Caché Release Notes and Upgrade Checklist Archive
New and Enhanced Features for Caché 2010.1
[Back] [Next]
Go to:

The following major, new features have been added to Caché for the 2010.1 release:

Furthermore, this version of Caché has been improved and enhanced in the following areas:
In addition, many more localized improvements and corrections are also included. In particular, if you are upgrading an existing installation, please review the detailed list of changes in the Upgrade Checklist.
Major New Features
Class Compiler And Routine Dispatch Improvements
Version 2010.1 contains many improvements to the performance and reliability of our object implementation. Many of them are changes to the underlying implementation and therefore invisible to developers. Their effects are evident as much improved compilation times – some early testers report up to twice as fast - and faster run-time performance. The class compiler has been improved to support richer development options, better ease of use and faster compile times. The corresponding object runtime and dispatch mechanisms have also been enhanced for better performance and scalability. Version 2010.1 now supports runtime superclass resolution, system implementations for commonly generated property methods (Get, Set, isModified, setModified), and a shared class cache.
There are new compiler and class dispatch mechanisms that avoid errors associated with compiling a class while instances of the class are in use. The compiler also has improved logic for determining when changes to a superclass require recompilation of subclasses; this avoids unneeded recompilation. Details may be found in Class Compiler Notes in Using Cache Objects.
Java Dynamic Object Interface
This version of Caché introduces a new high-performance interface for Java programs that provides the following:
Rapid Application Development
Dynamic SQL
This release of Caché includes support for a new interface for dynamic SQL, which allows users to define and execute SQL statements at runtime. Dynamic SQL is now implemented through the %SQL.Statement and %SQL.StatementResult classes. %SQL.Statement includes support for the following methods:
Execution of a dynamic SQL statement creates a result object, which is an instance of the %SQL.StatementResult class. %SQL.StatementResult can hold simple data, a single result set, or multiple result sets, depending on the SQL statement that was executed. It includes functionality for iterating through a result set, handling errors, and so on; it also includes functionality for examining statement metadata, manipulating the form of data for display, and related operations.
For more information on dynamic SQL, see the chapter Using Dynamic SQL.
Performance And Scalability
ECP Scalability Improvements
In prior versions, if a request buffer from an ECP application server contained a synchronous request (such as a Set, Kill, $INCREMENT, and so on) that resulted in a disk I/O, subsequent requests in that buffer would wait till the disk I/O for the synchronous request completed. Now, the ECP server process daemon on the database server will continue to service subsequent read (or get) instructions that can be serviced from the buffer, in parallel while the disk I/O is completing, thereby speeding up responses to the application server.
Reliability, Availability, Maintainability, Monitoring
The DataCheck facility provides a mechanism to compare the state of data on two systems to determine whether the two are consistent. It accounts for the situation where the data on each system may be in transition, and includes logic to re-check discrepant ranges. A typical use of this functionality would be to verify that the source and destination of shadowing are consistent.
Compression During Shadowing
Caché version 2010.1 introduces compression of journal data from the primary to the shadow. The source (primary) compresses a source journal block before sending it to the receiver (shadow); the receiver decompresses it upon receipt, prior to saving it to the shadow copy of the source journal file.
ECP Responsiveness Metric
Fast responsiveness of a Data Server is key to good performance on the Application Server. To permit measurement of response times, a new property, ResponseTime, has been added to the SYS.Stats.ECPAppSvr class that allows you to measure the responsiveness of the Data Server(s) that this application server is currently connected to. If there are multiple connections, the value is the overall response time for all Data Server connections. To compute the average response time, use the number of connections contained in ResponseConn.
Separate Delegated Authentication and Delegated Authorization
With this release applications can now use different third party technologies for Kerberos and OS authentication using the Delegated Authentication mechanism. This allows customers to use LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol), for example, to define the Roles of a user, while using Kerberos to authenticate the user.
Removal Of $ZUTIL Documentation
In this release, InterSystems provides class components (methods, or properties) that have the same information and functionality as each of the documented $ZUTIL functions. This has been done to provide a more modern interface to system services available to a wider range of languages used in Caché applications.
In accord with this transition, the documentation for the $ZUTIL functions has been excised from the ObjectScript reference book. It is now part of a separate document stored in the legacy documentation archive. No further updates to it will be made.
The $ZUTIL functions will remain available for applications to use. However, all future functionality updates which would have been done by adding new $ZUTIL functions will use a class paradigm instead.
InterSystems encourages applications to convert to the new usage. To assist in the transition, a table giving the $ZUTIL function identifier and the new equivalent is given in the conversion checklist for this release. The information will also be reproduced temporarily in the ObjectScript reference work as well.
In a few instances, the $ZUTIL functionality is now provided by system variables ($NAMESPACE, and $DEVICE). Also, this information does not include those $ZUTIL functions affected by the removal of support for DDP and DCP.
Change In PDF Page Size
The page size for documentation PDFs has changed in the version. Previously, pages assumed a height of 9 inches and a width of 7 inches. Now they use a height of 11 inches and a width of 8.25 inches. The margins have also been been reduced slightly to 0.75 inches.
This new format permits larger tables and figures, and wider program listings. Waste paper as a result of cropping has been eliminated since the new format will fit on both A4 and U.S. letter-sized paper without need for cutting before binding.
Planned Changes
Database Extents Deprecated
The use of database extents was introduced in early releases to work around the fact that files sizes were severely restricted. Databases of that period often exceeded the limits on the size of an individual file. Database extents allowed a logical database to span multiple physical files.
The limits in the underlying technology are no longer relevant – operating systems, mature filesystems and volume managers currently provide support for extremely large files. Database extents have been rendered obsolete. In the interest of simplifying system management, database extents are no longer supported as of this release.
In a future version, Caché, Ensemble, HealthShare and TrakCare will no longer support database extents. A tool will be provided to assist any customers with extents to aggregate them into appropriate files.
DCP, DDP And LAT Deprecated
InterSystems introduced Enterprise Cache Protocol (ECP) in 2002. Since then, all of our major customers have adopted ECP to deploy scale-out architectures. Usage of DCP and DDP, earlier technologies used to network databases, has diminished considerably and is now almost exclusively used when data is shared between Caché and earlier M technologies.
We intend that, in the latter half of 2010, Caché and Ensemble releases will no longer support DCP and DDP. LAT support on Windows will be deprecated at the same time.