DataFlex WebApp Server is a high performance, fully integrated application server for deploying DataFlex browser-based applications, Web Services and service oriented architecture (SOA) solutions.
DataFlex WebApp Server is an integrated component of DataFlex, and as such, it utilizes and leverages the complete resources of the DataFlex environment.
Technically, the DataFlex WebApp Server is a compact, highly-efficient, C++ based application and transaction processing engine that connects to users and/or services via Microsoft IIS and to a variety of database options using DataFlex’s standard connectivity architecture.
DataFlex web apps generally use a “Process Pool”, rather than starting up a new process to service a given user’s session, allowing DataFlex web apps to be both highly responsive and highly scalable. See our DataFlex WebApp Process Pooling Demo article.
DataFlex WebApp Server – licence choices
With the release of DataFlex 17.1, a range of DataFlex licensing choices were introduced for licensing Web applications, Web services, etc.
The DataFlex WebApp Server licensing options are:
- Web Client Licensing – which is based on named users
- Web Application Licensing – which is based on the number of discrete web applications
- “Lite” WebApp Server Licensing
Note: This licensing also impacts how you licence DataFlex Content Manager websites.
Want to compare the prices of the different types of licences?
Try our DataFlex WebApp Server Price Calculator
Web Client Licensing – based on Named Users
Web Client licensing is based on named users. This is different from the concurrent user licensing applied to the DataFlex Windows or DataFlex Character Mode products, in that each user requires a licence whether they are currently using the system or not. If Joe is a user and Jane is a user, you must have a licence for Joe and a licence for Jane, even if both are never using the application at the same time. This form of licensing is appropriate when you know exactly who is going to be using your system, such as in internally deployed corporate applications.
There is no limit to the number of different web applications which may be deployed on a WebApp server using Web Client licensing.
All web client licences include database connectivity (the ability to connect to such databases as Microsoft SQL Server, Actian.SQL, IBM DB2 or ODBC).
Windows/Web “Combo” Licences
In addition to pure Web Client Licences, there is also the option to purchase licences combining Windows concurrent user-counts with Web named-users – the user-counts are the combined total of the two. Combo licences also include database connectivity.
Web Application Licensing – based on number of web applications
Web Application Licensing is based on the number of discrete web applicationswhich are to be deployed on the licensed server. In this context a web application is defined as a single executable WebApp (and will appear as one entry in the DataFlex WebApp Administrator utility). This form of licensing is appropriate when you have no knowledge of who may be accessing your application(s), such as in customer-facing web applications.
There is no limit to the number of users who may access applications deployed under Web Application licensing.
“Lite” WebApp Server Licence
The DataFlex WebApp “Lite” server is not the same component as was sold under the name “Lite” server in previous versions (which was limited to 5 concurrent “sessions”).
In VDF 17.1 the “Lite” server supports only a single web application served by a single operating system process. (i.e. only a single instance of one executable will run). This makes it appropriate for such uses as web services or running a single Ajax-style web application which will only be relatively infrequently accessed.
A “Lite” server cannot act as a node under the SPLF.
SPLF stands for Security, Performance, Load Balancing and Fail-over.
The SPLF acts as a “master” server which receives all requests to an application or applications and directs those requests to one or more (up to 255) WebApp server nodes to be fulfilled. This allows the load on a web application to be balanced across multiple servers, improving performance in high-demand environments and catering for the possibility of individual server failures. Additional security comes from the fact that only the SPLF itself need be Internet-facing, with the actual WebApp servers (and the data they are accessing) remaining safely behind a firewall, never directly exposed to the Internet.
This capability was previously marketed as the “Enterprise Server“.
There is no price for this component; instead a price of £600.00 is added to the price of each DataFlex WebApp Server licence which will serve as a node under the SPLF, as detailed on the WebApp Server pricing page.
Any given SPLF can only serve one of the two licence models above: Web Client or Web Application – the two cannot be mixed under a single SPLF. A “Lite” server cannot act as a node under the SPLF.
DataFlex WebApp Standby Servers
For environments requiring the deployment of a “standby” DataFlex WebApp server, to be activated only in the event of a failure of a “live” server, Data Access offer the following two options:
- “Hot” Standby: a running secondary server instance which will be automatically activated on the failure of the live server. This option is available at 50% of the live server price and annual subscription.
- “Cold” Standby: a non-running secondary server instance which will be manually activated on the failure of the live server. This option is available at 25% of the live server price and annual subscription.
Choosing which licence to upgrade to
If you already have a WebApp Internet Edition licence, with an up-to-date subscription, you may choose which licence model – Web Client or Web Application – you wish to move forward with, and also the number of named users (in the case of Web Client model) or web applications (in the case of the Web Application model). Which option and what level will determine the amount of your next subscription payment when it becomes due.