Friday, June 28, 2013

Rational Developer for IBM i 9 is available

A new version of the Rational Developer for i is available. RDI in the version 9 is the new name for a tool which was also known as WDSC, RDP and many more other names. RDI is an eclipse based development tool for software development on Power systems running i aka known as AS/400, iseries, system i. With RDI 9 some long time awaited improvements have been made by Rational. The eclipse base has been upgraded from 3.6.x to the 4.2.2 codebase. So you have a much improved JDT (Java development tool) and you are able to install all the cool plugins which comes with eclipse 4.2.2 in your Rational Developer. The special plugins like the System i enabled RSE (Remote System Explorer) LPEX (Editor for RPG and Cobol) have got enhancements too. The Outline in RPG should show the informations more detailed and Rational promises that many functions will give a better performance. This will be much appreciated, because performance is one of the weak points of the old RDI versions.

RDI comes in three versions:

Rational Developer for i RPG and Cobol Tools

This is the tool for the classic i Developer who wants to build green screen applications with RPG and Cobol. Also included is a graphical Version of SDA and plugins to access the db2 on i. There is no support for Web development in this version from Rational, although you can add open source plugins from Eclipse to fill the gap.

Rational Developer for i RPG and Colbol + Modernization Tools

This version has all of the Basis version with many additional plugins to build Web Applications on the Websphere software stack from IBM. Many of this plugins are very complex and need highly trained developer on this tools to be productive. The are very good for big multi tier systems, but maybe to complicated for small projects For smaller projects the base version with added open source plugins from eclipse are an interesting alternative.

Also included in this version is the new IBM Worklight Studio 6.0 to build mobile applications. The strange thing is that applications which are built with IBM Worklight Studio 6.0 can not be deployed to the i. You have to deploy them to a Windows or Unix Worklight server which can then access the db/2 on the i.
Rational Developer for i RPG and COBOL + Modernization Tools, EGL Edition v9.0

This is the replacement for IBM Rational Developer for i for SOA Construction. I have no informations about this version, but IBM has promised for such a long time that EGL has a bright future with no visible results, that i can not believe in this future anymore.

*Updated*You can find additional informations to the new versions on or in the announcement. Das Informationcenter wurde ebenfalls bereits für die Version 9 aktualisert.

Unfortunatly up to now there is no Tial version of 9 available, but i have already contacted a sales representative of IBM when and where a Trial for this version will be available. *Updated* Eric Simpson has blogged about RDI and at the end of his post is a  tutorial  how to install the trial with the installation manager manually.

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