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Did you see the 3.5 JDBC update for CFMX 6.1 and 7: Anyone tried it? Seen the new features it adds

Note: This blog post is from 2006. Some content may be outdated--though not necessarily. Same with links and subsequent comments from myself or others. Corrections are welcome, in the comments. And I may revise the content as necessary.
Had you noticed the JDBC updater at http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/knowledgebase/index.cfm?id=42dcb10a? It applies updates to both the Merant DataDirect and Sequelink (ODBC) drivers.

I have a few questions/observations for others who have run it or may consider it, and they apply to 7.02 and 6.1 users, such as whether you need to apply it manually and about the various new features it adds, like integrated NT authentication for SQL Server, and a new JDBC Spy feature for any DBMS? More on them in a moment.

Do you need to update this for 7.02? 6.1?

First, do you need to apply the update manually if you're running 7.02, or even one of the later cumulative hotfixes (CHFs)? It doesn't say specifically. While it may seem we should presume it was included in 7.02, I think we should not. Some features it adds (below) are not in the C:\CFusionMX7\lib\macromedia_drivers.jar (whose date is also from 2004, at least on my 7.02 install.)

(UPDATE: In fact, it appears that the updated drivers were NOT in fact included in 7.02, or any CHF. First, as mentioned in the comments below a discussion on the Adobe Forums confirmed that these drivers were NOT included in 7.02. Also, note that CHF 1 for 7.02 lists the link for the driver updates as something you need to do yourself, under "additional information". There's also no mention of the JDBC drivers in the technotes for 7.02 CHF's 2 or 3, so it seems safe to conclude that 7.02 users do need to apply the update individually to get the updated JDBC drivers.

But better still, if you have 7.02 installed and wonder what version you have, you can find out for yourself. Check out this later entry of mine which helps you determine what version of the DB drivers you are indeed now running.)

As for 6.1, it's not clear but do we need to apply it if we have the latest 6.1 updater (6,1,0,83762 )? Again that build's macromedia_drivers.jar also lacks some of the files added by this updater, so I would assume so. I applied the update to my CFMX 6.1 updater release including also the important updating of the Sequelink ODBC Server as indicated in the technote. Don't miss that, if you're running on 6.1 (not needed on 7). After restarting, things are working.

Warning for those with 6.1 and 5 installed

I should note that I did find that my CF5 server (also running on this same dev box) suddenly, and for the first time ever since this box was created a few months ago, started raging with a persistent 55% cpu utilization for ntconsolejava.exe. I certainly would have assumed that the problem was in my CFMX 6.1 services, but by process of elimination it was the stopping of "ColdFusion Management Repository Server" (from CF5) that did the trick. That runs a JRun instance in the CF5 server.

I can't see how this would be connected, but I point it out in case it happens to others. I don't know what to do about it. I may just stop my CF5 server until I ever need it. I suppose I could also just set the management service to manual. I don't recall what the mgt service did in CF5. A quick review of the docs shows it had to do with archiving and admin reporting.

New Features in the Update Driver

But perhaps more important, as for the features it adds, did anyone notice the "sql server nt authentication" it enables? It seems that would solve a useful problem, but I could not get it to work. I followed all the steps including extracting the DLL (it's in the zip) and creating an "other" datasource type with the provided "authenticationmethod" in the JDBC URL. Has it worked for anyone?

Note also the interesting new spy feature, which can provide some useful diagnostics (think SQL Profiler, but for any DB and all the info tracked in a log file on the CF server). I was able to get it working successfully with a SQL Server database (using the "other datasource type" as explained in the technote), but when I tried to add it to an odbc dsn against an Access DB, using the connection string approach listed, nothing happened (no spy log created, until I used the "other datasource approach).

Note as well that the updates offer various fixes for SQL Server, Oracle, and Informix. It's also an update that pure JRun 4 users can/should run. I will point out that one blogger has found a change in behavior regarding multiple statements on a single SQL line: http://www.feed-squirrel.com/blog/index.cfm/2006/6/8/CREATE-TABLE-from-CF-7.

See the technote (linked at the top here) to learn more. I've also opened a question in the Adobe forums with this same info: http://www.adobe.com/cfusion/webforums/forum/messageview.cfm?catid=143&threadid=1180864&enterthread=y, as I can't assume as many people read my blog as will read that.

I'll be curious to hear (here or there) what others have experienced and what they think of these new features.

I should warn that the technote indicates a couple of times that you should not try to put these new connection string values into the "connection string" field of a DSN, instead creating an "other" datasource type and providing them on the JDBC URL for that DSN. When I made the mistake, I found that I could not query any ODBC datasources nor could I even start the CFMX Admin or get debugging on any page. All complained that the "DataSource service is not available.". I found no neo-query.bak to recover from, so was quite stuck. A careful analysis of the new-query file found that inappropriate CRLF character codes had made their way into the file (As 0a and 0d values that made for bad xml). I removed them (not trivial to do correctly) to get things back in order, so FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED.

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I want to make sure people see the comments from a couple of Adobe folks in the forum entry I pointed to above, who have added some insights since I wrote this:


Take their comments to heart (as to why they have not included these updated drivers automatically, even in 7.02) before you go implementing them. In other words, test things carefully.
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