This post will show you an approach to size shared memory requirements for database applications running on InterSystems data platforms including global and routine buffers, gmheap, and locksize as well as some performance tips you should consider when configuring servers and when virtualizing Caché applications. As ever when I talk about Caché I mean all the data platform (Ensemble, HealthShare, iKnow and Caché).


A list of other posts in this series is here

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Overview

We started to use Azure Service Bus (ASB) as an enterprise messaging solution 3 years ago. It is being used to publish and consume data between many applications in the organization. Since the data flow is complex, and one application’s data is usually needed in multi applications the “publisher” ---> ”multiple subscribers” model was a great fit. The ASB usage in the organization is dozens of millions of messages per day, while IRIS platform is having around 2-3 million messages/day.

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In this article, we’ll build a highly available IRIS configuration using Kubernetes Deployments with distributed persistent storage instead of the “traditional” IRIS mirror pair. This deployment would be able to tolerate infrastructure-related failures, such as node, storage and Availability Zone failures. The described approach greatly reduces the complexity of the deployment at the expense of slightly extended RTO.

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When using Studio, ODBC or a terminal connection to Caché or Ensemble, you may have wondered how to secure the connection. One option is to add TLS (aka SSL) to your connection. The Caché client applications - TELNET, ODBC and Studio - all understand how to add TLS to the connection. They just need to be configured to do it.

Configuring these clients is easier in 2015.1 and later. I'm going to be discussing this new method. If you're already using the old, legacy method, it will continue to work, but I would recommend you consider switching to the new one.

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Article
Dmitry Maslennikov · Dec 3, 2021 1m read
VSCode-ObjectScript on GitHub

Not so while ago GitHub introduced, ability to very quickly run VSCode in the browser for any repository hosted there. Press the . key on any repository or pull request, or swap .com with .dev in the URL, to go directly to a VS Code environment in your browser.

github dev

This VSCode is a light version of the Desktop version but works entirely in Browser. And due to this, it has a limitation for extensions which was allowed to work this way. And let me introduce the new version 1.2.1 of VSCode-ObjectScript extension which now supports running in Browser mode.

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The topic of for/while loop performance in Caché ObjectScript came up in discussion recently, and I'd like to share some thoughts/best practices with the rest of the community. While this is a basic topic in itself, it's easy to overlook the performance implications of otherwise-reasonable approaches.

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Your application is deployed and everything is running fine. Great, hi-five! Then out of the blue the phone starts to ring off the hook – it’s users complaining that the application is sometimes ‘slow’. But what does that mean? Sometimes? What tools do you have and what statistics should you be looking at to find and resolve this slowness? Is your system infrastructure up to the task of the user load? What infrastructure design questions should you have asked before you went into production? How can you capacity plan for new hardware with confidence and without over-spec'ing? How can you stop the phone ringing? How could you have stopped it ringing in the first place?

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Article
Pravin Barton · Mar 28, 2019 2m read
ObjectScript error handling snippets

ObjectScript has at least three ways of handling errors (status codes, exceptions, SQLCODE, etc.). Most of the system code uses statuses but exceptions are easier to handle for a number of reasons. Working with legacy code you spend some time translating between the different techniques. I use these snippets a lot for reference. Hopefully they're useful to others as well.

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Hello!

This article is a small overview of a tool that helps to understand classes and their structure inside the InterSystems products: from IRIS to Caché, Ensemble, HealthShare.

In short, it visualizes a class or an entire package, shows the relations between classes and provides all the possible information to developers and team leads without making them go to Studio and examine the code there.

If you are learning InterSystems products, reviewing projects a lot or just interested in something new in InterSystems Technology solutions — you are more than welcome to read the overview of ObjectScript Class Explorer!

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As a developer, you have probably spent at least some time writing repetetive code. You may have even found yourself wishing you could generate the code programmatically. If this sounds familiar, this article is for you!

We'll start with an example. Note: the following examples use the %DynamicObject interface, which requires Caché 2016.2 or later. If you are unfamiliar with this class, check out the documentation here: Using JSON in Caché. It's really cool!

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Have some free text fields in your application that you wish you could search efficiently? Tried using some methods before but found out that they just cannot match the performance needs of your customers? Do I have one weird trick that will solve all your problems? Don’t you already know!? All I do is bring great solutions to your performance pitfalls!

As usual, if you want the TL;DR (too long; didn’t read) version, skip to the end. Just know you are hurting my feelings.

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Article
Michael Broesdorf · Jul 22, 2016 16m read
Using Regular Expressions in Caché

1.About this article

Just like Caché pattern matching, Regular Expressions can be used in Caché to identify patterns in text data – only with a much higher expressive power. This article provides a brief introduction into Regular Expressions and what you can do with it in Caché. The information provided herein is based on various sources, most notably the book “Mastering Regular Expressions” by Jeffrey Friedl and of course the Caché online documentation. The article is not intended to discuss all the possibilities and details of regular expressions. Please refer to the information sources listed in chapter 5 if you would like to learn more. If you prefer to read off-line you can also download the PDF version of this article.

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Article
Sean Connelly · Apr 12, 2017 5m read
Bug killing development tips

Does anyone NOT use a debugger? I can't remember the last time I did. It's not because I don't dislike them, I just don't need to use them. The main reason for this is because I have a certain development methodology that either produces less bugs, catches them at a unit test level, or makes tracking them down much easier.

Here are my tips...

1. Write your own COS cheat-sheet.

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Hi colleagues!

Every day Johns Hopkins University publishes new data on coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic status.

I built a simple InterSystems IRIS Analytics dashboard using InterSystems IRIS Community Edition in docker deployed on GCP Kubernetes which shows key measures of the disease outbreak.

This dashboard is an example of how information from CSV could be analyzed with IRIS Analytics and deployed to GCP Kubernetes in a form of InterSystems IRIS Community Edition.

Added the interactive map of the USA:

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In the last post we scheduled 24-hour collections of performance metrics using pButtons. In this post we are going to be looking at a few of the key metrics that are being collected and how they relate to the underlying system hardware. We will also start to explore the relationship between Caché (or any of the InterSystems Data Platforms) metrics and system metrics. And how you can use these metrics to understand the daily beat rate of your systems and diagnose performance problems.

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There are often questions surrounding the ideal Apache HTTPD Web Server configuration for HealthShare. The contents of this article will outline the initial recommended web server configuration for any HealthShare product.

As a starting point, Apache HTTPD version 2.4.x (64-bit) is recommended. Earlier versions such as 2.2.x are available, however version 2.2 is not recommended for performance and scalability of HealthShare.

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In this post I show strategies for backing up Caché using External Backup with examples of integrating with snapshot based solutions. The majority of solutions I see today are deployed on Linux on VMware so a lot of the post shows how solutions integrate VMware snapshot technology as examples.

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Article
Eduard Lebedyuk · Feb 5, 2016 11m read
Class Queries in InterSystems IRIS

Class Queries in InterSystems IRIS (and Cache, Ensemble, HealthShare) is a useful tool that separates SQL queries from Object Script code. Basically, it works like this: suppose that you want to use the same SQL query with different arguments in several different places.In this case you can avoid code duplication by declaring the query body as a class query and then calling this query by name. This approach is also convenient for custom queries, in which the task of obtaining the next row is defined by a developer. Sounds interesting? Then read on!

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Python has become the most used programming language in the world (source: https://www.tiobe.com/tiobe-index/) and SQL continues to lead the way as a database language. Wouldn't it be great for Python and SQL to work together to deliver new functionality that SQL alone cannot? After all, Python has more than 380,000 published libraries (source: https://pypi.org/) with very interesting capabilities to extend your SQL queries within Python.

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What is Web Scraping:

In simple terms, Web scraping, web harvesting, or web data extraction is an automated process of collecting large data(unstructured) from websites. The user can extract all the data on particular sites or the specific data as per the requirement. The data collected can be stored in a structured format for further analysis.

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Article
Dmitry Maslennikov · Aug 20, 2021 6m read
GitHub Codespaces with IRIS

Some time ago GitHub, has announced the new feature, GitHub Codespaces. It gives an ability to run VSCode in the browser, with almost the same power as it would run locally on your machine, but also with a power of clouds, so, you are able to choose the machine type with up to 32 CPU cores and 64 GB of RAM.

Looks impressive, is not it? But how it could help us, to work with projects driven by InterSystems IRIS? Let's have a look, how to configure it for us.

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