Solid software
for HP Servers
Robelle News   July 2004

Highlights from our recent on-line customer news. The links
and full articles are available at

What’s Up DOCumentation

1700 Disk I/Os Per Second

Here is some HP 3000 news picked up at a talk by Alvina Nishimoto of HP (at the Summit Client Conference). One of HP's 3000 customers, an airline reservation system running on a top-of-the-line N-class (4-way, 750 mz) with XP fiber-channel disk arrays, is sustaining 1700 disk I/Os per second! The system is running 90% cpu utilization and has no bottlenecks. They even hit 2000 I/Os per second at some peak moments. We thought 400 per second was incredible a couple of years ago!

Help Robelle Decorate Our New Office

We have a large bulletin board in the server room, but it is empty! So we posted a postcard from South Africa (thanks Nicky) on the bulletin board. Now we want to fill up the board with postcards from our travels and from friends of Robelle. Fran sent cards from Las Vegas & Washington DC. Bobsy mailied one from Oregon. Tammy is mailing postcards from New Mexico. Birket Foster sent one from Anguilla, while visiting Bob.  Can you help out by sending a postcard? The address is
Suite 372, 7360 137 Street
Surrey, BC Canada   V3W 1A3
 P.S. New phone number is 604.501.2001

Weird Oracle Error

Sometimes the eventual solution of a tech support problem has almost nothing to do with the original customer complaint. Read about this customer experience with Oracle on HP-UX, where they started by thinking they weren't licensed for Oracle access. In the end, we determined that he needed an HP-UX patch or a new config file to bypass a 2 GB file limit.

Tammy at HPWorld-Chicago

Tammy Roscoe of Robelle will be attending HPWorld to meet customers and research the HP market. We won’t have a vendor booth this year.

Homesteading and MPE Tips

Feedback from Frontline People ... Chris Bartram

Chris Bartram of 3K Associates is the creator of NetMail for the HP 3000 and other Internet products. Chris operates the web site, which contains lots of useful information for HP3000 users. Chris has been a 3000 booster for years. When we caught up with Chris, he had this to say: “I'm still consulting for one main client, which still runs a couple of HP 3000s, though as ‘legacy’ systems (read only).“ Click the link above to read the entire interview.

HP Response to SIB

Jeff Vance at Virtual CSY in Cupertino (jeff.vance at hp dot com) has released HP's response to the "tactical" requests in the recent SIB. "At this time we intend to fully or partially implement seven out of the top 15 requested [tactical] items, including the top two items: network printing and ftp security enhancements. We are saying no to seven of top 15 items; however, two of the seven have usable scripting work-arounds. We don't yet have an answer for one item (SCSI pass-thru) which is currently being investigated." Click the link above to read HP's full reply.

More Feedback from the Front Lines

This time we interview Paul Edwards who has been an HP 3000 contributor for almost as long as I can remember. Paul writes:

 "Last year was terrible for consultants. No work at all in the HP 3000 community. I'm doing more this year so far than all of last year. My work so far this year has been Wireless Internet Installations, PC support, and RAID array installations at HP 3000 homesteading sites." Click the link above to read the full interview and learn lots about RAID on the 3000.

HP 3000 Long Term Storage and Maintenance Service

If you are migrating off the HP 3000, you might want (or be required to) maintain access to old data in the original format. Beechglen will maintain your 3000 system at their data center, providing you access to the system via secure Internet (VPN) access. Your organization will still have access to the historical data, but you won't need to maintain a staff of knowledgeable MPE resources.

Qedit Tips

Qedit and Quad Comparision

If you are moving from MPE to HP-UX, you may find yourself looking for a replacement for the Quad editor on MPE. Qedit is an alternative that runs on both platforms.

The biggest difference between Quad and Qedit is the special Quad way of keeping track of file changes in a separate file. Qedit does not do this. The second difference is that Qedit has an extensive full-screen mode that includes Cut and Paste, function keys to move ahead and back a page, search functions, and much more.

When shifting from Quad to Qedit, you may find our comparison chart helpful (keep in mind that we are not Quad users, so our comparison is generated from the documentation only). Click link above.

Suprtool Tips

Oops - Set Fastread Has a Problem

Suprtool/UX 4.8 has a new feature for Eloquence called Set Fastread On. This enables a special serial access method which is 3 to 5 times faster. Unfortunately, we have discovered a problem. When Set Fastread is On, the Chain command (which doesn't use fastread), does not return the correct records. This is corrected in Suprtool/UX 4.8.01, which has become the current production version. Suprtool for MPE is not affected.

Another Amazing Year for Suprtool!

As you surely recall, last spring we released version 4.7 of Suprtool with expanded Eloquence support, $Number, $Counter, $Total, $SubTotal, $Split, high-speed many-to-many links, and more. If you thought that was terrific, wait until you see this spring's release. Suprtool version 4.8 has even more improvements and will be sent to each Suprtool customer at the time they renew their support for the year.

Suprtool 4.8 has a $Edit function for formatting data, just like COBOL has. Suprtool now allows up to 255 $split functions per task. This means you can now parse almost any field-separated data entry. Suprtool now has a $Findclean function to identify records with specific characters in it.

And on HP-UX, Suprtool now reads Eloquence databases up to five times faster.  Eloquence routines are now dynamically loaded, using the libraries on your system. Dbedit for HP-UX now works on Eloquence databases; and on Oracle databases in the ImaxSoft version of Suprtool. The List command now has new options for listing to a file on HP-UX.

HP-UX and Migration Planning

HP-UX Resources:

Software Porting and Archive Center for HP-UX

Here is a very useful web site for HP-UX, containing Open Source packages which have been configured and ported to HP-UX.

Search the hpux-admin mailing list

Search by date and text. When you click on a posting to read it, the text opens in another window.

Links/ Resources/ Industry News

HP 3000 Resource: ROC Software Tools

Here is the web page for Maestro (job scheduling), BackPack (backup utility), SpoolMate (spool file management), Escalibro (share tape autochanger), Formation (business forms) and TapesPlus (tape library). And here is the FAQ link.

Printed Manuals for Robelle Products

Order your own personal Qedit or Suprtool manual to hold, mark up and dog ear. A useful service from Robelle: you can order on-line the latest manuals 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. Note: if you are happy with a PDF file or HTML-Help version, these are still free to download.

click to order a printed manual

Powerhouse Documentation Online

The Cognos site now has download archives for Powerhouse and Axiant.

File Conversion Web Site

Useful web site for file conversion, including text to PDF, CSV to FIXED, etc. Lots of online tools, mostly conversion, but also determination of file type and more. Link found in the Taurus newsletter.

Useful site:

Can't remember the hex code for circumflex? Or need it in Decimal or Octal or HTML? Use this web site (the link is from the Taurus newsletter).