Adabas Database and Web 2.0: Together at Last

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2006-02-08

Adabas Database and Web 2.0: Together at Last

Software AG made it easier to squeeze data out of its Adabas high-performance database and into a service-oriented architecture by unveiling an SOA gateway Feb. 7.

The Adabas SOA Gateway lets developers work in their familiar environment—be it Java/Eclipse, .Net or AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML)—without having to know Adabas or the mainframe.

Joe Gentry, vice president of enterprise transaction systems, said the release of the SOA gateway is the first in a push of product releases in Software AGs Adabas 2006 launch.

The gateway being the first Adabas 2006 release reflects its priority to the company, which wants to boost interoperability of the database by allowing it to be leveraged through open standards such as Web services, he said.

"Its part of the whole Web 2.0 future," he said. "Companies are looking to connect newer Web technologies to traditional back-end databases."

The Adabas SOA Gateway is now in beta release with some 12 customers, Gentry said, none of which are yet in production.

He declined to name the customers, but Software AG has a lot of customers in the financial industry, be it banking or insurance. It also has a lot of presence in government and in transportation, with Delta Airlines being one large Adabas customer.

Such companies have built and managed huge amounts of information, whether its banking data or information about telephone calls or revenue collection for state agencies.

All that information is stored in Adabas files, for which developers have had to write Cobol programs or have had to use Software AGs Natural development language to get to the data.

As developers have taken to writing newer applications in Java or .Net, they want to provide connectivity to the database for the applications theyre writing, Gentry said.

Thus, the Adabas SOA Gateway serves to hook organizations that are creating new systems to connect to data stores that have grown over the last 20 or 25 years within their Adabas databases.

Next Page: Supporting Eclipse.

Supporting Eclipse

The gateway installs on the same platform running Adabas and requires no client-side footprint.

Nor does it require coding by client-side developers. Rather, Adabas administrators define data to be exposed directly from Adabas to the development platform.

Thus, theres no need to build a connectivity bridge from the database to Java or .Net.

The gateway supports the Eclipse open-source development environment, meaning both Adabas and client-side developers can work in the same environment.

This enables, for example, SDOs (Service Data Objects) that are defined in the gateway to be tested, versioned and maintained in an open-source CVS (Concurrent Version System) repository.

Developers can build SDOs to get information such as employee or product data out of Adabas.

Developers can write a Web service to fetch particular nuggets of information and deliver them back as XML documents.

Also, the gateway can expose Adabas data or logic as a Web service to be consumed by AJAX or BPM (business process management) tools.

Next up in the Adabas 2006 release schedule will come a new version of Software AGs Event Replicator tool, which it rolled out in July 2005.

To read more about the Event Replicator tool, click here.

Event Replicator lets users push Adabas changes out to databases including Adabas, DB2, Oracle, SQL Server and Sybase, as well as to XML-based applications, in real time.

Whereas the July version of Event Replicator ran only on IBM mainframes, other versions are due to roll out later this year.

Also due out under the Adabas 2006 product launch is support for the storage of unstructured multimedia, including voice, video and pictures.

The unstructured support will allow for the storage of XML blobs—for example, the storage of XML data in relational fields.

This use of blobs isnt comparable to storage of native XML such as IBM is doing in its upcoming hybrid SQL/XML database, code-named Viper.

However, Software AG already has its Tamino native XML database.

The Adabas 2006 SOA Gateway is scheduled for general availability March 31.

Its priced according to what type of platform is hosting Adabas and number of processors (or MSUs) deployed.

The gateway supports Adabas Version 7.4 and higher on the mainframe, and Version 5.1 and higher on open systems.

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