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5 replies Latest Post - ‏2013-04-01T16:37:46Z by SystemAdmin
SystemAdmin
SystemAdmin
225 Posts
ACCEPTED ANSWER

Pinned topic Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

‏2013-03-22T12:29:19Z |
We are a mixed RPG and COBOL shop with two developers that are currently
using SEU/PDM. We tried using WDSC 6/7 in the past on a regular basis but
its instability and slow speed quickly convinced us to stay with our current tools except for some analysis situations.

For fun, we asked our BP to give us prices for the newer Rational Tools.
Apparently there are three categories of the software and two of them seemed prohibitively expensive. So, looking to just replace our current WDSC (which we only use occasionally for RPG outlining), it seems that the 5733-RDG tool is the perfect replacement because according to the BP and IBM its supposed to be the successor of WDSC. The prices we were quoted are as follows:

$940 per user and includes 1 year of 9X5 support;
3 yr (includes 1st year) support is $376 per user.

Our questions are:

1. Is this a one-time price for the software and maintenance or do we
have to pay this same price (940+376) every year?

2. Is this RDG package more stable than WDSC? I have lost code in the
past trying to use WDSC. On the other hand, I have never lost code
with SEU/PDM even during a power or communication failure.

3. The other developer is an RPG'er so if he decides to begin using
RDG he will gain far more benefit than a COBOL'er like myself, true?
I didn't see much for COBOL in the new GUI toolset but the outline
window for RPG is handy (if you can figure out how to open it every
time...lol)

4. The learning curve is steep with the WDSC package. In most cases I
can be in/out of SEU and have a maintenance change done in the time that
it takes to fire up WDSC, wait for a list of source members to appear,
open one for editing, make a quick change and then compile the program.
Has this changed with the new RDG tools? Is the window interface to
open, edit and compile a program been made easier/faster? Like most
shops, we do far more maintenance than new, large-scale development
so speed and ease of use is critical for us.

This may be the wrong place to post these questions but it would be
nice to hear from other shops in a similar boat. We're thinking that
its probably not worth the money to upgrade from WDSC but if the
learning curve is easier with RDG and its more stable/reliable than
our WDSC exeperiences, we might pick up at least one seat to help
us jump forward...

Thanks for any input!
Updated on 2013-04-01T16:37:46Z at 2013-04-01T16:37:46Z by SystemAdmin
  • PWConner
    PWConner
    53 Posts
    ACCEPTED ANSWER

    Re: Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

    ‏2013-03-22T12:57:53Z  in response to SystemAdmin
    1) The price is shocking for those of use that grew up on an AS/400 with all tools included. I'll let someone else address the details.

    2) Rational Developer for Power Systems (RDP) is better than WDSC; period.

    3) The outline tool automatically refreshes in the newest version of RDP.

    4) The learning curve is steep with RDP, but worth it. I've been using RDP for awhile. I still discover little tricks to increase productivity, not to mention rediscovering other tricks from time-to-time. You are never going to beat PDM/SEU for quick maintenance of green screen or batch programs, but RDP beats the old tools at program comprehension where most of your time is probably spent.

    My advice is to get RDP (hopefully at a discount).
  • SystemAdmin
    SystemAdmin
    225 Posts
    ACCEPTED ANSWER

    Re: Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

    ‏2013-03-22T13:36:42Z  in response to SystemAdmin
    Hi Terry,

    I am an RPG programmer. Green screen, subfiles, ILE, stored procedures for the web guys. I don't do any Java or web stuff, just RPG, DDS and CL. Been using WDSC since it was Code/400 on OS/2. I found WDSC 7 to be very stable. So I wasn't driven off of it because of its flaws. RDp 8.5.1 has been equally stable for me. The only real improvement for me has been the ability to use 7.1's new BIFs in RPG. I don't use the live outline or autocomplete - I should get on that.

    1. Pricing. The $900 number is a one-time buy. The $300 number is the 3-year maintenance. So we basically pay like $100 per user per year for maintenance.

    2. I have never lost code with WDSC 7.0.0.8 or RDp 8.5.1. I did have incidents with WDSC 5 and 6.

    3. Don't know about the Cobol tooling, but for me the biggest benefit is the ability to see more code and to open the same member for editing more than once. Think about having to change a data structure and the mainline code that uses it. Very nice. All the other stuff is interesting but never grabbed me by the throat. I've been programming in RPG since 1978; maybe it's an old dog/new trick problem.

    4. I did not find the learning curve steep. If you can use Word or Notepad you can learn RDp. Yes, navigating all the bells and whistles will take time, but I never found that necessary. As for startup time, I leave it running all day. RDp 8.5.1 starts up noticeably faster than WDSC 7.0.0.8. I make a separate connection for each 'project' I'm working on, so switching from A/R to P/R is as simple as clicking on the Payroll connection.

    David runs a WDSC/RDp list over on midrange dot com; it's a bit more active than here. You can get opinions of people who aren't in my shoes there.
  • SystemAdmin
    SystemAdmin
    225 Posts
    ACCEPTED ANSWER

    Re: Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

    ‏2013-03-22T13:38:21Z  in response to SystemAdmin
    The RDP product is light years ahead of the old WDSC products. While the learning curve is a little long I have notice that those developer who embrace the product and commit to using it on a regular basis do much better and are up to speed much faster than those who use it only occasionally. It will probably take a month of regular use to become really proficient with it. After that, you may never want to go back to PDM again. I know I don't. I used to love PDM. Now, after using RDP, and before that WDSC, I avoid PDM if at all possible. I really don't like working in it any more.

    As to the speed, it sounds like you start RDP when you need it an then close it. I would suggest that that isn't the way to use RDP. The majority of the time spend it loading the program. I had it in my startup list and when my PC booted or restarted RDP would automatically start. That way it was always ready. As a developer I spent all day every day in RDP and never experienced speed issues.

    If you are having issues with large lists of members being displayed in RPD I would suggest using filter pools, filters, and connections to make your lists smaller and more precise.

    I have notice that those that don't like RPD tend to have one thing in common, and that is that they didn't spend time to really get to know it.
  • SystemAdmin
    SystemAdmin
    225 Posts
    ACCEPTED ANSWER

    Re: Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

    ‏2013-04-01T15:16:39Z  in response to SystemAdmin
    Thanks guys for the feedback. Sorry for the delay in getting back here but we're processing our year-end right now...

    The most salient quote seemed to be from PWConner:

    You are never going to beat PDM/SEU for quick maintenance of green
    screen or batch programs.

    Because of the fact that we are primarily doing maintenance -and- we're
    slated to move off this platform in 3 years, I am going to ask for a single copy of the new RDP package. Maybe we'll get some use out of it
    before the system goes away. Unfortunately, we don't have X amount of
    dedicated days to learn this software package and still keep production
    running.

    BTW, I should have explained that the reason the learning curve seems so
    high is because of the multitude of windows, "perspectives", etc, that take over the screen. If the install process would default to a member list "window" and an editor "window" then it would be a lot easier to learn :)

    Anyway...thanks again!

    Terry
    • SystemAdmin
      SystemAdmin
      225 Posts
      ACCEPTED ANSWER

      Re: Stay with WDSC or try to move to 5733-RDG

      ‏2013-04-01T16:37:46Z  in response to SystemAdmin
      > The most salient quote seemed to be from PWConner:
      >
      > You are never going to beat PDM/SEU for quick maintenance of green
      > screen or batch programs.

      Responding for the archives.

      I am a green screen maintenance programmer and I don't understand this. I type the exact same speed whether I'm using SEU, RDp or a 3741. RDp has several key functions which make it my day to day choice over SEU/PDM. I see more lines of code, the tab key works as expected, I can edit more than one source member at once (or the same source member: think I specs, C specs and O specs) and I can compile from within the editor.

      > Because of the fact that we are primarily doing maintenance -and- we're
      > slated to move off this platform in 3 years,

      Definitely learn RDp. There is no other platform on earth which uses anything like SEU. When you move to a different platform you will almost certainly be using an IDE similar to RDp.

      --buck