Motherhood – The world’s most beautiful feeling, and today I am one of those blessed ones who can enjoy this experience.
I am Sharvari, a Software engineer at ISL, a caring mother and a responsible wife at home.
Too many roles and only 24 hours in a day, you need to be on your toes to manage everything. This juggling act demands expertise, patience and hard work.
It’s always a difficult situation for first time mothers like me to balance both professional and personal duties. They will always end up with a feeling that they have not achieved enough.
Moreover every working mom would want to give her best to her new born when she is at home and as a responsible individual you would also want to give best at work.
The key that I found in such a situation is “Effective Time Management”.
This starts from planning, one might have to plan for every small and big thing which may include planning your day properly or even planning for future.
My experience is you have to learn the 4Ds of time management–
Do it – Get it done the sooner the better.
Delegate it – It needs to be done but someone else can take care of it
Dump it – Anything that is unimportant now and in the future dump it.
Defer it – This needs to be done but not now it can wait.
Most, if not all the activities in a day can be put in these categories.
These are just a few pointers which can help you towards effective time management.
This is a learning task, and I am still learning how I can manage my time effectively to be a better mother and a better individual.
Finally, also remember to keep some time for yourself.
It is difficult to find "me time", a necessary and needed moment to refresh and regroup, while managing other things.
Work hard and smart and the world will be yours!
Fresh out of college, after years of studying the core subjects, each one of wish to create something new and exciting. Develop that code which is highly appreciated, solves the problems, is extremely efficient etc etc.
But not all of us get to develop the main source and even be a part of that development cycle in industry. So, should you be unhappy on the testing role offered? Absolutely not!
Testing is a very responsible job. No product goes into the market unless it is thoroughly tested and gets the approval of the tester that it is good to go. This role is not easy and can be very interesting. As a tester, you know the behaviour of the software more than the developer himself. You are the first client. Testing the real time scenarios, you are a bridge between the market and the development. Trust me, it is very exciting.
So, how should you go about testing?
Here are some tips on better testing:
1. Understand what is to be tested.
Know the software thoroughly. Go through the document given by the developer.
2. Ask for more.
Discuss with developer about the software's behaviour, its implementation etc. The more you involve in it, the more bugs you can find.
3. Plan your tests.
Write down the plan of the tests. This should list all the tests. Be sure to do negative testing. Often, software works in normal cases. But goes for a toss in negative conditions. Include real time scenarios, customer situations. Think like a customer.
4. Implement your tests.
Choose an efficient testing tool or language. Plan your implementation well. Remember, tests should be as efficient as the main code you are testing. This is the most interesting part. Here, you get to do automation around the software, learn new products. Can be innovative as well!!
5. Identify the bugs.
Writing tests is not all. You need to understand the erring cases, identify the defects. Get them fixed. Critical defects are highly appreciated, because you are catching them before the software goes in market. This actually saves alot!
6. Get the bugs fixed.
Let the developer fix the defect. Re-test the fixed code. Feel free to say NO, if you are not happy.
Testing is really a responsible job role. Be proud to say you assure the quality of the software to be delivered!
Meet Kalpana, the immense source of inspiration at IBM India Software Lab. Kalpana has a rich pool of experience and has a calm demeanor, even on her busiest days! Director at IBM ISL and a mother to her 24 year old son, Kalpana integrates work and family beautifully while ensuring she gets out for a walk and enjoy mystery novels to de-stress.
Kalpana is passionate about contributing to women's growth in technical field and she extended her warm support to talk to us and provide encouragement to be positive, brave and above all..happy! Read her interview to know more.
Thank you Kalpana for opening the group with your valuable words.You are certainly our pillar of strength!
An introduction: Professional background, family, interests
I have 29+ years of industry experience and have been with IBM for last 19 years. I have been with India Software Lab(ISL) since its inception in 2001 and have played key leadership roles across functions in growing the lab to its current level.
Born and brought up in Bangalore, I have completed my Masters Degree in Engineering from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in 1982, after which I embarked on an 11-year career with PSI Data Systems.
Family - I am married to a Chartered Accountant, have a son who is 24 years old and stay with my extended family which includes my mother-in-law.
I like listening to old hindi music and read a lot and mostly fiction.
What made you choose a career in technology? Can you explain how you guided your career to be where you are today?
When I was in doing my undergraduate degree, I had a friend who was always talking about a post-graduate degree course in Engineering in the premier Indian Institute of Science (IISc) at Bangalore and that she was applying for it. So I just went along, took the entrance test, got through it and joined the Bachelor’s course in Electrical and Electronics Engineering. I also went on to do my Masters in Engineering from IISc itself. Thereby, a chance discussion and a lot of encouragement and support from my parents, my father in particular, took me along this path and here I am enjoying a career in technology!
How have you balanced your professional and personal demands simultaneously?
I like the current term a lot better - "Work Life Integration" than the work life balance. It has been a challenge given that we work in a global company. I try to keep the week-ends for my family and be there for important events or testing times. I ensure I am there when I am most needed. The flexibility work options provided by IBM are useful. I also built a good team with the team members having a strong mutual trust - this team contributes to each one managing work and life.
Our health tends to take a back seat due to work and personal commitments. What are your suggestions for nutrition and fitness?
I believe that if the woman in the house stays fit and healthy, she can then ensure the others are healthy too. Health is one area where we must lead by example. Personally, I try and make time for walking, and I try to walk a lot! Also, have been interested in Yoga and have picked it up in the last couple of years.
Any advice on women who choose to pursue a career in technology?
Given our education and experience we have the skills to take up a career and be successful. But the challenge has been on who we think is responsible for our career. Personally I feel we are equally responsible as our manager and the organization. But first and foremost we have to decide “to want a career” and learn to look at work as not a physical place but a state of being, of integration with our regular flow of daily life. Career in technology is great place to be today - given the changes that are happening and how much technology is influencing our daily lives and also the various business. Opportunities are many. Go for it.
In addition, Focus on Personal Excellence, never be satisfied with what you know, Integrity, Positive Attitude are important; try to maintain good relationship with people you work with; Never hesitate to ask someone to teach you what you want to learn and keep continuously learning.
An Indian way to say Hello with dignity, respect and love to everyone.
This is my first post here at developerette and I am quite excited about it. I really hope that typing here is completely a unique experience and more exposure to learn more. So am here.. doing some shadow postings here & there as well as writing something unique here & there.
Hope to have a good learning experience here :)
Please welcome Dr. J.Manjula, principal, GVG college for women, Udumalpet, Tamil Nadu. Dr. Manjula is a strong willed and courageus woman, on whose shoulders rests the ambition of the girls at GVG. She's a spirited professional, dedicated to her work, the well being of her staff and the future of her students. Above all, she is a progressive leader, who believes that nothing can empower the women of this country more than solid education and well defined career paths.
We are honored to have Dr Manjula speak to us about her powerful personal life, her devotion to the college and her advice to girl students across the country. Please read on.
Thank you ma'am for sharing your experiences with us, you lead by example in your personal and professional life, thus encouraging girl students and women IT professionals from all backgrounds.
Please tell us about your work and about your personal interests:
Of the 35 years I've been associated with GVG, I've been the principal for the last 12 years. There are various achievements i'm proud of at GVG. Last year we crossed 340 placements. We were the first to get the NAAC accreditation and now have also been ISO certified. We're an autonomous college and so, have the freedom to design our own course curriculum. In the south, we are the leaders in development education and job skills and are enjoying the benefits of that.
Also I was rewarded the Excellence award conferred by the Rotary club. I have a son, who is settled in the States with his family. I am drawn to philosophy and am a member of the Art of Living society and follow Guru Mahan philosophy which provides me a lot of motivation. I devote all my time to the well being of the students, their curriculum, introducing new courses, the food at the hostel and other amenities.
GVG is a college of excellent reputation. How do you maintain that?
The key is the focus on the girls. Even after they go to other countries for higher education, they never forget theor alma mater. We train them on life skills and not merely books. Once they graduate from GVG, the girls are knowledgeable individuals who have strong careers and are excellent home makers. All that is important for women, and we ensure there is plenty of focus on both angles. Various topics of empowerment are discussed with the girls like Cancer, Female Infanticide, Mental and Physical strength etc.
Technology like Campus-i is used to detect, understand and eliminate the root cause of illnesses that are common to this area like anemia. This incomparable focus is what drives parents from faraway towns like Kanyakumari etc to leave their wards in the safety of GVG. Be it hot water, amenities, clean drinking water, activities or studies, there is no compromise on quality.
My aim is to give the best to the girls so they don't feel deprived because of being born in a small town with less opportunities. When they join companies, they are clearly identified as GVGians!
Companies like IBM have contributed greatly by providing opportunities and a stage for success to the students. More interaction from professionals is required for the girls to learn and grow and take up responsible positions in the corporate world.
What are some of the challeges the girls face in building careers in IT and how do you guide them?
The big question is Career or Marriage? My answer is to win at both. I alsways give my example to parents and the girls, that I am a widow, lost my husband in a drowning accident and came out of the tragedy strong and empowered only because of my job. If I did not have a career and the financial indipendance to fall back on, my obstacles would have multiplied manifold. When the doctors declared my husband dead, my first words were, thank God I have a job in my hands and I will survive this. Education is a bigger gift than Gold and parents need to understand that. A job provides financial, mental and emotional well being to a woman.
The other challenge is Communication. The girls here are shy, so we encourage them to face the crowd even if for 2 minutes and speak. The practice on a regular basis, helps them overcome their hesitation.
What is your advice to girls who aspire to succeed professionally?
I was sent to colleges in Haryana and Goa and other cities for mentoring and realised that girls everywhere need to focus on education and jobs rather than getting married first. I believe that we need to help the weaker students by spending time on the areas they are unable to cope with. 0 and 80 are just numbers and I don't criticize for poor performance. If you have the will to learn, the percentages will improve as well.
Values are critical. Be a good human being, that's primary. We do not allow the use of mobile phones and discourage the girls from friendships and relationships which lead them away from education.
Lastly, Make decisions in personal relationships that make your parents and teachers proud.
Meet Sargam Singh, the star at IBM Software Labs who's grown and succeeded by plugging away challenging situations at work and home. Sargam talks about her role at IBM as a Development Manager and at home as a mother and wife in an interview with us.
Thank you Sargam for sharing your mantra with the developerette group. We are certain that your experience will encourage new mothers to not only build careers in IT but also confidently take positions in leadership.
Please tell us about your work: the role you have at IBM, your responsibilities and your team.I have 14+ years of industry experience and have been with IBM for last 7 years. I joined IBM as a Project Lead on WebSphere Application Server Test team. Currently, I am a Development Manager with IBM India Software Labs and am responsible for development and delivery of WebSphere Service Registry and Repository (WSRR) product out of India. Besides this, I lead the Asia Pacific Tech Sales Support for WSRR and am a member of the World Wide Agile Leadership Team.
I manage a team of 11 people, out of which close to 50% are women. It is a very high potential team and I see a good diversity in the top performers. In my opinion, women can bring in a different kind of perspective, and are often able to capture softer aspects of people capabilities which makes them great team player and leaders.
Tell us about your family and how you integrate your work and family?
My husband works with an IT multinational as a Program Manager. Besides us, I have a daughter who is 12 now and my mom-in-law who is with us. Both me and my spouse are in a high pressure jobs but it is the strong family support system which makes managing everything so simple. Coupled with this, IBM's work-life integration culture makes it possible to deliver the best both at work as well as for my family. I make sure that I am available for every important occasion and at any time when my family needs me the most. However, there are challenges at times, when work demands more time and my family has been amazingly supporting, including my little daughter who is growing up to be a responsible teenager.
What are some of the challenges you have had to face to keep both aspects balanced?
There have been times in my career when taking some great opportunities called for a decision which impacted my family. Soon after I joined IBM, I had to leave for US for an extended period of 6 months. I made that decision after a lot of deliberation as it meant leaving my daughter behind for that long. My husband was a big support and stood by me all through. That period was very tough for me but I emerged out of it as a winner, both at personal and professional front. My husband and daughter joined me in US for 2 weeks after my assignment ended and time and distance had in no way impacted my bonding with my daughter. In fact, she looked much more confident and independent. On the professional front, those 6 months provided a boost to my career by opening up newer opportunities.
So this is one such instance, and there are times when we have to make such tough choices. We need to understand this delicate balance and take a call depending on what is more important at that point in time. Opportunities have to be grabbed, and if you want to excel professionally, you need to have your goals defined. Family interest must come first, but women often live in a self created notion that things will break if they are not around. So create a strong support structure and when faced with a challenge which calls for a decision, talk about it to your family and they will be your biggest strength to take it head-on.
Now that you have overcome the initial challenges, what is your advice to young mothers who wish to succeed in their carers?
I feel that single thing which can guarantee success is the "right attitude". I would say two things here -
Firstly, create a strong support structure, both at work and at home. At home, you need to have the confidence that things can go on even when you are away. At work, you have to build a strong team and backup which can stand by you in case of any emergency. Both these are easy to do if you have the right attitude which naturally wins love and support from people around you, be it your family, or colleagues or even a household help.
Secondly, keep your high level goals clear, both on personal and professional front. There will be times when your family needs you more and you cannot let your professional life impact that, and there will be occasions when you will have to sacrifice family time for tackling challenges on work front. The key to success is being able to successfully maintain this delicate balance. Risk Taking choices come every day in everything we do, personal or business, in many forms. It is a matter of having the confidence in your judgements and stand up for what you believe in.
Would you suggest development as a good career for women?
Certainly yes. Women often shy away from technical path for different reasons. However, women have an innate quality of dwelling deep into details of things without loosing sight of the bigger picture. This can play an important role in ensuring a very successful technical career for women. Excellence is a state of mind and it comes naturally to them. Making excellence critical in the small steps can lead to great results for the larger agenda in your personal and work lives.
Hi I am Dhivya from the Team VIVID WINNERS and we got the ALL GIRLS TEAM AWARD in the TGMC'10 contest. Now I am doing Final year IT in Mepco Schlenk Engineering College, Sivakasi. I like to share about our project details. Our project is INFORMATION KIOSK which aimed at developing an information kiosk for Sivakasi (which is in TamilNadu, India) that is of importance to a person to know more information about the city. This system will be more useful for the tourist and the person who is new to the city. It also has some useful links like matrimonial, employment opportunity, e-governance and also e-agriculture. One can also read the daily newspaper. The tourist can view the route from the main bus station in Sivakasi to their desired location. IBM TGMC contest make us to gain more knowledge and we feel proud to share our experience.
My team mate Jothi wants to share the project submission process "We submitted our project as in the format specified by TGMC. And at the time of the submission we didn’t think that we will go this much. But we won the all girls team award . During the face to face evaluation we were really very happy to get a chance to share our experience with IBM TGMC. "
What Kanthimathi and Senbagareka(my team mates) felt when we were there in the felicitation ceremony is "Our Eyes gleamed with surprise when we came to know that we are one among the finalist in the felicitation ceremony . We were inspired by the video played in the begining of the ceremony.The thoughtful speech given by highly experienced people in IBM was awesome.We were out of the world when our names were pronounced in the Felicitation ceremony.That was one of the best moment in our life.And we were very proud to receive the “ALL GIRLS TEAM AWARD”. The price we won is always a memento reminding our great time in DELHI."
I want to thank my guide Prof.T.Revathi who supported us to do this project. She gave us lot of ideas to do this project. She referred the scoring criteria for the project submission and told us to use Ajax, to take backup of the database and to make the website available in the local language too. She also mailed us some reference web pages to do those things. And also she helped us during SRS preparation. She taught us about the OOAD concepts.
I also want to thank our department staff Mr.A.S.Karthik Kannan who gave us some ideas and corrections in our project to make our project the Perfect One. I like to thank Dr.K.Vijayalakshmi and Mrs. S. Kavi Priya who helped us to complete our project on time. I like to thank my entire department Staffs since they all encouraged us to do this project because of that we got energy during our tough time.
It's been seven years now since I entered the IT world and the journey so far has been so eventful that I won't go with common tag line - 'Time just flies......' :)
Setting up yourself and excelling in this competitive world and at the same time balancing your responsibilities at home does demand a lot from you. Every modern girl dream of standing on their own feet and be economically independent. That's the dream one chases for first 20-25years of one's life. I won't deny that, same was my dream too. I completed my Masters in Computer Technology and fortunately got a good break in good IT company. We all know that change is law of nature but the pace with which technology changes is really tuff to catch up with latest. One needs to regularly brush up their skills very frequently and that does demand a good amount of time from you.
So, that was about my professional role, going toward personal me, I am happy to share that despite being daughter and sister, I have the responsibilities of being a wife, daughter-in-law and most importantly mother of two small kids. If one starts counting the responsibilities that comes with that package, it won't be possible. Here, comes in picture what we call in IBM - Work/Life Balance. I would say, the stage I am in right now, is the most crucial and difficult stage. There are challenges in your professional life that you can not leave taking up as well as in personal life that you can not get rid of. There's testing time all through the way. You are being tested for your patience level almost daily. No wonder, we find many cases of Stress and frustrations in such situations. But, the key here is how we sail in these testing times, how we balance out things, how to set a demarcation between professional and personal life and coming out a winner in both area.This is the phase when the most precious thing that you can think is - TIME. One needs to make best use of the time available. Time management is the key. There are some other important skills that comes as good help. These are :
- Delegation of non-important work.
- Focusing on key areas.
- Saying 'No' to things that are really not in your area and you are not willing to go for that.
- Spending some time for self only, when you can do some thinking/planning on course of action you really want to pursue.
- Choosing the right direction.
- Open for brainstorming, discussion with peers, seniors, family whenever you are in delima.
I have been using IBM MobileFirst (formally known as Worklight) since over a year now and have already published one hybrid app for Android and iOS platforms. I used jQuery Mobile UI Library in order to build my UI. Recently I was surfing the internet to learn about Angular JS and in process of doing so I came across Ionic framework. I read about both the frameworks and I found them much more better than jQuery Mobile. So I took a step further and thought why not leverage the features provided by these frameworks in order to build a hybrid app in MobileFirst Platform. In this post I will mention the steps required to configure MFP project to run with Ionic Framework. If you don't want to do any configuration, you can simply download AngularIonicStarterProject.zipView Details MFP project in which everything is pre-configured. So lets get started.
AngularJS is a structural framework for dynamic web apps. It lets you use HTML as your template language and lets you extend HTML's syntax to express your application's components clearly and succinctly. Angular's data binding and dependency injection eliminate much of the code you would otherwise have to write. And it all happens within the browser, making it an ideal partner with any server technology. To learn more about AngularJS you can visit this website which have very good set of tutorials for it. As far as its installation is concern, AngularJS will be installed as part of Ionic Framework Dependency so that you don't have to worry about that for now.
Installing Ionic and Angular
Once Node.js is installed in the system, you can follow the following steps in order to get Ionic and Angular framework files.
Configuring Ionic and Angular into MobileFirst Project
In this post, you have successfully create a Hybrid App in IBM MobileFirst Platform by using Using Angular JS and Ionic Framework. You can easily take the attached project as your base project and start building exciting apps for the customers using Ionic and Angular.
IBM WebSphere Application Server is a robust, enterprise class application server that provides a core set of components, resources, and services that developers can utilize in their applications. In this blog, I am going to talk about Application Edition Management and Automatic Deployment through scripting.
What is Application Edition Management?
Many business applications require constant availability. The standard for application availability asserts that applications are deployed on application server clusters. The redundancy of a cluster is essential to provide continuous availability. Interruption-free application upgrade refers to the ability to upgrade while maintaining application continuous availability. In other words, users of the application experience no loss of service during the application upgrade.
When you perform a rollout to an edition, you replace an active edition with a new edition. To provide interruption-free application upgrades, performing a rollout to an edition includes the following items:
To perform a rollout to a target cluster, you can divide the cluster into groups, and define a group size, which specifies the number of nodes to process at a time. Performing a rollout to a group results in the servers in each group being upgraded to the new edition at the same time. Each server in the group is quiesced, stopped, and reset. A rollout can be performed on only one group at a time in the administrative console. When any member in the new edition becomes available, all requests are routed to the new edition.
As you perform a rollout to the edition, some servers in the cluster move from the previous edition to the new edition, some servers are in the process of making the transition, and other servers have not started the transition. All application requests are sent to any server that has an active, running instance of the latest edition of the requested application. For example, when you perform a rollout from edition 1.0 to 2.0, all application requests are served by edition 2.0 when edition 2.0 becomes available on a server. Any servers that are still running edition 1.0 do not serve requests until this server is updated to edition 2.0.
Performing an atomic rollout to an edition replaces an edition on half of the cluster at a time to serve all user requests with a consistent edition of the application. All user requests are served by either the previous or the new edition; user requests are never served by both editions.
An atomic rollout ensures that all application requests are served by a consistent edition, for example, either edition 1.0 or 2.0, but not by both. The currently available edition is taken offline from half of the servers that comprise the cluster. In those servers, the new edition is activated and started, but those servers are held offline until the next step completes. The next step is to take the currently active edition offline in the remaining servers. At this point, no server has an instance of either edition available to serve application requests. The ODR temporarily queues any request that arrives for this application. After the application is fully offline, the first half of the cluster is brought back online. The second half of the cluster transitions from the previous edition to the next edition and is brought back online.
Automatic Deployment with Ant Script
I am assuming by now that you are comfortable with the edition management concept of WebSphere server. In this section I will try to explain how you can achieve it in your organization once deployment is finished. I am assuming the target deployable artifact (EAR, WAR etc) is already prepared by you. The automated script will perform following task for you:
If you don’t have any shared library reference in your application then you can modify the script create your own version. You can use this script in both clustered and non-clustered environment with little modification in code. I will explain both processes here. So let’s get started.
You need to follow below steps in order to make below script to work:
In addition to providing interruption free delivery of your application to your customer, you can also save the valuable manual deployment time if you use this script.
GlobalRationalUserCommunity 270007QH7A 1,249 Views
Tuesday, June 30
6:30 a.m. ET
Every line of code you create comes with a complexity cost. How can you tame this complexity for your large source base? One way is to streamline your delivery turnaround time for enhancements and fixes by visualizing your projects' source code—after all, "a picture is worth…” Some major financial systems are driven by industry standard visual representations that allow those projects to meet agile DevOps demands. Join this session to learn about productivity gains and improve your continuous delivery of software.
Roger C. Snook
Roger brings twenty five years of software product innovation and consultative engagements across several industries.
Roger is an OMG Certified UML Professional, IBM and Open Group Certified Specialist and has been a featured global speaker on Cloud Software, DevOps for Mobile, SOA, Design, and Rational software topics.
Roger is also a volunteer for the American Youth Soccer Organization that promotes a fun, family soccer experience for 1,000 kids in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia.
You can connect with Roger on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/rogersnook.
***Dial in codes will be sent a few minutes before the webcast and posted in the online meeting.
By registering for this webcast you are allowing the GRUC to provide your information to IBM and/or webcast sponsors for direct contact regarding IBM products and promotions. You will also receive a complimentary membership to the Global Rational User Community.
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This blog will talk about "Graphical Data Mapping Editor" which was introduced in WebSphere Message Broker Version 8.0 (hereafter called IBM Integration Bus).It will help as a quick reference for creating new maps, customizing a message map to include headers and editing the property of Transform Elements.
Graphical Data Mapping Editor creates/edits graphical maps. It is used to develop message mapping for Mapping Node. The Graphical Data Map( .map ) represents input and output message data in graphical format.
Graphical Data Mapping Editor has the ability to:
Graphical Data Mapping supports the following Message Domain:
It does not support JSON message domain.
The following use case illustrates how maps are created:
The new created map can be edited with the Mapping Editor .
Mapping Input Source to Output Source:
Customizing to add Headers:
Editing the property of Transform Element:
Edit the property of any individual transform element to add a condition or assign a value as illustrated:
Mapping Editor Navigation:
Disclaimer: Each posting on this site is the view of its author and does not necessarily represents IBM's positions, strategies or opinions. I do not guarantee correctness of the opinions or content or sample code presented here. Use it at your own risk
As one of the core developer of DB2 Connect CLI team, I got an opportunity to work on supporting generic special registers feature. Idea behind this blog is to spread some of the benefits and usage to help application development community understand it better to leverage the same.
Though focus of this blog would remain CLI centric, similar concept exists in other client drivers like IBM DB2 .NET provider and IBM JDBC driver (aka JCC).
IBM Data Server Driver configuration file (by default named as db2dsdriver.cfg) is catching its popularity among the customers due to its capability of allowing different DSNs and database properties configuration in a central repository manner. In addition, being in XML format, it takes a less of an effort for any user to get used to such configuration files. In DB2 Connect V10.1 Fixpack 2, CLI added new capability to db2dsdriver.cfg by allowing users to set special registers generically.
Before I go deep into the feature explanation, let me begin with answering few basic questions:
What are special registers?
A special register is a storage area that is defined for an application process by the database manager. It is used to store information that can be referenced in SQL statements.
To know more about special registers with examples, refer to the following link:
What is the existing method of setting special registers from client applications?
There are set of special registers which can be set (or updateable) by the client applications. Application can modify such special registers programmatically using “SET” SQL statements. There are few special registers for which DB2 CLI provides connection level keywords. Application can set these keywords either via db2dsdriver.cfg or db2cli.ini configuration files.
Limitations using existing method of setting special registers:
Setting special registers programmatically expects modification of the application source code and recompile each time special register needs added/removed/modified. Also, this needs to be taken care in all impacted application programs.
Using special registers which can be set as CLI keywords can be a better approach than former, but with limited list of such keywords, applications do not get complete solution. CLI can be enhanced to support requested special registers as a keywords, however with data server introducing new special registers at each release, this remains an ongoing solution. This expects users to upgrade their client drivers to be able to get newer special register support as keyword.
What is the newer mechanism CLI provides to address above situation?
To overcome the drawbacks of both the above approaches, it was desired to have a more generic solution to be developed. As a result, CLI has introduced a unique section of special registers viz. <specialregisters> in the configuration file db2dsdriver.cfg. This section allows users to specify a list of special registers that they like to configure. Based on the need, <specialregisters> section can be added at a DSN level or a database level or even globally.
During each connection to a given DSN or a database, CLI reads through db2dsdriver.cfg and processes <specialregisters> section in the following manner:
- read each special register name and its value from <specialregisters> section of a given DSN or a database
- “without scanning/interpreting” form a chain of special registers to be sent to the connected data server.
- upon the first SQL of the connection, flow chained special registers to the server
- server will process each special registers of the chain (along with the 1st SQL of the connection) and set it appropriately at the server.
As we can see from the above logical flow, with this feature, CLI has no dependency to know the special registers to validate. It will simply flow the entries from <specialregisters> section to the server and let server do necessary validations. Another benefit we can see here is because flow of the special registers is chained together along with 1st SQL statement of the connection, network trips to set the special registers is saved significantly now.
When server upgrade occurs and user application likes to set newly supported special registers, with this new feature of CLI, all user needs to do is to add that special register in their <specialregisters> section! As we can see, no driver upgrade is needed here in order o use newer special registers.
Illustrating usage of <specialregisters>
Having given some background, I can now proceed with the working of this feature. Let’s begin with adding <specialregisters> section to existing / new db2dsdriver.cfg configuration file:.
Sample db2dsdriver.cfg file
Interpreting <specialregisters> section from above sample:
1. Special Registers applicable across all DSNs/databases ( residing under global <parameters> section)
CURRENT DEFAULT TRANSFORM GROUP = 'MYSTRUCT2'
CURRENT LOCALE LC_MESSAGES = 'en_CA'"
2. Special Registers applicable for DSN = sample
CURRENT SCHEMA = 'MYSCHEMA'
CURRENT DEGREE = 'ANY'
CURRENT DEFAULT TRANSFORM GROUP = 'MYSTRUCT2'
CURRENT LOCALE LC_MESSAGES = 'en_CA'"
3. Special Registers applicable for database = sample2
CURRENT SCHEMA = 'MYSCHEMA1'
CURRENT DEGREE = 'ANY'
CURRENT DEFAULT TRANSFORM GROUP = 'MYSTRUCT2'
CURRENT LOCALE LC_MESSAGES = 'en_CA'"
The above configured special registers for relevant DSNs/databases come into effect with the first SQL statement given post connection. It is at this point the special register settings are applied at the server.
In the above application logic, "INSERT" is the first SQL statement post connection. Along with this SQL statement, the effective special registers list (as listed in the db2dsdriver.cfg) is formed and these special registers get set at the server. In case any special register setting at server has resulted in any warning or an error, those will be chained to the result of 1st SQL’s response. Application can call SQLGetDiagRec() API to retrieve any warning or error details to diagnose the problem.
Where I cannot use this new feature?
To enable client info properties, it’s not recommended to use <specialregisters> section. Existing mechanism either via CLI keywords or environment/connection level attributes can be used instead.
If application logic desires to set special registers during the connection (not at initial phase of the connection), or if they like to change the special registers in between, then setting special registers programmatically is the only way. New feature is useful only as initial value of the special register for the connection.
In summary, as an application user, one can get below benefits with the new feature:
1. Savings in time and network utilization by reduction in network flows
Reduction in network round trips between client and servers since most optimal DRDA protocol is used while flowing special registers set information to the server.
Moreover by chaining set of special registers along with 1st SQL of the connection saves another network round trip by using piggyback mechanism.
2. Less maintenance and upgrade of the driver:
The new approach avoids necessity of driver level upgrade just to exploit any new server special register. All users need to do is add the new special register entry in the <specialregisters> section to the existing drivers’s db2dsdriver.cfg file (minimal driver level requirement is V10.1 Fixpack 2). Knowing many big organization having thousands of client drivers installed at each workstation, this saving brings lot of relief to them.
3. Centralized maintenance:
Using central configuration method for db2dsdriver.cfg, users can now have much controlled manner to add/remove/edit the special registers for their applications. Also, with flexibility of using <specialregisters> under DSN, database or global level, user can tune their need quite easily.
Here are some of the links that can be referred to :-
mentions details on Special Registers
mentions about the IBM data server driver configuration file structure
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Having worked for some time on LDAP for DB2,I thought it was better if I could highlight how and in which areas LDAP can help ,when working with DB2.So with a platform like that of developerette, I thought I would use this ,so here is a brief introduction on what is LDAP and how it best fits while working with DB2.
What is LDAP?
Today people and businesses rely on networked computer systems heavily to support distributed applications where the key information is stored in central repository.
Useability scenarios for LDAP fitting best for DB2
The figure represents a typical LDAP topology where client connects to "payroll" database using the cataloged information present in the LDAP server.
Supported LDAP servers for DB2
IBM Tivoli Directory server
Microsoft Active Directory server
Sun One LDAP server
Netscape directory server
This was an attempt to highlight the major applicability scenarios where businesses can make best use of LDAP in order to better manage their data in a distributed environment.I would be probably covering the basic configuration and some CLP LDAP commands and their usage in the next part for a better hands on experience.