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Since PowerBuilder 2017 R2, we have a new HTTPClient object, which is a base object for sending HTTP requests and receiving HTTP responses from a resource identified by a URI. Compared to the Inet object, the HTTPClient object is easier to use and supports more methods (Get/Post/Put/Delete) and more SSL protocols (TLS 1.0, TLS 1.1, TLS 1.2, SSL 2.0, and SSL 3.0).

Among other things, the HTTPClient can be also used to consume SOAP Web services. This is particularly useful as the Web Service Proxy has many limitations and defects calling SOAP Web services such as not supporting TLS 1.2. This article is to show how you can use the new HTTPClient to call your existing SOAP Web services instead. 

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In PowerBuilder 2019, 3 new UI themes are provided to control how PowerBuilder’s commonly-used controls render in runtime applications. These new UI themes adopt a “Windows 10” style to enhance the appearances of applications. For detailed description of the themes, see Understanding system themes and Details on the theme settings and their effects.

You can directly control whether an application applies a new UI theme, or provide users with the ability to select a preferred theme by themselves. For details, see Applying a theme.

It is possible for you to modify a system theme through changing the theme template files, or to copy a system theme to create a custom theme. This way, you can further tune the color settings in the theme to your personal preference. For details, see Creating a custom theme.  

You may want to use the UI theme settings together with the PowerBuilder IDE settings and scripting techniques to achieve optimum UI effects. For samples on how to start the work, see Several useful techniques to further adjust your user interface.

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POWERBUILDER AND GRAPH DATABASES

Because I could find nothing, anywhere, regarding PowerBuilder (PB) and graph databases (GDB), I thought I’d provide some information following some dabbling with this emerging (well, emerged now) technology.

I developed a keen interest in GDBs after a contracting friend who does some work for me had attended a NEO4J course – he contacted me and said the application I develop would be ideally suited for a GDB.

I looked at NEO4J and quickly realised the code would not fit with the PB my application.  Then another friend advised that MS SQLServer had introduced basic graph DB features in its 2017 version, with enhancements expected to follow.   I gave it a try.

(I should point out that I’m not an experienced programmer - self-taught, I work alone so I can’t learn from peers, too busy on my work to go off and learn new skills, long in the tooth, and need to get a twelve-year-old to change my digital watch at daylight savings.  So the caveat is that experienced programmers may know ways far better than I’ll lay out here.)

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The support for PostgreSQL that was added in R2 was covered in an earlier blog post.  The enhancements in R3 are primarily related to addition entries added to the PBODB170.INI file.  These additional entries provide more support for maintaining tables, views, primary and foreign keys, users and groups in the database painter.  

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With the release of PowerBuilder 2017 a new native method of exporting DataWindows to PDF became available.  There were some enhancements to that functionality added in R2 and in R3 that we're going to look at in this article.

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In an article on the enhancements that were added to the stand alone compiler in R2, I remarked on an issue on how file version information was handled in the initial release, and which was still a problem in R2.  Fortunately, R3 corrects that issue.