Thursday, April 28, 2011

IBM Redbook: Informix Flexible Grid

Draft version of Informix Flexible Grid: Extending Data Availability made available at

Table of Contents
  • Chapter 1. Overview
  • Chapter 2. OpenAdmin Tool
  • Chapter 3. Configuring server for Flexible Grid and Enterprise Replication environments
  • Chapter 4. The Flexible Grid
  • Chapter 5. Administering Enterprise Replication
  • Chapter 6. Monitoring and troubleshooting Enterprise Replication and Flexible Grid
  • Chapter 7. MACH11 cluster
  • Chapter 8. High availability data replication
  • Chapter 9. RSS database server
  • Chapter 10. Shared Disk Secondary servers
  • Chapter 11. Connection management in an Informix environment
  • Chapter 12. Informix in cloud and virtualization environments
  • Chapter 13. Migration
  • Chapter 14. Using ifxclone   
I am currently reading this to help prepare for the free 11.7 Certification Exam I'm going to take in 3 weeks at the IIUG Conference.

Page 1: When did HDR become Heuristic Data Replication and not High-Availability Data Replication?

    Tuesday, April 26, 2011

    Chef Diego on the 2011 IIUG Informix Conference Menu

    Close your eyes and think of the food served at the last conference you attended.

    Did you relive nightmares of imitation gruel and grade D meat? You probably did. This is because for most conferences the food is an after thought, an added expense, something that just needs to be dealt with because people have to eat.

    Not true for the IIUG Informix conference. We have a chef and he has a super cool name, Chef Diego. He also has a vision for the food he will prepare for this year's conference. Did the dude that cooked your last conference meal have a vision or did he have a budget?

    During our three day cruise, I will take you to four different destinations: the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, the Mexican Riviera and Alaska before returning you to Kansas City. Welcome aboard and bon voyage!

    - Chef Diego

    The last thing you think about when deciding if you should attend a conference is the food. That is probably the right approach, which is why the CPC has put together a conference rich in technical content. The great food and open bar (no tickets ;) are just icing on the cake.

    If you are not registered for the conference, it isn't too late to register and you can still take advantage of $100 off for IIUG members. Book now before airline prices increase! You can attend this 3 day event for less than the cost of one IBM Informix training class!

    Monday, April 25, 2011

    Innovator-C: Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

    I've been talking a pretty big game about Innovator-C and how you can use it in production even though some Growth Edition and Ultimate Edition features are not available and the amount of memory and CPUs you can use are limited.

    2 weeks ago that talk stopped being just talk and became reality as we turned up our first Innovator-C HDR pair of production database engines.

    The server ain't big (1 Quad Core CPU, 2GB SHMTOTAL and RAID10 over 4 disks), but it cranks out 4 million transactions and 500,000 new session requests per day (and the box is bored and typically 99% idle).

    This database was a perfect fit for Innovator-C. The data set isn't so large that we need to worry about partitioning data and it is all OLTP so not having PDQ isn't show stopper. Recovery Time Objective would have been nice, but using the CKPTINTVL isn't a big deal. The only thing I'm really sad about not having is Direct I/O for cooked chunks, but whatever. I can live without it (just don't understand why this is disabled in Innovator-C).

    Wednesday, April 13, 2011

    2011 IIUG Informix Conference Schedule Now Available Online

    In about a month the 2011 IIUG Informix Conference and its 95 hours of Technical Sessions, 19 hours of Hands on Labs, 36 hours of Tutorials, 3 Keynotes, 3 days of Exhibit Hall, 3 Breakfasts, 6 Refreshment Breaks, 3 Lunches, 3 Evening Events and over 25 hours of Certification Exams will come together in a beautifully choreographed ballet of speakers, volunteers, attendees, hotel staff, laptops, projectors, food, drinks and friends.

    To help you navigate the largest gathering of Informix fanatics and plan how you will best take advantage of all the conference has to offer the Conference Planning Committee has posted the Conference Schedule and Sunday Tutorial Schedule online for your reading pleasure.

    UPDATE: Mobile device friendly link:

    Friday, April 8, 2011

    Upgrading an HDR Environment from 11.50.FC3 to 11.50.FC8W2

    I'm about to upgrade one of our HDR pairs from a relatively old version of 11.50 to the most recent drop to resolve a minor bug. Since an upgrade is something you may be interested in doing some day, I thought it would be a good idea to document my steps here.

    Normally an upgrade from xC3 to xC8 would be trivial and low risk since we're only upgrading the minor versions, but with the addition of Compression in xC4 any upgrade from xC3 or lower must be treated as a major upgrade which includes a reinitialization of HDR.

    I want to minimize downtime by doing as much of the work as I can outside of the maintenance window and I want to minimize my risk by testing the following migration and reversion steps on my test systems to ensure there are no gotchas and choreograph my upgrade in a way that always gives me a quick and safe way to abort mission and get production up and running if something goes wrong during the upgrade.