Aura Equipments of France has just announced a new Apache, MySQL and PHP stack for the IBMi, the new stack has been compiled from standard open source code and is available for free download from the Aura website .
iAMP server is a fully integrated stack which runs in the PASE environment on IBMi, this means the standard Apache Server is also running in the PASE environment allowing a close connection between it and the extensions and modules provided by other parties. While you still have the option of connecting to the IBM HTTP server via a FASTCGI port you now have the option of running the entire stack in the PASE environment. Why is this important you may ask, well one of the reasons for the new stack is a growing concerns from a number of IBMi users about the slow introduction of some of the newer Apache releases on the IBMi with its Powered by Apache server. IBMi does a very good job of making the security releases available but sometimes lacks the additional features Apache provides especially in the earlier version of iOS.
Aura have built the entire stack from the freely available open source code, this means it follows the standards you will find in many of the other AMP Stacks out there for Linux and Windows. If you have your own modules you can add them to the stack in the same way as you can with other Linux and Windows stacks without any problems. Many of the restrictions found where proprietary modules are included with a stack do not exist in the iAMP server, everything is from the open source community and will work with any other modules they provide. While this release of iAMP server does not have every module available, it does have the main ones that are used by most shops. As more modules are compiled they will be added to the stack by Aura and will be supported in the same manner as the existing modules. If there is a module which is not provided and you need it before Aura gets round to making it available you have the ability to add the module yourself or may even find a compatible binary elsewhere, that’s the beauty of having a standards based open source stack.
Shield Advanced solutions will provide support for the iAMP server for North America via a fee based support contract or on a consultancy basis if required. Free community based support will be available via forums which will be dedicated to the iAMP server which is just as you get with any other AMP stack available on Linux or Windows.
One item we need to clarify is the inclusion of the i5_toolkit, this is a proprietary solution from Aura equipments and is not shipped as part of the iAMP stack. The original i5_toolkit which shipped with the Zend product will still be available to the users of the Zend product and you can update the version using the downloads available from the Aura Equipments website. However this version of the toolkit only accepts requests from the local server (Zend HTTP Server) and cannot be accessed from remote HTTP servers. Aura will continue to support the users of the i5_toolkit for FREE using the forums which are to be setup for this purpose. However for a small fee you can upgrade that support to premium level which will entitle you to full technical support from the Aura support team. Anyone who has registered with Aura will be receiving a notification which will include a special reduced rate for support for the i5_toolkit and the iAMP server. If you have not registered your copy of Easycom with Aura now would be a good time to do it!
Any new customer which requires the i5_toolkit will be offered full support for the toolkit PLUS the iAMP server for a single price, this offer will be especially important for the smaller customer who needs support for their entire stack not just the i5_toolkit. The FREE support will still be available via the forums and will be monitored by the Aura tech support team.
iAMP is a new alternative and one which customers should look into, the support costs and level of technical support you will get should make this an easy decision if you are looking at developing a web based interface to your IBMi data and objects.
If you would like to see a demo of the iAMP server in action or have any questions please feel free to contact us, this is a major step in bringing a standards based alternative AMP stack to the IBMi.