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Handling dumb terminals

 
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Hello
One of my clients wants to migrate his current systems to J2EE based systems. Server side is not a problem but all his client machines are dumb terminals. They use APT which comes with sybase database to provide a console based front end on these dumb terminals. They dont want to dump these dumb terminals. I have no clue how to handle this in Java. Anybody got any ideas?? Any articles?? Plz let me know
Cheers
Jayram
 
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Hi Joshi,
I didn't know anyone was still using dumb terminals I'm not real clear on the architecture on the client side, but generally speaking you'll probably need to set up some sort of messaging service on the clients to translate the output from the DT's to what your server is expecting. This may or may not involve a technique called screen scraping which extracts information from the DT's. You will probably have to write some native code to bridge between the legacy system and your Java code. While you're struggling through all this, try to come up with reasons why your client should donate their legacy equipment to the local landfill
Hope this helps
Michael Morris
SCJP2
 
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If you can incorporate the existing terminal interface software into your system, you may want to do that.
One widely used C package for interacting with dumb terminal is called "curses". A quick seach revealed Java-based project called jcurzez. If you are not familiar with dumb terminals and their variations and limitations, you may want to find a book on curses.
 
jayram
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I am not very sure why they are still using it. But i think they dont want to move away from it because they think dumb terminals dont have any software maintianance costs. Also their users (500) are very much used to that environment so they dont want to change the console based interface. Now I am really at loss on how to do this in java ...maybe i need to see their architecture first...
I am just hoping to meet someone who has been in this DT hell before...
 
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