FLAP Phase Two Prep Status Update: Name Change and KIDS Bug

With prep for and recovery from the VISTA Community Meeting in Sacramento, it's a good time to jump back into our series of blog posts about FLAP Phase Two Prep, which has continued through this period.

On 5 January we delivered a preview RSA file of MSC Fileman 22.2V3 to VA so their MSC Fileman 22.2 intake contract with Leidos could shift to the refreshed codebase. Since then I've been working on verification, cleanup, and packaging to prepare to distribute MSC Fileman 22.2 to the rest of the community.

About the FLAP Phase Two Prep Sprint

Yesterday, we completed the monthlong, intensive sprint to update our first release of Fileman 22.2 from March 2013 to produce MSC Fileman 22.2. We in this case consisted of Don Creaven, Zach Gonzales, George Timson, Sidney Tarason, David Whitten, OSEHRA Product Manager Mike Henderson, and me, with FLAP documenter Kathy Ice working in parallel on the manuals (see below) and FLAP system manager David Wicksell working hard to keep our servers accessible during this period of trials and tribulations. The focus of this update was on:

FLAP and Fileman's Architectural Role

To say that File Manager is VISTA's database management system is a gross understatement, so gross that it is more misleading than helpful.

Traditional database systems run side by side with the applications, offering data-related services (like creating, reading, updating, and deleting records - the services with the unattractive acronym CRUD - along with many, many other such services). In other words, most DBMSes have a peer-to-peer relationship with the applications that use them to manage their data.

VA FileMan 22.2 FileMan Routine Changes and Visual Cross-Reference Documentation link.

By following the installation instruction of the Fileman 22.2 submission in OSEHRA Technique Journel (http://code.osehra.org/journal/browse/publication/27), we  install Fileman 22.2 sucessfully on a VistA instance based on FOIA 082412 release. Routine changes are extracted and imported into VistA-FOIA git repository based on FOIA 082412. The difference between Fileman 22.2 and FOIA 082412 can be view directly via github:

Fileman vs FOIA 082412

Fileman 22.2 Documentation Suite

The Fileman 22.0 documentation suite, as released by VA, included: Release Notes, Installation Guide, Technical Manual, Getting Started Manual, Advanced User Manual, and Programmer Manual.

We're in the process now of revising the documentation suite for the 22.2 release. We have completed the Release Notes, and I believe that the current draft has been uploaded to the "Documents" section of this project. (It is a "current draft" because we haven't yet received VA approval for it.)

Look at Me, I’m Invisible!


This project is really exciting for a number of reasons. The extensions to Fileman are exciting. The improvements to Lab are exciting. The opportunity to engage OSEHRA is exciting. Developing a project for VA outside of VA is exciting.

I, alas, am working on the non-exciting part of the project. I’m doing the documentation. I’m working on the afterthought, the bit that nobody really finds all that interesting.

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