Niakwa, Inc.

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Niakwa Data Manager

Introduction

The computer industry today is flooded with powerful and exciting products which can both use and enhance your data files. The trick is finding a reliable and portable interface that will provide you the data independence necessary to access these products.

Niakwa's Data Manager (NDM)* provides the perfect solution. NDM is an Application Program Interface (API) that allows your applications to utilize state-of-the-art native Industry Standard Access Method (ISAM) products to store data, while retaining full portability.

With NDM, you'll experience complete data independence. This freedom to share data files with a variety of third-party products (i.e. Informix, SQL, Xtrieve) will greatly enhance the value and functionality of your applications. End users will be able to generate exciting reports, presentations, and spreadsheets by using NDM to access these products.

The Data Manager was designed so that applications need to be developed only once. After the initial development, moving applications from one platform to another is as simple as obtaining the Data Manager Package (Pak) and supported native ISAM for that specific platform.

This data sheet provides a full orientation to the features, benefits, functionality, and performance of the Niakwa Data Manager.

* Use of the Niakwa Programming Language is a requirement to run NDM.

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Technical Brief

NDM consists of a set of subroutines that can be called by the application program by use of simple GOSUB' statements (i.e., GOSUB' NDM_CREATE_FILE).

NDM provides an API to the native ISAMs which, then, perform all of the actual data management for NDM. Supported ISAMs include:

  • Btrieve Technologies' Btrieve
  • Informix's C-ISAM
  • IBM's OS/400

Using these native ISAMs, NDM is able to access a variety of application data files.

Depending upon the third-party product being used, the application files may be read and written to, or read only.

Benefits

The Niakwa Data Manager provides developers numerous benefits, including:

  • Data Independence
  • Programmer Productivity
  • Performance

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Data Independence

When using an ISAM, data files are independent and, thus, allow third-party products to access your data files. Data independence benefits developers at several levels:

  1. Off the shelf query/report tools; such as, Xtrieve, IQ, Crystal Reports, etc. can be used to access your application data.
  2. Using easily obtainable conversion programs, your data files can be accessed by third-party products (i.e., Focus, Lotus, and SQL).

This also allows you to add new functionality to your applications with minimal effort.

Performance

NDM adds minimal overhead to native ISAM performance. Thus, NDM application I/O performance is usually equivalent to that of the native ISAM.

Applications using NDM generally realize substantial performance gains due to NDM's elimination of file access bottlenecks. Each data file is designated as a stand-alone file. One user may lock a file while a second user continues to access other files. In addition, support for record locking allows applications to reduce or eliminate the need for file locking, thus, multiple users can update data in the same file concurrently.

Application performance is also significantly improved by use of native ISAM capabilities (i.e., buffering and caching).

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Features

The Niakwa Data Manager provides:

  • Multiple Indices
    Each key may contain up to 8 segments. A total of 24 key segments per file may be defined.
  • File and Record Locking
    Support for both file and record locking is provided. This allows multiple users to access different records in a file simultaneously without encountering conflicts.
  • Native File Storage
    All data is stored in expandable, stand-alone native files. You'll never receive a file full warning.
  • SEEK Functions
    Searching for specified key values, seek functions support =,>,<,>=,<=, start-of-file, and end-of-file specifications.
  • Transaction Start, End, Abort
    These features allow operations to be logically grouped into transactions. Partially completed transactions can be backed out of the database in the event of an error or hardware failure.
  • Data Conversion Functions
    NDM's data conversion facilities automatically convert native ISAM data types to NPL data types, as specified in a programmer defined data dictionary. This allows the application to work with different ISAMs without modification while maintaining data in the native format so that it is fully accessible by third-party products.
  • Data Dictionary Files
    NDM's data dictionary files simplify file maintenance by allowing you to efficiently catalog and track data files, formats, and indices.
  • Utility Programs
    The NDM Utility Programs allow for the easy creation and maintenance of data dictionary files and other support files. Also included are utilities for migrating user data files from one platform to another.
  • Field Type Support
    NDM supports not only NPL, but also native field types. This allows for more convenient and complete programming capabilities.
  • Special API Functions
    These functions provide access to native ISAM specific features.
  • Platform Specific Toolbox Feature
    NDM provides access to extended platform specific features. This provides you the opportunity to utilize a variety of convenient development features.

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Packaging

NDM is sold in packages, including:

NDM Development Software

Available for all platforms supported by NDM, the development software must be installed on each development system.

NDM Development Documentation

The Programmer's Guide and hardware/OS specific instructions are available for all operating environments supported by NDM.

NDM RunTime Package

The NDM RunTime Package is unsecured and copyable (no user limit or security) which makes NDM a very cost effective data management tool. NDM is packaged and sold by operating system as follows:

  • MS-DOS environments (MS-Windows/NetBIOS/Novell NetWare/386/DOS-Extender)
  • Intel Unix
  • AIX (IBM's RS/6000)
  • IBM's OS/400
Maximum Limits
DescriptionNDMBtrieveC-ISAMOS/400
Record Length4090*327673276732766
Key Length120*255120255
No. of Keys/File8*119unlimited100
No. of Segs/Key24*1198119

* Extended on platforms where larger values are supported.

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System Requirements
HardwareOperating SystemOperating EnvironmentISAM Supported
IBM and 100% CompatiblesMS-DOS 3.1 or greaterNovell Netware 2.11 or greater. MS-Windows 3.0 or greater.Btrieve 5.0 or greater.
Approved Intel-based 80386 or greaterIntel UnixAltos UNIX
AT&T UNIX
Interactive UNIX
SCO UNIX
C-ISAM 4.00 or greater for the specific operating environment in use.
IBM RS/6000AIX Version 3.XX or greater.C-ISAM 4.00 or greater.C-ISAM 4.00 or greater.
IBM AS/400 Server
IBM 80286 and 100 % Compatible or greater clients
OS/400 V2R3M0 or greater
MS-DOS 5.0 or greater.

MS-Windows 3.1 or greater.
Native AS/400

Auxiliary Components

  • Error Handling
    NDM error codes are identical across operating environments and native ISAMs, thus, applications can check for error code values and act accordingly.
  • NDM Utilities
    NDM provides a method for easily creating, deleting, viewing, and modifying NDM support and application data dictionary files (a commented source code version is available upon request).
  • Online Help
    Bundled into the NDM Utility, this facility provides a convenient on-line reference to all NDM API calls.
  • Field Type Conversion
    NDM provides functions for easy conversion between NPL and native ISAM-supported field types.
  • ISAM Feature Support
    A "toolbox" feature supports specific native ISAM functions not supported by all native ISAMs.
  • BESDK
    The BESDK feature supports mixed language programming by providing object files, source code, and example MAKE procedures for external routine integration.
  • Export to IQ
    NDM allows you to easily export the data dictionary and key description components of your Btrieve files into an IQ data description file, thus, allowing end users passive access to their data files for report generation purposes.

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Supported Environments

AIXNetBIOS
Intel UnixNovell NetWare
MS-DOSOS/400
MS-Windows386/DOS-Extender

NOTE: SuperDOS, Xenix, and VMS are currently unsupported.

Technical Support

Niakwa provides one of the most prompt and comprehensive support systems in the industry today. In 1993, 99% of all Niakwa support calls were responded to within one hour, with an average resolution time of 15 minutes or less.

File Manipulation Calls

NDM_CLOSE_FILE
NDM_CREATE_FILE
NDM_CREATE_FILE_FROM_CATALOG
NDM_CREATE_INDEX
NDM_CREATE_KEY_TABLE
NDM_DELETE_FILE
NDM_DELETE_INDEX*
NDM_OPEN_FILE
NDM_OPEN_FILE_FROM_CATALOG
NDM_SET_CURRENT_INDEX

Information Type Calls

NDM_GET_ISAM_ERROR_CODE
NDM_GET_CATALOG_ENTRY
NDM_GET_CONFIGURATION
NDM_GET_CONVERSION_TABLE_LIST
NDM_GET_CURRENT_INDEX
NDM_GET_DEFAULT_FIELD_TYPE
NDM_GET_ERROR_DESCRIPTION
NDM_GET_FILE_STATUS
NDM_GET_FORMAT_SPEC_FOR_KEY
NDM_GET_FORMAT_SPEC
NDM_GET_HANDLE_SIZE
NDM_GET_LIMIT_HIGHWATERS
NDM_GET_OPEN_FILE_LIST
NDM_GET_POSTION*
NDM_GET_RECORD_LENGTH_FROM_DD
NDM_GET_TOOLBOX_STATUS
NDM_GET_TRANSLATION_TABLE

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Record Manipulation Calls

NDM_APPEND_UNIQUE_KEY_RECORD
NDM_DELETE_RECORD
NDM_INSERT_RECORD
NDM_READ_RECORD_BY_KEY
NDM_READ_RECORD_BY_POSITION
NDM_REWRITE_RECORD
NDM_SET_POSITION*
NDM_SET_READ_BLOCKING
NDM_UNLOCK_ALL_RECORDS


Conversion Calls

NDM_CONVERT
NDM_CREATE_CONV_TABLE_FOR_KEY
NDM_CREATE_CONVERSION_TABLE
NDM_CREATE_CONV_TABLE_FOR_KEY_FROM_CAT
NDM_CREATE_CONV_TABLE_FROM_CAT
NDM_DESTROY_CONVERSION_TABLE


Configuration Calls

NDM_INITIALIZE
NDM_SET_TOOLBOX_STATUS
NDM_SET_TRANSLATION_TABLE
NDM_SET_MAX_KEY_SEGS
NDM_TRANSACTION_ABORT*
NDM_TRANSACTION_COMPLETE*
NDM_TRANSACTION_START*


IBM AS/400 Specific Calls

NDM_ESTABLISH_CONNECTION
NDM_SET_INDEX_FILE_NAME
NDM_CREATE_DEFINED_FILE
NDM_GET_INDEX_FILE_NAME

* Platform dependent feature

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