Design Policy for 5250 PHP modernization, Menu items

One of the most important items when looking at the modernization of an application is the user interface and how you will take your existing Green Screen displays and change them into a a GUI Interface. Having seen some of the converted screens which are supplied by the IBM GUI interface available with UIM I felt that using a page with imbedded links did not look that good? So I looked at my options.

I could use radio buttons and a button to launch to the next screen, or even set up a launch button for each menu option. But I felt using a drop down menu would be a better option. This gave me a few challenges, firstly I wanted to make this a pure PHP implementation so I did not want to be developing Java Script, however after looking at some of the PHP Layers based solutions I decided that Java Script would probably be the best option, not only for easy of use but also for reducing the complexity of the overall solution.

The menu will be available across all pages so moving from one section to another should be easy, I am not sure just how difficult it will be to set up the bridge interface to allow the move to a menu and directly to a menu option in one foul swoop but I cant see too many challenges at this time.

Most of the commands should be easy to interpret and develop pages (probably pop outs) for and I do have the ability to call the program directly so all in all it seems like a fairly simple approach using the bridge software?

The product I intend to use for the project is not too large or complex, so some of the decisions I make here may not carry into a larger project?

As soon as I get the initial code developed and the links to pages and menus start to show promise I will post the code to show how I did it! Not to show how you should do it, simply how I achieved what I wanted to do.


3 thoughts on “Design Policy for 5250 PHP modernization, Menu items”

  1. Hi Chris,

    I am looking for the best solutiobn for my customer. Thei will decide how to modernize their existing 5250 application. Either by HATS or 5250 bridge in Zend Platform. I have no knowledge of java but has worked with php on their system. Unfortunately, there is not much information or copies on using the 5250 bridge. What do you think the 5250 bridge works? Did you encounter many problems?

    Thanks for any aswers.
    / Jaroslav

    You can reach me on following e-mail address:

  2. Hi Jaroslav

    The 5250 bridge is in fact very new, I only came across it after reading an article. The problem with many of the other solutions is they are expensive to buy and expensive to change using the HATS only gives you a standard HTML representation of your DDSSRC, I used UIM to build all of my menus and screens so it will not work for me as far as I can determine.

    If you are happy with PHP I would definitely look at the bridge, the demo’s which are available when you install the software are very compelling and I think the additional removal of the Interactive tax (You pay for interactive users) makes this even more compelling for those who need cheaper alternatives.

    The only worry I have is the overhead of running PHP on some systems with all of the memory requirements imposed by the HTTP server etc…

    Hope you can review the demo’s they do show how you need to move forward.


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