Decision Time for Organizations Facing IBM Sterling Connect:Enterprise End-of-Life

Users of IBM Sterling Connect:Enterprise were notified in January of this year that an end-of-life date had been set for the product.  A 16-month window was set to allow customers time to migrate to a replacement Managed File Transfer product. 

IBM Sterling Connect:Enterprise -End of Road DetourThe April 30, 2016 support deadline is fast approaching and failure to act has the potential for severe consequences. Operating mission-critical file transfer processes on an unsupported product can put operational continuity at risk, and an outright failure could irreparably damage relationships with trading partners.  It is critical for organizations to find an alternative to Connect:Enterprise and develop a migration strategy soon.

Options for Migration

IBM recommends that customers migrate over to another Sterling replacement, however this is not your only Managed File Transfer option.  Consider the following:

  • Be sure to evaluate the true cost of the alternative when factoring in staff and consultant time for migration, maintenance, and training.
  • What is the realistic timeline for this migration, and how do you mitigate risk if support for Connect:Enterprise expires before the project is complete?

To serve your organization's best interests, it's important to perform your due diligence when finding an alternative for Connect:Enterprise. Besides replacing Connect:Enterprise current functions, this is also the ideal opportunity to determine if there are additional enterprise requirements for batch or ad-hoc file transfers.

Linoma is offering GoAnywhere MFT as an enterprise-level managed file transfer alternative to Sterling Connect:Enterprise. GoAnywhere has an affordable price point with no limits on the number of trading partners.  With an intuitive interface and fast learning curve, Connect:Enterprise customers can convert to GoAnywhere in a relatively short period of time.

GoAnywhere offers centralized control over all transfers, including automation of internal and external file movement, and detailed audit logs with extensive reporting capabilities.  Key points of GoAnywhere are:

  • Affordable purchase price and low cost of ownership
  • Simple installation and operation
  • Responsive customer service and frequent updates
  • Industry standard encryption and protocols including SFTP, FTPS, HTTPS, SCP, Open PGP, ZIP with AES and AS2
  • Multi-platform support

GoAnywhere MFT's intuitive browser-based interface and comprehensive workflow features will help eliminate the need for custom programs/scripts, single-function tools and manual processes that were traditionally needed. This innovative solution improves the reliability of your file transfers and helps your organization comply with data security policies and regulations.

With integrated support for clustering, GoAnywhere MFT can process high volumes of file transfers for enterprises by load balancing processes across multiple systems. The clustering technology in GoAnywhere MFT also provides active-active automatic failover for disaster recovery.

In addition to addressing core data transfer requirements, GoAnywhere also simplifies and secures file sharing and collaboration with its GoDrive module.  Unlike consumer-grade cloud sharing tools, GoDrive provides an on-premise alternative with centralized control and end-to-end encryption.  For ad-hoc transfers, the Secure Mail module makes it easy for employees to send sensitive information and attachments without file size or file type restrictions.  Both provide the security and audit logs needed to achieve compliance company-wide.

Connect with the GoAnywhere team and let us help you explore your migration options and file transfer requirements.

Dropbox is Easy But is it Good for Business?

dropbox is easyIn the October issue of IBM Systems Magazine, Linoma Software chief architect, Bob Luebbe, raises concerns about the use of cloud-based file sharing apps in a business environment.  In the Technology Showcase, Luebbe questions the practice of trusting sensitive documents to consumer-grade software.

These file sharing services - like Dropbox - are popular for exchanging photos and documents between family and friends.  The simple and seemingly magical propagation of files through the Internet to dozens of computers and devices makes it ideal for personal use.

In the article, Luebbe talks about the appeal of these free, or low-cost, file sharing services and the real risk they pose to an organization.  He also presents a secure alternative called Managed File Transfer (MFT) that delivers the same results but with greater control, encryption at rest and in transit, and detailed audit logs.

To learn more, check out Bob Luebbe's Showcase in the October 2014 issue of IBM Systems Magazine or explore the on-premise MFT solution GoAnywhere at GoAnywhere.com.

Linoma Renews IBM Advanced Business Partner Level

IBM Advanced Business PartnerAchieving and maintaining the IBM Advanced Business Partner level is completely based on product quality and customer satisfaction. IBM assigns their partner levels for ISV's (independent software vendors), like Linoma Software, on customer feedback. Linoma Software actively produces five products that run natively on the IBM i (iSeries).

What is the benefit of Advanced Partnership? Quite simply, Advanced Partners have direct access to resources within IBM. Linoma Software has a direct connection to IBM support, labs and knowledge-base. The Advanced Partnership also provides Linoma Software the ability to test against upcoming software, like the recent i7.1 operating system for IBM i and p systems, before it is released to the public.

Linoma Software is a long-time IBM Advanced Business Partner and is well known for its dedication to high quality software, user-friendly applications, and outstanding technical support. With over 3000 satisfied business customers ranging from small business to Fortune 100, government entities and not-for-profit organizations - Linoma Software provides the same level of expertise to all.

"We work with thirty-plus vendors for all our 'Power System' related software, and no one has better technical support staff than Linoma Software. When I call other vendors, I anticipate multiple levels of call routing, and if I'm lucky the person may be able to research a solution. With Linoma's support team, it's always been the first person, and they've handled the issue with the feel of a practiced hand who recognized my problem and had a solution ready immediately." Shaun Skelton - Berry Plastics

Linoma Earns Multiple Certifications

Linoma Software strives to meet the quality assurance that satisfies customers and certification partners. To obtain certifications, we vigorously test our secure managed file transfer solution on various enterprise operating systems to certify that our products are compatible with each vendor or provider.

Most recently, we received approval for the Vmware Ready certification. It took strategic planning to run enough projects to add a load on the virtual servers running both GoAnywhere Director and GoAnywhere Services, but we prevailed and submitted successful test results to Vmware.

We are pleased with our Vmware Ready certification and would like to bring attention to the other designations we have earned.

IBM - GoAnywhere Director is tested and certified by the IBM Labs to run on any IBM System with Linux and to run on any Power System (p and i) with AIX, Linux, or i/OS. We are an IBM Advanced Business Partner and actively participate in software beta testing, like the recent i7.1 release.

Red Hat - Fedoras on the ready, GoAnywhere Director and GoAnywhere Services look sharp and perform flawlessly on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.4 and the upcoming 6.0. As a Red Hat ISV, we've participated in upgrade testing, beta testing and running on the Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization.

Microsoft - As a Microsoft Certified Partner we not only have access to the latest technical knowledge for Microsoft products, we have gone through 3rd party testing for our software and have proven that the GoAnywhere Director managed file transfer solution runs flawlessly across the entire current Windows family.

Linoma Software is ranked highly among its install base for providing exceptional support and continues to test and develop for upcoming Microsoft technologies. Linoma Software also maintains Professional ISV Partnerships with proven user groups, hardware, and software companies. Be sure to contact us if you have any questions about our various certifications.

Linoma Starts Off the Year with Several Product Releases

When things get hectic and life gets crazy, let's face it, we could all use a release. All puns aside, Linoma Software has been busy the past 5 months issuing several releases which provide our current and future clients the business edge they need in this ever changing market. Linoma released updates for Surveyor/400, Crypto Complete, GoAnywhere Services and last but not least GoAnywhere Director.

In February, Linoma released Surveyor/400 3.7. Surveyor/400 allows users to easily query and download data from IBM i to their desktops and network servers. Version 3.7 provides support for Excel 2007 with custom formatting options to create professional-looking spreadsheets. Surveyor/400 additionally supports earlier versions of Excel, as well as CSV, fixed width text, HTML and XML documents.  Surveyor/400 conveniently provides over 20 IBM i tools in one application.

In addition to Surveyor/400, Linoma also released Crypto Complete 2.20 in February. The new release of Crypto Complete 2.20 incorporated tokenization. Tokenization should be considered when sensitive data is stored on multiple systems. Tokenization is the process of replacing sensitive data with unique identification numbers (e.g. tokens) and storing the original data on a central server in encrypted form. By centralizing sensitive data, tokenization helps to thwart hackers and minimize the scope of compliance audits such as PCI. Additionally, Crypto Complete 2.20 offers faster encryption for backups while eliminating the need for intermediate save files.

Let's fast-forward to June; Linoma released GoAnywhere Services 1.3.0. Version 1.3.0 adds enhanced security features with IP Filtering, Syslog feeds and additional Trigger actions, along with other updates and usability options. GoAnywhere Services is a secure file server that provides internal and external trading partners with a secure connection to your system for exchanging files within a fully managed and audited solution.

Also in June, Linoma released a new version of GoAnywhere Director. GoAnywhere Director 3.2.0 provides a connector for sending data using the AS2 version 1.2 standards. This includes support for multiple file attachments within a single AS2 message, synchronous MDN receipts and message integrity verification. AS2 messages can be sent over an SSL tunnel, making it a secure option for the transfer of sensitive data. Version 3.2.0 also includes Syslog server integration, advanced scheduling options, enhanced server certificate handling and FTP checksum validation options. GoAnywhere Director is a managed file transfer solution for the enterprise.

If you need any additional information about any of our product releases or if you need a solution and aren't sure what is the best product for your circumstance, give us a call. If we don't have the product your business needs, we can point you in the right direction.

It has been a great start to 2010 and we would like to say thanks to all of our clients for their continued support.

GoAnywhere Director Receives the "Ready for Power Systems" Validation

GoAnywhere Director, the proven Managed File Transfer solution from Linoma Software, adds another certification to its list this week with the receipt of the "Ready for Power Systems" validation from IBM. GoAnywhere Director was validated through testing by IBM to meet the criteria for applications that run on its Power Systems. The Ready for Power Systems validation demonstrates GoAnywhere Director runs on the i7, AIX, and Linux operating systems for IBM i and p servers.

Before receiving Ready for Power Systems validation, applications are tested to meet IBM's standards - integration with IBM system management software, system and processor energy use, role-based access and application security, application availability for HA, and its ability to run in virtualized environments.

Prior to this testing, GoAnywhere Director also earned the following designations from IBM:

  • Ready for IBM Systems with Linux (i, p, and z)
  • IBM DB2 Universal Database - Verified by IBM
  • IBM i Hardware - Verified by IBM

GoAnywhere Director is an innovative solution for automating data retrieval, translation, encryption, compression and distribution for the enterprise. With GoAnywhere's intuitive interface and comprehensive functionality including XML, you can easily streamline and secure the transfer of data with your customers, trading partners and enterprise servers.

GoAnywhere Director and GoAnywhere Services (a secure file server), are platform independent. They provide the same role-based audit logging, automation, secure managed file transfer, and XML translation on Linux (Red Hat, SUSE), Windows®, Mac OS X, and UNIX (Solaris, HP-UX).

Linoma Software is an IBM Advanced Business Partner.

COMMON 2010 - 50th Anniversary

Linoma Software was happy to be part of COMMON's 50th Anniversary Conference. Linoma has been attending COMMON for 14 years and was happy to see many familiar faces. The weather in Orlando was beautiful and the conference was well-attended. For those of you unfamiliar with COMMON, it is the world's largest community of IBM midrange users providing information, education, and networking among users, IBM, and related third-party solution providers. Linoma continues to develop its well-known IBM i products as well as broaden its scope by enhancing products such as GoAnywhere and Crypto Complete.

During the show, Linoma provided demos as well as conducted a survey. According to our results, 44.1% of companies are storing personal identifiable info (e.g. SSNOs, birth dates) "in the clear," 25% are sending sensitive data unencrypted over the internet, and 48.8% of the companies interviewed are sending unencrypted backups off site. If your company is among the percentage who is not securing sensitive data be sure to contact us at info@linoma.com and we can evaluate which product would most suit your industry needs.

In case you missed it, Debby Gaffney of Fidelity International, was the winner of our prize give-away... an iPAD! Linoma will be attending COMMON, October 4-6, 2010 in San Antonio Texas. We hope to see you there!

Visit Linoma's facebook page to see photos of the conference.

SQL Field Procedures in IBM i 7.1

Field Encryption on the IBM i just got easier. SQL Field Procedures are a new DB2 feature in version 7.1 that allows a user-specified "exit" program to be called whenever data is read from, inserted into, or updated in a field (column). This is somewhat similar to database column triggers; however there are two distinct advantages:

  1. Field Procedures allow data to be modified on a Read operation, which allows the exit program to automatically decrypt the field value before it is returned to the customer's application.
  2. Field Procedures provide a separate internal space to store the encrypted version of the field value. This allows organizations to encrypt numeric fields such as packed decimal, signed decimal and integer data types without having to store the encrypted values in a separate file.

While IBM provided the hooks into the database with Field Procedures, they rely on 3rd party vendors like us to provide the encryption functions and key management. Linoma worked closely with IBM to test the new Field Procedures and provide feedback to their development team during the early release beta program for 7.1. This also allowed Linoma sufficient time to fully integrate Field Procedures into Crypto Complete for readiness when i 7.1 ships.

We're excited about Field Procedures since it will allow customers to implement column-level encryption on the IBM i without modifying their applications. This is especially important if a customer is running a canned application and/or does not want to modify their source code.