How To Make IBM i Web Apps Without Web Expertise


If your company is one of the thousands of organizations around the globe that rely on IBM i to power internal systems and business processes, you are probably well aware of its strengths and weaknesses. You are certainly not alone. Overall, the need to update IBM i legacy apps and create better Industry 4.0 tools is one of the most common issues companies and IT departments working with the platform face today. 

What are the challenges of IBM i web app development? 

Updating legacy solutions and creating new, fully functional web applications that support modern technologies can be quite challenging. This is especially true for smaller companies unable to keep up with growing web development costs or the increasing complexity and diversity of programming languages and technologies. Insufficient financial resources restrict smaller businesses in their quest to implement technological innovations and application modernization. As a result, their digital transformation efforts lag behind their competition. 

Luckily, organizations using the IBM i platform don’t have to allocate huge budgets to develop and implement powerful, cutting-edge web applications. Instead, by using a number of simple tools and solutions, you can easily create, deploy and maintain your IBM i web apps. Best of all, it can be done by people who don’t have any specialized knowledge or experience in web development.

How does Visual LANSA enable the easy, low-cost creation of IBM i web apps? 

Visual LANSA is a comprehensive low-code, rapid application development platform. It helps companies build enterprise-grade mobile, web, and desktop apps. Since its release in the late 1980s, LANSA has had more than 30 years of experience working with the IBM i platform. This extensive knowledge of IBM i ecosystems has evolved ever since. Now, the Visual LANSA platform offers many exclusive solutions for IBM i developers, including tools that enable the easy creation of IBM i web apps. 

Let’s explore a few examples of how LANSA products relieve your business of the burden of enterprise app development. 

Simplified development process 

Visual LANSA platform allows any developer to work on any part of an application. Using LANSA’s high-level language, a developer can apply the same skills to write client-side code, server-side code, and everything in between. Essentially, LANSA shields developers from having to become experts in many different languages and technologies. This is a key advantage of the LANSA platform because your developers can focus on the app creation process.  They can deliver software without delay or worrying about complex tech. 

Full-stack developers are not required 

Another considerable benefit of a unified low-code development approach is that it saves organizations the expense of hiring expensive, specialized software developers to create new apps. Using LANSA, developers create applications in the platform’s IDE. They use the same development approach with every Visual LANSA application. This means every developer can create an entire web application from start to finish. is no longer necessary to have different front-end and back-end developers on your team.

Reduced maintenance costs 

80% of an application’s total cost of ownership is ongoing maintenance. To mitigate this LANSA promotes a different approach to the maintenance of the new IBM i web apps. The solution is LANSA’s Business Rules Engine and Data Services Layer. This allows developers to define system-wide business rules and also data constraints across all LANSA-developed apps. The result is your team can maximize code reuse as well as reduce maintenance expenses. 

How to build feature-rich app portals for IBM i web apps?

Creating portals for your IBM i applications is another common challenge for many organizations. Modern portals typically include a feature that takes a lot of time and effort to develop. That is where Portalize comes into it. 

Portalize is a fully functional, fully customizable portal framework loaded with the most essential portal features. By providing pre-made portal components, Portalize simplifies the creation of app portals, saving your developers manual coding time. 

Portalize is a tool that can power an app portal of any size by offering scalability, security, and speed. 

This solution also includes a number of powerful app portal features. Here are some of them: 

  • Security features: IP monitoring, banning session logging. Find out more on these security features in this article about IBM logging.
  • Secure sessions: Portalize checks all requests to ensure they are not coming in from outside your system. 
  • Advanced navigation features: makes it easy for your users to navigate safely.
  • Numerous user features: login, create an account, forgot password, security validation questions, update a user profile, and set preferences.
  • Rich admin features: managing user accounts, security settings, email notifications, and Google analytics. 

How to avoid a headache of cross-platform deployment of your IBM i apps? 

Another potential headache related to the development of new IBM i web apps is the deployment and migration of these solutions across various platforms. Changing enterprise server platforms and databases often creates problems for the IT team trying to deploy the app on multiple platforms. 

LANSA’s proven approach to the development of enterprise apps is to provide companies with flexible cross-platforms capabilities. LANSA supports the deployment of IBM i web apps to other server platforms. These include (Windows and Linux), as well as cloud platforms (Azure, AWS) or on-premise servers. 

LANSA’s platform also supports all popular databases. These include Microsoft SQL Server, IBM Db2, Oracle, and MySQL, in addition to other mobile and desktop platforms. 

Finally, LANSA makes it easy to swap databases or server platforms without making significant changes to your applications.

Willing to test-drive LANSA’s IBM i web app creation capabilities? 

Visual LANSA incorporates decades of IBM i development experience. It is a web app creation solution that acknowledges all key IBM i features and simplifies the development process. 

LANSA’s tools also help companies of all sizes implement digital transformation projects, modernize legacy tools and, finally, incorporate cutting-edge technologies for unprecedented efficiency. 

Want to know more about LANSA’s tools and how your organization can benefit from implementing them? Read about other powerful solutions available to the users of Visual LANSA low-code development platform here.

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