These answers to Frequently Asked Questions about FLEX-ES® should help to familiarize you with our product. For further information, please contact Fundamental Software.
This FAQ addresses general and business aspects of FLEX-ES. For more technical matters, please see our Technical FAQ.
Question: How long has FLEX-ES. been around?
Answer: The first release of FLEX-ES (originally known as FS/370TM) became available in 1991. It was limited in functionality. Subsequent releases (named OPEN/370TM) improved the available functionality. In 1996, ESA support became available. This greatly expanded the market available to FSI. With Release 5, which became available Q3 of 1997, ALL IBM operating systems were supported. The product was renamed FLEX-ES on 20 April 1998 to reflect its increased capacity as a flexible solution applicable throughout the mainframe operations of the entire enterprise.
Q: How do I attach my existing mainframe peripherals to FLEX-ES?
A: FSI sells an optional Parallel Channel Adapter card. This card provides parallel channel ("bus and tag") peripheral connectivity. Two versions are provided, one with one channel per card and another with three channels per card. The PCA supports most peripherals, including all tape, many printers (including Xerox and IBM 38XX laser printers), and many communications controllers. It supports operation in both DC Interlocked mode and in Data Streaming mode. In Data Streaming mode it supports transfer rates of both 3.0 and 4.5 megabytes/second. Each PCA card comes with a custom cable which adapts the card connector to (as appropriate) one or three pairs of bus and tag cable ends.
Q: Does FLEX-ES support ESCON channels?
A: Yes. Please see our Statement of Completion for SCA (ESCON®-Compatible) Support.
Q: On what servers does FLEX-ES run?
A: FLEX-ES is supported only on FSI-certified servers with FSI-certified hardware options and FSI-certified operating systems. A list of certified servers is maintained by FSI, and information is available from authorized FSI resellers.
Q: How do I install/integrate FLEX-ES?
A: Installation/integration services are available from authorized FSI resellers.
Q: How long does a typical installation take?
A: On-site installation takes, on average, three days. This time is dependent upon how many tapes are needed to load the IBM OS, Program Products, applications, and data. Note that this three-day figure is not 72 hours, but three average work day shifts. Thus, on the first shift the tapes are loaded, on the second day the installation is validated, and the third day is spent doing on-site training of operations and (if desired) systems programming staff.
Q: What is FSI's support policy?
A: A one-year warranty is provided with each FLEX-ES license. First-level support is generally done by your authorized FSI reseller. FLEX-ES was designed to allow extensive remote maintenance. With the permission of the customer, FSI technicians, in support of the FSI reseller, can log in to a system remotely and perform remote diagnostics and maintenance, if required.
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Fundamental Software, Inc.
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