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Client: EVRY AB

Aktors has been participating in development of J/XFS based systems, which are used both in retail banking and ATMs. These systems are now being deployed or already in production in e.g Spain, Middle-East and Scandinavia.

What is J/XFS?

The J/XFS (Java eXtensions for Financial Services) standard defines the interface between a pure Java application and a wide range of financial devices (e.g. ATMs, printers, pinpads, card readers) and provides a layer of separation between application and device logic. Without J/XFS, integrating numerous banking devices with branch systems is problematic, time consuming and expensive. It also leaves the branch with an inflexible solution that is not easily updated when new applications are required or devices need to be added. The J/XFS interface solves all these problems.

J/XFS was developed by leading system suppliers DeLaRue, IBM, NCR, Wincor Nixdorf and Sun Microsystems and is now hosted, monitored and maintained by the European Committee for Standardisation, CEN.

J/XFS will become increasingly important as it provides a solid foundation on which future networked banking solutions can be built. It is also easily integrated into the modern retail banking solutions being offered by the major industry players.

Advantages of J/XFS

  • Java language advantages
  • The Java language supports an automated garbage collection facility that frees all unused memory, thus relieving the developer of this responsibility. There are also no pointers in the Java language, which are common sources of application instability. Experience has shown that applications written in the Java language tend to be more robust than those written in other languages, which is a critical requirement for financial systems.

  • Reduced client administration costs
  • If the client portion of a financial system is written as a loadable application, the entire application code can reside on the in-bank-server. This way, every client is able to automatically access the newest software upon startup. These advantages take effect especially when a large number of clients are installed at the site.

  • Device independence
  • The J/XFS standard abstracts the vendor-specific data sequences used to control financial devices into a set of properties, methods and events unique to each device type (card reader, key pin pad, etc.). As a result, J/XFS-compliant financial applications become independent of the underlying device hardware, which the application has to access. That also means that hardware can be replaced or upgraded without affecting the application.

  • Location independence
  • The communication layer of the J/XFS standard ensures identical application access to financial devices, whether they may be local or remote. Since multiple teller stations share centralized resources, it is irrelevant where these devices, such as passbook printers and document scanners, are physically deployed.

  • Platform independence
  • The J/XFS standard utilizes a language-based platform, with the only requirement to run being the presence of a Java Virtual Machine. The JVM may be present in a browser, an operating system, or directly embedded within the microcode of a specialized computer chip. This way, the J/XFS standard is independent of any particular hardware or operating system.

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