Despite a couple of premature announcements on the release of the Universal Driver 4.6 recently, I am now pleased to formally announce that the latest version of the popular Universal Driver is now available and, yes, I do have both full installation and upgrade files available.
The new version features a brand new installer and support for large key sizes and large records has also been greatly enhanced. There are an increasing number of occasions where more intelligence is being built into record keys and parts of the system sometimes handle the keys correctly and in other parts it treats them as a bug and this results in false errors being reported. This issue is addressed in this release.
However, this new version will not support unlimited length record keys. Record keys can now be a maximum of 512 characters long. Any keys that exceed this limit will now be ‘illegal’ and applications will be unable to either read or write them. The server event log will report Linear Hash Error 1016 for this condition. Since this will make the records unreadable, they will be treated as though there is a ‘group format error’ (GFE) in any table that contains them. For this reason, the Database Manager tools in OpenInsight 9.1 have been updated to report the errors (LH Verify) and the ‘Fix’ option has been enhanced to copy them to a new table called DUMP_FIX_SAVE.
Furthermore, there is a more critical fix to address the issue where the Fix GFE option on the current ‘Verify LH’ menu silently considers any records with keys greater than 50 characters long to be GFE’s. Anyone running the ‘Fix GFE’ option will lose any records that have keys longer than 50 characters. As a result of this issue, an RDK containing a FIX_LH routine is being included with the UD 4.6 release. This updated routine will remove the ’50-character-throwaway’ functionality and replaces it with the new ‘512-character-save’ functionality.
In addition to all of the above, the Universal Driver 4.6 now provides backwards compatibility with all previous versions of Linear Hash files, something that was lost from the Universal Driver 3.0 onwards. Plus, the client driver’s (not the service) internal file handle management has been enhanced for improved handling of open tables and the Universal Driver can now manage over 300 open and active tables from a single client – although the reasonable design of such an application would not be recommended.
The Universal Driver 4.6 is fully supported on the following servers: Windows 2000 SP1 and later, both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 2003 SP1 and above and 32-bit Windows 2008. Please note that Novell and Linux servers are not supported at the present time. As with the earlier Universal Drivers, Windows 95/98 workstations are not supported, leaving Windows NT, 2000, XP and Vista Business or Ultimate as deployment options. The Universal Driver 4.6 currently supports ARev 3.12 and OpenInsight version 4.1 or later – 16-bit OpenInsight is not supported.
If you are a client in the EMEA region and you have previously purchased a license for the Universal Driver 4.0 or 4.5, then you are entitled to a free of charge upgrade – drop me a email with your UD serial number and I’ll gladly forward the upgrade files to you by return of email. The files are pretty large though, so a boxed version is available – shipping charges will apply in such cases.
This is an especially good release that addresses several long standing issues that have only just come to Revelation’s attention as deployed systems become larger and larger. I would therefore urge anyone running an ARev or 32-bit OpenInsight system on a Windows server and using an older Revelation Network product, to seriously consider this a necessary upgrade.