Helping You Decide

Many factors go into deciding your Internet implementation. In this section, we present some questions to think about as you proceed. In the chapters that follow, we use examples to demonstrate how these questions will affect your decision on how to deploy Internet- or Web-based applications.

How much do you want the user to do?

Simply visit your site? —> Write a Web interface to your application then write a small CGI program to handle the communications between the interface and the program on the server, or embed the Web runtime or Web thin client on your Web page.
Download and install a free runtime?     —> Include the standard thin client on your Web page.
Click a link? —> Create a hyperlink to the Web runtime or Web thin client on your Web page; or set up the runtime as a helper application or viewer in the browser.
Purchase a fully-licensed runtime? —> Set the runtime up as a helper application or viewer in the browser.

How much programming are you willing to undertake?

Perform no new programming? —> Use the Web runtime or possibly Web thin client. (If you're already using the thin client, no new programming is required.)
Re-engineer the application to distribute the processing among several machines?     —> Use AcuConnect.
Write a markup language front-end and a small CGI program in COBOL? —> Use our COBOL CGI solution.
Write an entirely new Internet program? —> Write it in ACUCOBOL-GT. You can feed COBOL data to browsers using our CGI syntax, and you can embed Internet browsing into your program using our WEB-BROWSER control.

Do you need to provide remote access to programs, data, or both?

Programs —> Use any of our thin client or AcuConnect solutions.
Data —> Use AcuServer, Acu4GL or AcuXDBC.
Programs and data      —> Use a combination of these technologies.

Do you want to provide Web access or more private access?

Web access —> Use our Web thin client, COBOL CGI solution, or Web runtime.
More private access      —> Use AcuServer, AcuConnect, or thin client.

How is your application designed?

Does your application perform lots of file I/O? —> Distribute the processing via AcuConnect or offload all the processing onto the server via the thin client or Web thin client.
Does the executing program require client computer access?      —> Use the Web runtime or a fully-licensed runtime.
Does the program need to execute if a network is unavailable? —> Use the Web runtime or a fully-licensed runtime.

Do you require a persistent connection to the server (i.e., Does the server need to remember the last action from the browser)?

Yes     —> Use the thin client, Web thin client, Web runtime with AcuConnect, or add pointers and cookies to your CGI program to store browser information. (CGI programs are inherently stateless.)

How frequently do you update your programs and data?

Frequently     —> Use a server-processing solution like the standard thin client, Web thin client, and/or AcuConnect, or a remote file server like AcuServer.

What are the operating environments of your user population?

Windows clients and servers? —> You may use any of our Internet solutions.
UNIX clients and servers? —> Use our COBOL CGI solution for Web access. Use our other technologies such as AcuServer, AcuConnect, and Acu4GL in Internet deployments.
Windows clients and UNIX servers      —> You may use any of our Internet solutions.