It is my pleasure to announce this issue of the OpenVMS Technical Journal. First, I would like to apologize for the delay; however we were otherwise occupied in getting OpenVMS Version 8.2 out.
Your feedback is essential to the growth and development of this journal. Please take a moment to contact us; we want to hear what you have to say.
Once again, we have a number of excellent articles. To highlight just a few, let me start by pointing out "A Survey of Cluster Technologies" by Ken Moreau.
You will find this an in-depth and very well researched article. "Porting the Macro-32 Compiler to OpenVMS I64" by John Reagan gives you a firsthand look at what
changed and what stayed the same from an engineer on the compiler team.
"Are you Certifiable?" What an interesting question and name for an article! Certification is a big thing in the IT industry these days, and OpenVMS does have
certification available. This article was written by John Gillings, who was part of the team that developed some of the certification tests. "Delivering Web Access to
OpenVMS" by Tom Bice describes how Southeastern Freight Lines migrated its All-in-1 application to Verastream and added a graphical user interface. This migration preserved all their valuable
data, enabled them to keep their OpenVMS systems on which they rely for zero down-time, enhanced customer service, and reduced IT costs. There are four more excellent articles in this issue as well.
As always, I would like to thank all the Authors. As you can see from the bio page, we have an impressive group of Engineers, Ambassadors, and Partners. Key to the publication of this journal is the
documentation team that works with the Authors. For this issue, they were Carolyn Crowell, Suzy Kane, Mary Marotta, Sarah Masella, Joseph McMullen, Phil Milgrom, Pat Nelson, and Merle Roesler. Of
course, without the core team of Warren Sander, the web master, and Mary Marotta, this project would not be possible at all. I owe them a huge debt of gratitude. Thank you all very much.
I hope you enjoy this issue of the OpenVMS Technical Journal.
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Article Title: A Survey of Cluster Technologies [ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: Ken Moreau
Article Abstract: This paper surveys the cluster
technologies for the operating systems available from many vendors, including
IBM AIX, HP-UX, Linux, HP NonStop Kernel, HP OpenVMS, PolyServe Matrix Server,
Sun Microsystems Solaris, HP Tru64 UNIX and Microsoft Windows 2000/2003. In addition I discuss some technologies which
operate on multiple platforms, including MySQL Cluster, Oracle 9i and 10g Real
Application Clusters, and Veritas clustering products. I describe the common functions which all of
the cluster technologies perform, show where they are the same and where they
are different on each platform, and introduce a method of fairly evaluating the
technologies to match them to business requirements.
Author Bio: Ken Moreau Ken has been with the combined HP for 25 years, starting with Digital Equipment in
1979 as an Educational Services developer of Computer Based Instructional software. Ken was
with the VAX DEBUG group for 4 years, and transferred to a PreSales Solutions Architect
position in 1990. Ken has focused on high availability solutions across the industry for the last 10
years. Ken has been an OpenVMS Ambassador since 1992.
Article Title: Introduction to the Performance Data Collector for OpenVMS (TDC) [ » HTML ,
» PDF ]
Article Author: Lee Clark
Article Abstract: The Performance Data Collector (TDC)
can be used to collect approximately 1100 system performance metrics from Alpha
and Industry Standard systems for analysis by other application software.
A runtime-only variant of the
Performance Data Collector (TDC_RT V2.1) is installed with OpenVMS V8.2 and
provides a data collector application and support files.
A downloadable kit (TDC V2.1)
provides runtime environments for all supported system configurations (Alpha
systems: OpenVMS V7.3-2 or V8.2; Industry Standard systems: OpenVMS V8.2) as
well as a Software Developers Kit (SDK).
The SDK documents the TDC
Application Programming Interface (API) and provides C header files and sample
code. The API can be used to develop software to integrate TDC with other
applications in various ways including:
This article provides an overview of software development with the TDC SDK.
- Extracting data from a TDC data file for analysis;
- Feeding data "live" to another application as the data is collected by TDC, without first storing the data in a file; or
- Supplementing the metrics provided by TDC with other metrics of interest, in a fully integrated and supported fashion.
Author Bio: Lee Clark - HP OpenVMS Engineering After joining DEC in 1984, Lee worked primarily on VMS-
centric applications, including the DECalc and DECdecision spreadsheets, and content-based
retrieval software. Since returning from a sabbatical spent working on the TeamLinks for
Macintosh email client, he has been working in the system management tools group in OpenVMS
Article Title: Are you Certifiable? [ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: John Gillings
Article Abstract: The IT industry has embraced
certification as a means to determine competency over a specific product. The
idea is simple; a candidate takes an exam which tests their knowledge and
skills. If they pass, they are then entitled to claim certification over the
But how are these exams compiled?
Are they "real" or could you cram the night before and pass? Who
decides what knowledge is necessary, and how are the results validated?
OpenVMS has three levels of
certification. This article describes how those exams were created, who should
sit them, and why you can trust the results. It will also provide some general
tips on exam technique.
Author Bio: John Gillings is a Systems Software Consultant in HP Customer Services based in the Customer
Support Centre in Sydney Australia, a position he has held for the past 16 years. Prior to that he
worked as a commercial programmer, and as an academic, teaching Computer Science at
Macquarie University in Sydney Australia. His experience with OpenVMS dates back to VMS
V1.0, running on the first VAX 11/780 to be commissioned in Australia. He holds a BSc in Human
Genetics, a BSc(Hons) in Computer Science and an MSc in Software Engineering. John is an
OpenVMS Ambassador, and the Technical lead for the OpenVMS track of the HP OpenVMS
Article Title: Removing the 32-Bit Limit from System Space (OpenVMS V6.1 -- V7.3-2)
[ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: Dan Buckley
Article Abstract: With OpenVMS VAX Version 6.0 and earlier systems, 32-bit VAX address space was divided into four
1-GB sections called S0, S1, P0, and P1. S0 space was designated as system
space. This 1-GB limit on system space could prevent a system from having a
large number of users while also having large working sets, virtual address
space, memory disks, nonpaged pool, and LBN caches. If your usage attempted to
exceed the amount of system space available, your system would not boot.
As systems grew larger with more CPUs and huge amounts of memory (16 GB is common
now, whereas a MicroVAX II was limited to 16 MB), the 32-bit limit prevented
systems from effectively using all their memory.
This article tracks the changes made to OpenVMS over the years to expand system
space, remove large users of system space, and reduce the size of the remaining
users of system space.
Author Bio: Dan Buckley is an Off-site Software Support Consultant for the Product Competency Center at
Hewlett-Packard. He has been supporting OpenVMS for the past 20 years
including 10 years at the Customer Support Center and 5 years at customer sites as a part of
Digital Consulting. Dan's primary focus is in the areas of OpenVMS Performance, Clusters and
Crash Dump Analysis. Dan is also an OpenVMS Ambassador.
Article Title: Taking OpenVMS Security One Step Further [ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: Ted Saul and Michael Grinnell
Article Abstract: We all know that OpenVMS is one of
the most secure operating systems in the industry. The inability to penetrate an OpenVMS system
has been proven over and over in real world production. OpenVMS also proved to be invincible at the
DefCon 9 Hacker's Conference where it came out on top over all other operating
systems including Windows NT, XP, Solaris and Linux.
Perhaps the biggest threat to an
OpenVMS system however is not from a hacker attempting to gain illegal access
to the machine from the outside but rather as someone acting as an
insider. A user who has somehow been
granted elevated privileges whether intentional or not will have the ability to
carry out malicious behavior and how much damage they can performed will depend
on how much time passes before being discovered.
HP Services in conjunction with
partner PointSecure are teaming up to offer the OpenVMS System Security Audit. This article will serve to explain what the
new services have to offer a customer as well as how PointSecures two software
products will work to protect the system from threats both from the outside and
inside. Using PointAudit and System Detective, the system manager can not only
see the state of current security on the system but also setup events to take
place based on a defined set of triggers.
Tips on writing an internal security policy will also be given and how
to use the information gained from the audits to enforce and maintain the
Author Bio: Ted Saul is an HP Off-site Software Support Consultant for the Product Competency Center at
Hewlett-Packard. He has been supporting the OpenVMS Operating System for the past 15 years
including fielding security related issues with customers. Ted is also the project lead for the
rollout of the OpenVMS System Security Audit service being offered by HP in conjunction with
PointSecure, Inc. He has presented the service and PointSecure software along with its value to
customers that are looking to bring their systems to heightened level of security.
Author Bio: Michael Grinnell is an Off-site Software Support Engineer for the Product Competency Center at Hewlett-Packard. He has been supporting the OpenVMS Operating System
for the past 20 years. His expertise includes OpenVMS security and implementing various backup solutions. He has been involved in delivering the PointSecure software along with its value to
customers that are looking to bring their systems to heightened levels of security.
Article Title: Delivering Web Access to OpenVMS [ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: Tom Bice, Manager of Integration Strategy for WRQ
Article Abstract: In the late
'90's there was a perception that organizations had to get away from host
systems. Today, companies are realizing that the mainframe is here to stay, creating
a new obstacle - data integration. Multi-million dollar shipping company, Southeastern
Freight Lines (SEFL), was faced with the challenge of integrating data stored on
the mainframe with its web portals. The
need to get the most from its host system and customer demands for web access
and application automation required SEFL to emulate and integrate data long
stored on the mainframe, a challenge facing most organizations today.
This article will discuss how
Southeastern Freight Lines (SEFL) turned to WRQ to create a portal that would
automate their claims, billing and ticketing operations from data and
applications locked away in their mainframe. In eight weeks, SEFL unlocked and web-enabled
their mainframe systems using WRQ's Reflection. SEFL then modernized their
operations center by creating a portal using WRQ's legacy integration solution,
Verastream. SEFL's customers, employees and partners now have web-enabled
access to drive their entire shipping operations more efficiently and
Author Bio: Tom Bice serves as Manager of Integration Strategy for WRQ Verastream, a leading legacy
integration solution. Tom has more than10 years of legacy integration expertise and has held
various Product Management, Product Marketing, and consulting roles within the host integration
Article Title: Decnet-Plus technical overview [ » HTML , » PDF ]
Article Author: Colin Butcher
Article Abstract: This article provides a technical
overview of DECnet-Plus, including DECnet over IP. DECnet-Plus is
the latest implementation of DIGITAL Network Architecture (DNA) Phase V. The
purpose of this article is to explain some of the history, background,
structure and mechanisms that make up what is often simply referred to as
"Phase V". It is hoped that this will assist system designers and
managers to better understand the capabilities of DECnet-Plus
and thereby ease migration from DECnet Phase IV to DECnet-Plus, especially when using DECnet
over IP in a predominantly TCP/IP based WAN infrastructure. The author has
extensive consulting experience gained by working with DECnet
on mission-critical OpenVMS systems. This article has been written in response
to many of the situations and queries that have occurred over the years.
Author Bio: Colin Butcher Colin specializes in "mission critical" and "safety critical" systems and networks. He
has been responsible for the architectural design and implementation of several major systems,
including satellite control, air traffic monitoring, manufacturing and healthcare. He has been
involved with OpenVMS systems and networks since the early 1980s.
Colin was one of four finalists for "IT Consultant of the Year" in the 2003 BCS (British Computer
Society) IT Professional Awards in recognition of his work with HP (formerly Digital / Compaq)
and OpenVMS Engineering.
Colin is a well-known presenter of technical seminars, often for HPUG (the UK HP User Group,
formerly known as DECUS UK) of which he is currently vice-chairman.
In 1996, Colin established XDelta Limited as an independent consulting organization, primarily
working as a source of external technical expertise to mentor and assist clients working on high
availability infrastructure projects.