IIUG Insider (Issue #109) July 2009

Highlights: Fastest Informix DBA Contest II – 40 contestants have entered so far!!

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 hot, very hot. 32 Celsius or 90 Fahrenheit is high no matter which scale you use. Israeli summers are always like this. I know the IIUG is a worldwide community and for some of you it is mid- winter. But still it is hard for me to write a long editorial.

I am trying to keep up with IDS Beta testing the last release and moving my production systems to the last one GA. The fix packs are much more then bug fixes. Each one has a bunch of additional functionality and improved performance. Conversion is very smooth, the product is robust and there is no impact on my third party applications.

I am planning a short article on some new SQL features introduced in IDS 11.5 xC5. It will probably not make it into this issue but I promise to publish it in the August Insider.

Gary Ben-Israel
IIUG Insider Editor

Highlights Back to top

Fastest Informix DBA Contest II – 40 contestants have entered so far!!

June 18 – September 30, 2009

Advanced DataTools is sponsoring a NEW contest for Informix Users to find and honor the fastest Informix DBAs. This is a new version of our very successful contest at the 2009 IIUG Informix User Conference. The challenge is to take a basic Informix IDS database server configuration and a SQL script that runs a series of inserts and updates and see who can get it to run the fastest!

We will be conducting a Q&A session web cast on Friday, July 31, 2009 – 2:00 pm, EDT and would like to invite anyone interested in participating in the contest to attend this web cast.

To register for the web cast visit http://advancedatatools.webex.com and look under upcoming events.

There will be 12 winners in the following CATEGORIES:

Grand Prize – the Fastest User DBA. To qualify for this prize, the user must be:

  1. A DBA employed at a company using Informix internally
  2. Not a consultant
  3. Not an IBM employee

(Grand Prize is either a Free pass to the 2010 IIUG Informix User Conference or an iPod Touch)

Honorary Prizes (Fastest DBA Shirt):

  • Fastest Professional Consultant DBA
  • Fastest IBM Developer (IBM employee)
  • Fastest Senior DBA (over 50)
  • Fastest Mid-Aged DBA (30-50)
  • Fastest Youngest DBA (under 30)
  • Fastest Newest DBA (shortest experience with Informix)
  • Fastest Old-timer (longest experience with Informix)
  • Fastest International DBA (Non USA resident)
  • Fastest Domestic DBA (USA resident)
  • Fastest with the fewest changes

The challenge will be to complete the following:

  • Download the data and the SQL Code
  • Setup an Informix IDS environment
  • Identify and add missing indexes
  • Tune and optimize the Onconfig file
  • Tune the optimize dbspace/table layout
  • Tune the optimize SQL script
  • Run the benchmark script
  • Repeat this process until you are satisfied with your times

Send the ONCONFIG file, a setup.sh script and the tuned benchmark_run.sql file to us by September 30, 2009 and we will see how it runs on our hardware.

The rules:

  • See the contest details for what changes are allowed and not allowed.
  • The row and data counts at the end of the SQL process must be correct.
  • The final timed run will be at our facility on our hardware, run by one of our staff.
  • Each participant’s configuration will be saved and the results must be reproducible.
  • The judge’s role will be to review the results, arbitrate disagreements and will have final say.
  • The rules may be updated to clarify any questions submitted before the contest ends on September 30, 2009. Updates will be posted on the website http://www.advancedatatools.com/Informix and on Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/FastInformixDBA

Judges: Lester Knutsen, Art Kagel, Carlton Doe, Spokey Wheeler

If you need an Informix system, I would suggest getting the Developers edition of the Informix Virtual Appliance:

  • Information on the Informix IDS 11.50.xC4 virtual appliance.
  • Download the Informix IDS 11.50.xC4 virtual appliance here!

To register for the contest and download the rules, data and code, http://www.advancedatatools.com/Informix/

Conference corner Back to top

CNIUG User Conference 2009

The China Informix User Group was formed on Oct. 2008 as a branch of IIUG. The website http://www.cniug.org, the gateway of CNIUG, was live by the end of 2008. Already the website has become the most widely recognized Informix site in China. It attracts more Informix DBAs, developers, and users to share their knowledge and experience.

On Aug. 20, 2009, the two-day User Conference will be held in Guiyang, China by CNIUG. In this event the CNIUG:

  1. Invites Informix executives to share their Informix business plan and product roadmap.
  2. Invites the Informix Chief Architect and the Informix team at China Development Lab to present the latest IDS features.
  3. Invites local users from telco and banking industries to share their migration and development experience.
  4. Invites Informix business partners to present their exciting business outcomes in Great China Region.

We expect a larger turnout for the User Conference than 2008 and we’re hoping to convey a strong future for Informix in China.

Young Tan
Informix Enablement Manager
IBM China Software Development Laboratory

IBM Information On Demand Global Conference 2009

Attention IIUG members! We invite you to join us – October 25 – 29 in Las Vegas, for the 2009 IBM Information On Demand Global Conference. Business and IT professionals who are serious about achieving smarter business outcomes will be at this premier IBM event featuring leading-edge solutions from across IBM software, hardware and services. We have an exciting lineup of Informix-related sessions and activities. We want to make sure that the IBM Informix content and activities we have on tap meet your needs. So please take a moment to take our short , 10-question survey at the link below so we know what you’d like to see at the conference.


We aim to deliver the best conference yet and have made smart enhancements to make this the one event you won’t want to miss:

  • An exciting lineup of customer speakers who will share real world insights across a broad spectrum of information management topics
  • Strategic and tactical sessions exploring opportunities made possible by a world becoming more instrumented, interconnected and intelligent
  • Deep technical content paired with the best education leaders in the information management industry
  • Breakthrough technology to help you connect with other attendees and make this year’s conference more efficient, accessible and green
  • An expanded EXPO of over 200 Business Partners and 175 Exhibitors providing smarter solutions for your business!

Register by July 31 and save when you to take advantage of the extended early-bird hotel rate and registration discount! A savings of $400!


Visit the web site today for more information: http://www.ibm.com/software/data/conf/

Free IBM Virtual Conference

Title: Data In Action Virtual Conference: Effective Data Management for Smarter Outcomes
Date: August 19, 2009
Time: 8:00 AM PDT / 11:00 AM EDT

Leveraging all your available information with both speed and accuracy is no longer a dream. Now is the time for companies of all sizes to harness the power of data to drive smarter business outcomes. Utilizing more effective data management strategies, through the implementation of an optimized infrastructure, improved DBA efficiency and application development productivity gains, can not only lower IT costs, but also solve nagging data growth problems.

Join us for a special, complimentary Virtual Conference, offering valuable insights for lowering IT costs through industry-leading performance, enhanced storage compression and improved automation. During this conference, you will:

  • Hear from Donald Feinberg, leading industry analyst, on the IT challenges, key trends and innovations shaping the data management marketplace.
  • Learn from customers and application providers who have incorporated innovative technologies and are now gaining a competitive advantage.
  • Visit the Solution Provider Pavilion where you can chat with application providers and business partners from around the world.
  • Learn from customers and application providers who have incorporated innovative technologies and are now gaining a competitive advantage.
  • Tour the Expo area to view demos, explore technology, talk with Informix experts and other Information Management experts. Download white papers, tools and other collateral.
  • Engage in chats with IBM innovators, customers and partners to discuss how your organizations can reduce query processing time by up to 22 percent, improve operational efficiency, cut storage cost by up to 75 percent, and reduce the amount of data latency by up to 10 times.

This is one event you won’t want to miss. Get your questions answered through 2 interactive (webcast) sessions, 8 exhibit booths, and live chat with industry experts. IBM and its business partners are helping companies around the globe with industry-leading data management technologies and their world-class expertise. Learn how your company can achieve smarter business outcomes and reduce underlying IT costs, all from the comfort of your office.

Registration url/landing page: http://bit.ly/2FMac6

Education Back to top

Advanced DataTools is offering half priced Informix training classes now through October!

All of the Advanced DataTools Informix training classes are half off ($1000) and the price is valid for both on site training and via the web. This price is only for our July, August, and October classes. All of our training courses are updated to include the most recent Informix releases.

Course Schedule

July 27-30, 2009 – Informix IDS for Database Administrators
This course is for database administrators, programmers, and technical support personnel who will be setting up, managing, and tuning IBM Informix IDS 11, 10, 9. or 7. databases.

August 17-20, 2009 – Advanced Informix IDS Performance Tuning and Optimization
This course is for database administrators and application developers who will be responsible for managing, optimizing, and tuning an IDS database server. The focus is on skills, procedures, and scripts to improve the performance of your database server. The course will provide a toolkit of scripts and utilities to start monitoring and optimizing your IDS database server.

October 5-8, 2009 – Advanced Informix IDS Performance Tuning and Optimization
This course is for database administrators and application developers who will be responsible for managing, optimizing, and tuning an IDS database server. The focus is on skills, procedures, and scripts to improve the performance of your database server. The course will provide a toolkit of scripts and utilities to start monitoring and optimizing your IDS database server.

More information on the class can be found at:


To register or for more information on Advanced DataTools Training call (703) 256-0267 x101

Sign up today!

Advanced DataTools is your number one source for Informix Training. Customized/on site training also available. http://www.advancedatatools.com

Updated Informix Training Offerings!

Announcing: 2009 Information Management Certification Days

Receive a 50% discount* on certification exams across the entire Information Management portfolio by attending an Information Management Certification Day.

For more information & event dates visit:


Explore other popular IBM resources:

  • IBM Professional Certification Program
  • Redbooks, developerWorks
  • Wikis, forums, and blogs
  • Podcasts, demos, and more!

Expand your skills with these new and updated Informix classrooms and ILO Training:

  • IDS v11 Administration
  • IDS v11 Transition
  • IDS v11 Replication
  • Informix Warehouse
  • Informix SQL
  • Intro to New Features in IDS v11 (E-learning)

Most titles are available in classroom and Instructor Led Online (ILO) delivery format.

To view Informix schedules & enroll:


Visit http://www.ibm.com/software/data/education/

IBM Books

Understanding IBM SOA Foundation Suite: Learning Visually with Examples

This book, Hello, World! Your First Hands-on Experience with IBM SOA Foundation Suite, helps developers build a good knowledge foundation on IBM SOA products. To simplify the learning process, this book focuses on a subset of ten products from IBM SOA Foundation, and includes a number of useful and practical introductory-level tutorials that feature the fundamentals of these IBM SOA products. In addition, the tutorials are also available as videos.

Get a copy today!


Viral Data in SOA: An Enterprise Pandemic

In a world refocused on consolidation, sharing, and reusing IT resources, now more than ever, organizations need to make sure their information is as perfect as they can make it. This book compliments the many different products aimed at improving data quality, such as Information Server and Information Analyzer, as well as those IBM products that help customers build SOA applications, Master Data Management applications, etc.

Read more!


Save 35% on select titles at the IBM Press Bookstore

IBM Press is pleased to offer several new books as well as some of our most popular Information Management titles at a very attractive 35% discount. In addition, IBM Press is offering FREE ground shipping for all orders in the US. Simply enter coupon code INFOMGMT during checkout to receive your discount.

To learn more about the eligible books and this special offer visit:


Go Green with a 15 day free trial of Safari Books Online

Now you can read with a “Green” option that lets you save money and trees while keeping your skills sharp. Safari Books Online, which offers powerful, searchable access to more than 7600 books and videos online, is offering a 15 day free trial and 15% off you purchase when you keep your account open.

Learn more:


IBM Education

Assess and Save is back!
Keep more money in your pocket

Back by popular demand, the Assess and Save offer returns on July 1, 2009! Purchase and pass any Information Management Online Assessment Exam through Prometric Testing from July 1, 2009 to September 30, 2009 and you will receive a 50% off voucher good toward the purchase of the corresponding exam at the IBM Authorized Testing Provider, Prometric. That’s $100 right back in your pocket! Beyond savings, candidates from the first phase of the offer experienced significantly improved pass rates on the actual exam, so you will be more likely to earn your IBM Professional Certification on your first try!

Sign up today!


Developer corner Back to top

Informix Chat with the Lab

Informix Chat with Lab

August 12
8.30 AM Pacific
10:30 AM Central
11.30 AM Eastern
4.30 PM London
5.30 PM Paris

Cognos and Informix

This month’s chat will be on Cognos Express, an exciting new offering featuring deep integration of Cognos & Informix technology.

Jerry Keesee, Director of the Informix Lab will introduce the call and Joseph Pusztai, Director of Cognos Mid-Market Products & Portfolio, will be our speaker. Please join to learn about Cognos Express, as well as all available Cognos & Informix solutions that help IBM customers gain better insight on their business performance.

Participant access information:

URL: /url/chat_aug09.html

Conference number: 8308447
Passcode: 7694800

Presentation material will be available at http://www.ibm.com/informix/labchats prior to the event.

Audio replay for July 15 Informix chat with lab available now!

In case you missed the session or would like to share with someone…

Audio replay for topic, Compression & Storage Optimization support in IDS is posted on Chat with Lab site at http://www-01.ibm.com/software/data/informix/labchats/#25

Stay tuned. The next Informix Chat with the Lab is coming soon!

New in developerWorks

Informix Dynamic Server 11.50 Fundamentals Exam 555 certification preparation, Part 1: IDS planning and installation

This tutorial is the first in a series of tutorials designed to help you become familiar with all the different aspects of IBM Informix Dynamic Server (IDS) and help you get ready for the IDS Fundamentals Certification exam. This first tutorial covers the planning and installation of IDS–a great place to start to successfully understand and use IDS.

16 July 2009

Migrating from Oracle 10g to IBM Informix Dynamic Server on Linux, Unix, and Windows

We discuss considerations, and describe a methodology, for migrating from Oracle 10g to the Informix Dynamic Server (IDS). We focus primarily on the basic topic areas of data, applications, and administration, providing information about the differences in features and functionality in areas such as data types, DML, DDL, and Stored Procedures. Understanding the features and functionality of the two products will better enable your decisions as you develop your migration plan. We provide a migration methodology and discuss the processes for installing and using the IBM Migration Toolkit (MTK) to migrate the database objects and data from Oracle to IDS. We also illustrate, with examples, how to convert stored procedures, functions, and triggers. Application programming and conversion considerations are also discussed. The laboratory examples are performed under Oracle 10g and IDS Version 11.5. However, the processes and examples can also be applied to Oracle 7, 8, and 9i.

6 July 2009

Using IBM Database Encryption Expert to protect your sensitive data

IBM Database Encryption Expert provides features to encrypt and control access to data written to file systems and database backup images. Beginning with Version 1.1 Fix Pack 3, the product supports both DB2 and Informix Dynamic Server (IDS). This article describes some of the key features and mechanisms of Encryption Expert and shows you how to use them.

2 July 2009

For more information go to developerWorks – Informix:


IBM corner Back to top

White paper: Tivoli Identity and Access Assurance for Healthcare providers

This white paper describes how regulations worldwide present new requirements for healthcare providers. IBM Tivoli Identity and Access Assurance can help providers comply with regulations, while improving productivity with features such as secure unified single sign-on.

URL: /url/smrc.html

Informix news Back to top

DBTA Downloads: White Papers

Database Trends and Applications invites all IIUG members to visit the new http://www.dbta.com often. Visit DBTA’s new White Paper Download Center at http://www.dbta.com/DBTA_Downloads/WhitePapers regularly for the latest in white paper content with new content posted weekly.

VendorRate’s Top Rated Vendor report for the 2nd quarter of 2009

  • IBM Informix received the #1 overall ranking. (Page 3)
  • IBM Informix is the #2 rated vendor by Small Organizations (less than 250 employees). (Page 5)
  • IBM Informix is the #1 rated vendor by Enterprise Organizations (over 2500 employees). (Page 6)
  • IBM Informix is the #2 rated vendor by 6 out 9 raters’ job functions. (Page 7-8)
  • IBM Informix received high scores in every one of the benchmarks in which raters evaluate vendors. (Page 9)
  • IBM Informix is the #1 rated vendor within the Database & File Management Software category and the Business Intelligence Software category with a score of 96. (Page 13)


“…in B2B markets, purchasing decisions were far more influenced by peer networks, i.e., other customers, than by any other sources of information or referral.”
Turning Customer Pain Into Competitive Gain, CMO Council, 2009

IIUG corner Back to top

Technical Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

How many of you are a member of a Technical Special Interest Group or SIG? The IIUG provides a variety of email discussion groups that give you quick access to a variety of topics, but better than that you also have quick access to a variety of experts. Our most popular group with an average of 20 posts a day is the ids@iiug.org SIG. Discussions are generally very technical with the most common responses to questions being “send me a copy of your config file” so answers are not just guesses. It is nothing like the soap opera you get sucked into on comp.database.informix; which requires hourly reading to keep your inbox from exceeding its maximum allowed size on a daily basis. There are members of the IIUG Board of Directors monitoring the various SIGs as well as many of the IBM Informix developers. If you want to understand how the new compression feature works you simply post a question and within the hour you will have responses varying from personal opinions about how it works to detailed technical descriptions of the actual code.

To register for a SIG, you need to login to the IIUG site http://www.iiug.org and select the “Member Area” from the middle of the home page. Once in the member area, you should select “Subscribe to E-Mail Lists”. Here you will be given a list of SIGs which revolve around various topics or languages. To select a group, you check either the “Subscribe” box or the “Digest Format” box. The Subscribe box gives you real time access (well, within 15 minutes or so) to the emails posted on the group throughout the day. If you are a member of one of the busier sites or just want to catch up once a day, you may want to choose the second option of getting the emails in a digest format. This will send you an email daily that will show you all the emails posted on that site during the last 24 hours. For the larger groups you may get a dozen emails a day, but for the smaller lists you will see only a few emails maybe once or twice a week. You must be a member of a SIG to be allowed to post to that SIG, but anyone can review the emails sent on the list by pulling it up from the web site. The most popular SIG is definitely ids@iiug.org with an average of 250 posts per month. Other popular English speaking SIGs are the classics@iiug.org, development-tools@iug.org, oat@iiug.org, and datablade-list@iiug.org.

The first “I” in IIUG is for International. Many users in the Informix community do not speak English as their first language, and may feel more comfortable conversing with other Informix users in a different language. For that reason we have five language SIGs. We have members of the board from France, Portugal, Brazil and Israel that speak not only English but also Portuguese, French, Spanish, German and Italian. These groups all have links on the main page in the center on the bottom marked “Informix Engine Discussion” to aid users in finding them. There is a Taiwan Users Group that monitors its own Chinese SIG group since no one on the current BOD speaks Chinese. The most popular language SIG is the iiug-esp@iiug.org which is where people can discuss Informix topics in Spanish. We also have iiug-deu@iiug.org for German, iiug-por@iiug.org for Portuguese, iiug-fra@iiug.org for French, and a BRAND NEW iiug-ita@iiug.org for Italian. Please spread the word on these language sites to anyone you know that is fluent in any of these languages.

There is a rather unique SIG for job information. If you register for jobs@iiug.org you will get an email notification of any new jobs that are posted to the Informix Job Board. When you sign up it mentions that this is a one-way list, so any email messages sent TO this list will be discarded. To respond to a job posting or to post a job, you still need to go to the Informix Job Board.

I mentioned that members of the Board of Directors (BOD) monitor the sites. What the board does not do is adjust any of the content. For this reason, if we feel someone is being inappropriate on the site, we will have a discussion with the poster. In extreme cases, the BOD can vote to remove the person’s membership from the IIUG to stop them from posting at the SIGs. These are controlled groups, which mean that no anonymous postings are allowed. Yes, Obnoxio the Clown is a registered user of the IIUG, and the BOD can find OTC if we need to. Each poster must be a registered member of the IIUG before they can access the members area to join at SIG. Please email any problems you see on the SIGs to my attention at kate@iiug.org.

For a complete description of all of the SIGs, find the Technical Special Interest Group link on the left side of the IIUG main web page under the heading “Discussion”. /forums/technical.php

Kate Tomchik (kate@iiug.org)

Informix resources Back to top

Informix Blogs and things

  • The IIUG forums at /forums/technical.php **** these are very good****
  • Blogs, Videos, News and more at http://planetids.com
  • IDS Experts at http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/idsteam
  • Guy Bowerman at http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/gbowerman
  • Madison Pruitt at http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/roundrep
  • Jacques Roy at http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/jacquesroy
  • Cathy Elliott at https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/mydeveloperworks/blogs/InformixVoices ** New **
  • Informix blogs at http://www.ibmdatabasemag.com/blog/main/archives/informix/index.html
  • Kate Dawson at http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/katedawson
  • Fernando Nunes at http://informix-technology.blogspot.com/
  • Virtual Worlds, MMOGs, Serious data – Informix Technology for Persistent Worlds http://informix4virtual.wordpress.com/
  • IBM DATABASE MAGAZINE at http://www.ibmdatabasemag.com
  • The Informix Zone at http://www.informix-zone.com
  • The Informix mag at http://www.informixmag.com/
  • IIUG Developers Desktop /devnews/Vol_1_Iss_4/Home.html
  • There is now an Informix group on LinkedIn. The group is called “Informix Supporter”, so anyone loving Informix can join, from current IBM employees, former Informix employees to users can join. It will also be a good occasion to get in touch with others or long-time-no-seen friends. If you fancy showing the Informix logo on your profile, join. To join, simply go to: http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/25049/5E4B2048E558


Calendar of events Back to top

August – 2009
Date Event Location Contact
3-4 2009 Informix Road Show Orlando, Florida Douglas Brown
6-7 2009 Informix Road Show Boca Raton, Florida Douglas Brown
17-18 2009 Informix Road Show Toronto, Canada
18-19 2009 Informix Road Show Cape Town, South Africa
20-21 2009 Informix Road Show Montreal, Canada
20-21 CNIUG User Conference 2009 Guiyang, China Anchi Shen, Young-Yi Tan
September – 2009
Date Event Location Contact
3-4 2009 Informix Road Show Johannesburg, South Africa
7-8 2009 Informix Road Show Beijing, China
10-11 2009 Informix Road Show Shanghai, China
14-15 2009 Informix Road Show ChengDu, China
14-15 2009 Informix Road Show Washington DC
21-22 2009 Informix Road Show Taipei, Taiwan
22-23 2009 Informix Road Show Raleigh, North Carolina
22-23 2009 Informix Road Show Stockholm, Sweden
23-24 2009 Informix Road Show Frankfurt, Germany
28-29 2009 Informix Road Show Hursley, England
October – 2009
Date Event Location Contact
5-6 2009 Informix Road Show Caracas, Venezuela
8-9 2009 Informix Road Show Buenos Aires, Argentina
8-9 2009 Informix Road Show Munich, Germany
19-20 2009 Informix Road Show Santiago, Chile


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:


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. The 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
Tammy Frankforter

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.