Rocket BlueZone Terminal Emulation FAQ

To ease you into your new software or aide in your decision making process, we've put together several of our customer's frequently asked questions. They range from general to specific. If you don’t see the answer your question, contact us! We are here to help.

General Rocket BlueZone Termianl Emulation Suite Questions

Q. Is the Rocket BlueZone terminal emulator compatible with Windows 8?

A. Yes, BlueZone has been tested to meet all of the technical requirements to be compatible with Windows 8. Only "Compatible with Windows 8" software has passed Microsoft-designed tests for compatibility and reliability on PCs running the Windows 8 operating system. "Compatible with Windows 8" products install without worry and run reliably with Windows 8, including 64-bit.

Q. Is the Rocket BlueZone terminal emulator compatible with Windows 7?

A. Yes, BlueZone has been tested to meet all of the technical requirements to be compatible with Windows 7. Only "Compatible with Windows 7" software has passed Microsoft-designed tests for compatibility and reliability on PCs running the Windows 7 operating system. "Compatible with Windows 7" products install without worry and run reliably with Windows 7, including 64-bit.

Q. Is BlueZone terminal emulator Windows Vista Certified?

A. Yes, BlueZone has undergone the Windows Vista certification program and has been granted full certification status by Microsoft. The 32-bit terminal emulator solution was designed specifically for Windows and Internet Explorer, which makes the C++ application extremely fast and completely Windows-compliant for features such as the cut, copy, and paste short-cut keys, as well as use of the full PC keyboard.

Q. Is BlueZone Terminal Emulator Windows XP and Windows 2003 Server compliant?

A. BlueZone is ideal for use on a Windows 2003 Server or with Windows XP desktops. BlueZone has achieved certification for the "Designed for Windows XP" Gold program from Microsoft, which requires testing through an independent third party, Veritest. The 32-bit terminal emulator solution was designed specifically for Windows and Internet Explorer, which makes the C++ application extremely fast and completely Windows-compliant for features such as the cut, copy, and paste short-cut keys, as well as use of the full PC keyboard.

Q. How do users, developers, and network administrators benefit from BlueZone?

A. BlueZone terminal emulator allows you to use Windows functions like cut, copy, and paste. You can also have use of the full PC keyboard, just as you're used to with desktop emulation. You will also find the 3270, 5250, VT100/VT220, SCO ANSI, and Wyse 60 host session independent of the framework of the Internet Explorer browser. The browser can be viewed as a delivery mechanism for the BlueZone files. Once an emulation session is launched, the role of the browser is complete and it can be closed.

For developers, new and existing Visual Basic, HLLAPI applications, and macros can be deployed and used just as they were with desktop emulation. Most 32-bit Visual Basic HLLAPI applications can be used as-is. Older 16-bit HLLAPI applications developed for IBM PC/3270 can also be used with BlueZone.

Since lower total cost of ownership (TCO) is one of the top reasons to switch to a Web-deployed terminal emulator, network administrators have the most to gain by migrating to a solution like BlueZone Web-to-host. The server-based code is easy to install and easy to configure with the use of the BlueZone Web to Host Wizard.

BlueZone terminal emulator offers a reliable and secure method of centralizing the administration of host access for your enterprise. Features like session profiles, scripts, HLLAPI application support, the ability to create and lock standard configurations and more will help lower your cost of host access ownership by at least 25%. And since most organizations license BlueZone as their standard for enterprise host access, you can consolidate the use of multiple emulators to a single host access solution.

Q. What is the difference between BlueZone Desktop and BlueZone Web to Host?

A. The executable installed for BlueZone Desktop and the executable deployed from the Web server in a Web to Host deployment are virtually identical. The main difference is how the software is installed on your PC. This offers great flexibility. Since the applications are the same, you can use the desktop version while at the office, and use a Web-to-host implementation if you need to access your systems from home without any loss of functionality or learning curve.

 

Both deployment methods provide 3270, 5250, VT100/VT220, SCO ANSI, and Wyse 60 host access, as well as FTP file transfer, and are fully compatible with Microsoft Windows. BlueZone terminal emulator is feature-rich and is used to replace much larger and older host access solutions, BlueZone has a very small footprint once it resides on your local PC. Depending on what components are loaded, footprint size ranges between 5MB and 8MB.

Q. What are the advantages of BlueZone Web to Host terminal emulator?

A. The primary advantages of using a Web-based terminal emulator for host access over a desktop-based client are centralized administration, lower total cost of ownership (TCO) and, for some, portal integration (the ability to launch host sessions from a corporate or organizational intranet).

 

With centralized administration, all configuration and management of the application is performed on the Web server. There is no need to install and configure the client software on every client PC. When a new release of the software becomes available, only the Web server needs to be upgraded. The new software will be detected and automatically downloaded to the client PC, eliminating the need to manually install an update on each desktop. This model can render significant savings for network administrators and is especially helpful if you have lots of remote users. Experts estimate that a 25% savings can be realized for host access simply by migrating to this model.

Q. How does BlueZone Web to Host work?

A. BlueZone is a Win32 application that provides connectivity for 3270, 5250, VT100/VT220, SCO ANSI, and Wyse 60 terminal emulation within a Web browser or as a desktop application. It also includes FTP file transfer.

One scenario under which BlueZone can be used is as follows:

  1. The BlueZone terminal emulator session is launched from the BlueZone launch page site. The URL http://yourservername/bluezone/launchpagename is the Administrator-defined URL used to launch a BlueZone session.
  2. When the session is launched, an ActiveX control or Java applet component is downloaded to your PC from the Web server. (The ActiveX control or Java applet is only downloaded the first time a session is launched, or whenever the server version of the ActiveX control or Java applet changes to a later version).
  3. Once the necessary files are downloaded, you simply access the host by launching a browser session. This is to ensure there are no required updates. Otherwise, using the local files, a connection is made directly to the host and the browser is no longer required.

BlueZone terminal emulator is truly a two-tier solution since the host connection does not go through the Web server.

Q. How does BlueZone use ActiveX?

A. BlueZone is a Win32 application that can be configured to use either an ActiveX control or a Java applet to download the applications and configuration files to your PC.

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API Programming Questions

Q. Can I use HLLAPI applications with BlueZone?

A. BlueZone supports several different versions of HLLAPI, 32- and 16-bit, WHLLAPI, EHLLAPI, and Extended EHLLAPI (EEHLLAPI).

It's compatible with any 32-bit PC application that has a Visual Basic or C HLLAPI (High Level Language Application Programming Interface) link to TN3270, TN5250, VT100, VT220, SCO ANSI, or Wyse 60 terminal emulation. In most cases, the application will work without any modification.

Q. What is the BlueZone Host Automation Object?

A. BlueZone offers the Host Automation Object (HAO) which is a COM object that can be loaded by any COM compliant scripting language or programming language. The HAO gives you complete control of the emulator interface and terminal window allowing sophisticated legacy integration and screen scraping. It currently supports the proprietary BlueZone interface and interfaces compatible with most other emulators, making the conversion of existing applications a snap.

The HAO is used by many BlueZone customers in a wide variety of applications including:

  • Microsoft to embed the collection of host-based data in an Excel or Word document
  • VBScript and JScript scripts to automate data input called in Web pages that launch BlueZone Web to Host, then to navigate to specific host screens using data obtained from the Web page
  • Single sign-on applications to take the user ID and password from a local store and log the user into a TSO session

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Deployment Questions

Q. What desktop platforms does BlueZone run on?

A. BlueZone can be used on any PC running Microsoft Windows 8, 7, XP, or Vista operating systems.

Q. What browsers are supported?

A. BlueZone can be used with:
  • Internet Explorer 5.0 or higher
  • Mozilla 1.6 or higher
  • Opera 7.2 or higher (with identity set to Opera or Mozilla)

For additional information, please review our more detailed list of client requirements by operating system.

Q. Which Web servers are supported?

A. BlueZone can be deployed from any enterprise-quality Web server and does not require a specialized application server.

Q. How is BlueZone Web to Host deployed?

When you launch a BlueZone session from a Web server, an ActiveX or Java control is downloaded to your PC from the Web server. This component unpacks the accompanying CAB file, loads the program and launches the emulation session using the accompanying configuration file. The ActiveX control or Java applet is only downloaded the first time a session is launched, or whenever the server version of the ActiveX control or Java applet component changes to a later version.

Q. How are BlueZone Web to Host sessions configured?

A. It takes only a few quick steps to start BlueZone:

  • After installing BlueZone's Web to Host Wizard, a site is created which will house your launch pages.
  • Each site will contain a minimum of one to several launch pages. It can contain as many pages necessary to accommodate your varied sets of users.
  • For a launch page you select the type of session that will be available (3270/5250/VT/FTP) and launch a default on the Web server. You can then configure that session live in the exact manner you want to represent and deliver it to your users. No more switches or radio buttons that are limited to only a handful of settings, but rather a fully functioning session. No more guess work! What you configure, is what your users will receive.
  • When complete, the configuration file is saved to the Web server.
  • The wizard generates the BlueZone Web pages, and those pages are simply published to the Web server.
  • Upon distributing the BlueZone URL launch page to your users, they simply click a link to launch the session. You may choose to give your users the ability to implement user-specific changes, lock out changes completely, or lock some settings, while others remain available for the user to change. Any local changes made will be retained on the local machine.

Q. How do I launch a BlueZone session?

A. You open a browser to the BlueZone home page. You then click a session icon that launches your pre-configured session. After the first download, BlueZone may be configured so that a desktop icon is created. This will allow you to launch your browser by double-clicking the icon. Optionally, you can double-click the icon to launch one or multiple sessions in the browser and have the browser automatically close.

Q. Can I configure my own settings?

A. The administrator has the option of allowing or locking the local configuration of your session profile. If changes are allowed, they remain local on your PC.

Q. What type of network traffic does BlueZone generate on the Web server?

A. BlueZone uses an ActiveX control or a Java applet which is downloaded only once from the HTTP server, or whenever a new version of the application is installed on the server. This minimizes the amount of network traffic with regard to the download.

The session profile (around 2KB) is downloaded from the HTTP server each time a session is started. For multiple sessions (e.g., 3270 and 5250), multiple session profiles are downloaded from the HTTP server to launch each session.

Traffic to and from the host (3270, 5250, VT100, VT220, SCO ANSI and Wyse 60) is identical to other desktop or Web-based emulators. This traffic can range from light (for users that may access two or three screens per minute) to heavy (for users performing many large file transfers).

Q. What is the maximum number of workstations supported from a single Web server?

A. The number of workstations supported by a single Web server is dependent on the servers available resources, not on BlueZone.

Q. What is the size of the download and how much memory does it use?

A. The total download size is approximately 1.2 MB. That size increases as additional components are added, such as scripting or the FTP client. These files are downloaded to your desktop the first time they are accessed, or whenever a new version is placed on the Web server.

Once the BlueZone software is downloaded to your desktop, approximately 3.5MB-5MB of disk space is used to store the downloaded components. When the BlueZone emulator is running, approximate 9MB of memory is used. Each additional session uses less memory than the first session because the code section is shared by all BlueZone sessions.

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File Transfer Questions

Q. What type of file transfer is supported?

A. The BlueZone mainframe display client supports IND$FILE file transfer for TN3270 terminal emulation sessions. BlueZone also offers a secure FTP client in addition to the TN3270, TN5250, and VT client software.

Q. How is IND$FILE supported?

BlueZone supports both presentation space and structured field IND$FILE file transfer methods. Structured field block sizes can be set to 2KB, 4KB or 8K bytes. Wild card file transfer is supported for the IBM VM/CMS operating system.

Q. How is FTP file transfer supported?

A. An FTP server must be configured and running on the host system you wish to transfer files to. The FTP client can be run from the terminal emulator or run as a separate program. The FTP client has a three-window interface (PC directory, Host directory and FTP connection information) listing the PC and host files using a Windows Explorer look-and-feel, and uses a drag and drop user interface. If desired, the FTP client can be configured to make an encrypted connection to the host, provided the host supports encryption.

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Terminal Emulation Questions

Q. What types of terminal emulation does BlueZone provide?

A. BlueZone provides the following types of terminal emulation:
  • TN3270 and TN3270E
  • TN5250 and TN5250E
  • VT 52/100/220/320/420
  • SCO ANSI
  • HP Character Block mode
    • HP 2392A
    • HP 70092/6
    • HP 70094/8
  • IBM 3151
  • Linux
  • VAX/AIX
  • Wyse60
  • Wyse60/AIF
  • Unisys
    • T27
    • UTS
  • ICL/VME

Q. What type of network traffic does BlueZone generate on the Web server?

A. BlueZone uses an ActiveX control or a Java applet which is downloaded only once from the HTTP server, or whenever a new version of the application is installed on the server. This minimizes the amount of network traffic with regard to the download. The session profile is downloaded only once from the HTTP server as well.

For multiple sessions (e.g., 3270 and 5250), multiple session profiles are downloaded from the HTTP server to launch each session.

Traffic to and from the host (3270, 5250, VT100, VT220, SCO ANSI and Wyse 60) is identical to other desktop or Web-based emulators. This traffic can range from light (for users that may access two or three screens per minute) to heavy (for users performing many large file transfers).

Q. What screen sizes does BlueZone support?

A. TN3270/TN3270E screen sizes:

  • Model 2 - 24 x 80 full screen display
  • Model 3 - 32 x 80 full screen display
  • Model 4 - 43 x 80 full screen display
  • Model 5 - 27 x 132 full screen display
  • Model 3290 (62 x 160) Split/Split-V
  • Custom Alternate and default sizes

TN5250/TN5250E screen sizes:

  • Model 2 - 24 x 80 full screen display
  • Model 5 - 27 x 132 full screen display

VT 52/100/220/320/420 screen sizes:

  • 24 x 80 full screen display
  • 24 x 132 full screen display
  • 32 x 80 full screen display
  • 32 x 132 full screen display

SCO ANSI:

  • 25 row x 80 column (SCO-ANSI emulation mode)
  • 25 row x 132 column (SCO-ANSI emulation mode)

Q. Does BlueZone support full 132-column display?

A. BlueZone does give you the ability to view 132 columns of host information. However, we do recommend using a higher resolution Windows display in order to give you the option of using a more readable font - 1024 x 768 is a good place to start. 132-column display is supported in TN3270, TN5250, VT and SCO ANSI terminal emulation.

Q. Does BlueZone support graphics terminal emulation?

A. Yes, GDDM 3179G graphics and IBM APA mainframe graphics are supported for the TN3270 emulator, as are IBM Programmed Symbol Sets A-F. In doing so, BlueZone lets you emulate a combination of features found in the older 3279 S3G, 3179G and newer host graphics terminals. Though few mainframe applications incorporate the use of graphics, there are some like SAS/GRAPH from SAS Institute and IBM's GDDM.

Q. Does BlueZone support SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) security for host access?

A. Yes, SSL is supported as a configuration option in BlueZone. SSL security provides both authentication and encryption to prevent eavesdropping and tampering with your TN3270E, TN5250E, and FTP sessions. In order to use this feature you must be connected to a TN3270E, TN5250E or FTP server that also supports SSL security. If your host does not support it, Rocket LegaSuite Security Server can enable you to support an SSL connection without having to upgrade your host.

BlueZone accepts the same Certificate Authorities supported by Microsoft Internet Explorer version 6. BlueZone can also be configured to accept self-signed certificates, not-yet-valid certificates and invalid certificates, if desired.

Q. Does BlueZone support light pen emulation?

A. Yes, light pen emulation for TN3270 host access is supported. The light pen emulation key (cursor select key) can be mapped to a mouse button. Also, the Alt + F9 key combination is the cursor select key for the standard BlueZone keyboard map.

Yes, BlueZone provides you the ability to detect certain areas of a screen as a hotspot area. You can move the mouse to the text and then click or double-click the text to send the appropriate host key back to the host. You can make hotspots visible or invisible. If visible, the hotspot text will appear similar to a Windows dialog box button to indicate the text is a hotspot.

Q. Does BlueZone allow the window title to be customized?

A. Yes, you may customize the items displayed on the BlueZone session title bar. The following items may be displayed on the title bar:

  • Session identifier
  • HLLAPI short name
  • Session profile name
  • Session description
  • Program name
  • Separator

Q. What cursor types does BlueZone support?

A. The standard BlueZone alpha cursor can be configured to be either blinking or non-blinking or configured as a block cursor or an underline cursor. There is also a cursor ruler that can be turned on which displays a cross hair cursor on the screen.

Q. What fonts does BlueZone support?

A. BlueZone will display fixed pitch fonts. These fonts can be TrueType, OpenType or bitmap.

Q. Does BlueZone support double-byte character sets?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports double byte character sets.

Q. What types of cut, copy and paste does BlueZone support?

A. As a true Microsoft Windows application, BlueZone allows the mouse or shifted arrow keys to be used to select a rectangular area of text. This selected area can then be cut or copied to the Windows clipboard using the Ctrl + "X" or Ctrl + "C" keys, respectively.

In addition to the standard Cut, Copy and Paste commands, the Copy Append and Paste Continue commands are also supported. Both block and stream paste modes are supported. The cursor can optionally be moved to the end of the pasted text. Auto-copy to the Windows clipboard can also be configured.

Q. Does the VT emulation support extended colors?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports 16 different color attributes for both text foreground and background including normal, underline, inverse, blink, underline and bold and the varying combinations of these attributes.

Q. Does the VT emulation support double-height and double-width characters?

A. Yes, double-height and double-width characters are supported.

Q. Is a VT scroll back buffer supported?

A.Yes, BlueZone supports a VT scroll back buffer. When enabled, you can scroll back a specified number of lines. Although the default buffer is 24 lines, this may be set to any number between 24 and 2500.

Q. Can the VT scrolling speed be configured?

A. Yes. BlueZone supports DECSCLM, smooth or jump scrolling.

Q. Does BlueZone support SSH?

A. Yes, SSH2 is currently supported in the VT client as is SSL.

Q. Does BlueZone support VT420 terminal emulation?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports the VT-420 terminal emulation escape sequences and keyboard.

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Rocket BlueZone Keyboard Questions

Q. How do I map the keyboard?

A. BlueZone's keyboard definition can be easily changed to any configuration you desire via the following steps:
  1. Select Options > Keyboard to open the keyboard Options menu. By default, the mappable functions are listed in the functions list box.
  2. Select the desired function (for example, Clear.)
  3. Click the New button and click on the desired key within graphical keyboard dialog. This will map the function to the key. Click OK to save your changes.

Q. Are 122-key keyboards supported?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports the Key Tronic 122-key keyboard when used with Windows 98 and 95.

Q. Is keyboard type ahead supported?

A. Yes, keyboard type ahead is supported and this option can be enabled or disabled. BlueZone can store up to 256 keystrokes.

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Pricing Questions

Q. What is the difference between per seat and concurrent licensing?

A. BlueZone offers both kinds of licensing. Per seat is typically suitable for a smaller shop where you know the exact number of users and a seat is purchased for each user. Concurrent licensing is much more advantageous as it allows you to purchase a pool of licenses from where all your users draw.

Using the License Manager, when you launch BlueZone, BlueZone checks out a license from the License Manager. You retain the license during your active, connected session. Once your session is terminated, the license is returned back to the License Manager to be used by another user when necessary. This provides much more flexibility to your organization where your number of host users can vary, or there are users who do not access the host on a daily basis.

Regardless of which license type is preferred, it is considered a perpetual license, and your organization owns the software.

Q. How is the application licensed when published from a Microsoft Terminal Server (with or without Citrix MetaFrame)?

A. Publishing BlueZone from a Microsoft Terminal Server, with or without Citrix MetaFrame, is ideal for many organizations. You simply install BlueZone Desktop on the terminal server and you or any user with access to the server can use the application without having to install and run BlueZone on the local workstation. And you can maintain your own set of configuration settings.

A concurrent software license purchase is required for this scenario. The License Manager is used to manage the pool of concurrent licenses.

Q. Can I use BlueZone on my home PC or laptop, and is there a charge?

A. This is another advantage that concurrent licensing can provide. Regardless of where you use the BlueZone software, or how many machines its installed on, you can use the BlueZone software as long as there is a concurrent license available to use from the License Manager.

Q. Does the license price include support and maintenance?

A. Yes, both per seat and concurrent licensing models include technical support and software maintenance for the first year. A subsequent maintenance payment would be required to retain support after the initial year.

Q. Does the maintenance and support plan include upgrades?

A. Yes, software maintenance includes upgrades of the BlueZone software as well as any new software that would be required due to your operating system upgrade.

Q. Does the price include SSL security?

A. Yes, support for SSL is built into the software. There are no additional fees required to support a secure connection using SSL.

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Rocket BlueZone Printing Questions

Q. Does BlueZone support TN3270E host printing?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports TN3270E IBM mainframe host printing. Both 3287 LU-Type 1 and LU-Type 3 host printer sessions are supported.

Q. Does BlueZone support TN5250E host printing?

A. Yes, BlueZone supports TN5250E iSeries printing: IBM 3812-1 (Single-byte) Host Print Transform and iSeries Extended SCS (Non-IPDS Printing) or IBM 5553-B01 (Double-Byte). A TN5250E Host Print Key is also available.

Q. Does BlueZone support VT printer sessions?

A. BlueZone supports VT Slave printing.

Q. Does BlueZone support Print Area?

A. Yes, BlueZone can be configured so that it will print all or part of multiple screens automatically. The user must define specific "Print Area" strings that uniquelly identify the print function the user wants the system to execute (such as defining a string that identifites the last screen to print). When the print screen function is selected, BlueZone searches the screen to see if it matches a defined Print Area. If so, the screens are printed. If not, the single screen is printed as a normal print screen.

Q. Does BlueZone offer a print server?

A. Yes, BlueZone offers a TCP/IP print server. It is a Line Printer Daemon (LPD) allowing printer data streams originating on a variety of host systems to be printed over TCP/IP to any Windows printer, using the LPR/LPD protocol. You may use the BlueZone TCP/IP Printer on a shared PC as a print server, allowing multiple users to share a single print queue, or run it on every PC, giving each user a unique print queue.

Q. Does BlueZone support transparent printing?

A. Yes, BlueZone can be configured to use transparent printing. When special control codes or escape sequences are being sent to the printer, the Passthrough - Send All Data Directly to the Printer option is used to ensure that these special codes are printed correctly.

Q. Can printer orientation be saved in the session profile?

A. Yes, printer orientation can be saved in the session profile for both TN3270E and TN5250E host printer sessions.

Q. What options are available for host screen prints?

A. BlueZone can optionally print a configurable title at the top of each host print screen. Margins can be set and multiple host screens can be printed on the same page.

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