Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator

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1 Verastream Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator

2 Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator With interoperability emerging as one of today s most urgent infrastructure needs, web services have become a widely used go-to solution. That s because web services provide a standard way to break applications into reusable components, which let you link data and exchange information across the enterprise. Services typically provide a clean approach to a complex problem, thanks to their open protocols and platform independence. Using services, IT staffs can enable communication among disparate applications without time-consuming custom coding to get the process started. And using the right services approach, no modifications to existing application code are needed. The Mainframe Integration Challenge When it comes to mainframe applications, the prospect of code change is especially significant. Generally the most critical to business operations, mainframe programs were largely established long before the advent of service enablement. That means modifications are not only difficult, but also risky. This white paper explores options for building appended services for application integration, while avoiding the need to modify the source applications. It focuses specifically on host applications and shows how Micro Focus Verastream Host Integrator can simplify, support, and safeguard your host services strategy. It provides technical details on four key Verastream tools used to capture the functionality of mainframe applications. What Can Verastream Host Integrator Do for You? Verastream Host Integrator extends mainframe assets to meet changing business needs such as mobile deployment, SOA integration, portal production, and web self-service solutions. With Verastream Host Integrator, there is no need to modify your valued business processes. Instead, you use a simple visual tool to create services from host-application data and logic. The services can be mixed, matched, and reused to build new solutions. Whether your environment is IBM Mainframe, IBM System i (AS/400), Unix, HP OpenVMS, or HP e3000, Verastream Host Integrator lets you use existing mid-tier development skills and familiar IT tools to make the most of your proven legacy investments. Because no code changes to existing applications are required, you avoid risk while ensuring quick ROI. 2

3 How Does Verastream Work? Four Advanced Tools That Simplify Integration For seamless performance, Verastream offers a full range of components to create, run, and manage your new multi-tier applications. And Verastream provides a strategically incremental approach that reduces the time frames typically associated with other processes. The result is that all lines of business get agile applications to support their needs and make them more productive. With the graphical Verastream Design Tool, developers can encapsulate legacy functions including data elements and screen navigations as components. The Verastream services approach makes legacy applications available to a range of modern devices without the need to modify your valued business processes. Here are four features that set Verastream apart: 1. Design Tool The Verastream Design Tool uses a simple point-and-click process to abstract legacy functions in component form. With this graphical tool, developers can encapsulate a range of legacy operations, including data elements and screen navigations. You first use the Design Tool to build models, which are simple maps of the host application. Screens within a mapped application can include patterns for identification, attributes to specify locations for inputting data, and operations to allow programmed traversal of the host application. Procedures. Once the host application is modeled, you can use the Design Tool to create procedures that add the functions you want the model to support. Procedures are similar in operation to a simple database query; you tell the procedure what you want the user, or client application, to provide and then what you would like to return. In this step, you do not have to program how or where to deliver the inputs to the host application, nor do you have to determine where to get the information you would like returned. The procedures simply tell the model what they are working with and the model, having an embedded map of the host application, triggers the inputs to the corresponding locations and pulls the results as needed. This approach provides a valuable layer of abstraction that is built into all services created by the Design Tool. Because the map of the host application is defined separately from the procedures, you can think of procedures as units of work. That means managing the host mappings and what you are asking Verastream to do become separate activities. 3

4 Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator Once these steps are complete, you deploy the model to the Verastream runtime server. Client applications can then connect to the models and have access to the mainframe applications as if they were simple procedures, accepting inputs and generating outputs. These procedures will show up as operations within your web service. Modifications made to models only. The most apparent benefit to this flexible approach occurs when changes to the host application need to be accounted for. (Using a database as a metaphor, the process is similar to a change in a schema.) With Verastream, the change can easily be accommodated by modifying the host model only. And any procedures (regardless of how many) based on this model will auto matically inherit the new method for interacting with the host application. So even in situations where you are building numerous services based on your host applications, you will have an efficient and intuitive way to keep the services tightly coupled with the applications they represent. Event handlers. The Design Tool also offers the ability to create custom server-controlled routines called event handlers, which can be built using any construct in Java or.net. That means you can tap the power of either of these common mid-tier languages to customize a model s behavior. You do it by defining specific events that will suspend the interpretation of a model and turn control over to usersupplied procedural code. Once event handlers are created, you can attach them to transactions associated with the entire model, to a lifecycle event, or to entities, attributes, operations, recordset fields, and procedures. You can reuse an event handler in multiple models or with multiple objects of the same type within the same model. Code generation, any way you need it. While Web Builder can generate all the necessary sample code as deployable project files for testing purposes, note that the code can also be quickly viewed, modified, and rebuilt using industry-standard tools such as the latest versions of Visual Studio, Eclipse, or any other IDE. This capability simplifies the building and applied use of services based on your host applications. Modern initiatives (including mobile), on the fast track. Web Builder can auto-generate HTML5 screens based on default or user-defined themes, to give any authenticated user immediate access to the targeted host application. This functionality is available to both desktop and mobile users. Because the default or customized screens are built using HTML5, they can immediately support any modern device. The auto-generated HTML5 screens are useful for creating custom front ends, which are built with standard code that is easily loaded into third-party IDEs. All generated interfaces are extensible and follow well understood CSS and Div modeling. This feature provides a practical method for controlling the look and feel of dynamic content. With Verastream Web Builder, your project potential ranges from simple rejuvenation to complex integration services for both Java and.net environments. In addition to getting auto-generated web services when projects are published, you can produce and deploy web applications or specific component interfaces as needed. This full set of functionality gives you a fast track for completing business initiatives that rely on host application data and logic. 2. Web Builder Verastream Web Builder automatically generates terminal screens that can be rendered on any device, as well as generating ready-touse web applications. Or you can choose to modify any number of screens and map them to custom forms, suppressing any information you choose, to create unique applications. If you want to build a customized application, you can use Verastream Web Builder to auto-generate and deploy sample code based on the model you created in the Design Tool. The services you created at that stage become the building blocks for creating the custom app, so you reduce development cycles. With Verastream Web Builder, your project potential ranges from simple rejuvenation and HTML5 access to complex integration services. 4

5 3. Session Server The Verastream Host Integrator server is the workhorse of the solution. In a production environment, these servers run the procedures and navigate the host applications to update and return the needed information. In addition, Verastream session servers are designed to fit into high service-level environments. You are not locked into a single configuration when deploying Verastream Host Integrator servers. Here are some choices for the ways they can be run: Standalone, on individual servers. In virtualized server containers, with numerous servers on a physical machine. In clusters, with numerous servers functioning as one larger logical server. These flexible deployment options allow you to easily build the right physical infrastructure to meet required service levels. You have full control over scalability. In addition, you can build in proper degrees of fault tolerance via redundant load-sharing servers. 4. Administrative Console The Verastream Console is the administrative hub that centralizes monitoring and management tasks. The Administrative Console uses an easy-to-navigate Eclipse-based interface to centrally configure, deploy, and manage your models and procedures. You can also use it to define the right level of resources that will run corresponding models and procedures. With the Administrative Console you can set up ways to distribute workloads across clusters of servers. Once the system is configured and deployed to match your needs, you can use this tool to monitor how the host resources are being used, what models are running, and what level of oversight you want to capture. The Verastream Administrative Console provides a rich and customizable interface to manage the extended server environment. Verastream Session Servers provide critical runtime features such as session pooling, load balancing, and failover. Perspectives. To provide a configurable user experience, the Administrative Console uses the Eclipse concept of perspectives, each one containing different views and editors. This functionality lets you switch from one application to another, and to adapt your workspace to your own administrative needs. 5

6 Complementing Your Web Services Strategy with Verastream Host Integrator You can modify and save perspectives, with the ability to revert to the last one saved. Each perspective group remembers the last perspective so you don t have to retrace unnecessary steps. The Ad min istrative Console includes these perspectives: Custom perspectives. To tailor the console to your own workflow and needs, you can combine views and editors from different perspectives to create a custom perspective. These custom perspectives are easy to create via menu walk-throughs. Management perspectives. Using the management perspectives, you can configure and monitor your management servers, administer directory services, and handle authentication. The Administrative Console includes these management per spectives and corresponding functions: Servers Handle load distribution domains and data replication with management server peers in a cluster. Directories When you configure an LDAP provider in the console, user and group directory services for management server clients are authenticated by that LDAP service provider. Authorization The type of access allowed on the server is determined by the security profile of the user I.D. Views. For full customization ability, the Administrative Console offers a feature called views, which provide information about components you are working with in the console. Each perspective has views associated with it, by default. You can open, close, or add views from other perspectives directly from the View menu. You can minimize, maximize, restore, and detach views. Some views have their own toolbars that provide additional functionality and you can get descriptions of what is displayed in the view. Selecting an object in one view can affect what is displayed in other views, so you have integrated information at any given time. The Verastream Advantage Widely used services strategies, despite their usefulness, have certain limitations for today s business needs. Host applications in particular can present some complex technical problems. The challenge for IT is to find the right solution for service-enabling diverse applications and integrating them into today s multi-tier architectures. With Verastream Host Integrator, service enablement does not have to be an all-or-nothing effort; instead you can tackle projects on an individual basis. The work you do now can be reused at any time, to meet ongoing integration needs. This incremental approach allows you to quickly free up any mainframe-class application without disrupting the entire IT infrastructure. Only Verastream offers this specific set of functionality and the four advanced tools described above. If you are considering service enablement of your IT assets, but need a complementary host services strategy, now is the ideal time to move ahead. With Verastream Host Integrator, all your applications can work together to achieve the large-scale data and logic sharing needed in your continuously changing environment About Micro Focus Since 1976, Micro Focus has helped more than 20,000 customers unlock the value of their business logic by creating enabling solutions that bridge the gap from well-established technologies to modern functionality. The two portfolios work to a single, clear vision to deliver innovative products supported by exceptional customer service. 6

7 Micro Focus UK Headquarters United Kingdom +44 (0) U.S. Headquarters Seattle, Washington Additional contact information and office locations: A 08/ Micro Focus. All rights reserved. Micro Focus, the Micro Focus logo, and Verastream, among others, are trademarks or registered trademarks of Micro Focus or its subsidiaries or affiliated companies in the United Kingdom, United States and other countries. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

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