ODBC Connection error after upgrade from MapForce 2016SP1 to 2016R2 or 2016R2SP1

Date:2 May 2016
Product/Release:LANSA Composer - V6.0
Abstract:MapForce’s interaction with ODBC has changed between 2016SP1 and 2016R2, adversely affecting MapForce’s ability to establish this connection.
Submitted By:LANSA Technical Support
Updated:14 October 2016

Description:

Update: This issue has been corrected in Mapforce version 2017, so this is a recommended upgrade for any IBM i customers affected by the following issue.

It seems that the behaviour of MapForce when establishing an ODBC connection has changed between MapForce 2016SP1 and 2016R2 (and 2016R2SP1), such that previously successful ODBC connections can no longer be established when existing maps are opened. Further, the failed connection attempt(s) result in user profiles becoming disabled on the database server - which can be a significant inconvenience for corporate customers.

An existing map, for example, LCD_ORDERSIN_02.mfd, can be successfully opened in MapForce Version 2016, service pack 1 (2016SP1) and you are prompted (as expected) for credentials to connect to the database server.
IBM Signon screen

After completing the signon dialog, the map opens correctly:
MapForce Map Screen

After installing MapForce Version 2016, Release 2 (2016R2) or 2016R2SP1 and rebooting the PC, if you attempt to open LCD_ORDERSIN_02.mfd again, this time you will not be prompted as expected for credentials to connect to the database server, and the ODBC connection fails
Example of ODBC connection failure

The text of the messages in the Messages pane:

LCD_ORDERSIN_02.mfd: Consistency validation failed - 1 error(s), 0 warning(s)
The component TXDOC_DATABASE does not have any valid structure information.
Database Connection Error
Reason: Failed to connect to the database
Unknown Error occurred while trying to open the connection.
[IBM][System i Access ODBC Driver]Communication link failure. comm rc=8002 - CWBSY0002 - Password for user on system LANSA is not correct, Password length = 0, Prompt Mode = Never, System IP Address = 123.123.123.123

In addition to the failure, the user profile will be disabled on the IBM i server. The IBM i server generally does this automatically after three failed connection attempts (this may be different depending on your companys failed login policy) so this indicates that MapForce (or the driver) has unsuccessfully attempted the connection at least three times.

This Mapforce change of behaviour has been reported to Altova. In the meantime, this issue can be avoided or worked around as follows:

  • don't upgrade to 2016R2 or 2016R2SP1 until it has been confirmed by LANSA that this issue is resolved.
  • using appropriate Connection settings, make sure you have connected (via 5250 or iNav) with Client Access before opening maps. Contact LANSA support if assistance is required with the connection settings.
  • use a DSN-less connection string by embedding the password in the connection string ( PWD=XXXXX; ) Contact LANSA support if assistance is required with this workaround.