Merlin IBM i

IBM Merlin powered by Arcad

What is IBM Merlin?

IBM Merlin (Modernization Engine for Lifecycle Integration) is a strategic platform enabling IBM i customers to modernize both their heritage applications and development processes via DevOps. Merlin was built on Red Hat OpenShift to take advantage of a modern Hybrid Cloud world.

Interview with Steve Sibley about MERLIN by Philippe Magne

Merlin Benefits Customers

What are the key benefits of Merlin for IBM i Customers?

Merlin allows IBM i applications to realize the value of hybrid cloud and multi-platform CI/CD pipelines. The modernization tooling within Merlin helps IBM i developers to create next generation applications leveraging the existing investment in traditional systems often written in RPG & Cobol. RESTful interface connections and enterprise messaging technologies allow developers to add new business value to IBM i applications.

Diagramme merlin

Merlin offers some key advantages to IBM i developers:

  • Access to industry standard DevOps tools (e.g. Git, Jenkins, VS Code etc) enabling common development tooling across platforms
  • Automated Modernization of old Fixed Format RPG into modern Free Format
  • Modern Cloud based IDE – develop across multiple platforms using the industry standard VS Code
  • Application Discovery and Analysis – increase developer productivity
  • Reduce the learning curve with industry standard modern tooling enabling your next generation developers
  • Intuitive UI with auto-complete, syntax highlighting, debugging, and more…
  • Secure deployment of IBM i applications and infrastructure
  • Vast ecosystem of extensions – add functionality for multiple languages and frameworks

Why use Merlin?

  • “Traditional” IBM i developers can more rapidly and easily adopt VS Code, Git, CI/CD and concurrent development with the fewest possible changes in their daily processes.
  • Developers “new to IBM i” reduce their learning curve and enable them to contribute to RPG development and access the DB2 database.
Use Merlin IBM i
Merlin ARCAD Extensions

Today, ARCAD extensions offer the following features:

ARCAD Builder uses the ARCAD metadata repository to recompile all dependencies automatically. No makefiles or scripts to maintain – Cross-references are updated in real time. As soon as a developer starts to use Merlin (integrated ARCAD functionality), all of the build infrastructure is created automatically, enabling a personal build and then an easy integration into a shared branch.
ARCAD Transformer RPG – on-the-fly code RPG conversion to modern Free Form syntax
ARCAD Observer application analysis functionality available directly in the code, at the developer’s fingertips:

  • instant impact analysis down to source line and field level using ARCAD cross-references
  • “CodeLens” feature using the ARCAD metadata repository – revealing file declarations, procedure declarations, procedure usage, and more
CI/CD – Seamless IBM i automation from the developer’s codespace. That is, as the developer is working in his/her codespace, any actions which require IBM i functionality are automatically invoked – for example:

  • Merlin transparently creates a library for each new branch, making “concurrent development” with Git on IBM i extremely easy-to-use
  • an entire pipeline can be triggered as soon as a change is pushed to a repository: something as simple as a single compile, or multiple steps with things like code quality, third party vulnerability scanning, reporting, unit and regressions testing all without developer intervention.
  • Powered by ARCAD technology for IBM i, the Merlin platform helps software developers realize the value of hybrid cloud and multi-platform DevOps implementation.

  • Merlin allows you to automate and optimize an intelligent build while accelerating your CI/CD cycle.

  • The tool also exposes native IBM i functions as RESTful interfaces and manages your enterprise message technologies.

  • With a browser-based IDE and Red Hat CodeReady workspaces, your new developers can start to bridge the talent gap by taking advantage of modern tooling and a familiar environment.

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