Monday, September 28, 2015

Altering tables in the SQLDB service on Bluemix

My blog has been quiet for some weeks thanks to some offline vacation and due to some business trips. Last week I first spoke about DB2 at a conference, then coached developers at a Bluemix hackathon. At that Bluemix event I was asked whether it would be possible to change some column definitions for an existing table. It was easy to say "absolutely", but it turned out to be harder than thought because at first I couldn't how to do it. So let's document it... :)

Once you have provisioned a SQLDB database service on Bluemix and launch the administration console, you are greeted by the "Getting Started" screen prominently featuring the following three choiced:
IBM SQL Database: Getting Started

The "Run Queries" button is intended to perform SQL SELECTs, nothing else.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Keeping track of "my" DB2

Some years back when talking about DB2, there was only the "I am on the host" or "We are mostly OLTP" distinction. My standard phrase has been "I am a distributed guy". Well, today, when only talking about DB2 for Linux, UNIX, and Windows ("DB2 LUW"), some more description is needed to clearly state what, where, and how the product is used. Here is a small overview of my world of DB2 LUW.

If you have not done so, I would recommend taking a look at the IBM Data Server Manager as fairly new tool to monitor, administrate, and tune DB2. The experience in using the web-based GUI can directly be applied to the administration interfaces of the related DB2 services in the cloud, sqldb and dashDB.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wired or weird Tweets? Doesn't matter to Bluemix, DB2, and Node-RED...

Robot with
a personality?
Someone to talk to, someone to take the meeting minutes. Well, I can offer that - at least partially. I took the Node-RED service on Bluemix for a test drive and
created a Twitter service. It automatically can respond to tweets and can also store the incoming messages in a DB2 table. In my example it is just a, more or less, silly service right now, but it could be expanded to react to and log Twitter-based customer feedback, provide some basic interim reaction or acknowledgement. Let me show you how easy it is to get started...

To build the Twitter service you need the "Node-RED Starter" boilerplate from the Bluemix catalog as well as the "SQL Database" service. Create the Node-RED boilerplate first, then add the database service and directly bind it to the new application. Once everything has been provisioned, it is time for wiring up the Twitter service in the flow editor. The following picture gives an overview of the two flows when completed. I made the flows available in the Node-RED library.


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