Omnis 7 Frequently Asked Questions

So what are the main differences between Omnis 7 and Omnis Studio?

Omnis Studio has many new features and enhancements, including new classes and window objects, a new and more integrated design environment, many new design tools, and introduces new object-oriented features and programming techniques. All the improvements in Omnis Studio mean a shorter learning curve, quicker more-streamlined development, and smoother deployment and maintenance: these all add up to lower costs, particularly in the longer term. And when you convert to Omnis Studio, you can adapt parts of your existing app and run them on the web or on mobile devices using the JavaScript Client technology, which is really essential for mobile based end users.

I can see the benefits Studio, but what has it got that Omnis 7 hasn't?

Well they are too numerous to describe in any detail here, but they include: the ability to create web and mobile clients (using remote form classes) using the JavaScript Client, various new classes including schema, query, table (for improved SQL data access), toolbar, task, object, and code classes; many new and improved design tools including a new library and class (format) Browser, a new SQL browser, the new Component Store, Property Manager, Notation Inspector, and Data file browser; many new window controls including new string and data grids, icon arrays and tree lists, tab and page panes, and 20 or so external components or window controls (added to Omnis as separate DLLs or code fragments); a completely new API which means you can add your own external components very easily; and literally hundreds of small fixes and enhancements. Since Omnis Studio is built on the Omnis 7 code-base it inherits all the past Omnis fixes and enhancements which provides a very stable development environment.

Can I convert my Omnis 7 version 3 applications to Omnis Studio?

Yes, Omnis Studio (v3 or 4 only) converts Omnis 7.3 applications automatically, you need to open your old Omnis 7.3 library in Omnis Studio v3 or v4 and the converter is launched automatically. The majority of simple applications will convert, and they will function in the same way as before. However some large or more complex applications will require some attention following conversion. The effort involved in the conversion process must be weighed against the longer term benefits of upgrading to Omnis Studio and taking advantage of its new features. You can even convert applications created with Omnis 7 version 2 or earlier to Omnis Studio by first converting them to Omnis 7.3. A similar case applies to converting Omnis data files: Omnis Studio v3 or v4 will attempt to convert Omnis 7.3 data files automatically, while you must convert data files created with Omnis 7 version 2 or earlier to Omnis Studio by first converting them to Omnis 7.3. For very old Omnis data files, such as those created with Omnis 3, Omnis 5, or in some cases Omnis 7 version 1 or 2, it may be worth exporting the data from your old data file and importing it into a new Omnis Studio data file.

What type of things can I convert?

You can convert your old code that accesses Omnis Datafiles (called the Omnis Data Manipulation or DML) to generic code that can access any type Relational Database using SQL. If you are already using SQL code in your app, but what we called the old "V2 DAMs", then we will help you convert to the new DAM technology, what we call the "V3 DAMs", which use special object based methods which are more efficient, secure and suited to modern databases. And your old app might be accessing old Non-Unicode data, but again we can help you move your application to Unicode, so you can support a larger range of languages, character sets and symbols.

Can I convert really old Omnis applications to Omnis Studio?

Yes you can but the fewer conversion processes an application has been through the more successfully it will convert to Omnis Studio. For very old Omnis applications, such as those created with Omnis 3, Omnis 5, or even Omnis 7 version 1 or 2, it might be worth converting a library containing your file formats only (called file classes in Studio), then in Omnis 7.3 creating basic windows and reports based on those file formats (file classes), and then converting the new library to Omnis Studio, or alternatively doing all the GUI design work in Omnis Studio.

Will Omnis Studio break my old code?

The majority of code in your Omnis 7.3 application will continue to work in Omnis Studio (v3 or 4 only), and the converter will convert some pieces of code as necessary and highlight any potential problem areas. We recommend that you convert your old application and, when time permits, rewrite parts of it to take advantage of the new objects and OO features in Omnis Studio.

Do I need to use OO programming in my converted Omnis 7.3 application?

No. All the OO features added in Omnis Studio are there to be used if you want. The majority of code in your old library will continue to work in Omnis Studio v3 or v4. For example, Omnis Studio has a new event handling mechanism, but your old event handling code (If #CLICK..End If) will continue to work. Of course we recommend you use the new OO way of doing things in Omnis Studio when adding new functionality, or if you're starting from scratch, then you and your customers get the benefits from the new OO and component technologies in Studio.

For more details on converting from Omnis 7 to Omnis Studio, please Contact us to arrange a free consultation to discuss your conversion options.