Enterprise Generation Language (EGL) migration capabilities

Users can perform an actual migration of an application. This application will include reports, forms and even some functionality that doesn’t migrate directly. Feedback would be collected on usability of the tool, as well as customer impact of some of our accepted workarounds. Anyone with Informix 4GL or EGL interest can participate.

Informix .NET integration with Microsoft Tools

Learn about how to create Informix .NET applications with a few clicks, drags and drops. Let us know what additional features you will like to see in the Informix .NET provider to make programming with Informix databases quick, efficient and fun. Anyone interested in creating .NET applications is welcome to participate.

Informix Advertising

This focus group session will gather information regarding the habits and preferences of users of any IBM Informix products that affect how IBM shares information about the Informix product family or generates publicity for those products. We will discuss email, Web, hard copy print, and other means of marketing communications.

IIUG Web Site

The International Informix Users Group (IIUG) will host usability and features testing for its Web site at /. IIUG members are encouraged to provide their feedback on current and potential Web site design, layout, and features.

2 Informix SIG’s

  • Informix on Linux
  • Informix DBA Best Practices

And even more….

  • IIUG/Informix Ask the Experts Panel
  • Informix Spotlight Session
  • Informix User Group Leadership Council Meeting
  • IIUG Annual General Meeting
  • Free Informix Certification Exams
  • Many other Networking Opportunities.

If you need help justifying attendance to your boss or anyone else, take a look at the Justification Toolkit and other useful information on the IDUG website:


Here are quotes from a couple of last year’s attendees:

“I just wanted to send you an email to say how much that I enjoyed the conference. The sessions were amazing. The thing that I liked about the sessions was that it was purely technical, and not marketing related. I learned more in the last week than I have in any other time in my Informix career. The conference was truly worthwhile from a learning perspective, and I had no problem justifying the cost of the conference to my bosses.”

“I wanted to take the time to say “Thank You” to the entire team that put on the IIUG portion of the conference. I’ve told my boss that I learned so much new information as a DBA that I have more action and idea items to implement once I get back into the office tomorrow! I hope IIUG will continue to be involved at future IDUG events as I will see benefits to the growing Informix user community. With anticipated growth with new Web Sphere sales mixed with the OLTP running on Linux as IBM is now marketing IDS, I envision that at Next year’s conference there may be a new set of basic Linux IDS DBA classes that could be taught by the more experienced DBAs. I hope more of us our using 9.4 and/or 10.0 by that time and we can share again real world experiences with these newer releases of the product (like configurable page sizes). Thank you again to you and all of the board members and IBM staff that made this IIUG conference wonderful!”

Thanks for your time and please sign up soon.


Looking forward to seeing you in Tampa!


Cindy Lichtenauer
International Informix User Group – Board of Directors

PS – Check out the Conference Blog for even more up to date details!


IIUG/IDUG Europe Conference Rome, October 9-13, 2006

IIUG is getting closer to Europe and the IIUG conference is now closer to our European members. We are in the process of selecting abstracts for the conference and in April our European Conference Planning Committee will meet in Bucharest to set the conference schedule. This is a conference you will not want to miss so start planning today.


Paul Watson and Gary Ben-Israel
IIUG Board of Directors

IIUG Board of Directors corner Back to top

Building IIUG Communications with the help of all

Regular feedback from you guys is that we do not see enough Informix in the press. We sure agree with you, but we would also love to see dinosaur billboards everywhere. My now 4 year old son would love to see the dinosaur billboards everywhere too. I am not sure he will understand what a dinosaur database is but we (grown-ups) all know.

In order to compensate for the lack of press coverage, IIUG has decided to start its own communications program and I am in charge of it.

Our goal is not only to build more awareness of the Informix brand, within IBM, but also to extend real awareness of your favorite (I have high hopes) users group.

To ease this process, I need the help of all of you, proud members of IIUG. Please read your favorite IT magazines, favorite web sites and report them to me. I need the publication title, the name, title and gender of the journalist and his/her e-mail. We already have a few, but we need more in the USA, United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, India and all other countries where Informix is growing (it does include France).

If you have any press announcement or communication idea you would like to share with us, please contact me.

We are all going to build a stronger community by enhancing our communications to the world. Let’s all participate in this effort.

Contact me at jgp at iiug dot org.

Jean Georges Perrin (jgp)

Using the Informix Special Interest Groups

If you are not using the IIUG Informix Special Interest Groups then you are missing out on communicating with the best brains in the business. The groups are a very effective way to discuss issues, problems, bugs, work arounds, new features, and great ideas with not only practitioners but also the Informix engineers. The quality of the advice is very very good. Reading the postings is very simple to set up and organise. There are five choices.

  1. Visit /forums/ and browse. There is no login required
  2. Login to the IIUG Member Area at http://www.iiug.org and then navigate to “Forums”. Here you can read and write to the forums.
  3. Have us post the messages to you in an email. You can set this up by again by logging in to the Member Area and navigating to “Subscribe to Email Lists”. Simply tick the box of the forums you want to monitor and you will start to receive the postings in your Inbox.
  4. Instead of getting all the messages individually you can get them bundled up in a single posting for the day. To do this go to the same place as in 3 above and click on “Digest”.
  5. RSS feed. This is brand new. Now you can have your RSS reader linked directly to the forums. See /rss or read the blurb below on the RSS service to learn how.

New for SIG users. RSS is here.

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is another method to push news or information. RSS feeds are very useful because the news is reduced to the defined XML format using XML tags. This means you can manage the data in any way you want, on reception of the feed. Chuck it into a database if you feel inclined, display it in your browser or as a ‘ticker feed’ on your desktop. The choice is yours. You are now officially free from the tyranny of the “Inbox”. There are a pile of free RSS readers out there or, if you are geekie, then you can write your own. :-). I would expect that you will write your own.

Anyway… the point is. All of our SIGs have RSS feeds that you can access. Just navigate to the forums and you will find the RSS link.

The Informix-forum.

We need answers to two questions.

  1. What application providers have not yet stated certification of their products for Informix IDS v10?
  2. What applications do you use that you believe should be certified for Informix IDS v10?

You can send your feedback to david@iiug.org or kate@iiug.org or add your comment to the thread in /forums/informix-forum/

BTW. Have a look at the Informix-forum. This is the place for you to discuss the Informix brand and it’s development and marketing. Be creative and tell it like it is 🙂

And… Congratulations to the Aussies on putting on a fantastic “Commonwealth Games”. You gals and guys did a great job.

David Fraser
IIUG Board of Directors

Vendors who need “encouragement” to support IDS 10

Hard to believe, but we have actually heard some vendors don’t see the financial benefits of providing their applications support of Informix version 10. The IIUG is teaming up with IBM to identify those vendors that have existing products using Informix databases, yet have chosen NOT to make this application available version 10. Clearly these people are confused and misdirected, and we would like to help them “see the error in their ways”.

Last month, I started a thread requesting what vendors people are using that they would like to see support upgrades to version 10. I will be giving this list to IBM, so they know on which vendors they need to concentrate their attention.

Here is the list I have compiled so far.

  • SAP
  • Stellent (formerly Accorde/Optika )
  • BMC – Patrol Database tools such as db-reorg; SQL Back Track
  • Khalix
  • PeopleSoft
  • Vantive
  • Ecommerce Broadvision
  • Cadquest
  • Rockport
  • Kronos
  • Lawson
  • MapInfo
  • Callatäy-Wouters and its product Thalerv2
  • Er/Studio supports version 5.x and 9.x currently, but not 10.
  • Brio Query (Hyperian Microstratedgies ) has made plans clear.

Please continue to forward any more applications/vendors to me at kate@iiug.org.

Website Modifications 2006

Seen the website lately? You should! Myself and the rest of the IIUG Board have brainstormed and added a number of new features to the web site.

Are you attending the conference? Ask to be part of the Website UFO – User Feedback Opportunity group. We will work as a team to improve the website even more. Here are the new features you will see at http://www.iiug.org:

  • NEW INFORMIX-FORUM!! The new method for communicating to IBM and the IIUG about the direction of Informix databases has arrived. To ensure that everyone has quick access to it, you now can select it from the center of our front page.
  • Language specific links to language SIG (Special Interest Groups) pages. – added at the immediate bottom of the web page. Now it tells people in their language about how to join IIUG and SIGs. We want to increase the number of members we have in non-US countries, and hopefully this will help.
  • Join and login buttons are now at the top of the page, filled in with last information used so you can automatically log in much easier. You have the option of saving this information for the next visit. You no longer have to use a post it on your computer to remember your member ID!
  • Date/Year added to main page items, and they are sorted with the most recent on top.
  • Radio button to turn off background screen.
  • Reduced the number of items on the main page, to eliminate scrolling.
  • VNext link now located in the IIUG.org HotSpots on the left side. This links you to David Williams list of wanted Informix improvements.

If you have any suggestions on how to make the WEBSITE more useful for you to use, please email them to me at kate@iiug.org.

Education Back to top

Informix Day @ IBM European Technical Conference

Join us for a special Informix Day on May 16 in The Hague, The Netherlands, for a one day intensive technical track on Informix Dynamic Server (IDS). This track is a superb opportunity for those interested in IDS to learn more about the powerful capabilities of IBM’s premier data server for online transaction processing and industrial strength, embedded computing. The solutions-oriented track will cover a technical deep dive of IDS, techniques for advanced performance tuning, benefits of using IDS in your SOA environment, PHP and .NET application development with IDS, and practical applications of IDS extensibility.

Sign up today to take advantage of a substantially reduced conference price for Informix users!


Special Informix Day pricing: 465,23€

Chat with the Lab

Informix Chat with the Lab – Wednesday, April 12 11 AM Eastern time

Informix in a Mobile World

Learn more about IBM’s small footprint relational database that works with IDS to securely extend your data to mobile devices such as personal digital assistants (PDAs), smart phones and other embedded mobile devices. Our speakers are: Jerry Keesee, Director of the Informix Lab; Anita Chung, Everyplace Product Manager and Jacques Roy, WW Informix Technical Consultant.

You may RSVP for this event at: https://ww4.premconf.com/webrsvp/register?conf_id=1596472

Linda Spina
IBM Information Management Sales – Americas

Developer corner Back to top

Binary PHP PDO Driver for Informix available for Windows

I wanted to let everyone in the Informix community know that the Informix driver for PHP, pdo_informix, to connect to Informix through the PDO abstraction layer is available for download. The URL where it can be downloaded is:


Kellen Bombardier
Software Engineer
IM Common API Development – Lenexa
IBM, 11200 Lakeview Dr. Lenexa, KS 66219
What’s new on developerWorks

The following articles can be found in the Informix section of developerWorks:


Informix Dynamic Server and Linux — Up and running
Find out how you can install one of the two major enterprise Linux distributions and configure it for running IBM Informix Dynamic Server (IDS) Version 10. You’ll learn how to get a trial version of the IDS database server up and running and how to use a disk as a raw device.
09 Mar 2006

Informix OnBar and TSM, Part 2
Informix Dynamic Server (IDS) allows the database administrator to send the database backups directly to an external storage manager. The actual version 10 of IDS already includes the necessary library to connect it to IBM Tivoli Storage Manger (TSM). IDS and TSM together build a powerful team to back up large databases safely and to restore them quickly.
09 Mar 2006

DB2 and open source: Put yourself on the map with Google Maps API, DB2/Informix, and PHP on Linux
Google Maps API along with DB2, Informix, PHP, JavaScript, and XML let you create an easy-to-use map with your data on it. Pan to your zip code to see area-specific data. Use custom icons, change the map type, create a sidebar, and use event handlers.
02 Mar 2006

Informix success story Back to top

RealPlis accelerates online real estate listings with IDS 10 and Linux

Published on: 13 Feb 2006

“The migration solved our performance problem overnight. We were stunned by the difference. Queries that took five minutes to complete took seconds with Informix Dynamic Server, Version 10.”
Eric Gordon, Managing Director, RealPlus, L.L.C.


In the real estate industry, it’s location, location, location that drives sales. For RealPlus, L.L.C., however, which provides the New York City real estate industry with an online listings database service, the key to satisfying real estate agents is performance, performance, performance.

Business need: Accelerate response times from online real estate listings service for Manhattan real estate agents

Solution: Migrate from IBM Informix® Dynamic Server, Version 7 on SCO UNIX® to Version 10 on Linux®

Benefits: Queries that took five minutes to complete now take just seconds; seamless migration to Version 10 avoided rewriting of applications; higher productivity of users and database administrators; real estate agents extremely pleased with results; enhanced performance of mobile solution; ability of agents to benefit from added functionality RealPlus had built into its application

You can find the full article at: http://www.ibm.com/informix/realplus/

News Back to top

IBM Informix SE and OnLine trade-ups

On March 14, 2006, IBM announced a reduced-price trade-up from Informix SE and OnLine to Informix Dynamic Server Express Editions. Customers experiencing growth in data and users and/or wishing to expand their application development environment or business environment overall, by trading-up to IDS can now do so easily using Passport Advantage part numbers. Extended Parallel Server (XPS) V8.51 availability and updates to the Data Management Gold Program Business Intelligence Bundle, Red Brick Analytic Bundle for Enterprises and Red Brick Analytic Bundle for Small and Medium Businesses were also announced.

You can find the PDF at:


Calendar of events Back to top

April – 2006
Date Event Location Contact
5 Washington (DC) Area Informix User Group Meeting IBM Facility, Fairfax VA Lester Knutsen
May – 2006
Date Event Location Contact
2 Portland Area Informix Tech Fair Portland, Oregon John Miller
7-11 IDUG/IIUG North America Tampa, Florida Cindy Lichtenauer
16 Informix Day @ IBM European Technical Conference The Hague, The Netherlands Michael N. Cohn
June – 2006
Date Event Location Contact
7 Chicago Informix User Group Meeting Chicago Athletic Association Sam Alwan
October – 2006
Date Event Location Contact
9-13 IDUG/IIUG 2006 – Europe Rome, Italy Cindy Lichtenauer
15-20 IBM Information on Demand Global Conference Anaheim, California


Useful links Back to top

In response to your input, we have created a page on the IIUG web site containing all the links we used to include. Please find it at: /quicklinks.html

Closing and credits Back to top

The International Informix Users Group (IIUG) is an organization designed to enhance communications between its worldwide user community and IBM. IIUG’s membership database now exceeds 25,000 entries and enjoys the support and commitment of IBM’s Data Management division. Key programs include local user groups and special interest groups, which we promote and assist from launch through growth.

Sources: IIUG Board of Directors
IBM Corp.
Editors: Gary Ben Israel
Stuart Litel
Jean Georges Perrin

For comments, please send an email to gary@iiug.org.

Categorized as Insider

By Vicente Salvador

Board member since 2014, a user since 1989 and Informix fan. I'am software architect which allow me to combine technical and business skills.