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Mainframe Revolution

177 Posts authored by: Jonathan Adams
Jonathan Adams

Watch and learn

Posted by Jonathan Adams Apr 24, 2014
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Do you need to know how to manage mainframe SQL performance through a GUI? Or check DBRC List History through a GUI? Or manage z/OS, CICS, DB2, IMS, or WebSphere MQ through a GUI or 3270 interface?

 

You can learn how to do all this and much more by watching BMC Quick Courses on YouTube. Hundreds of short videos provide instructions on how to use a variety of BMC mainframe products.

 

Check it out!

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

Jonathan Adams

Movie award season

Posted by Jonathan Adams Feb 17, 2014
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The annual movie award season is in full swing. The Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, and BAFTA ceremonies have already taken place, and the Academy Awards are just around the corner. Movies are big business now.

 

While our Quick Courses (short educational videos) won't win any of these highly publicized awards, they will show you how to use BMC mainframe products. And we have more available than ever - over 350, in fact - covering topics from APPTUNE to MainView for z/OS. We even offer a subset of Quick Courses with Chinese and Japanese subtitles.

 

The complete library is available in the BMC Documentation Center (BMC Support ID required) and on a DVD that your account manager can order. Most are also available without a login here.

 

Check out these movies. They are free - and informative. And you don't have to drive to a movie theater to see them.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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Elvis Costello asked, "What's so funny 'bout peace, love, and understanding?" You may be wondering what's so funny about IMS. If you know IMS, you know it's awesome. And if you don't know IMS, you may want to see just what it has done. It's the database that started it all, and it is going strong with IMS 13.

 

Check out this list of top 9 things you didn't know about IMS and add your comments to round it out to a top 10 list.

 

And remember that BMC is here for you to support IMS 13 and its cool new features.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

Jonathan Adams

You've got a friend

Posted by Jonathan Adams Oct 25, 2013
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(With apologies to James Taylor)

 

When IBM sends new versions of IMS and DB2,
You need software to support them all.
BMC will be there to help you in every way
We won’t let you fall.


You just call out our name, and you know wherever we are
We’ll be ready to help you again.
Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all you have to do is call and we’ll be there, yes we will.
You’ve got a friend.


Hey, ain’t it good to know that you’ve got a friend
Software can be so cold
Upgrades can hurt you – they will hurt you
They’ll take your bonus if you let them, but don’t you let them….


IBM is releasing DB2 11 and IMS 13. And BMC is ready on Day One to support these database servers by providing innovative solutions that address real customer problems.

 

Both of these new versions provide CPU performance savings. DB2 11 features extended RBA and log record spaces plus improved analytics. IMS 13 provides connectivity enhancements and online changes for the major database types.

 

BMC is doing more than just supporting the new features from IBM. We have several new mainframe solutions in just the past 6 months:

 

 

We are committed to the mainframe and to lowering the costs of running it. While DB2 11 and IMS 13 deliver CPU savings, BMC solutions lower CPU usage even more and cut elapsed times.

 

BMC Data Management for DB2 and IMS are the industry’s leading solutions – providing twice the performance at half the cost. 

 

When are you planning to move to DB2 11 and 13? Let us know.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

Jonathan Adams

Mainframe evolution

Posted by Jonathan Adams Sep 17, 2013
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We recently completed our eighth annual mainframe survey, and almost 1,200 IT professionals from around the globe and across industries responded. While some prognosticators insist that the mainframe is going away, the survey shows that the mainframe is evolving to play an increasingly important role. We learned that 93% of the survey respondents see the mainframe as a long-term business platform, and one-half of the respondents say that their mainframe will grow and attract new workloads in the coming year. Clearly, the mainframe is not going away any time soon, if ever.

 

Not surprisingly, the top IT priorities for the upcoming year include IT cost reduction, application availability, business/IT alignment, and application modernization.

 

IT cost reduction

In the survey, 85% of respondents said cost reduction is their top priority.  In fact, respondents told us they spend an average of 46% of their total mainframe budget on software alone. The cost of IBM software was the top reason for reducing MIPS and moving off the mainframe.

Batch jobs, CICS applications, and DB2 applications are the top workloads that drive four-hour rolling average (4HRA) monthly license charges.


Application availability

As always, availability is a priority. Respondents said that the best ways to improve availability were to have visibility into end-to-end performance, to receive proactive notification of problems, and to reduce planned outages. More than one-half of the respondents told us that their greatest data recovery challenge is the time it takes to recover lost or corrupted data.


Business/IT alignment

Almost one-half of the respondents said that improving business agility is the most important issue for business/IT alignment, followed by managing service levels.


Application modernization

When asked why application modernization was important, respondents said it’s important to take advantage of more updated technology. Application programs that were written 10 (or more) years ago would probably be more efficient if they can exploit hardware and software enhancements.


The future of the mainframe

Over 90% of respondents plan to stay on the mainframe, and most of them plan to use more MIPS. Only 13% said they were lowering MIPS, a move driven in large part by IBM software costs. And just 7% of respondents said that they had plans to completely eliminate the mainframe.

 

As expected, Big Data and Cloud Initiatives are a major focus for IT organizations across the board. 70% of respondents said the mainframe will have a key role in Big Data plans and one-third of those planning a cloud implementation said that mainframe data will be accessed by their cloud applications.

 

For more details, see the survey results here.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

Jonathan Adams

Monster Mash

Posted by Jonathan Adams Sep 12, 2013
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Does moving off the mainframe save money? Does it reduce complexity?

 

This article describes common issues with moving away from the mainframe and says that organizations "often end up creating a monster: a tangled mess of technologies and best-of-breed packages that don’t work together and threaten to overwhelm the organization with its cost and complexity."

 

With everything else you need to deal with in your data center, do you need to create another monster?

 

Does your organization plan to eliminate the mainframe? We'd like to know.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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Nissan has long been associated with z cars. Remember the Datsun 240z?

 

datsun_240z-pic-51710.jpeg.jpg

The z cars have evolved over the years, and now Nissan is selling the 370z.

 

Nissan-370Z-Roadster.2.jpg

 

But one of the most exciting z innovations (at least for us mainframers) is the integration of the Nissan Leaf electric car with the mainframe. Yes, you read that correctly - some of the newest automobile technology relies on some of the oldest, but most efficient, data processing technology. This integration enables drivers to use smart phones to check battery status, find charging stations, and even remotely control the air conditioning.

 

This is just one example of how the mainframe continues to evolve.

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If we want the mainframe to be around for years to come - and we do - then we need to make sure that the Millennials care about it.

 

Millennials, also known as Generation Y, were born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s. In other words, they are teenagers and young adults. Many of those young adults are graduating from college and starting their careers. While a career in the mainframe may not sound as exciting as creating video games, the mainframe career is one that pays well and will last for a long time.

 

Check out this article on why Millennials should care about the mainframe. One of the reasons they should care is that the mainframe is critical to IBM's future and Millennials are critical to the mainframe's future. At BMC, we are teaching Millennials about DB2, IMS, z/OS, and more.

 

What is your organization doing to encourage Millennials to work on the mainframe? We want to know.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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In a world where technology changes daily, it's good to be able to depend on the database technology that started it all.

 

In 1966, IBM teamed up with the company that became Rockwell to design a database that would keep track of all the parts a rocket to the moon would require. The resulting database - IMS - was released in 1968 and quickly became the standard for IT organizations around the world. Many of those organizations still use IMS today to manage financial transactions, telecommunications, manufacturing, and more.

 

Raise a toast to IMS and its younger sibling, DB2, that just turned 30.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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Last week, DB2 turned 30. It wasn't the first database, but it has become the mainframe database of choice for new applications and it spawned the relational database industry. IBM is celebrating the 30th birthday.

 

And BMC is making it even easier to use the world's most popular mainframe database. Very soon, you will be able to manipulate mainframe data and analyze SQL performance through an intuitive graphical user interface. Check it out!

 

What are your favorite memories of DB2 over the past 30 years?

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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How do you save DB2 on z/OS CPU cycles? Learn how to get the most from your processors in this article by Chad Reiber.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

Jonathan Adams

Mainframe jargon

Posted by Jonathan Adams May 16, 2013
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In the mainframe world, we use a lot of jargon and many, many acronyms. It can be daunting for new users to decipher what we are saying.

 

Here's a brief (and somewhat outdated) primer on mainframe jargon. Perhaps we should call this a legacy list. My favorite is:

 

IBM Sports Center
When a southerner wants to say "IBM Support Center" but slurs it together. Kinda like "FIZE Yew" which when translated for Yankees means "If I was you."


What terms would you add to the list? Let us know.


The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.


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What is happening with your mainframe now? What is important to you? We want to know!

 

Today, we are launching the eighth annual Mainframe Survey, and we invite you to click here and let us know what you think.

 

Last year, almost 1300 IT professionals shared their experiences and opinions. You can see the results here.

 

Don’t miss this opportunity to share your feedback. The survey will be open until May 27th.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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With apologies to Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young...


It's no secret that many mainframe professionals are somewhat older than other IT technicians. In fact, many mainframe pros are closer to the end of their careers than they are to the beginning of them. But the mainframe is not going away anytime soon, if ever, so how do you ensure that you will be able to support mainframe environments in the future?

 

One approach is to hire recent college graduates and nurture them. Dave Hilbe, senior director in Research and Development at BMC Software, has been working with several young IT professionals for the past 5 years. He describes a good methodology for educating and managing the young talent in this article from Enterprise Executive.

 

How are you addressing the aging mainframe workforce in your organization? Let us know.

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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A bit of entertainment from the entertainment industry.

 

What other movies mention mainframes?

 

The postings in this blog are my own and don't necessarily represent BMC's opinion or position.

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