NetManage Aims to Bring Legacy Apps to the Web

CUPERTINO, CALIF. (01/27/2000) - Software vendor NetManage Inc. is expanding its product line into Internet country.

The company last week rolled out software that will let SNA users convert 3270 and 5250 and other legacy applications into Web-based formats such as HTML, ready for business-to-business Web communications or to establish online storefronts. NetManage claims these products, called the OnWeb eBusiness Product Portfolio, should decrease the time it takes a company to get legacy applications.

Web-to-host connectivity tools from NetManage and others are designed to remove most of the drudgery from host access execution by obviating the need to connect each client to an SNA gateway. Users simply connect to the Web server via a browser and access applications over the Internet.

NetManage, like IBM Corp., Eicon Technology Corp., OpenConnect Systems and other competitors, is trying to come out with a comprehensive legacy-to-Web package that will wow customers and let them easily migrate legacy applications to the Web world, says analyst Darcy Fowkes of Aberdeen Group in Boston.

The NetManage portfolio consists of three software components that run on Windows NT and Unix servers now and will run on Windows 2000 in the future. The first is the flagship OnWeb eBusiness Integrator package, which will let customers take existing mainframe, AS/400, VAX and Unix host applications and convert them to HTML or XML for access by any user with a browser. Multiple back-end host applications can be integrated at once via this package.

A second package, OnWeb eBusiness Designer tool kit, has a simple drag-and-drop graphical user interface that lets users rewrite existing legacy SNA or Unix business logic for Web use.

The next component is the OnWeb ePublisher, which will let users take traditional legacy 3270 and 5250 green-screen applications and convert them to a Web format, while keeping many of the attributes of the original host. This "screen scraping" application is aimed at users with a single host and who are interested in providing quick-and-dirty Windows access to legacy applications.

The ePublisher runs on Windows NT and Windows 2000.

Also included in the portfolio is the OnWeb eBusiness Development Kit, which lets customers craft object-based applications with standard Java or Microsoft developer tools. With the Development Kit, IS managers can craft applications for groups of around 150 users, who log on to an intermediate server that can access data from up to four back-end hosts. The Development Kit runs on Windows NT and will run on Windows 2000, as well as Unix hosts.

The OnWeb eBusiness Product Portfolio will be available within the first half of this year. Pricing for the products has yet to be announced.


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