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9. Miscellaneous Topics

Further hints to the use of Ingres.

9.1. Automatic Startup and Shutdown

If you want Ingres to start automatically whenever Linux boots and stop when you shutdown or reboot the system, do the following:

Log in as root.

Check if your Linux variant has System V or BSD style init (init's man page will tell that).

If your system conforms to System V, the /etc/rc.d/init.d directory must exist. Create a file there (call it ingres or any other name you wish). The file should contain at least the following:

#!/bin/sh

case $1 in
  start)
    echo "Starting Ingres"
    su - ingres -c "ingstart"
    ;;

  stop)
    echo "Stopping Ingres"
    su - ingres -c "ingstop"
    ;;

  *)
    echo "Usage: ingres {start|stop}"
    exit 1
    ;;
esac

exit 0
        

Link the file as K01ingres to the directories that correspond to the run levels in which Ingres should stop:

# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc0.d/K01ingres
# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc1.d/K01ingres
# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc6.d/K01ingres
        

Also link it as S99ingres to the directories that correspond to the run levels in which Ingres should start:

# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc2.d/S99ingres
# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc3.d/S99ingres
# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc4.d/S99ingres
# ln -s /etc/rc.d/init.d/ingres /etc/rc.d/rc5.d/S99ingres
        

It is not important to call the links K01ingres and S99ingres, the point is that the name starting with K should contain a small number (so that Ingres stops early when changing to a lower runlevel) and the name starting with S should contain a large number (so that Ingres starts after everything else has started). Naturally, the file names must not clash with names of existing files.

If you have a BSD style init, put the following lines into /etc/rc.d/rc.local:

echo "Starting Ingres"
su - ingres -c "ingstart"
        

This will start Ingres. (As a matter of fact, you can use /etc/rc.d/rc.local even if you have a System V style init.)

To stop Ingres automatically, create a file in /etc/shutdown.d (call it, say, ingres) that contains the commands:

echo "Stopping Ingres"
su - ingres -c "ingstop"
        

No matter which type your system is, the files you create must be executable files, owned by root.

Naturally, if your system provides a utility for configuring programs to start and stop automatically (such as chkconfig in RedHat), use that if you wish.

9.2. ingmenu

The easiest way to access an Ingres database (at least, for beginners) is via the ingmenu program. From ingmenu, you can reach Ingres' forms-based utilities, by which you can create, update and query tables, create, edit and run reports and ABF or Vision applications. Its usage is:

$ ingmenu test
        

Test is the name of the database.

9.3. Circumventing Ingres Net

Without Ingres/Net, in theory it is not possible for Ingres applications to access databases on different machines. However, there exists a method, not supported by CA, by which sometimes you can come around this problem.

Let us suppose your application runs on host ingdev and the database (called test) you would like to update or query resides on host ingserv. Your first task is to find out the port number of the appropriate DBMS server running on ingserv. You can use ipm for this purpose: as ingres, start ipm on ingserv and choose option Server List. In the list of servers select one that is of type INGRES and handles the test database (you have to see either test or ALL in column Connecting to Databases). You find the port number of the DBMS server in the first column. Let us suppose it is 1259.

On machine ingdev, set the shell variable II_DBMS_SERVER in the following way:

$ export II_DBMS_SERVER='ingserv::1259'
        

Now run the command:

$ sql test
        

If it works, you have access to the test database on host ingserv.

This solution is applicable only if both machines are of the same architecture, the same operating system is running on both of them, the character set is the same in both Ingres installations, and so on: I do not know the full list of necessary conditions. Therefore, I cannot guarantee that this trick will work.

On the other hand, if you restart Ingres on host ingserv, the DBMS server process will get a different TCP/IP port, therefore you probably have to automate the fetching of the current port number to the application server. You can use the show command of the iinamu utility for this purpose. The following command line gives the port number of the DBMS server if there is only one server running:

$ echo show | iinamu | grep INGRES | tr -s ' ' '\t' | cut -f4
        

9.4. Forms-Based Development Tools

The Ingres installation includes a sample application, created by ABF, the traditional development tool of Ingres. You can load it with the abfdemo command. Unfortunately, the manuals of ABF and Vision cannot be found either on the Ingres CD or on the CA site.

There is a problem with the SDK under glibc 2.1: applications created by ABF or Vision cannot be either compiled or run directly from the database. This problem is solved in the full Ingres version. For the SDK, install the RedHat glibc 2.0 compatibility packages. If you do not have RedHat, download them from the following URLs:

Besides the compatibility packages, you need an Ingres patch. It was posted on the Ingres newsgroup in September, 1999. I have a copy of it, email me if you wish to install it.

The compatibility packages and the patch probably do not work for all Linux distributions. I only tested them on RedHat and Caldera Open Linux.

9.5. Ingperl and Perl DBI

Previous Perl versions, version 4 included, made Ingres access possible via libraries known as ingperl. You can find information on ingperl at http://www.contrib.andrew.cmu.edu/~lfm/ingperl.html.

In Perl 5 a new, unified database interface, called Perl DBI, appeared. Its site is http://www.symbolstone.org/technology/perl/DBI/index.html.

You can download the Ingres module of DBI from that site.

9.6. Ingres links

I leave you with a few pointers to important Ingres sites:

Have fun!