While it is true that a number of methods exist for getting iSeries data into a browser-based application, CGIDEV2 is one option that every iSeries shop should consider. It has a number of distinct advantages:
It does not need a WAS server.
It allows you to leverage existing RPG/COBOL code.
It's easy to use.
Free is always good and, although sometimes we worry that we get what we pay for, in this case CGIDEV2 is a great value. It runs with only an HTTP Server; no WAS server is required, thus simplifying the administration of the application. Modifying existing RPG and COBOL code to work with CGIDEV2 is quite easy. This allows the incorporation of existing application logic into new Web apps with little rewrite. IBM has gone to great lengths to simplify CGIDEV2. They took the powerful but intimidating APIs of the original CGIDEV product and wrapped them up inside slick ILE service programs and subprocedures. Now coding Web apps with RPG couldn't be easier.
To get started with a basic Web app using CGIDEV2, you must first install the product. Download the free tool from IBM at http://www.-922.ibm.com/easy400p02.htm. The Install program is easy to use and will even create and configure your HTTP Server for you.