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As we all well know, InterSystems IRIS has an extensive range of tools for improving the scalability of application systems. In particular, much has been done to facilitate the parallel processing of data, including the use of parallelism in SQL query processing and the most attention-grabbing feature of IRIS: sharding. However, many mature developments that started back in Caché and have been carried over into IRIS actively use the multi-model features of this DBMS, which are understood as allowing the coexistence of different data models within a single database. For example, the HIS qMS database contains both semantic relational (electronic medical records) as well as traditional relational (interaction with PACS) and hierarchical data models (laboratory data and integration with other systems). Most of the listed models are implemented using SP.ARM's qWORD tool (a mini-DBMS that is based on direct access to globals). Therefore, unfortunately, it is not possible to use the new capabilities of parallel query processing for scaling, since these queries do not use IRIS SQL access.

Meanwhile, as the size of the database grows, most of the problems inherent to large relational databases become right for non-relational ones. So, this is a major reason why we are interested in parallel data processing as one of the tools that can be used for scaling.

In this article, I would like to discuss those aspects of parallel data processing that I have been dealing with over the years when solving tasks that are rarely mentioned in discussions of Big Data. I am going to be focusing on the technological transformation of databases, or, rather, technologies for transforming databases.

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Developing a Full-Stack JavaScript web app with Caché requires you to bring together the right building blocks. Previously, I outlined the basic steps to install and connect Node.js to Caché and make it's powerful multi-model database capabilites available for use with Node.js. You can use Caché as a NoSQL-, document- (with unique key-level access!), SQL- and object-database with Node.js. When developing JavaScript applications, you'll see how powerful this combination is and makes Caché a perfect fit for Node.js.

In the first part of this article series I will show how to get started with the React framework, one of the most popular frameworks currently taking over front-end development. In the next parts you'll learn how to connect a basic web app to a Caché back-end.

You'll see, it's very easy to get started with this technology - you can even compare the amount of basic knowledge you need to COS because you only need to know a few basic concepts to start!

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In my previous article, we reviewed possible use-cases for macros, so let’s now proceed to a more comprehensive example of macros usability. In this article we will design and build a logging system.

Logging system

Logging system is a useful tool for monitoring the work of an application that saves a lot of time during debugging and monitoring. Our system would consist of two parts:

  • Storage class (for log records)
  • Set of macros that automatically add a new record to the log

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Robert Cemper · Nov 21, 2020 3m read
ObjectScript over ODBC
This is a coding example working on IRIS 2020.1 and on Caché 2018.1.3 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions      
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !   
Every now and then you may encounter a situation where for various reasons
ODBC is the only option to access a remote system. Which is sufficient as long as you need to examine or change tables.
But you can't directly execute some commands or change some Global.

Special thanks @Anna Golitsyna for inspiring me to publish this.

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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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$LIST string format and %DynamicArray and %DynamicObject classes

IRIS, and previously Cache, contain several different ways to create a sequence containing a mixture of data values.  A data sequence that has been available for many years is the $LIST string.  Another more recent data sequence is the %DynamicArray class, which along with the %DynamicObject class, is part of the IRIS support for JSON string representation.  These two sequences involve very different tradeoffs.

$LIST String Format

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Presenter: Anton Umnikov
Task: Identify your slowest SQL queries and tune them for better performance
Approach: Use InterSystems’ query profiling and analysis tools. Discuss how system configuration can affect performance

This session will show you how you identify the weakest link in your application SQL and introduce you to the fine art of tuning those queries. To do this we will take a look at InterSystems query profiling and analysis tools, as well as how system configuration can impact SQL performance.

Problem: Obscurity on how our SQL engine works


Content related to this session, including slides, video and additional learning content can be found here.

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In this series of articles, I'd like to present and discuss several possible approaches toward software development with InterSystems technologies and GitLab. I will cover such topics as:

  • Git 101
  • Git flow (development process)
  • GitLab installation
  • GitLab Workflow
  • Continuous Delivery
  • GitLab installation and configuration
  • GitLab CI/CD
  • Why containers?
  • Containers infrastructure
  • CD using containers

In the first article, we covered Git basics, why a high-level understanding of Git concepts is important for modern software development, and how Git can be used to develop software.

In the second article, we covered GitLab Workflow - a complete software life cycle process and Continuous Delivery.

In the third article, we covered GitLab installation and configuration and connecting your environments to GitLab

In the fourth article, we wrote a CD configuration.

In the fifth article, we talked about containers and how (and why) they can be used.

In the sixth article let's discuss main components you'll need to run a continuous delivery pipeline with containers and how they all work together.

In this article, we'll build Continuous Delivery configuration discussed in the previous articles.

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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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Michael Smart · Oct 7, 2016 4m read
Forwarding Requests in a REST Service

One useful feature of our REST framework is the ability for a dispatch class to identify request prefixes and forward them to another dispatch class. This approach of modularizing your URL map will improve code readability, enable you to easily maintain separate versions of an interface, and provide a means to protect API calls that only certain users will be allowed to access.

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Henrique Gonçal... · Oct 6, 2020 2m read
An overview of npm-iris

What is npm-iris? 

N.P.M stands for "No Project Mess."

N.P.M. is a Project & Task Management app that uses InterSystems IRIS and Bootstrap 4.

No Project Mess is created to help developers and small business companies to reduce complexity in their daily problems, with a simple and intuitive projects and tasks management software. 

It offers different views for your tasks, from a spreadsheet, kanban, calendar, or even Gantt!

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So, one day you're working away at WidgetsDirect, the leading supplier of widget and widget accessories, when your boss asks you to develop the new customer facing portal to allow the client base to access the next generation of Widgets..... and he wants you to use Angular 1.x to read into the department's Caché server.   

There's only one problem:  You've never used Angular, and don't know how to make it talk to Caché.

This guide is going to walk through the process of setting up a full Angular stack which communicates with a Caché backend using JSON over REST.  

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Igor Titarenko · Sep 10, 2020 3m read
How To Create "Write-Only" Code

One of the leading benefits of ObjectScript is the speed and efficiency it allows for an experienced developer. Let's look at an example of how you can benefit from ObjectScript today.

Suppose you have a class that stores the names of your users. We'll call the class Data.User, and give it a string property Name. Next, we will need a method to create a new user or update an existing one. A naive, simplistic approach might look like this example:


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While the integrity of Caché and InterSystems IRIS databases is completely protected from the consequences of system failure, physical storage devices do fail in ways that corrupt the data they store.  For that reason, many sites choose to run regular database integrity checks, particularly in coordination with backups to validate that a given backup could be relied upon in a disaster.

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Robert Cemper · Apr 26, 2020 5m read
Materialized Views

A VIEW in SQL is basically a prepared SQL statement.
It has to be executed and assembled like any other SQL query.
MATERIALIZED VIEW means that the content is collected before hands and can be retrieved rather fast.
I saw the concept first with my favorite competitor named O* and they made a lot of noise about it.

  { favorite: because I could win every benchmark against them devil }

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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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Robert Cemper · Aug 3, 2020 3m read
Global Scanning & Slicing
This is a coding example working on IRIS 2020.1 and on Caché 2018.1.3 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions      
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !   

In most cases, a global used by default storage has just 1 subscript level that represents the IDKEY.
For an index-globals we may see 2 or more subscript levels.
Arrays, or parent-child relationships or persistent classes extending a base data class
are examples where we see more levels. Though all these globals are quite uniform.

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Robert Cemper · Jul 21, 2020 2m read
Un-Typical persistence
This is a coding example working on Caché 2018.1.3 and IRIS 2020.2 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions 
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !

During my search for a snapshot of a persistent object,
I met a feature that I would like tho share as it could be useful in some special situations.
My trigger was to have a before- and an after-image during unit testing.

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Robert Cemper · Jul 29, 2020 5m read
SQL for ^ERROR Global
This is a coding example working on Caché 2018.1.3 and IRIS 2020.2 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions 
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !

Standard error logs in IRIS / Caché / Ensemble are written global ^ERRORS.
As this piece dates back some decades back to previous millennium its structure
is far from the typical SQL storage structures.

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This is a coding example working on Caché 2018.1.3 and IRIS 2020.2 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions 
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !

This  an example of a customized SystemFunction extension (ZZISJSON) in Caché & IRIS
This time it is  to be included in %ZLANGF00.mac

A JSON string is mostly imported from a file or over REST.
You rely on a clean and compatible structure. This is the check.

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This is a coding example working on Caché 2018.1.3 and IRIS 2020.2 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions 
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !

It is also an example of a customized command extension (ZZJSN) in Caché / Ensemble & IRIS

This is the Caché version for fast JSON formatting. But iIt also works in IRIS .  
To allow parallel existence in IRIS with the previous example this is named ZZJSN

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Robert Cemper · Jul 20, 2020 2m read
SPOOL as SQL Table


This is a coding example working on Caché 2018.1.3 and IRIS 2020.2 
It will not be kept in sync with new versions 
It is also NOT serviced by InterSystems Support !


Device #2 named SPOOL dates back to the predecessors of Caché and IRIS
It was the first "%Stream" like option to buffer output before printing.
It is also the first and still today the most simple way of output redirection.

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