Uniface (programming language)

Uniface (programming language)

Uniface is a 4GL RDBMS Rapid Application Development (RAD) environment owned and maintained now by Compuware. Originally know as UNIFACE, the product was developed in Amsterdam by Inside Automation, which later changed its name to Uniface; in the 2000s, s/b 1990's (I used it in the 1990's) the product name was changed to Uniface. An early logo for the product included a red capital A which reflected the red capital A in the Inside Automation logo.

Uniface was originally developed in the C (programming language) on the VMS platform with an Oracle database. This is still apparent in the special keys and defaults used.

With Uniface, one can develop applications with a component-based and model-driven architecture. Uniface has been around since the late 1980s and has supported GUI development since the mid-1990s (Version 6).

It stores database model information and code into a repository (originally called a conceptual schema), with which one can create forms, reports, services, session services and entity services. Each component written gets its metadata from the repository (including keys, relations, table layout, field layout, etc.).

There are drivers to interface to most of the main relational databases (Oracle, Sybase, Informix, MS-SQL) and it is possible to develop a proprietary driver for any SQL based database.

The representation layer is designed to be platform independent, which means that one can develop on a main platform and execute on many other platforms (originally it was possible to develop on Apple and DEC platforms; now, only Windows is supported).

The Universal Request Broker of Uniface is capable of dealing with many current protocols, including CORBA, Tuxedo, and call-in and -out for many languages and protocols (ActiveX, .NET, C(++), Java, COBOL, RPG, Component Object Model (COM), etc.

The Uniface Web Request Dispatcher (WRD) allows requests to Uniface Server Pages and Web Services from a client (service requester) to the Uniface Application Server as a service provider.

The URouter/UServer principle of Uniface makes it scalable, balanceable and gives one the ability to run processes asynchronically. UServer is a server with 3 modes:
* File server.
* Application Server.
* Database server.

Runtime versions are available for Microsoft Windows, Unix, Linux, VMS, MVS, AS/400, etc.


Since version 8, Uniface has used Compuware's "Distributed License Management" tool to manage licensing. Despite its name, the Distributed License Management tool is in fact a centralised license management solution, which distributes licenses to clients as and when they need a license. This approach means that a common pool of licenses can be maintained, without the need to individually license every individual workstation.

External links

* [http://www.uniface.info The Official Uniface Community]
* [http://www.compuware.com Compuware]
* [http://www.compuware.com/products/uniface/ Compuware Uniface product page]
* [http://hosted.byjones.net/turf/ T.U.R.F. The Uniface Related Forum]
* [http://www.puuu.org Profe$ional Uniface Users Universe]
* [http://lists.umanitoba.ca/mailman/listinfo/uniface-l Uniface listserve]
* [news:comp.soft-sys.app-builder.uniface Usenet comp.soft-sys.app-builder.uniface]
* [http://www.uli-merkel.de/ Uli Merkel's page]

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