This new release includes enhancements to Gweb Professional Edition and Gproxy Professional Edition. Gweb Professional Edition is further enhanced by the load balancing and license sharing support implemented in Gproxy Professional Edition.
Host Links and Gweb Professional Edition, Release 6.0 is now available. Your local distributor can download it for installation on production sites.
IMPORTANT: the format of the license file has changed
You will need a new license in order to upgrade to Host Links 6.0. Your new license must conform to the new pricing and conditions for the R6.0 Host Links product set (see below). Consult your distributor for further details.
The most important new features of the release
Enhancements to Gweb Professional Edition, making it even more attractive and simple to use for web-enabling legacy applications.
Gweb Professional Edition is further enhanced by the load
balancing and license sharing support implemented in Gproxy Professional Edition.
Gproxy Professional Edition is now a very important product for users with multiple Ggate Professional Edition or Gweb professional Edition servers, both because it balances the load across the currently available servers, and because it allows currently available servers to share the licenses allocated to any server that is down.
Ggate is replaced by Ggate Professional Edition
GgatePlus is replaced by GgatePlus Professional Edition
Gweb Standard Edition is replaced by Gweb Professional Edition
Gproxy is replaced by Gproxy Professional Edition
Gsocket is discontinued
Boldon James OSI stack is discontinued
Basic is discontinued as a product (but is still delivered with all other products)
Customers installing R6.0 must upgrade to the new products.
Single system and LAN licenses discontinued
For all products that are sold by session, user or workstation the Single System and LAN licenses are discontinued. Corporate licenses only are available, and customers following the upgrade path must move to corporate licenses. Products involved include the GUFT client, GlAPI-run-time, Ggate, Pthru, Qsim, V78sim and G3270.
Corporate licensing by concurrent session only
All R6.0 corporate server licenses will now be by concurrent session. All servers will count the sessions. Each server license must have a session limit. The corporate license is for the sum of the session limits on the individual servers, and discounted by the total number. The corporate license is a discount mechanism only, unless Gproxy Professional Edition is installed to enable license sharing.
New license file
The format of the license file has changed in this release, partly due to new functionality (see the chapter on Gproxy below). All installations need an updated license file; the old file, if any, will no longer work.
The most important Gweb enhancements
Gweb allows external script processing of browser input
Gweb provides new printing mechanism
Gweb provides more macros and give access to fields and screen content of previous forms
Gweb accepts user-defined parameters at any time
Gweb HTTP server supports CGI and SSI
The most important Host Links enhancements
Gproxy makes Gweb servers even more available when balancing the load between multiple Gweb servers
Gproxy transfers licenses assigned to unavailable Host Links or Gweb servers to other servers
Gproxy includes the Gweb HTTP server
Gconfig provides GUI interface to DSA configuration
The equivalent release of Gmail is also available for compatibility. There have been no functional changes to Gmail since R5.3, only error corrections, but it is preferable if users with Gmail who need Host Links 6.0.0 update their Gmail too. If you have special reasons for not doing so, you should check with us.
Highlights from the SRB
Input scripts Gweb 5.3 introduced the possibility of using an externally defined script or program to process host screens when they are received from the host. With Gweb version 6.0 you can also use an externally defined script or program to process input data from the browser before the data is sent to the host. The input script or program can also choose NOT to send data to the host but instead return HTML code to the browser.
Both Input and Output scripts can now deliver HTML data and mark it to be parsed by the internal Gweb #macro# interpreter.
Up to 50 parameters can be defined by the user. The value of these parameters can be set in the gweb.cfg configuration file or dynamically at session start-up. The parameters are available for use directly within Gweb macros and from external scripts, and they can be dynamically altered during execution.
Dynamic screen size Gweb can now use any screen size supported by the emulator. Currently, only the VIP7800 emulator supports a screen size differing from the standard (24 lines by 80 columns).
The new macro #print ...# is used to generate print output. The macro supports encoding of print output in various ways, e.g. plain text and HTML.
If the host session is disconnected while print data is still available, the emulator will stay in memory so that the print data can be viewed from the browser.
Refresh-, Clear- and PA-buttons
The new Refresh button will update the browser screen from the current emulator screen without sending any data to the host. The Refresh function can also be invoked by the new CPIC keykode "@W".
The new Clear button will erase all data from variable fields, using a standard HTML form function.
For IBM 3270 emulation, the buttons PA1, PA2 and PA3 are now available.
Disconnect macro You can define a string of CPIC coded characters that will be sent to the host when the session is about to be automatically terminated. This is useful if you need to send some kind of a "logoff" sequence.
CGI program support The GwebS server now supports it's own CGI programs. By de-fault, the GwebS configuration file is set up in a way that automatically enables the Gproxy content-pushing CGI program named "nph-push" for delivering dynamic Gproxy HTML data.
SSI support GwebS now supports a very simple subset of Server-Side Include commands.
Set parameters on the fly from the index.cfg file All parameters configurable in the gweb.cfg configuration file can also be set dynamically from the index.cfg file. This can be useful if you need to redefine timeout values for some specific host screens.
New HTML presentation method
Gweb 5.3 used the "preformatted text" (the <PRE> and </PRE> tags) HTML technique to present host data on the browser screen. Although easy and in most cases good enough, this presented problems where exact alignment of data was desired. The <PRE> technique fails here because the 3D-effect that browsers apply to variable fields causes the width of these fields to be slightly adjusted, causing a misalignment. With Gweb 6.0, the default presentation mode uses the HTML <TABLE>, technique, where there is more control over the alignment of data. The 5.3 presentation method is still available by adding the Gweb parameter "-pm 0".
Load-balancing support Using G&R/Gproxy, Gweb sessions can be load balanced between multiple Gweb servers. Gproxy knows the Gweb servers that are available, and their load. This allows Gproxy to redirect the browsers (transparently to the user) to the running Gweb server with the least load at connect time. This assures high availability and maximum throughput.
Form stack Gweb can be configured to memorize the last <N> host screens. Any data from any of these memorized screens is available in Gweb macros, for example allowing you to pick up the fourth field from the host screen identified by the name "logon".
Gweb macro language changes in detail
Nested #if# #if#, #ifnull#, #ifnnull# macro statements and the corresponding #else# can now be nested to a maximum depth of 30.
Substring patterns in #if# statements
The #if# macro can now check for the occurrence of a substring within a string. Example: #if "Gweb" in screen(1,1,49)# <P>Gweb!</P> #endif#
Added the #scratr ...# and #html color [...]# macros The new macro #scratr# returns the screen attributes of the given screen location. The screen attributes are returned as a string containing one or more of the letters R, G, B, L, F, U, I and/or H (Red, Green, Blue, Low intensity, Flashing/ blinking, Underline, Inverse and/or Hidden/invisible).
The #html color ...# attribute outputs the necessary HTML code to change the color (and other screen attributes) for the given screen location.
Added the #gweb(formname)# and #gweb(formnumber)# macros The name and sequential number of screen forms are now available to the facelifter. The #gweb(formname)# macro is guaranteed to return a Null string if the current Gweb session is not facelifted at all (no index.cfg), otherwise it returns either the name of the form (as defined in the index.cfg file) or the word "default" if the session is facelifted (index.cfg exists), but the current form is not (no pattern matches).
Gweb minor changes in detail
"init:" macro for host comms Normally, when Gweb sends data to the host, it starts with the current field, updates the data if it has changed, tabs to the next field and so on, then adds the Transmit function at the end. In special circumstances, you might want to send some special codes to the host before starting with the variable data. The "init:" macro lets you do this.
Pattern matching can check for cursor position and for presence of a variable field The pattern matching syntax in the index.cfg configuration file now supports a method of determining if the cursor is within an area of the screen. You can also check for the presence of a variable field inside a given range.
Extended functionality for automatically created input fields In some circumstances the hosts do not create any variable fields, relying on the terminals 'unformatted' (command mode) functionality to allow input of data. In such cases, Gweb creates an input field for the browser. The new option -afl lets you supply a padding character and also invokes a set of rules to make that input field exactly as long as necessary.
Unmodified form fields skipped when delivering data to the emulation Gweb 5.3 delivered all fields with data to the emulation engine, even if the content of the field was unmodified. In Gweb 6.0 the content of an unmodified field is not delivered to the emulation engine (the field is simply skipped with a Tab character) to avoid field checking on unmodified fields.
The session can be disconnected with a CPIC keycode A new CPIC keycode, "@Q", causes the current session to be disconnected. The keycode can be sent either as a Gweb macro, as an automatic reply defined in the index.cfg or from an external script.
Extended set of parameters that can be unlocked The -RES and -LU line parameters are added to the set of parameters that can be specified by HTML at session start-up time.
Allow additional response header lines The new gweb.cfg parameter "-httpresp XXX" lets you add additional HTTP Response Header lines to the responses.
GPROXY Professional Edition extensions
Gproxy Professional Edition license server Gproxy Professional Edition can be setup to operate as a license server for Host Links server programs. When using Gproxy as a license server on multiple Host Links systems, each Gproxy will inform the other Gproxy license servers about the license keys it maintains. Combining this information with the new 'Site' license information in the new 'licenses' file, Gproxy is able to take over temporarily licenses normally handled by a Host Links system that has crashed or been shutdown for maintenance purposes. The other Gproxy license servers will detect the absence of a Gproxy license server and automatically take over the failing system's licenses. Whenever the failing system comes back on line, the license server that took over will automatically restore its original license count and resume normal processing. In a configuration with multiple active license servers, the license server that takes over is the one running on the system with the lowest numerical IP address.
Gproxy PE Gweb-server-specific load-balancing Gproxy Professional Edition can now load balance G&R/Gweb servers in the same way that it balances the load between G&R/Ggate servers. The new functionality is enabled by a new Gproxy command line parameter (-gwebs portno) which tells Gproxy which IP port number it should listen to in order to catch the incoming HTTP connections from the Gweb clients (i.e. browsers).
Gproxy maintains Gweb server load tables which are based upon the statistical information that is sent out periodically by the Gweb servers (enabled by the Gwebs -na ipaddr[1-4] or -nb parameter). The broadcasted information includes current and total number of sessions, HTML requests, number of files, number of bytes etc etc.
When a connection comes in from a Gweb browser, Gproxy will redirect the browser to the Gweb server having the lightest load. The HTTP redirection process is completely transparent to the Gweb user.
Gproxy can use the GWEB server The GWEB server now supports 'Server Side Includes' which is used by the Gproxy HTML report logic in order to push the network events as they occur into a browser. This means that it is no longer necessary to install a separat web server on the Host Links system in order to be able to offer the Gproxy generated HTML reports.
DSA configurator Gconfig now offers the administrator the possibility to maintain the local DSA network (i.e. the DSA.CFG file) using a new set of Windows GUI 'property-sheet' menus. The menu interface significantly simplifies the administrative task of maintaining the DSA network configuration - in particular for administrators with limited knowledge of DSA terminology and configuration file syntax. There is a separat menu sheet for each of the main DSA directives and help is available. Once the configuration changes have been completed, the configuration file can be saved and optionally loaded into the text editor of choice (i.e. as set by the 'wintextedit' directive in the Host Links profile). The configuration compiler (GLCC) can be activated from within Gconfig.
Updated parameters for all servers Gconfig is updated to support all new server parameters introduced in this release.