Tuesday, June 18, 2013

IBM Total Solutions Event Brussels Forum 24-25/09/2013

I thought I might already send out a reminder for this annual Total Solutions Event at the Brussels Forum in September. So you can make all necessary arrangements before the holidays.

What's it about ?
If you're a Benelux customer and you want to keep up to date about all things mainframe then you should take the time for this conference. A wide audience is targeted as there are tracks for managers, architects, software developers and technical people. The emphasis is on the software side but there's is also a pure technical track on System z. Let me give you an overview of the tracks :
  • TRACK 1 - Trends in Enterprise Computing
  • TRACK 2 - Achitecting System z-centric Enterprise
  • TRACK 3 - Increasing your Business agility with new Industry Solutions on System z
  • TRACK 4 - Creating Business Value with the latest System z Technology
  • TRACK 5 - Extending, transforming and growing your Transaction Processing Applications
  • TRACK 6 - Making your IT infrastructure smarter
  • TRACK 7 - Increasing Productivity and Time to Marketing with the latest Application Development Solutions
  • TRACK 8 - Staying ahead of Today´s Data and Information Management Challenges Architectures
Where : IBM Brussels Forum
When : 24-25 September 2013. Unfortunately the event has been reduced to two days now.
You can already register over here.
The full agenda will be added later.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Webcast : zEnterprise : The Best gets Better

zEnterprise : The Best gets Better. Hmmm, I wonder what this could be about . . .

This promises to be an interesting webcast on Tueasday July 23th with as speakers a.o. Doug Balough and Stephen Leonard. It's at 11:00 am ET or at 5:00 pm Brussels Time.

I'm taking over the contents which you can find over here.
Organizations of all sizes are under intense competitive pressure to provide new and improved services. To innovate. To differentiate. To deliver new value. And to do it all for less with fewer resources.

There is a solution. On July 23, zEnterprise® gets even better. Come see how you can enable better business results:
  • Energize your enterprise applications to foster growth
  • Save money by consolidating workloads and exploiting the cloud
  • Improve security on the industry's most trusted and resilient infrastructure
  • Improve performance, flexibility and scale
With new capabilities in cloud, analytics and mobile, zEnterprise truly offers it all – for whatever comes your way now and in the future.

Register now to join IBM senior business leaders and industry-leading clients on July 23 to learn more about the unique value and new capabilities zEnterprise brings to market.
Registration is on the same webpage.
As I always say, just check it out !

Friday, June 7, 2013

June 7th 2013 - DB2 for z/OS : Happy 30th anniversary

This is a much anticipated anniversary in z/OS land. A lot of events are organized to celebrate it. As I cannot list them out all, I thought I'd take some alternative approach. So I'll just let some pictures do the talking. They show you how much this anniversary lives in the community. Be sure to click on the pictures to see the stories behind them or just to get some good sources for future information.

Cake and more cake and social media

More social media
And back to where it all started. Click on the picture to get to the announcement page. The American and European announcements are put together.
Happy Anniversary, DB2 !

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

IBM Announcement : Software withdrawal: IBM System z selected products

Before you start to panic when I mention Tivoli Storage Manager for z/OS, the announcement is about Withdrawals from Marketing : 'Software withdrawal: IBM System z selected products - Some replacements available (ZP13-0277)'.

So, one of the softwares that becomes End of Marketing on September 9, 2013 is IBM Tivoli Storage Manager for z/OS V5.5 (5698-A13). I was just curious if any replacement would be mentioned. And indeed, the replacement is Tivoli Storage Manager for z/OS Media V6.3 (5698-Z01). I wrote about this replacement some time ago.

Another one that might interest some people is the WDFM of IBM Lifecycle Extension for z/OS V1.10 (5656-A01). As you might expect, there is no replacement for this. End of Marketing is August 26, 2013.

And there's also z/OS 1.13 which is withdrawn from marketing on January 31, 2014. This is later than usual, but I guess this has everything to do with the transition to z/OS 2.1 which is its replacement. This should, I suppose, give every one who is still on a lower release the chance to get at least to z/OS 1.13.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Announcement : DS8870 Release 7.1

Today there were two announcements for the DS8870. One on hardware : 'IBM System Storage DS8870 (machine type 2421, 2422, 2423, and 2424) delivers advanced Easy Tier capabilities, enhanced resiliency, and business continuity functions (ZP13-0060)' and one on related software functionalities : 'IBM System Storage DS8870 (Machine type 2396, 2397, 2398, and 2399) Function Authorizations for advanced Easy Tier Server capabilities (ZG13-0055)'.

Apart from every one putting more and more focus on Flash, I think a large part of this announcement is about Easy Tier V5. But not everything applies to System z. The first feature is only applicable to Power systems : Easy Tier Server, which allows to copy some of the hottest data to SSD disks on the Power server. These SSD disks serve as a cache and should give you much faster response times by overcoming latency of the SAN. This remains of course managed by Easy Tier itself.

Easy Tier Application gives the administrator some influence over the Easy Tier automatic processes as he can sort of overrule them for specific cases. It "is an application-aware storage application programming interface (API) to help deploy storage more efficiently through enabling applications and middleware to direct more optimal placement of data by communicating important information about current workload activity and application performance requirements. In this release, the new Easy Tier Application feature also enables clients to assign distinct application volumes to a particular tier in the Easy Tier pool, disregarding Easy Tier's advanced data migration function". It also gives better insight in the working of Easy Tier.

The Easy Tier Heat Map Transfer utility "is able to provide whatever the data placement algorithm is on the Metro Mirror/Global Copy/Global Mirror (MM/GC/GM) primary site and reapply it on the MM/GC/GM secondary site(...). With this capability, DS8000 systems can maintain application-level performance at an application secondary site when it takes over in supporting a workload after a failover from the primary to secondary site". The last two features are of course platform independent.

What else ? I won't sum up everything but I just want to mention two other things
  • Prevention of accidental loss of data when initializing a z/OS volume with ICKDSF INIT or REFORMAT. Ability to determine what z/OS Systems a volume is online to.
  • There's a low cost entry class configuration option which comes down to more drives per device adapter
The software announcement is about the Function Authorizations which "are for billing purposes only". The new function which is introduced is for the Easy Tier Server function : IBM System Storage Easy Tier Server indicator (feature number 7084).

And for all the rest of the goodies ? Well, just check out the announcements ?

Monday, June 3, 2013

Updated alerts for Red Alert APAR OA42277

Last week I posted on a 'Red Alert : Potential loss of data for DB2 v10 users on z/OS 1.12 and 1.13'. Now there are two updates on this Alert.
You can check them out over here :
I'm taking over the content of this last Red Alert.


An error has been discovered in a Pre Req for Red Alert APAR OA42277

Potential loss of access to data in DB2 or MQSeries Log data sets greater than 2gb on z/OS 1.12, 1.13 after application of PTF's UA68675 & UA68676 for APAR OA39870 and base z/OS 2.1.


Any application using the RBA interface to Media Manager accessing Extended Format (EF) VSAM data sets greater than 2gb may lose access to the data past 2gb. Applications using the relative CI interface are not affected. Data sets defined with Extended Addressability are also not affected. This includes all current versions of DB2 and MQSeries and potentially other users of Media Manager's RBA Interface to access EF VSAM Data Sets greater than 2gb, such as IMS FastPath DEDB and other utility programs which may access these data sets.

A usermod/method is currently being developed to be able to access the data above 2gb.

Please see APAR OA42425 for more details.

Recommended Actions:

  1. Do not install PTF's for Red Alert APAR OA42277 or PTF's for Pre Req OA39870.
  2. To avoid the problem in Red Alert APAR OA42277, zDMF users should refrain from using zDMF until complete PTF chain can be installed. The risk of OA42277 is extremely small for those customers without zDMF.
  3. If PTF's for OA39870 are installed on z/OS 1.12 or 1.13 please remove as soon as possible.
  4. Extended format VSAM datasets greater than 2gb, such as DB2 Logs, MQ Logs and IMS FastPath DEDB, accessed with Media Manager using the RBA interface while the fix for OA39870 was installed, should be verified. Please see APAR OA42425 for instructions.
  5. Monitor APAR OA42425 for updates regarding the availability of the usermod and recovery procedures.
  6. z/OS 2.1 users will need to install the ++APAR for OA42425 when available.