HostSurfer: a new cost-efficient Mainframe Modernization Solution
We have recently updated z/Scope Anywhere to add two powerful programming extensions that guarantee a cost-efficient Mainframe Modernization Solution: HLLAPI.js and HostSurfer.js.
HLLAPI stands for High-Level Language Application Program Interface and is an IBM API that allows a DOS PC application to communicate with a mainframe computer. Further extensions (WHLLAPI, EHLLAPI, EEHLLAPI) were implemented to facilitate Windows (3.1, NT, and up) applications to use this API as a standard method to scrape screen data or exchange mainframe data with other data sources.
HostSurfer.js can be referred to as a “mainframe modernization” tool, but it’s actually much more than that: it is a framework that allows developers to fully integrate the web with the mainframe’s legacy applications, based on the modern and most widely used programming language and runtime environments.
And that’s not all, you can also extend green-screen applications by combining them with other web resources and have them work together.
How does HostSurfer.js work?
The communication between a mainframe and its terminals is based upon a bidirectional stream of data using the Telnet protocol. This back and forth exchange of data (comprised mostly of plain text) is maintained until the session is closed.
HostSurfer.js transforms the Telnet data stream into a set of data with values and attributes.
With HostSurfer.js you can define rules to identify screens. Once the screens are identified, you can define views, automate actions, combine/transform the fields in the screen and declare navigators. These rules will allow you to create powerful front-end web extensions.
HostSurfer.js functional structure
HostSurfer.js is structured as a layered arrangement of functionally distinctive components, as depicted in the following diagram:
The source and target of the data is the terminal-based application screen at the bottom part of the diagram.
HostSurfer.js keeps a collection of rules and screen fields. These fields determine the navigation flow and data access features, as well as, end-to-end data synchronization (data binding).
Find more about HostSurfer.js
There’s a huge potential for the level of enrichment that z/Scope Anywhere can achieve using HostSurfer.js. Give it a try and you’ll see how easy it is to modernize your mainframe application.
If you have any questions regarding this blog entry, you can leave a comment below or send us an email at [email protected].
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Notes for current z/Scope Users
We find that many of our old customers are now adopting Windows 10 or Windows 11.
z/Scope v6.6 (desktop) and z/Scope Anywhere v8.5 (web) are fully compatible with Windows 10 and newer versions.
Do you run an older z/Scope version? Any z/Scope user covered by our Maintenance Service may update their current version at any time.
Aside from our technical support service, surely the best part of renewing your license’s maintenance is being eligible for the latest software updates and version upgrades at no extra cost.
Check out our download page or contact our technical support team to find out about the latest available version or to inquire about your renewal status.
You can also visit our Documentation page to find the available help files.