IIUG Insider (Issue #202) April 2017

Highlights: IBM Informix – HCL IP Partnership

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.



Informix is starting a new era. HCL is partnering with IBM and will be responsible for support and development of Informix. This 15 year partnership, is in my opinion, the greatest thing that happened to Informix in many years.

As Al Martin, Vice President, Analytics Development & Client Success, said in the IIUG 2017 event in Raleigh, it removes the handcuffs that have been placed on Informix for the last many years.

I’m sure that in the near future will start seeing many positive things concerning Informix development, sales and marketing.

I am urging the Informix community to share the following message:

IBM is not getting rid of Informix. The partnership with HCL while maintaining ownership shows commitment and belief. IBM and HCL together will make Informix better and stronger to the benefit of all existing customers and the many new customers that will join the Informix community in the near future.

Gary Ben-Israel

IIUG Insider Editor
IIUG Board of Directors


IBM Informix – HCL IP Partnership

Introduction – About HCL
Who is HCL?
HCL is a business enterprise with presence in the fields of technology and healthcare. Founded in 1976 as one of India’s original IT garage startups, the HCL enterprise currently comprises three companies in India – HCL Technologies, HCL Infosystems and HCL Healthcare with annual revenues of US$7.1 billion and over 111,000 professionals from diverse nationalities operating across 31 countries including over 500 points of presence in India.

In the technology space, HCL’s offerings span a wide range of software and hardware services and solutions including R&D, Technology Services, Enterprise and Applications Consulting, Remote Infrastructure Management, IT Hardware, Systems Integration, Distribution of Technology and Telecom Products. A new entrant in Healthcare, HCL aims to provide innovative medical services, products and training to meet the growing demand for quality Healthcare in India. For further information, visit www.hcl.com.

IBM and HCL IP Partnership from Client Perspective

How will Informix benefit from the IBM-HCL IP partnership?

Informix will be part of HCL’s Product and Platforms Division. HCL and IBM will collaborate on:

  • Offering management to deliver a richer Roadmap to our clients
  • Marketing of Informix products
  • Supporting Technical Sales activities
  • Supporting and enhancing expertise in IoT and new business areas

HCL is responsible for Development, Support and Offering Management. Informix development and support employees will transfer to the larger HCL development organization. Seamless transition of development and support activities for Informix will be ensured with the necessary Informix expertise joining HCL.

IBM continues to own the Intellectual Property (IP) and is responsible for Sales, Technical Sales, Marketing, Lab Services and will be the first point of contact for support. HCL will also help with Sales, Marketing and Technical Sales activities.

There won’t be any changes to client relationships and processes. For example, there are no changes to Sales relationships, quotes, invoicing and payments. Product download mechanisms such as Passport Advantage, Fix Central and Trials & Downloads will remain unchanged. Additionally, there are no changes to how Clients report issues/problems (PMRs/APARs). There won’t be any changes to the Product documentation location on IBM website.

Other key points to note

  • IBM recognizes the need to increase capacity and to innovate to address current Client needs and to address new growth areas.
  • IBM intends to deliver additional capabilities to our clients
  • IBM-HCL partnership has been made to secure the long-term success of Informix products
  • IBM is expanding the existing partnership for 15+ years with HCL to accelerate the product roadmap innovation and extend the Informix products to new Business areas
  • All Informix products will continue to be supported according to IBM Software Support Lifecycle Policies.
  • IBM will continue to sell the Informix products as it does today
  • No change to contracts. Sales contact is still with IBM
  • Executive, Technical and Advocate relationships remain unchanged.
  • IBM will continue to be the first point of contact for support and will work with HCL who will provide advanced support and Development.
  • Support management will be through the IBM’s PMR process
  • IBM license, Pricing, Sales and support channels are unchanged.
  • IBM and HCL will ensure to keep the client commitments unchanged

Welcome Letter – Darren Oberst

Dear IIUG Member,

Building on a history of collaboration between the two companies, HCL and IBM have entered into a 15 year

partnership that takes the best of their shared knowledge and experience to jointly develop and market the Informix product family.

Effective May 1st, HCL will take on development, technical support, and product management teams, and will work jointly with IBM on product strategy, marketing, and sales.

HCL and IBM recognize the importance that data plays in today’s business environment and have committed to investing in, and growing, the capabilities for data and analytics. HCL will build additional features and functionalities based on business realities and client priorities. With this renewed energy and commitment, HCL plans to improve the roadmap and enhance Informix.

Clients who are using Informix will continue to engage with IBM as the primary partner, with HCL broadening the reach to the user community. HCL’s specialized customer advocacy group fosters collaboration with HCL technical and engineering teams to advance customer interests and develop product roadmaps for new releases.

This partnership plays on both companies’ strengths. IBM data and analytics is the world’s strongest brand in this category, with well-known product families and market reach.

HCL is a global leader in IT services, Application services and Engineering & Research capabilities. Under the new digital ecosystem, the agreement enhances each partner’s ability develop new and innovative data-driven applications that enhance customer operations and competitiveness.

Both companies have enjoyed a longstanding and successful partnership across technology, software and services. With a history of collaboration and innovation, we’re excited about the opportunity to jointly address your needs for business-critical data and analytics solutions.

Most importantly, all of you have many years of experience and dedication on Informix. We encourage you to share your ideas and energy, so Informix continues to drives value for many years to come.

Warm Regards,


Darren Oberst
Executive Vice President
HCL Products & Platform

Explaining the new IBM and HCL partnership on Informix…and why it is good for you.

On April 18th, IBM’s Daniel Hernandez, VP Offering Management for IBM’s Analytics business unit, announced the new partnership between IBM and HCL to jointly develop and market the Informix family of products:

I, as well as many of my colleagues, have been looking forward to this moment, as it bears a great opportunity for the Informix product, the people involved in developing and selling it, but most importantly today’s and future clients.

As the responsible Offering Management Executive for Informix, allow me to further elaborate on the

Nature of this partnership agreement:

  1. This is a strategic IP licensing agreement that will enable HCL to access and evolve the Informix source code. It is not a sale of the source code, nor the product, nor existing software or support contracts. The partnership agreement covers the next 15 years.
  2. It is a joint investment by both companies to accelerate the development of Informix and expand it’s routes to market, leverage HCLs industry-oriented product- and IT services capability that will help position Informix in domains where it’s great strength’ like time series functionality as well as embedded, light-weight, and ‘hands-off’ administration are important. Think IoT devices, Gateways or Automotive. Go here to learn more about HCLs product & platform business unit:
  3. Development and support personnel will move to HCL and is subject to further growth to deliver on the goals above. Offering Management, Marketing, Sales as well as Accelerated Value Program support (AVP) will continue with IBM but gets complemented and thus expanded on the HCL side.
  4. Nothing changes for existing IBM customers. Their software license and support agreements remain unchanged.

Now, why is this good for you?

  1. Focus: New as well as existing Informix clients will enjoy a stronger market presence of Informix, and a commitment by IBM and HCL as expressed in a roadmap and joint go to market campaigns.
  2. Time to market: The Informix product will enjoy accelerated delivery of new product capabilities to help Informix to win in the market. It will mean an expansion of Informix core capabilities as well as cloud-based offerings to help Informix clients in their journey to cloud.
  3. Confidence: For new clients to invest in a mature, battle-tested, yet future-proof technology. And reassurance for existing Informix clients who might have worried about the future of Informix and their investments to date.

Feel free to comment or reach out in private to clarify your questions.

Matthias Funke

Director Core Database & Data Warehouse Offering Management & Strategy at IBM

Need more information on the IBM / HCL Partnership
Visit the links on the IIUG web site for more information:

Letter from Darren Oberst, the Executive Vice President, HCL Products & Platforms, had this letter in our conference guide. IIUG is posting it here so everyone gets a chance to read it.

The PDF file of the relationship, document distributed at the IIUG conference.
IBM Informix-HCL IP Partnership-Short Version-21

IIUG Board of Directors 2017 – 2018

The elections to the IIUG Board of Directors 2017 – 2018 has been concluded.

Thanks to all voters.

The board members (By alphabetical order) are:

  • Gary Ben-Israel
  • Miguel Carbone
  • Marius Ciortea (IBM Representative)
  • Rhonda Hackenburg
  • Art Kagel
  • Cindy Lichtenauer
  • Stuart Litel (President)
  • Vicente Salvador
  • Bruce Sims
  • Eric Vercelletto

Congratulation to Rhonda and Bruce who are returning to the board. Big thank you to Kate Tomchik and Tom Beebe who are leaving the board. Kate and Tom you have done a great job and will be missed.

Gary Ben-Israel

Conference corner

IIUG 2017 – Editor’s Recap

IIUG 2017 was a great event. Excellent technical sessions, big variety of topics and the best Informix speakers.

The only problem was the low attendance. I hope to see many more next year.

The IIUG Planning Committee and the IIUG Board of Directors are putting in a huge effort.

There is no doubt that this is an event worth attending.

Please let us know what will it take to get you to the 2018 event?

Email me gary@iiug.org or anyone on the IIUG Board or Planning Committee.

Gary Ben-Israel

RFE corner

Just in case you are not aware, some time ago IBM created a public website to collect the requests for new features directly from users. The RFE (Requests For Enhancements) website is included in developerWorks. You can access it here.

Once you logged in with your usual IBM ID, choose “Information Management” in the Brand dropdown box and “Informix Servers” or “Client Products” in the Products dropdown box.

The interesting thing is that any request, including your request, if you place one, is submitted to be voted on. This means the RFEs that receive more votes have a greater chance to be considered by the architecture and development teams for further consideration. In other words, this IS your opportunity to provide enhancement ideas even if you are not the biggest IBM customer on the planet earth.

Some RFEs will be of great interest, others will not seem useful to you. This is why your opinion is important. Do not hesitate to vote and place comments!

The idea of the RFE corner is to provide a digest on new Informix RFEs and make those RFEs more visible and accessible for the community, so that you can vote for them in a faster and easier way. By participating actively in this website, IBM will have solid and useful elements from the customer base to introduce new functionality to Informix product.

Also in the area of IBM website, a new functionality has been released: MyNotifications. You will want to register this webpage in order to receive the notifications of your choice (new product defects, new patch release, new versions etc…, on the frequency of your choice (daily, weekly). I have registered and will definitely remain registered, due to the value of the information delivered.

Check at this place.

New RFE’s created this month

Abstract Status Votes
temp Dbspace in RAM Submitted 1

TOP 16 RFE’s

Abstract Status Votes Progr.
In-Place Alter for varchar, lvarchar and boolean Under Consideration 54 +1
Backup from RSS or HDR Secondaries using ontape, onunload, onbar, dbexport Under Consideration 50 0
SQL interface to obtain the temporary space usage (tables, hash, sorts…) Submitted 48 0
Obtain the query plan of a running query Under Consideration 42 0
Request to track and save a time stamp for last time an index was used. Nee… Submitted 36 0
Backup Individual database, not entire instance Submitted 29 0
ALTER owner of database objects after creation Submitted 28 +1
New feature to have FORCE_DDL_EXEC functionality for all DDL changes Submitted 24 +1

Implement CREATE OR REPLACE option for stored procedures

Under Consideration 22 0
Implementation of regular expressions (adding to LIKE/MATCHES functions) Under Consideration 22 0
SQL interface to obtain the temporary space usage (tables, hash, sorts…) Declined 19 0
Allow triggers install/updates without taking an outage for the box Under Consideration 18 +1
Allow “group commit” as other RDBMS Under Consideration 17 0
Need an onmode option to terminate orphaned, tightly coupled global transac… Under Consideration 17 0
Enable HDR Secondary to perform archives (76777) Submitted 14 0
Improve performance of L1/L2 backups (59818) Submitted 14 0
Ability to re-create views and procedures without dependent objects being dropped (34762 Under consideration 14 0

Do not forget to vote for one or several of those RFE’s if they fit your requirements.

You can access each RFE by clicking on the above links. At the bottom of each RFE page you will find a hyperlink to vote for it. You will see the Request stats, including number of votes for this request, on the right side of the request page. The more votes, the greater the chance an enhancement will be addressed by the Development Team, taking into consideration the general interest.

Take some time to examine the full list and vote for the enhancements you would like to see implemented.

Gary Ben-Israel

Works for me

In this section I will write about things that help me in my day to day work. Most DBAs probably have their own ways to perform these tasks which may be different than the way I do them. So, if you find an error or can think of a better way, please let me know. If not feel, free to use these tips as is or modify them to fit your needs.

Last time I wrote about adding minutes to a datetime column. I suggested using the INTERVAL function.

Cosmo emailed me a nicer solution using the UNITS operator.

The stored procedure will just be:

create function inc_by_min(dt datetime year to second, j int)

returning datetime year to second

return dt + j units minute;

end function


This time it is using the OLAP function rownumber to generate a sequence numbering of a result set:

create table my_test (str_col varchar(100));
insert into my_test values ("c_val");

insert into my_test values ("b_val");

insert into my_test values ("a_val");

select rownumber() over() as seq_no, str_col from my_test order by 2;

seq_no str_col

1 a_val
2 b_val
3 c_val

Gary Ben-Israel

Calendar of events

May – 2017

Date Event Location Contact
8-9 Montreal – Informix Roadshow / IOT Hands-on Event Montreal, Canada
16 Munich – Informix Technology Day Munich, Germany  

June – 2017

Date Event Location Contact
13 Belgium – Informix Roadshow Brussels, Belgium
15 France – Informix Roadshow Paris, France  

September – 2017

Date Event Location Contact
18 Brazil – Informix Roadshow Sao Paulo, Brazil

Informix resources

IBM Informix home page www.informix.com or directly at: http://www-01.ibm.com/software/data/informix/

Informix Blogs and Wikis

Blogs and Wikis that have been updated during the last month

More Blogs and Wikis

  • Informix Experts at: https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/community/blogs/idsteam?lang=en
  • The Lenexa view at: https://www.ibm.com/developerworks/community/blogs/smoe?lang=en

Social media

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/groups/25049
Twitter : https://twitter.com/IBM_Informix
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/IBM.Informix
YouTube : https://ibm.biz/BdH2nb
Informix IoT Channel : https://ibm.biz/BdH2nm

Forums, Groups, Videos, and Magazines

  • The IIUG forums at /forums/technical.php
  • Informix Marketing channel on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/informixmarketing?feature=results_main
  • IBM DATABASE MAGAZINE at http://www.ibmdatabasemag.com
  • Credentials, the IBM Certification Newsletter at http://www-03.ibm.com/certify/email/201307credentials.shtml
  • The Informix Zone at http://www.informix-zone.com
  • 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. 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

Closing and Credits

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 Information 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.
HCL Technologies

Editor: Gary Ben-Israel

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.


  1. Anything related to HCL isn’t good for me.

    Personal experience. They are bad news.

    1. Jared,

      I also heard this kind of feedback some time ago. Informix is part of a new division in HCL, the Products division, which is not the divisions you probably have been dealing with.

      We personnally met VPs of the HCL Product and Engineering divisions, and they look very excited about this new 15 years partnership. Sincerely, and although it is impossible to predict the future, all this looks seems to have a lot of positive energy, and is certainly taking a much better path than it has during the last 16 years.

  2. Any details?
    They’re so big that it would be hard to imagine they’ve never done anything bad. This is dealing with a still brand new division of theirs: Products and Platform Unit.
    Would be useful if you’d allow us to better gauge your experience’s relevancy for this partnership and this community.

Comments are closed.