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OpenVMS version 7.2 new features & benefits

OpenVMS Version 7.2 is the new release of the OpenVMS operating system.

OpenVMS Version 7.2 provides new features that are designed to provide the highest level of interoperability between OpenVMS and Windows NT. It also offers a new computing environment that delivers even greater levels of performance, scalability, availability and extremely flexible operational capabilities. In addition, OpenVMS Version 7.2 includes performance and system management enhancements to OpenVMS Clusters. Internet Readiness is enhanced with the inclusion of Netscape FastTrack and the Java Development Kit, at no additional charge.

OpenVMS Version 7.2 is Year 2000 Ready and does not require the installation of any additional patch.

This document describes much of the functionality included in OpenVMS Version 7.2 and its associated networking products. It specifies whether the feature is Alpha specific, VAX specific, or common to both hardware platforms.

COMPAQ Galaxy Software Architecture on OpenVMS 
  • Allows multiple instances of OpenVMS to execute cooperatively in a single computer (AlphaServer 8400, 8200, 4100)
  • Leverages proven OpenVMS Cluster, symmetric multiprocessing, and performance capabilities to offer greater levels of performance, scalability and availability with extremely flexible operational capabilities. An OpenVMS Galaxy computing environment provides:
    • High commercial application performance. 
    • Existing applications run without changes. 
    • More flexible resource allocation. 
    • Higher software availability within a single system. 
    • Opportunity to upgrade/expand existing computers with a single system.
  • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
COM V1.0 for OpenVMS 
  • Native port of the Microsoft code which implements the COM standards.
  • Allows developers to create small, platform independent software objects that can be distributed across networks.
  • Existing OpenVMS applications can be encapsulated as a COM object and a Windows NT COM client can then interact with the OpenVMS application. 
  • COM server applications can be created on OpenVMS that can be accessed by Windows NT systems or other COM-enabled operating systems. 
  • COM V1.1 for OpenVMS will authenticate COM method calls with full NTLM security. 
  • COM client/server applications are supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
Extended File Specifications 
(formerly named HFS) 
  • The new ODS-5 file structure extends OpenVMS Alpha file names to be consistent with those of Windows NT and Windows 95. 
  • Extends deep directory support by allowing easier access through RMS.
  • ODS-5 adds the ability to store longer file names on OpenVMS Alpha, which can be more easily mapped between Windows and OpenVMS. ODS-5 expands the available character set to be consistent with Windows 95 and Windows NT. 
  • Deep directories are of benefit to application developers who are porting applications from other environments that have support for deep directories. Users can also benefit from the ability to have deeper hierarchical file storage. 
  • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
Intra-Cluster Communication System Services (ICC) 
  • Provides a high performance communications path within a system and within a cluster.
    • Allows application programmers to create connections between different processes on the same or different systems within a single OpenVMS Cluster system, resulting in improved application performance. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX.
    Clusterwide Logicals
    • Extends the convenience and ease-of-use features of shareable logical names. No applications changes are needed to use clusterwide logicals. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX.
    Fibre Channel Storage Interconnect 
    • Next generation shared storage interconnect. 
    • Support in 4/99.
    • Fibre Channel permits configurations that span greater distances, connect to a variety of different devices, and allow larger numbers of device connections. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Storage Multibus Failover 
    • Provides redundant paths to storage to remove any single point of failure.
    • Improves data availability by allowing failover among multiple SCSI and Fibre Channel paths using HSZ70, HSZ80 and HSG80 controllers. 
    • Direct path support only. Served path and Shadowing support will be added at a later date. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Gigabit Ethernet 
    • New 1000 MB/sec industry-standard Network Interface Adapter 
    • Support in 4/99
    • Provides the ultimate in high performance for network applications, while using existing Ethernet technology. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Lock Manager 
    • Performance Enhancements
    • Improves performance of applications that issue a large number of lock manager requests and improves application scaling on multiprocessor systems. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Smaller Disk Cluster Factors
    • Smaller cluster factors on bigger disk volumes and RAID arrays is available to make better use of available disk storage. 
    • RAID arrays and larger disk volumes, particularly systems with large numbers of small files; can now use smaller disk cluster factors, making better use of available disk storage. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX.
    Per-Thread Security Profiles
    • Simplifies multi-profile application development and improves overall performance. 
    • Permits each thread of execution within a multithreaded process to have an individual security profile. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    OpenVMS BACKUP  
    • Performance improvements
    • The OpenVMS BACKUP utility has been enhanced to provide faster performance for disk to tape backup of smaller to medium size files.
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    OpenVMS Management Station V3.1 
    • Adds storage configuration management support.
    • Storage configuration management makes it easier to manage disk storage devices across multiple OpenVMS systems and clusters. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and Open VMS VAX. Client support on Windows NT and Windows 95.
    Faster Image Activations 
    • Using Shared Address Data for installing images improves image activation time.
    • Reduces processing and time required to activate commonly used application images. 
    • Reduces aggregate memory requirements because more of the system memory and image related data structures required to run multiple copies of commonly used programs is now shared among multiple users.
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Windows Debug Extensions 
    • The OpenVMS Debugger adds a new Windows NT and Windows 95 Graphical User Interface (GUI).
    • Allows seamless debugging of OpenVMS applications from Windows 95 or Windows NT. 
    • Provides a "collaborative debugging" capability where multiple users can simultaneously view/debug the same application at the same time, each from their own PC. 
    • Provides the ability to debug more than one program at a time, potentially on different host systems. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX.
    Alpha Firmware Revision Checking 
    • Provides enhanced firmware version checking for OpenVMS Alpha systems during booting.
    • Makes firmware management easier by providing explicit information on how and when to upgrade Alpha firmware.
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    RMS Global Buffer Hashing 
    • Faster access provided to global buffers.
    • Significantly improves performance of RMS global buffer counts in a shared file environment. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Java Development Kit V1.1.6 
    • Incorporates a standards-compliant Java Development Kit (JDK), Java interpreter, and a just-in-time (JIT) compiler.
    • Java applications can now be run on OpenVMS Alpha. 
    • The JDK provides the ability to write Java conforming applets and applications. 
    • The JIT compiler provides faster execution of Java applications.
    Netscape FastTrack Server  
    • Netscape’s latest, general-purpose, high performance web server is now included at no additional charge in the OpenVMS kit.
    • Adds Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) support for centralized user and group management and one button publishing, which allows users to publish documents to the server with the touch of one button. 
    • No additional license is required. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    Dual formatted OpenVMS Online Documentation CD-ROM 
    • OpenVMS documentation is now readable on OpenVMS, Windows NT, Windows 95 and UNIX systems.
    • Provides easier and more flexible documentation access by allowing users to view the OpenVMS documentation from either OpenVMS or any ISO 9660 capable system with a Web Browser. 
    • The OpenVMS documentation CD-ROM can be served from OpenVMS to other systems via the web using the Fastrack web server, or any of the other available web servers.
    Networking Products:  
    DIGITAL TCP/IP Services V5.0 for OpenVMS 
    • New TCP/IP Kernel: The widely used and proven IPv4 kernel from DIGITAL UNIX Version 4.0D has been integrated into TCP/IP Services for OpenVMS. The kernel is based on Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) Version 4.3 and 4.4.
    • The new TCP/IP kernel provides: 
    • Proven reliability and functionality.
    • Rapid introduction of new IP features. 
    • Performance enhancements. 
    • Improved memory management.
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • New UNIX style command interface: Native use of UNIX style commands such as ‘netstat’ ‘ifconfig’ ‘sysconfig’ & ‘route’ as an alternative to the traditional TCP/IP Services management interface.
    • Allows the use of both UNIX and VMS style commands.
    • Provides ease of use for system managers experienced in managing a UNIX network subsystem. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • CIDR Support
    • Allows OpenVMS to operate efficiently in networks which require CIDR (Classless Inter-domain Routing) support.
    • Allows smaller routing tables 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • BIND 8.1: New BIND implementation based on the Internet Software Consortium's (ISC) BIND 8.1.
    • Provides support for new BIND functionality and improved BIND server performance 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • Load Broker: New method for Cluster load balancing.
    • Calculated load balancing mechanism for distributing the load among cluster members 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • NTP Enhancement: New implementation of Network Time Protocol (NTP) based on xNTP Version 3.
    • Provides compatibility with V1 & V2 servers 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • New SNMP Implementation: Support for Simple Network Management Protocol, SNMPv2.
    • Reduces SNMP traffic overhead and provides improved performance. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol)
    • Allows OpenVMS to act as a highly reliable DHCP Server. 
    • Dynamically allocates IP addresses to client systems. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • Gated
    • Provides support for RIPII, OSPF and other features required in larger IP networks. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    • Extended File System Support by FTP
    • Adds full support for OpenVMS V7.2 Extended File Specifications (ODS-5) when files are accessed and copied using FTP.
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha.
    DECnet-Plus for OpenVMS, V7.2
    • DECnet-Plus is the primary version of DECnet on OpenVMS V7.2, providing full support for DECnet Phase IV applications and protocols, and DECnet over TCP/IP. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    DECnet Phase IV for OpenVMS, V7.2
    • DECnet Phase IV continues to be provided on OpenVMS and is supported through a Prior Version Support contract 
    • DECnet Phase IV has been reintegrated into the OpenVMS V7.2 main installation script for upgrades and installations. 
    • Supported on OpenVMS Alpha and OpenVMS VAX
    Advanced Server V7.2 for OpenVMS (Alpha only) 
    • Provides networking functions that are compatible with the Windows NT[TM] Server - with additional features. Advanced Server is based on Windows NT Server source code from Microsoft[R] and AT&T[R]. 
    • Advanced Server V7.2 for OpenVMS is based on PATHWORKS V6 for OpenVMS (Advanced Server) with new capabilities to support the Windows NT integration features introduced with OpenVMS V7.2 on Alpha. 
    • These capabilities provide tighter integration with the OpenVMS V7.2 Operating System and include support for: 
      • ODS-5 based Enhanced File Specifications – providing long names and deep directories. (The ODS-2 file system will continue to be supported.) 
      • OpenVMS Registry (based on the Windows NT registry) 
        • Use of registry to store file server parameters
        • NT connect/management support
      • Support for underlying features needed by COM for OpenVMS
        • External Authentication 
        • NT Event Logging