The EurOS/2 NetRexx page

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by Martin Brampton

Not strictly OS/2 since NetRexx is portable across all Java supported platforms. Nonetheless, some information is included here because NetRexx is a natural direction for committed OS/2 users who may well have acquired a liking for Rexx.

The NetRexx Home Page

Mike Cowlishaw, IBM Fellow, is the inspiration behind NetRexx. The home page for NetRexx is hosted at IBM's Hursley Labs, where Mike works. The latest version of NetRexx, version 0.84, was released on 29th October 1996, with the following notes from Mike Cowlishaw:

  • Local variables now have a defined initial value, consistent with properties (variables of primitive type are initialized to 0, all others to null).
  • The Rexx class now has a new sequence(final) method for generating a sequence of characters. This serves the same purpose as the Rexx and Object Rexx xrange function.
  • The compare, delstr, delword, d2x, translate, and x2d methods of the Rexx class are now implemented.
  • The values of method arguments are now traced, for 'trace all' and 'trace methods'.
  • The numeric instruction is now allowed in binary classes.
  • Terms may now start with numeric symbols (for example, 12.max(i)).
  • Interface classes may now be extended, and methods in Interface classes may now have Signals lists.
  • The source and version special words now always return strings of class Rexx.
  • Many improvements and clarifications in the documentation.

RXFile and RXDbase

RXFile is a NetRexx class that implements the file-oriented functions of the original Rexx language, plus many other features. Version 1.08 is presently downloadable here. Now also available is RXDbase (rdb076.zip - includes RXFile), a NetRexx/Java class that implements a database API. Simple to use yet powerful and efficient, multiple field indexing is supported.

Included with RXDbase is DBFrontEnd (MaxBase), a graphical tool that allows you to manage your databases, both as a database administrator (creating/deleting DBs), and as a user (right now you can browse your db, add/modify/delete records, order your db on an index). Of course the db created with MaxBase are compatible with the RXDbase class, and vice versa, since MaxBase is only a front end to the RXDbase APIs.

MaxBase can be useful if you want to create a DB without 'hardwiring' it into your application. When you create a new DB with MaxBase, you actually create a .DEF and a .DAT files. Ship them with your application, and simply connect to them with a xxx.connect(rFileName) in your source.

MaxBase can be used as a stand-alone application, also, and so now you've found a truly portable phone book. :)

Authored by Max Marsiglietti. For more information, refer to Max's web site.

The NetRexx FAQ page by Dion Gillard

Dion Gillard of Multitask Consulting has created a frequently asked questions page for NetRexx. This also links to a page of "Freely Available Code" in NetRexx to provide examples.

(14th November 1996)