Need Advice on Sybase + Web Application 
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 Need Advice on Sybase + Web Application

There are a number of ways to do this with server-side
scripting; so long as your server-side application hooks
into a standard webserver and generates HTML, all that
you need on the client side is a standard web browser.

Basically, assuming you are NOT using client-side stuff
like Java applets, Javascript, or Active-X, your choices
boil down to the following options:

  1. Purchase one of the commercial web-database gateway
     packages, such as Allaire's "Cold Fusion," and the
     required ODBC drivers.  Usually these packages
     take templates that look like HTML with some SQL
     embedded, do the required database queries, and
     emit the result as pure HTML for the webserver to
     send to the browser.  We are just beginning to play
     with Cold Fusion and so far we like it pretty well,
     but it's early days yet -- in the past we've done
     all our web-database work in SybPerl as described

  2. Write scripts in your favorite programming language,
     using either the standard CGI interface or the API
     specific to your webserver to hook them to the DBMS.
     Your scripts convert the HTTP query into SQL, send that
     to SYBASE, then convert the results into HTML.  Many
     people, including me, like to use Perl for this purpose.
     There's a nice Perl interface to Sybase called "SybPerl"
     that basically wraps the Sybase Open Client libraries
     in Perl function calls, so our CGI scripts can call
     Sybase as though it were part of Perl.  This approach
     does require a fair amount of hand-hacking.  Also, it
     means the programmer must be familiar with HTTP, HTML,
     the CGI protocol, SQL, and the Sybase Open Client libraries,
     as well as Perl.

     There are some public-domain packages written in SybPerl,
     such as WDB, that can simplify this task in some cases.

3.   For those who prefer working with Sybase stored procedures,
     another option is to have an experienced web developer write
     a small "glue" routine that parses the CGI environment data
     and passes that information along to a Sybase SP as parameters.

     Then your SP needs to do the query processing and generate
     its output in HTML format.

     IMHO, this is rather a kludge, because Perl is a much nicer
     programming language than Transact-SQL, but if your developers
     are so accustomed to Transact-SQL that they are reluctant to
     learn Perl, this CAN be a viable approach.

Hope this helps.  There are some links to more information about
web-database development in my hotlist at

    http://www.***.com/ ~healy/cgilinks.html

And there's a long annotated list of CGI environment variables
at the URL:

    http://www.***.com/ ~healy/envlist.txt



As of 20 Oct 1997, only 802 days until Y2K....
Resistance _is_ futile! I have been absorbed by the BORG!  After
years of Unix and MacOS, I just got myself a home Windoze Box :-(

Mon, 10 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT
 [ 3 post ] 

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