Wednesday, December 29, 2010
We don't know what the next year will bring us but I surely wish every one the best for 2011 : A Happy New Year and good health to you and your family.
Thanks to all my readers for stopping by so regularly, to all the people who linked to this blog and to every one who gave me great feedback during 2010.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
But February already makes up for lack of interesting news. First of all, DB2 10 goes beta and there's a preview announcement of z/OS 1.12 and also an enhanced z/OSMF 1.12. Then there's ProtecTIER Deduplication Gateway, the virtual tape solution that emulates tape drives and writes the data to an attached disk array, which now comes available for System z as well. And, strangely enough I also pay some attention to the Power7 engine, allthough I didn't know then, it would become part of a new mainframe announcement, later on this year. Next to that, we see the first signs that the DS8100, DS8300 as well as the DS6000 will gently be replaced by the DS8700 in 2010.
If you want to read some more on ProtectTIER deduplication for mainframe, I payed some more attention to it in a March post. In that month there was also the creation of the new GSE Belux site, which is now used by almost every working group and contains lots of interesting information. We also see that z/OS 1.12 will no longer be available on 34xx tapes.
In April there are quite some storage announcements. In the year of its 10th anniversary, LTO comes with the fifth generation with 1.5TB of native capacity and up to 140 MB/sec native transfer rates. We also have a new DS8700 announcement with 600GB FC drives, 2TB SATA drives. But certainly the most important part of the announcement is Easy Tier with its automatic and manual modes. It takes care of automatic relocation of hot data to SSD drives and it also makes lots of volume migrations non-disruptive. Next to that ProtecTIER now offers many-to-one replication and XIV introduces 2TB SATA drives hereby doubling its capacity.
May shows us it's becoming a habit to add 2 years of extra (priced) support called Lifecycle Extension to the z/OS version that will go out of support in September, so this time for z/OS 1.9. It's also becoming clear that DS6800, DS8100 and DS8300 will be phased out. By the end of 2010 limited upgrades and disk types remain available. And as most of the customers are starting to pay (heavily) on maintenance by now, the message is clear, no ? We see a steady capacity growth of the TS7740 en TS7720 Virtualization Engines, too. BMC also did some catching up with the announcement that quite some additional products (focusing on DB2 utilities) will start using the zIIP from now on.
In June we learn about a new APAR (APAR PM12256) that should allow you to improve the redirection of DRDA workload over TCP/IP to the zIIP from some 45%-50% to about 60%. And you know what : it actually did ! Furthermore VTFM (Virtual Tape Facility for Mainframe Systems) is now also supporting zIIP for most of its workload. VTFM acts as a virtual tape library kind of like CA-VTape that already supported the zIIP pretty much from the beginning. IBM also announced the End of Marketing of their smaller TS3400 Tape Library without offering a replacement.
In July IBM managed to re-arrange my vacation plans by announcing the zEnterprise on July 22, 2010. A small offer for "A new dimension in computing". The zEnterprise did not only bring us a new mainframe (z196), it also introduced the IBM zEnterprise BladeCenter Extension (zBX) and the IBM zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager. Together they form the zEnterprise System. For the moment the zBX contains Power7 Blades and/or the Smart Analytics Optimizer. The goal is to use the mainframe as a central system to manage the heterogeneous platforms which are connected to it. In the beginning we will be mainly talking about managing, setting up, monitoring and automating these systems. But in the end we should be talking about a common policy based Workload Management. This will be realized through the IBM zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager. Oh, and there was also a new MLC pricing especially for the z196 : AWLC (Advanced Workload License Charge). The larger the customer, the higher the benefit. There's no longer a so-called technology dividend.
August and September were pretty calm after all the announcements in July. I even forgot to mention software announcements on z/OS 1.12, z/OSMF 1.12, z/VM 6.1, DS8700 (z/OS Distributed Data Backup) and PL/I for z/OS V4.1. Some of them were discussed in our latest Realdolmen System z e-zine which also came out in August. PL/I for example should now use less resources than its predecessor as it's using the new instructions on the z196. This seems to become a goal for IBM when launching new software : better performance without increased CPU usage. Which often used to be the opposite in the past.
The Total Solution event for System z organized at the IBM forum was a success and will surely be repeated in 2011.
October was also quite eventful this year. First there were some software announcements like z/VSE 4.3 and the IMS 12 Quality Partnership program (QPP). But the most important software announcement was of course the announcement of DB2 10. And here I continue the story I started with PL/I : "Just by REBINDing you should obtain out-of-the-box CPU savings ranging from 5% to 10% for traditional workloads up to 20% for some specific workloads". Read all the further details over here. Oh, and it's possible to migrate straight from DB2 V8.
On the hardware part there's more exciting news : the DS8800 is announced. I would summarize by saying : faster processor, faster connectivity and larger capacity on a smaller (hence more cost-efficient) footprint. But the message is clear : despite everything said and written, the DS8000 is here to stay for quite some time. Continuity prevails.
Less exciting news on the other hand : zBX will not become available for the z10.
Actually, November and December were rather quiet months. There was an announcement of a price increase for DB2 V8. Next to that there were also some updates on the status of the zPrime and TurboHercules cases, not that there was suddenly anything spectacular to mention.
Well, actually just some general remarks. First of all not only LTO had its 10th anniversary this year. Linux on z was also introduced ten years ago in 2000. And I think, when we see the zEnterprise today, that it's partially building on the success of the IFL and the other specialty engines. I'd say Smart Analytics Optimizer is the first System z specialty engine out of the box. So I can only fully support the direction IBM is taking with this zEnterprise. And of course the question raises : will we see a zEnteprise BC next year ? I guess so.
Second, what about cloud ? In your blog, not very present it is, Yoda would say. Well, it actually is, I think, I just don't like the term itself and I still have the feeling it's just a new name for things we've been doing for years (decennia). So I'd like to repeat a quote from James Governor's blog on this : "The next time someone tries to take you through 30 slides explaining the cloud you can just nod sagely, and say… “ohhhh. you mean servers, middleware and apps. Yeah I get it".”
And thirdly I would like to conclude with a trend I certainly like a lot. IBM has shown over the past year that it's thinking cross-brand and cross-product more than ever. Take e.g. StorWize : it introduces Easy Tier from the DS8000 and it takes the easy-to-use graphical interface of the XIV. Taking the strong points of one technology and not being afraid to use them in another product may continue to deliver some promising results in the future. Need I mention the zEnterprise in this context ?
Well, that's it for 2010. Looking forward to 2011 and I hope you will join me in the coming year too.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
- IBM develops a storage product, tries to find a name for it and finds out the name is already taken by another company
- In the mean time IBM is interested in the compression technology of Storwize and takes over the company
- Hey, Storwize was the name they had in mind from the beginning for their newly developped product. Now they can actually use this name
- IBM launches StorWize V7000 and guess what, this has absolutely nothing to do with the former Storwize real-time compression.
- What about the former Storwize realtime compression then ? Well, how about a new name for this one : IBM real-time compression. What do you think of that ? A new name for the product formerly known as Storwize (*) which has absolutley nothing to do with the new Storwize. Got it ?
This is some information you can find on the IBM Real-time compression Appliance STN6500 page :
"IBM Real-time Compression is a new storage efficiency solution for primary, active dataYou can find more information on the IBM Real-time compression page and (why not) on the former Storwize site. Or here's a nice introductory video, too :
IBM Real-time Compression Appliances are the only storage compression solutions that can shrink primary, online data in real time, without performance degradation. By significantly reducing storage requirements, organizations can keep up to five times more information online for analytics, use the improved efficiency to reduce storage costs, or achieve a combination of greater capacity and reduced cost.
By transparently compressing primary data by up to 80 percent, IBM Real-time Compression helps control the growth of storage, reducing the amount of storage to be managed, powered and cooled".
(*) OK, for those not getting the reference : still remaining a Prince fan too. Prince refused to use his name for a couple of years due to troubles with record companies. So, people referred to him as The Artist Formerly Known As Prince or TAFKAP. Confusing ? Not at all !
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Summarizing : all 73GB and 146GB Solid State Disk Drives are withdrawn from marketing. As of today, they can no longer be ordered on any DS8000 machine. On the DS8700 the drive sets and half drive sets will be replaced by the 600GB SSD drive sets. For the DS8100 and the DS8300 no replacements are offered. That means that on these machines the only drives you can still order are the 300GB and the 450GB Fiber Channel drive sets.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
"IBM Redguides focus on the business view of technology that solves business issues, provides business value, or enables competitive advantage by applying existing technologies or exploring a roadmap for emerging technologies."Redguides are more written from a business perspective and it's already indicated in the subtitle : 'for business leaders'. They also start each time with an 'executive summary'. Does that make them less valuable for the technical guys ? No, just the opposite as it puts everything into a broader business perspective. On the one hand, it takes a step back from the really technical aspects but on the other hand it gives you a good general introduction to the topic which is discussed. So, you can use them as introduction to fields you're not particularly familiar with or it might give you extra, non-technical arguments when you have to convince your management about a certain technology.
Is this all too theoretical for you ? I'll give you a couple of examples of Redguides.
- Using IBM System z As the Foundation for Your Information Management Architecture
I already mentioned this redguide when talking about the Smart Analytics Optimizer. Just take a look at the content and you'll know what I mean : Information management challenges, Strengths of IBM System z for information management, Exploring the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS V1.1. As I said : less technical, good overview.
- The IBM Mainframe Today: System z Strengths and Values
This is exactly what the title says. Do the test : think of a couple of strengths of the mainframe and you'll find them back here ... with the right arguments for the non-believers.
- IBM zEnterprise System: Smart Infrastructure for Today’s Heterogeneous Business Applications
This one particulary focuses on the zEnterprise and gives a good overall introduction to it, once again, from a business perspective.
As I always say : just check them out !
Friday, December 10, 2010
Curious to know whether there is still a paper version, I started googling about a bit and came across these pages.
- CA Technologies still has a CA Catalog Poster for DB2 9 for z/OS page where you can order the poster for DB2 9.
- BMC mails you a poster and a cd with a DB2 9 for z/OS Catalog Tables Interactive Guide. You can request them over here.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
- Technical document : z/OS Version 1 Release 12 Installation Plan Checklist
This is pretty straightforward : "z/OS 1.12 Installation Plan checklist is for installing and migrating to z/OS 1.12 from z/OS release 10 or release 11. To be used as a supplement to existing product publications." Still, it's a very valuable and thorough document. Look e.g. at the first check : "Ensure a System z server is available" ;-)
- White paper : z/OS V1.12 Management Facility Resource Requirements
Some practical experiences on setting up and using z/OSMF
- White paper : IBM Handbook Using DS8000 Data Replication for Data Migration
Starting with reasons to migrate, passing to various replication methods and ending with all kinds of migration scenarios (from easy to quite complicated) this is a very interesting document on data migration.
- White paper : DS8000 FlashCopy usage in DFSMSdss
This White Paper shows some usage examples for FlashCopy in a z/OS environment using DFSMSdss. It contains lots of illustrations and examples. Definitely worth a look.
- Presentations : IBM® zEnterprise™ System Network Virtualization, Management, and Security (Parts 1 and 2 - Overview and Details)
In fact I can be very short on this one : everything you always wanted to know about networking on the zEnterprise. Or as the abstract says : "Part 1 presents a high-level overview of the networking topics surrounding the new architecture. (...) Part 2 presents a more detailed view of the underlying architecture, its routing and security structures, and some of its software definitions. Part 2 is suitable for a technical audience that wants to understand more about the design, positioning, and implementation of the new architecture."
- White paper : Beginners Guide to Coding Java Batch Jobs
This white paper introduces you to programming Java Batch applications, it explains the differences with COBOL batch and gives you a step by step example for coding a 'Hello World' Java Batch application.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Here's the article on zPrime : 'Neon zPrime, IBM battle in Limbo'.
The article discusses the lawsuit in the States, the situation in the EC (which might be more favorable to Neon) and the fact that the genie is out of the box. The author indicates that even if Neon loses the battle with zPrime, others will follow and will eventually have a chance to be more successful.
Here's the TurboHercules article : 'Microsoft Quietly Invests in IBM Emulator TurboHercules'.
Well, the title says it all. As Microsoft earlier supported T3, it now also (financially) support TurboHercules. You can find all the details in the article itself.
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
- DancingDinosaur - Mainframe computing in the 21st century
This is a blog by "Alan Radding (...) a 20-year IT industry analyst and journalist covering mainframe, midrange, PC, web, and cloud computing". The latest posts are mainly about the z196. Don't expect any technical posts (hey, that's why I'm here for) but Alan writes about new workloads, Linux on mainframe, IBM's strategy concerning mainframe ...
- The Storage Buddhist
"Philosophical ramblings on storage by a guy who would really rather be sailing. Jim Kelly is a storage architect currently working for IBM New Zealand, in the mighty Pacific Ocean". Don't get this wrong : here are some very good posts with recent subjects like where and when to use SSDs, StorWize, Easy Tier, Quality of Service on StorWize and SVC ...
- Barry Whyte - An exchange and discussion of Storage Virtualization
This is an IBM blog with focus on virtualization. No need to say recent coverage was largely on StorWize and SVC. But there's also an interesting 'Brief history of recent time' covering storage history from 1990 up to now.
- Anthony's Blog: Using System Storage - The view from down under
"Anthony Vandewerdt works for IBM Australia as a Storage Solutions Specialist. His goal is to share his knowledge and experience of using IBM Storage solutions and learn more along the way"
I like this one, along with the next one, a lot ! Anthony writes about his own experiences and this definitely includes quite some posts on (installing) XIV. Another nice feature is that we regularly get updates from the IBM support site on every kind of storage.
- Storage CH Blog - an (IBM) Storage-related Blog
This blog is by Roger Luethy, Storage Specialist at IBM Switzerland. The focus is mainly on providing information on anything storage related. It has a very wide coverage on redbooks, installations, announcements, other interesting blog posts, competition ... Roger is quite prolific following everything very closely.
Monday, November 29, 2010
You can always start with the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer page, the announcement and its brochure.
Here are a couple of presentations on the subject
- IBM Smart Analytics optimizer by Hendrik de Smet
- IBM Smart Analytics optimizer for DB2 for z/OS by Willie Favero (Share presentation)
- IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS , V1.1 Beta Experiences by William Schray (Share presentation)
I also found some manuals at the Publication Center
- IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS, V1.1 Getting Started (GH12-6953-00)
- IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS, V1.1 Installation Guide (SH12-6916-00)
- IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS, V1.1 Stored Procedures and Messages Reference (SH12-6917-00)
- IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer Studio V1.1, User's Guide (SH12-6919-00)
Friday, November 26, 2010
- IBM Smart Analytics optimizer by hendrik de Smet
- Detecting Soft Failures Using z/OS PFA (Predictive Failure Analysis) by Jan Tits
- DS8800 by Jacques Glorieux
- Recent evolutions in mainframe related storage by Walter Casteels
- z10 and zEnterprise CPU Measurement Facility by Jean-Paul Goemaere
06/12/2010 - ITSOZ4BE
IBM zEnterprise System Technical Update
07/12/2010 - ITSOZ3BE
IBM zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager Overview
08/12/2010 - ITSOZ1BE
z/OS Version 1 Release 12 Technical Update
09/12/2010 - ITSOZ2BE
Parallel Sysplex Update and High Availability Topics
10/12/2010 - ITSOZ5BE
z/OS Networking Technologies Update
Thursday, November 25, 2010
The reason for the price increase (and I summarize) is mainly that DB2 V8 has been around now for more than 8 years and that prices haven't significantly changed during that period allthough lots of functionalities (hence cost reductions) have been added. And "(...) providing the highest quality support on an old version drives additional service costs".
As of April 1, 2011 people still on DB2 V8 will see a price increase with a maximum of 10% for DB2 V8, QMF Distributed edition and DB2 Net Search Extender in all European countries. IBM DB2 UDB for z/OS V8 VUE S&S will have an even higher increase.
I know there's still some time but customers still on DB2 V8 should consider upgrading to DB2 9 or DB2 10 (skip-level migration possible) as DB2 V8 will be end-of-service on April 30, 2012.
By the way, Happy Thanksgiving to my American readers !
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Next there's 'zEnterprise’s zManager-Tivoli Combination Presents a Fresh Approach to Resource Optimization' elaborating on the zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager and how it relates to the already existing IBM Systems Director.
Another article 'IBM’s zEnterprise Delivers Game-Changing Pricing' focuses not only on software pricing (AWLC, remember) but also on hardware pricing. Mind you, the prices are US prices and may vary in other countries. But I think the overall message remains the same.
You see, reasons enough to have a look at this issue of Mainframe Executive. By the way, you can download to .pdf version over here.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
It describes z/OS DDB and FDRSOS (which, by the way, stands for 'Saveguard Open Storage) and how FB logical volumes can be accessed from within z/OS :
"When the zDDB LIC feature key is installed and enabled and a volume group type specifies either FICON or ESCON interfaces, this volume group has implicit access to all FB logical volumes that are configured in addition to all CKD volumes specified in the volume group. Then, using the appropriate software, a z/OS host can perform backup and restore functions for FB logical volumes configured on a storage facility image for open systems hosts".It also explains how you have to configure such FBA volumes in HCD and further steps to execute in order to use z/OS DDB and FDRSOS. The authors also give some own experiences on using this solution.
If you need more information, you can find a Share (Boston) presentation on FDRSOS over here.
One last remark : it's no coincidence that the title of this post still indicates DS8700. For the moment DS8800 is not yet supporting z/OS Distributed Data Backup.
Friday, November 19, 2010
Still, not enough ? Well @craigmullins (yes, twitter again) pointed me to these two vWLC presentations about AutoSoftCapping (wmv, pdf) and SoftCapping to reduce your monthly software bill (wmv, pdf). Well actually they both start with some explanation on vWLC pricing and then continue with an explanation of AutoSoftCapping. This is a commercial product by a company called softwareonz. I have absolutely no relation to this company whatsoever but still, some of you might be interested in the product. More info and a FAQ can be found over here.
Thursday, November 18, 2010
But back to our Topic. In October there was a Technical University in Boston and all z/VSE presentations are gathered at the Technical Conference page of the z/VSE documentation pages.
Some of the presentations :
|z/VSE Trends and Directions - incl. Software Pricing and zEnterprise System (1.8MB) - Klaus Goebel, IBM|
|z/VSE Performance Update (1.2MB) |
Ingo Franzki, IBM
|z/VSE Tools Overview and Update (3.6MB) |
Ingo Franzki, IBM
|10 Years for the most successful partnership: z/VSE and Linux on System z (8.7MB) - Wilhelm Mild, IBM|
|Linux on System z - the Enterprise hub (6.3MB) |
Wilhelm Mild, IBM
|z/VSE Applications accessing DB2 on Linux on System z (4.8MB) |
Wilhelm Mild, IBM
|Disaster Scenarios and Backup procedures for z/VSE, z/VM and Linux on System z (3.7MB) - Wilhelm Mild, IBM|
|WebSphere MQ for z/VSE (2.8MB) |
Wilhelm Mild, IBM
|Workshop: Rational Developer for System z for z/VSE Development (1.6MB) |
Ingo Franzki,IBM and Wilhelm Mild, IBM
And if you page down a bit, there's also some presentations from an earlier Technical University at Berlin in May 2010.
As I always say : do check them out !
Thursday, October 28, 2010
- z/OS V1R12 Elements and features
Description of all z/OS elements indicating whether it's a base element or a priced or unpriced optional element
- z/OS V1R12 Migration and Installation page
This page contains the manuals for migrating from z/OS 1.10 and z/OS 1.11 to z/OS 1.12
Index of z/OS Migration Manuals
If you're still interested in earlier migrations, here's a collection of all earlier migration guides.
- Presentation : Migration to z/OS 1.12, part 1
Presentation : Migration to z/OS 1.12, part 2
I mentioned these presentations by Marna Walle on earlier migrations too. I only once had the opportunity to attend Marna Walle's presentations here in Europe during a Technical University last year and I can only say : the presentation material is good, but if you have the opportunity to see Marna give the presentations, do not hesitate !
- Presentation : z/OS V1R12 JES 3 Latest status and new features
The company, RealDolmen originated from, uses JES3, so here's one for them.
- PDF and Book files available with the Z/OS Information Center and
z/OS V1R12 elements and features PDF files
It's me I guess, but sometimes I have trouble finding my way through the Information Centers, so I usually start looking for the .PDF files. So, if you're in the same situation, here they are.
Just pay attention : both pages mention a migration guide from z/OS 1.9. Don't get your hopes up high : there is no direct migration path from z/OS 1.9 to z/OS 1.12. It's referring to a z/OS 1.11 manual.
- z/OS Statements of Direction
Always interesting to check whether there are some Statements of Direction that might have an impact on your shop in the future.
- z/OS and z/OSMF articles
Check out the latest z/OS Hot Topics Newsletter for various articles on z/OS, z/OS migration and z/OSMF. There's more on z/OSMF in this IBM Systems Magazine article by Gita Grube Berg and Anuja Deedwaniya, also highlighting the new functionalities in V1R12.
- IBM Platform Test
I just want to mention this site again as it's publishing a test report of every z/OS migration simulating a real-life sysplex environment. It's written from the perspective of the system engineer. They "describe the cross-product and integrated testing that we do" and "share our experiences. In short, if any of our experiences turn out to be painful,
we tell you how to avoid that pain". The latest publication is still on z/OS 1.11 but I expect to see a publication on a z/OS 1.12 migration by december.
Monday, October 25, 2010
The IMS Operational Best Practices teleconference playback is available at http://www.ibm.com/software/systemz/telecon/28sep/prz
There is also an upcoming "A Preview of IMS 12" teleconference on November 15 ready for registration at http://www-01.ibm.com/software/sw-events/teleconference/W454883N20567W34.html
There is an article on "Enhancing IMS" in the October IBM Systems Magazine Mainframe Extra at http://www.ibmsystemsmag.com/mainframe/IMS_v12/34748p1.aspx
And watch for the upcoming IMS article in the November IMS Systems Magazine Mainframe Extra, when posted, at http://www.ibmsystemsmag.com/mainframe/
Here are upcoming IMS user group meetings found through http://www.ims-ug.org/ or websites specified below:
- October 28 Dutch GSE at http://www.gsebelux.com/
- November 2 IMS Users Group Boston
- November 2-3 UK GSE Northamptonshire at http://www.gse.org.uk/tyc
- November 4 IMS Users Group Hartford
- November 9 IMS Users Group Victoria, British Columbia
- November 11 IMS Users Group Seattle
- November 15 SpDug Spain at http://gsesp.gse.org/grupos/grupos0.htm
- November 17 IMS User Group Phoenix
- November 18, Belgian GSE at http://www.gsebelux.com/
And these big events for IMS:
- Oct 24-29 IBM Information On Demand 2010 in Las Vegas at http://www-01.ibm.com/software/data/2010-conference/iod.html
- Nov 8-10 IMS Symposium 2010 Darmstadt, Germany at http://www.harmundi.com/conf10/
Thursday, October 21, 2010
The core of the message :
"If you are currently running CICS/VSE V2.3 and DL/I, you will not be able to do so on z/VSE V4.3. The highest supported z/VSE version and release when running both of these products is z/VSE V4.2.
z/VSE V4.3 also no longer provides product installation support for CICS/VSE V2.3. However, providing that DL/I is not required, IBM will not prohibit you from using CICS/VSE V2.3 with z/VSE V4.3. You will be able to install CICS/VSE V2.3 from an extended base tape supplied with a z/VSE V4.2 or earlier system. Alternatively, the CICS/VSE V2.3 sublibraries will remain in place if a Fast Service Upgrade (FSU) is used to upgrade to z/VSE 4.3. All other z/VSE V4.3 changes will be transparent.
z/VSE-supplied support for a CICS coexistence environment will be removed. However, you will still be able to run CICS/VSE V2.3 and CICS Transaction Server for VSE/ESA (CICS TS) V1.1.1 together on z/VSE V4.3."
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
The announcement is built around four key areas :
Improved operational efficiency for "out-of-the-box" DB2 CPU savings
Just by REBINDing you should obtain out-of-the-box CPU savings ranging from 5% to 10% for traditional workloads up to 20% for some specific workloads.
Unsurpassed resiliency for business-critical information
"Uniquely integrated technology allows DB2 for z/OS and System z to support your efforts of keeping your business running even when things go wrong or you need to make changes. DB2 10 innovations raise the bar on data resiliency through scalability improvements and fewer outages. This release delivers the ability to support up to five to ten times more concurrent active users in a single DB2 subsystem than in DB2 9 (...)"
Rapid application and warehouse deployment for business growth
"Business intelligence (BI) and analytics are more mission-critical than ever as demand for real-time data analysis on operational data increases. DB2 10 delivers significant capabilities to support this need, with better performance and CPU reductions, allowing you to manage and maintain your data in a single platform infrastructure with single audit and security processes, most importantly, which will allow users to obtain a consistent answer based on your core operational data maintained in a centralized location."
Enhanced business analytics and data visualization solutions with QMF
"Query Management Facility™ (QMF) Version 10 allows you to do more with your existing QMF investment than ever before. New analytic and mathematical functions and OLAP support dramatically enhance QMF's ability to deliver new function to business users -- an important option for BI and analytics usage. Providing access to many more data sources via JDBC opens QMF to a wider array of information that can be combined with QMF's known and trusted support for DB2 within the same report."
Prerequisites : you have to be on z/OS v1.10 and it runs on all z/Architecture.
General availability is October 22, 2010.
Some additional comments :
Migration from db2 V8 is also possible, but you might want to read the comments from Willie Favero about this on his blog.
Some related announcements :
'IBM DB2 10 for z/OS Value Unit Edition improves efficiency and resiliency (ZP10-0487)'
'IBM DB2 : New tools help you better manage your environment (ZP10-0349)'
Do attend the webcast in a couple of hours !
Monday, October 18, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
I already told you a similar story when I discussed PL/I for z/OS V4.1. And the title of this webcast on DB2 10 is telling you exactly the same message : they both offer more functionalities but at the same time they should consume less resources.
This webcast should give you some good insights on DB2 10 :
There is also a DB2 10 Beta customer telling his story and there's - what should be - a very interesting Q&A session with some of the most famous DB2 names around.
"In this session, you’ll learn how DB2 10 for z/OS delivers:
The Webcast is on Tuesday October 19, 2010, will take about an hour and a half and starts at 5 p.m. CET (Brussels). You can register over here.
You can find more details on Willie Favero's blog. And if you already want to have a better idea of some of the topics that will no doubt be discussed, you can have a look at this z/Journal article : 'Top-10 Features of DB2 10 for z/OS: A Preview'.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
But now it's already been withdrawn. So, in short this means : no zBX for the z10. You can find the reason for this in the announcement : 'Hardware withdrawal: IBM zEnterprise BladeCenter Extension (zBX) Model 001 (2458-001) (ZG10-0397)'.
"Based on the positive feedback surrounding the zEnterprise System launch, IBM has decided to focus on the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2® for z/OS® with zEnterprise 196 and Unified Resource Manager on the zBX Model 002. This will help clients to simplify and accelerate their time to value using a single approach and focusing on the latest technologies. As a result IBM is withdrawing the zBX Model 001 for System z10®, previously announced on July 22, 2010".By the way, you might want to view the .pdf of the announcement as the (European) announcement itself is rather illegible.
Monday, October 11, 2010
- Presentation : A System Programmer Productivity Tool Bag
Once in a while I just have to mention this one. These presentations from Bette Brody, which are updated regularly are "designed to point to and describe various information to assist in planning, aid in finding pertinent information, tools which are available to make a systems programmer job a bit easier". You will see that the most recent one is from Boston.
- Presentation : IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS , V1.1 Beta Experiences
This is another Share presentation which gives you some insight on how the Smart Analytics optimizer works and it gives lots of information on the implementation "with query workloads constructed to explore query offload, data mart definition, data mart loading, and offloaded query performance" . If you're interested in the ISAOpt, do take a look at this presentation.
- Technical document : z/OS Positioning Software for the zEnterprise (z196) Server
This is another 'evergreen' also by Bette Brody which has now been reworked for the zEnterprise. It gives you lots of information on supported Operating Systems, migration considerations, PSP Buckets . . . It also indicates what's supported by which z/OS release plus a lot of other information.
- Presentation: Accelerate with ATS: Easy Tier Webinar
This is a presentation (with audio) explaining how Easy Tier works, what benefits you can get from it, how the automatic mode works, how you can use the Storage Tier Advisor Tool and it also very briefly discusses the Manual Mode.
- FAQ DS8000 : What is the difference between the SW and LW laser transceivers ?
If you ever wanted to know exactly what's the difference between the two, then just read this FAQ. I warn you, it goes into such detail, I lost track at the third page (first page is the title, second page is the contents). And if you get through the entire document, I've got a suspicion you already knew all this stuff before you started reading.
- Presentation : Migrating to a Multi-port CHPID OSA-E3: Avoiding Common Problems (CHPID Types OSD and OSE)
Apparently there was a lot of confusion about the definition of the new OSA-Express3 cards, mainly becauce what looked like some kind of option, more or less concealed that a CHPID had to have 2 ports instead of one in previous versions. This presentation sheds some light on this 'problem'. It also gives a lot of other information on migration considerations when coming from OSA-Express2.
Read this in combination with a White Paper I mentioned earlier : OSA-Express3 Multi-ports per CHPID Definitions
Friday, October 8, 2010
Still, the announcements gives us already a lot of news on this new version. Here are the highlights :
I'll keep you informed on any further news about this version.
"IMS™ 12 Database Manager enhancements
- Broadened Java and XML support and tools can ease IMS development and access to IMS data.
- IMS Fast Path Buffer Manager enhancements utilize 64-bit storage to improve availability and overall system performance.
- Full Function Dynamic Buffer Pool support, centralized repository support, and enhanced commands simplify operations and improve availability.
- Extended Address Volume (EAV) support, Database Recovery Control (DBRC), Fast Path and Full Function DB enhancements relieve some capacity constraints.
IMS 12 Transaction Manager enhancements
- IMS Connect (the TCP/IP gateway to IMS transactions, operations, and data) enhancements offer improved IMS flexibility, availability, resilience, and security.
- Multiple Systems Coupling (MSC) TCP/IP link enhances bandwidth, improving performance.
- Broadened Java and XML tooling eases IMS application development and connectivity, and enhances IMS web services to assist developers with business transformation.
- Enhanced commands, Shared Queues Cross-Coupling Facility (XCF), and centralized repository support simplify operations and improve availability."
Thursday, October 7, 2010
What's interesting to notice is that IBM is really integrating components of different systems, taking valuable functionalities of one system and implementing them into the other ones. As you already saw, Easy Tier makes its entrance into the midrange systems. Another example : the (very) easy to use management interface of the XIV is now implemented into the Storwize V7000 and the new SVC.
But now on to the DS8800 and some new functionalities on the DS8700. As you might already've guessed : no more announcements for the DS8100 or DS8300. Here's a picture of the new DS8800 (front view with and without cover).
As a matter of fact, the DS8800 is the fourth generation of the DS8000 which already dates back to 2004. It's built on proven Power technology and IBM clearly indicates that we should expect more versions to come. It seems clear that customers more value performance, reliability and stability rather than whatever new functions or machines come their way. So it's no coincidence that the DS8800 contains for 85% the same system code as the DS8700.
There were four announcements, just like we've seen in the past, one for each warranty type. It starts with the machine type 2421 with the '1' indicating a one-year warranty up to the 2424 with a four-year warranty (ZG10-0328, ZG10-0329, ZG10-0335, ZG120-0330). The model was 941 for the DS8700 and becomes 951 for the DS8800. To make the announcement overview for the DS8800 complete, there's also an announcement on the Function Authorizations (ZG10-0331).
So What's New ?
IBM POWER6+™ based processors
For the moment we stay with the Power6 but the Power6+ version should deliver a sequential read throughput performance improvement of up to 20% and a sequential write throughput performance improvement of up to 40%.
High-density storage enclosure
High-density frame design improvements
Here's one of the main differences with the DS8700. I've put them next to one another here and you can immediately notice some differences.
The DS8800 supports only small-form-factor 2.5” SAS drives. The drives offer better performance at the same rotational speeds and since they’re smaller than the 3.5” drives, you can have more drives into a frame. We go from 8 megapacks of 16 drives (128 drives) to 10 gigapacks of 24 drives (240 drives) in the base frame. More drives per frame also means less floor space and since we only need three frames to obtain a 1056 drive configuration, we should also have some 30% of energy savings.
Upgraded I/O adapters
The DS8800 model offers enhanced connectivity with four-port and new eight-port Fibre Channel/FICON host adapters.
More efficient airflow
All disks are now situated at the front of the DS8800. This has the advantage that the hot air is no longer coming out at the top of the system (chimney apporach). With its new Front-to-Back airflow it now fits perfectly into the hot-aisle-cold-aisle data center.
We no longer see the FC drives and also the SATA drives are no longer offered on the DS8800. As the announcement says : "The DS8800 offers a selection of disk drives, including Serial Attached SCSI second generation drives (SAS-2) that communicate using a 6 Gbps interface. These drives use a 2.5" form factor for increased density and performance per frame". This leaves us with the following drives :
- 146 GB 15,000 rpm SAS
- 450 GB 10,000 rpm SAS
- 600 GB 10,000 rpm SAS
- 300 GB SSD drive.
We've seen the same with the DS8700 : some functions that are already implemented on the DS8700 will only become available later on the DS8800. A couple of those are :
- Quick initialization and thin provisioning support
- Remote Pair FlashCopy support
- Easy Tier support
- z/OS distributed data backup support
There's two interesting statements here and I quote : "It is IBM's current plan and direction to release a single version of machine code that can be used with either the DS8700 or the DS8800. Both products will then support the same functionality and have a common machine code base. IBM is also planning to offer an option for 8Gb host adapters within the DS8700 to support increased host server bandwidth". This should become available in the first half of 2011.
Next to that there was also an announcement for the DS8700 : 'IBM System Storage DS8700 offers new performance options (ZG10-0310)'. Main item here is the announcement of 600GB SSD drives.
Check out the availabilty dates because several dates are mentioned starting at October 22, 2010 up to December 10, 2010 for the SSD drives.
Potential data corruption for IMS or DB2 for z/OS following rebuild of lock structure in data sharing mode.
During rebuild of a lock structure in a DB2 V8 or DB2 V9 data sharing environment, two problems may occur when locks are being rebuilt asynchronously into the new structure:
- The IRLM may incorrectly conclude that the rebuild is complete before all locks have been rebuilt into the new lock structure. This can cause new lock requests to be granted prematurely, resulting in incompatible locks being held across the data sharing group.
- The IRLM may ABEND before all locks have been rebuilt. In this case, locks that were not rebuilt in time will be lost and will not be reacquired on restart.
In both cases potential data loss or data corruption may result either during or following the rebuild event.
Since the problem is in IRLM, all versions of IMS may also be affected.
No recent DB2, IMS or IRLM maintenance has affected the possibility of encountering this issue.
The resolution to the above issues will be provided by IRLM APAR PM23662.
Install ++APAR for PM23662 which is now available. If possible, avoid rebuild of IRLM lock structures until the solution for PM23662 is applied to all members of the data sharing group. If rebuild of the lock structure is unavoidable, then consider performing the rebuild with a single active member. This would require quiescing all the other members. If data corruption is detected following a lock structure rebuild, quiesce and restart all members of the group to prevent further problems.
Alternatively,for customers planning to do a Rebuild before the ++APAR can be installed on all members of the data sharing group (e.g. CF upgrade or processor upgrade with ICF in the near term), please contact IBM Support for IRLM to determine if a procedural bypass can be provided in your configuration.
If you want to have en overview of all past Red Alerts, then take a look over here. You can also subscribe on that same page so you'll be notified of any future Red Alert.
The highlights :
- "Exploitation of innovative IBM® zEnterprise 196 and z10™ technology:
- Ability to dynamically add logical CPs without preplanning.
- Large page (1 megabyte page) support for data spaces.
- Fast Path to Linux® on System z® function in a z/VM® mode LPAR.
- Use of Adjunct Processor-queue adapter-interruption facility for cryptographic operations.
- Configurable Crypto Express3 for data encryption and SSL acceleration.
- Virtual storage constraint relief for CICS® TS workload growth and system consolidation.
- Four-digit device addresses for ease of use and infrastructure simplification in mixed IT environments consisting of z/VSE, z/VM, Linux on System z, and/or z/OS®.
- IPv6/VSE V1.1, which provides both an IPv6 and IPv4 solution.
- Networking, security, and auditability enhancements.
- DOS/VS RPG II support for CICS TS.
- DL/I VSE V1.12.
- Enhanced IBM System Storage® options:
- IBM XIV® Storage System
- IBM System Storage TS7680 ProtectTIER Deduplication Gateway for System z"
It won't hurt to take a closer look at the details. The announcement e.g. also mentions that z/VSE 4.1 is End ofSupport on April 30, 2011. It also indicates which FSUs (Fast Service Upgrades) are possible. And : "CICS/VSE V2.3 will no longer be offered as part of the z/VSE V4.3 package. The CICS coexistence environment including DL/I DOS/VS V1.10 will be removed".
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
"IBM announces increases in one-time charges (OTC) and associated Subscription and Support (S&S) recurrent license charges (monthly and annually) and on reseller license charges for selected System z and zSeries Software Program Products.This is a European announcement. For Belgium, this means customers will pay 4% more for new OTC softwares and for associated Subscription and Support (S&S) payments.
Increased recurrent licence charges will be effective with the billing period that starts on or after January 1, 2011.
The one-time charge price increases are effective January 1, 2011."
Here's the announcement including the list with all the Websphere, IMS, DB2 and other IPLA softwares : 'Price Changes on Selected System z and zSeries Software Program Products (ZA10-1052)'.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Or just click on one of the links below. The presentations are put together per track.
- zEnterprise Announcement Overview: Jenna Bucher-Brown
- zEnterprise Announcement Overview: Ray Jones
- Track 1: System z for Managers and Executives
- Track 2: System z for Architects
- Track 3: System z and z/OS Update - Value and overview topics zEnterprise
- Track 3: System z and z/OS Update - Technical deep dive topics zEnterprise
- Track 3: System z and z/OS Update - z/OS topics
- Track 4: Modernization Solutions for z/VSE Clients
- Track 6: Linux on System z - Advanced
- Track 7: Information and Data Management on System z
- Track 9: Implementing the Foundation for Business Continuum on System z
- Track 10: Managing and Monitoring of System z Workloads
And there's more good news. you can already fill out your agendas with the dates of the next Total Solution Event : September 27-28-29, 2011. Ok, ok, I'll remind you of it some time next year.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
I mention it because I guess there will also be some mainframe related content.
What's it all about ? I'm just quoting the announcement of the event :
"Today's IT departments are being asked to meet tomorrow's storage challenges with yesterday's solutions. In this special announcement webcast, an IBM storage executive and a recognized storage analyst will discuss a host of new offerings in our storage portfolio.Registration over here.
You'll learn about innovative technologies that are fully integrated and optimized to help tame the information explosion by improving storage efficiency, reducing cost, and minimizing risk. Our webcast will also include the announcement of a new offering that provides the scalability, manageability and enterprise-level capabilities that meet both your business needs and IT budgets.
- Increase capacity while reducing complexity with a world-class easy-to-use interface.
- Improve storage utilization and system availability with integrated software functionality.
- Reduce space and energy requirements with compact packaging."
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
As you can see, I even missed my fourth blogoversary, but hey, better late than never. I already started out blogging four years ago and it appears that even in the entire company (1800 people) I'm one of the pioneers or at least one the more prolific bloggers. What do you think : not bad for an 'oldfashioned' mainframe guy, no ?
So I'm just going to end this post this with the same words I posted last year (and the year before) : thanks for stopping by from time to time and don't hesitate to leave some comments if you have any kind of remarks.
As Apu Nahasapeemapetilon (from The Simpsons) would say : "Thank you, Come again".
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -
(*) Yes, a quote from Prince of course. He's coming to Belgium in a couple of weeks, so I couldn't resist that one. My inspiration must be coming back, I guess :-)
Monday, September 13, 2010
I think this PL/I announcement is a bit exemplary for a 'new' approach by IBM. You know what I mean : every new release or version of a particular software (be it DB2, z/OS or other) gives you more functionality but also demands more resources. IBM wants to get rid of this particular image and is apparently going through great lengths to achieve this. Look at presentations / announcements of z/OS 1.12 or of DB2 10, they both have the same message : they should offer more functionality, still demand less resources.
The same goes for this new PL/I compiler. As you know IBM has added some 100 new instructions on the IBM zEnterprise 196. And the new PL/I compiler is making good use of them. Or, as the announcement states it :
"zEnterprise 196 hardware exploitation has been implemented in the Enterprise PL/I for z/OS compiler through the addition of the ARCHITECTURE(9) option. This option enables the use of new instructions from the load/store-on-condition and the distinct-operands facilities to be exploited in the compiler-generated code. This is designed to provide better performing applications tuned for the zEnterprise 196 server. Additional optimization and tuning help to improve the floating-point performance. These changes can improve the performance of generated code without the need for changes to the source code. A performance improvement of over 3% was observed using code generated by Enterprise PL/I for z/OS Version 4 using ARCH(9) when compared to code generated using the Enterprise PL/I for z/OS V3.9."IBM Enterprise PL/I for z/OS V4.1 becomes available on September 24, 2010.
You can find some more information on the IBM Enterprise PL/I for z/OS page and in the Data Sheet.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
People still using these tape formats bought some extra time, but do look out for another solution.
Effective February 22, 2011, IBM® will withdraw the following tape media types for IBM programs:
- 3480 Tape Cartridge - compressed format
- 3480 Tape Cartridge - uncompressed format
- 3490E Tape Cartridge