vee seven oh two

it’s announced! our second significant update this year to our Managed File Transfer product, WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition called V7.0.2.

cool image created using www.wordle.net

actually today (friday) i’m taking a day off to rejuvenate and i will be giving the computer a rest too. so i’ve taken advantage of this clever feature in blogger where you can schedule a new post for a future date. so if the above link to the announcement hasn’t quite gone live please try again later.

anyhoo – we’ve cram-packed the V7.0.2 update with lots of good stuff!

for example, we’ve introduced a new type of agent (called a Bridging Agent, although i confess i was also keen on Special Agent) that can “talk” protocols other than WebSphere MQ. in other words can send files over alternative transports to MQ. transports we’re supporting in this update are FTP and S-FTP. why on earth would anyone want to move files over anything but MQ? well – the objective here is to enable co-existance with existing environments such as home-grown solutions based on those protocols as well as support situations where the sender or receiver simply can’t run MQ. because the protocol is handled by a Bridging Agent it’s fully integrated into the graphical, command line and XML scripting interfaces. most importantly the Bridging Agents feeds all FTP and SFTP status into the single, centralized audit trail making it easy to track all the file movements regardless of transport. although FTP and SFTP aren’t as robust as MQ, we provide check-point re-start to improve the reliability across FTP & SFTP too.

if you read Gartner’s comments in their latest Magic Quadrant for Managed File Transfer (G00170848, 18 Sept 2009) you’ll have noticed that Frank makes mention that IBM needs to expand its product beyond the MQ protocol alone and alludes to IBM having something up its sleeve in this regard. well, this was it. FTP and SFTP support via these new Bridging Agents.

the protocol support provided by the Bridging Agents are client-side only and are designed to complement the extensive Server-side protocol support provided by IBM B2B gateway offerings like WebSphere Partner Gateway and DataPower XB60 B2B Appliance, in addition to partner onboarding and management.

speaking of IBM DataPower Appliances, in V7.0.2 we’re also supplying documented and tested configurations for integrating WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition with DataPower Appliances. This enables file transfers to be sent across WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition networks and on to trading partners via the DataPower XB60 B2B gateway across a range of protocols like AS2. this great article on developerWorks from my colleagues in Italy describes how to take advantage of DataPower as a file gateway in the DMZ and link it to WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition to handle the internal traffic.

V7.0.2 also bolsters the security support with finer grain access control to agent resources at the user and group levels. this extends the “sandboxing” feature we have to limit agent’s access to the local file directories. we’ve also found the time to extend the platform coverage to include iSeries, HP-UX 11.11 on PA-RISC and more. also, to help our clients move to production faster we’re providing a scriptable interface for creating the file transfer artefacts and enable the configurations to be stored. this can help automate the transition from pilot to production.

we’re excited about this V7.0.2 update and i’m keen to know what you think. please let me know. and i’ll bring you more news, as ever, from my desk in hursley.

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