Thin Client  Full Story

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The Thin Client eliminates the need for third party emulation programs. It is designed to provide your end users performance and efficiency, regardless of the network topology or performance. A dial up user can perform data entry at the same speed as a local user, data manipulation is done locally, transmission to the host is only done when required by the host applications thereby allowing extremely fast response time.

The Thin Client can run on any windows platform including Windows 95, 98, NT, Terminal Server, Windows 2000 and Windows XP. The Thin Client is designed so it can be installed from the host, requiring no client administration overhead, whenever the host is upgraded to a newer version, the Thin Client automatically upgrade itself when your end users connect to the host. It can support different versions of itself so a user can talk to different hosts having different versions.

The Thin Client eliminates the delays caused by character based emulation programs such as telnet. It also minimizes network traffic as no data is sent to the host until it is required by the application program. It requires no change to your application programs. The Thin Client delivers predictable performance regardless of the network's performance and utilization, users can work comfortably through out the day and peek times, increasing productivity and remove appreciable load on your network. 

Thin Client vs Telnet Based Emulators

The following diagrams highlight the difference between a standard telnet based client and the Thin Client. Note that the Thin Client can only be used for connections to Open/36 applications. Note that in this document Telnet refers to a character based protocol being used by emulators providing Unix access and environment such as vt220 and ibm3151.

The Telnet  Scenario

In a telnet based scenario, all end users key strokes are sent to the host, then echoed back from the host to the end users' pc. This scenario, is highly inefficient, causing delays between every keystrokes, and generating higher network traffic as several small packets are transmitted between the PC and the host. The user productivity and comfort is highly sensitive to the network performance and is likely to degrade on peek times where productivity is even more important.

Every character is transmitted to the host...



... and echoed back to the PC

.. and screen buffers are sent back to the PC 


The Thin Client Scenario

In the Thin Client scenario, key strokes are not sent to the host, entered data is only sent to the host when required by the application, all key strokes are handled locally on the end users PC, providing a light data entry environment at all times. In addition, this concept does have the significant overhead of key strokes being echoed back to the PC, the Thin Client has a block mode concept and provides optimal performance being a product specifically designed for Open/36. 

Only data buffers are transmitted, when needed...


Only screen buffers are sent back to the PC

The Road to Modernization

The Thin Client not only provide you measurable benefits in terms of users comfort, performance and low network utilization, it also allow you to give a modern look to your applications without requiring any program changes. Keeping in mind our goal of turning your past investment into an investment for the future, this extraordinary capability will allow you to modernize your applications' screens and dramatically increase their usability and look. In today's world of short lasting programming technologies, the only investment require is modification of your S&D specifications and enabling several new controls that will allow you to easily turn your character screens into stunning graphical screens as shown below.

The Thin Client being able to process both character and GUI screens, you do not have to convert everything from day one, you can progressively modernize your applications' screens and take it to the road of modernization at your own pace.

The Thin Client GUI conversion can also be applied on Menus. Menus can easily be converted in stunning Tree Controls, providing your users with all the menu options on a single screen.


The Thin Client GUI conversion only requires that your screen formats be changed, all programs functionality and  I/O buffers remain the same, no program logic change is required. Several new S&D specifications are available to enable GUI in your applications, all information on the new specifications can be found in the Open/36 Thin Client GUI Manual.


Screen Formats Caching

As highlighted earlier, there are significant benefits in using the Think Client. Even without conversion to GUI, you deliver your users with a predictable response time which can be compared as not being on a network at all as all key strokes are processed locally. Conversion to GUI gives your application increase usability, a new look and feel and takes your application to the modern world. 

There is another significant advantage in converting to GUI. When converting to GUI, it enables screen format caching which means that once a format was displayed on an end user's pc, the static portion of the screen will be cached and that as long as this format is not recompiled on the host, it will never be transmitted again. This provides the optimal performance eliminating transmission of repetitive data, only dynamic data, in most cases, application data, will be transmitted to the PC. The schema below shows the performance benefit of an application converted to GUI.


The Thin Client - Character Scenario

In the Thin Client "Character" scenario, both static and dynamic data are transmitted from the host to the PC when a screen is displayed. 

Static Screen Formats are sent to the PC

Dynamic screen data is sent to the PC


The Thin Client - GUI  Scenario

In the Thin Client "GUI" scenario, only dynamic data is transmitted from the host to the PC when a screen is displayed, static screen formats are cached on the PC and retrieved locally when needed.

Cached Static Screen Formats

Only dynamic screen data is sent to the PC


Integrated File Transfer

The Thin Client contains built in data transfercapabilities between the PCs using the Thin Client and the Open/36 environment. Several new Open/36 utilities are available as companions to the Thin Client to improve integration with the desktops by delivering data and reports directly to individual users or to central repositories on the windows environment.  The base features of the Thin Client combined with the new Open/36 desktop integration components allow the following possibilities :

  • Open/36 data file transfer to PC  in text formats *

  • Open/36 data file transfer to PC in MS Excel format (New or existing workbook) *

  • PC transfer from text file to Open/36 data file

  • PC transfer from MS Excel workbook to Open/36 data file (Support Ranges)

Note (*) : Open/36 data file can be a standard data file or a pre-formatted data file. Supported formats are comma separated values (CSV), reports (RPT) and XML format.


Integrated Archiving and Spooler

The Report Organizer, a Thin Client companion, provides the capability of having Open/36 reports print using Windows spoolers in cooperation with all other Windows users. Its structured report archiving features may very well eliminate the need to physically print many of your existing reports. Its MS Outlook like user interface allows your reports to be categorized to your discretion into repositories that can be local for each user or centralized or both depending on your structure and archiving strategy.