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What's Up, DOCumentation? 2003 # 4

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April 2003

From: Bob Green, President

To: Users of Robelle Software

Re: News of the HP e3000 and Robelle

Our newsletter publication has been monthly for over a year now. Publication has been on-line, with an email notification to each customer. Each issue is jam-packed with articles, but if you get as much email as I do, you may have missed this valuable service. Back issues can be reviewed at

The Robelle newsletter really needs to be read on-line, since the headline of every story is actually a web link to the full story or more information. In the interest of keeping the newsletter short and readable, the details are often to be found in the web links. The on-line newsletter is at

Table of Contents:

Update Your Account
Add/Change CPUs
Contact Robelle

Ask Support
Technical Information
What's New?

Free Trials. Click for:
Qedit for Windows
Host-based Qedit

Ecometry Solutions
Healthcare Solutions
Education Users
Consultants Corner

Qedit for Windows
Qedit for e3000
Suprtool for e3000
Suprtool Training

About Robelle
About the HP e3000
About HP-UX

News and Upcoming Events

Order Up-to-Date Printed Manuals

A new service from Robelle: you can order on-line the latest manuals for Qedit and Suprtool (for MPE/ix and for HP-UX). These professionally bound manuals will be printed immediately upon your request and billed to your credit card (via a service called The Qedit manuals are $25 US and the Suprtool manuals are $30 US. (You may recall that we are also offering old printed manuals for "free" - just the shipping cost. This new "on demand" service is for brand-new manuals with the latest information.)

Attention Qedit & Suprtool users!
Robelle has a special offer

For a limited time Robelle is giving away free manuals* (excluding shipping fee):

Suprtool for MPE version 4.3
Suprtool for HP-UX - version 5.0
Qedit for MPE - version 5.0

Shipping fee:

Regular mail - $6 per manual
FEDEX - $24 per manual

All prices quote in US dollars. Shipping fee must be paid by credit card, Visa & MasterCard accepted. Contact sales department at 888-762-3553 or to order your manuals (or just use our manual order form (MS Word).

*While supplies last

RUGs Still Active

The Greater Houston Regional User Group is having their next meeting on April 17th, 2003. This is an all day event and includes a tour of the new HP headquarters (formerly known as the Compaq campus.) In the morning users will hear from HP representatives on their Road Map for MPE and HP-UX. They will also hear about a non-profit organization In the afternoon users will discuss HP's plans for the Proliant series. For more information, email

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HP Tips

Support Call of the Week: C Compile Error

Barry Lake of Allegro recently helped resolved a Robelle support issue in which a customer was having trouble compiling a C program within Qedit for MPE, and believed that Robelle software was at fault. The error in question was:

   line 1438: error 1615: Default parameter specification not supported.

The offending line of code was:

   fnum = FOPEN ( fname, fop, aop, -recsize,,,,,, filesize );

We've frequently done similar things in our own C programs, so we know this should work, and we often do compiles inside Qedit, as well, so we were fairly certain the problem didn't have anything to do with Qedit. For the most part Qedit simply passes non-Qedit commands to MPE for execution. But just to be sure, our first troubleshooting tactic was to have the customer try the same compile command from the MPE prompt. As expected, he got the same error, which ruled out Qedit as the culprit.

For the answer, click the link above.


net.digest for March

John Burke's summary of the 3000-L mailing list for March is now on-line. Topics of interest: connecting new SCSI drives to old 3000s, QCTERM 1.0, NMMGR settings for FTP transmission robustness, and 'surprises' on HP hardware support contracts.

MPE/iX 7.0 Powerpatch 2

HP has released Powerpatch 2 (WBWGDT7A), including Java SDK Version 1.3, WebWise Replaces Apache in FOS, HPBrowse/iX 36384A.00.06 HFS filename and Byte-Stream, Increase maximum job and session limits to 3300, and more.

Hidden Value: March Column

Topics in John Burke's column this month: SHOWUSERLOG (etc.), ACCEPT FREE, impact printers, Apache in the C queue, IPL errors, crash recovery, FTP access, and much more....

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Qedit Tips

Qedit: Inserting Same Block Many Times

From the Qedit FAQ: How do i re-insert the same block of text many times in Visual mode. Answer: Use A0 to copy from the Hold0 file. Click link above for more details.

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Suprtool Tips

Splitting Byte Fields

Suprtool can now extract portions of a byte field based on the occurrence of certain characters.

Considering the following Data:

Armstrong/ Neil/ Patrick
Green/ Bob/ Miller
Fritshaw/ Elizabeth/
Edwards/ Janine/

For all the details on how you would split this into 3 fields, click the link above. This feature was added in Suprtool version 4.6.03, which is available as a pre-release.

Suprtool Coding Tips

Neil Armstrong has written some tips for improving your Suprtool programming style:

Suprtool is not only a database tool, but is also a language. Like any "programming" language there are things you can do to improve the readability of the scripts you are writing.

Suprtool does very little work when accepting commands. It does syntactic checking and some semantic checking of the commands, but Suprtool does very little work until you "xeq" the task or exit. (The Table command is the exception to this rule as it may have to read and sort a file to fill the table!)

Click the link above to see Neil show some "bad" code, which hides the logic of the task, and then demonstrate how to improve it.

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HP-UX and Migration Planning

Eloquence B.07.00 Official Release

The Eloquence B.07.00 database includes a fully integrated and improved TurboIMAGE compatibility extension which delivers outstanding compatibility to the TurboIMAGE database used with the HP e3000 applications.

Eloquence B.07.00 also adds substantial database improvements including support of database restructuring and performance enhancements, an enhanced version of the JDLG Java based GUI and the WebDLG web based user interface, updated support for recent Linux distributions and support for the Intel Itanium architecture. For more information on Eloquence, visit

"HP Says It's On Target for e3000 Phaseout"

From an article in ServerWatch magazine:

Schneck said the company is aware that customers will likely continue to use the platform past its December 31, 2006 end-of-support date. To that end, he said HP will "allow access to existing patches, key docuementation and some . . . technical content." At this point, he said, the company hasn't finalized plans for distribution of that material. He also said the company intends to remove barriers to the creation of platform emulators by third party developers, though he couldn't comment on the nature of HP's "fairly immature" plans in that area except to say the company will make the process "as simple as we possibly can."

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Links/Resources/Industry News

Quick and Dirty Solutions with CI Programming

An overworked, understaffed data processing department is all too common in today's ever belt-tightening, down-sizing and de-staffing companies.

An ad-hoc request may come to the harried data processing manager. She may throw her hands up in despair and say, "It can't be done. Not within the time frame that you need it in." Of course, every computer-literate person knows deep down in his heart that every programming request can be fulfilled, if the programmer has enough hours to code, debug, test, document and implement the new program. The informed DP manager knows that programming the Command Interpreter (CI) can sometimes reduce that time, changing the "impossible deadline" into something more achievable.

Click the link above for CI programming tips.

Technical: Threads and Processes

Here is a tip from Robelle's HP Encyclopedia on threads and processes in MPE, UNIX and Windows.

Consultant: Carlassara Design Inc

Company Name: Carlassara Design Inc.
Specialty:HP3000/MPE and HP-UX systems, POWERHOUSE, COBOL, IMAGE, ALLBASE and other relational databases, SUPRTOOL, QEDIT, EXCEL and other MS products, DOS, RJE, JCL, FTP, SMTPMAIL, and TOAD for querying ORACLE databases.
Description:Providing professional consulting services for nearly 20 years.
Contact:Alex Carlassara
Location:Wellandport, Ontario, Canada
Suprtool experience since 1985
Qedit experience since 1984. Some Qedit for Windows experience. Would recommend QEDIT to others.
References:Wellington Management LLB, Boston MA Stelwire Inc., Hamilton ON. Nortel Networks, Customer Service, Mississauga ON. Nortel Networks, Global Logistics, Milton ON. The Hostess Frito-Lay Company, Mississauga ON. Ontario Ministry Of Health, Downsview ON. Rubbermaid Inc., Mississauga ON. Pillsbury Inc., Willowdale ON. Macmillian Bathhurst Inc., Mississauga ON. Canada Trust, Toronto ON. Northern Telecom Inc., Brampton ON. Resume and references are available upon request.

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Newsletter Distribution

Robelle Solutions Technology Inc. provides the What's Up, DOCumentation? newsletter as a service to our customers. The newsletter is available on the web: in HTML format for browsing and PDF format for printing. Visit

Comments about this issue, as well as ideas for future issues, including news, tips, and suggestions for articles, can be sent to

Previous Issue: March Newsletter

The last newsletter also contains some interesting items, in case you missed it:

* New Major Suprtool Beta Release
* FTP Passwords with Security/3000
* QWIN Syntax Highlighting for Suprtool commands
* Many-to-many links in Suprlink
* Importing Excel Data
* Control Breaks (New Feature in Suprtool)

Browse the HTML issue or download the PDF issue.

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