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A New Addition to the IBM z Trial Program

March 27, 2018

I'm sometimes asked about options for getting hands on experience with Db2 for z/OS. Basically, I know of only one option, but it's an excellent one: the IBM z Trial Program.

I wrote about this in January and discussed my own experience with the Db2 for z/OS Administration solutions trial. In all, 12 trials are available as of this writing, with the latest being Db2 for z/OS Utilities, which has been integrated with a modern web UI through Data Server Manager (DSM). For those new to z/OS, DSM provides a familiar and intuitive browser interface to Db2 for z/OS tools. The traditional 3270 ISPF interface is also available for those that want to expand their knowledge with the native z/OS interface.

When you first access the IBM Db2 Utilities Solution for z/OS trial, you'll see two options. Only one, featuring the REORG utility is available currently, but another version with the RUNSTATS utility is coming soon.

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Click on “Explore scenario” to start the REORG trial. You're presented detailed instructions.

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The first lesson takes you through A REORG avoidance demo which covers the following:
  • Object Profile – Identifies the objects that will be subject to evaluation.
  • Exception Profile – Specifies the conditions for evaluating the objects.
  • Utility Profile – Specifies the utilities, or actions, that will be prescribed or triggered if the condition in the exception profile is met.
  • Job Profile – A collection of object, exception and utility profiles that will be evaluated.
This lesson also takes you through the steps to setup a maintenance window which denotes the time period in which any actions that result from the autonomic evaluation can be run.

Below is a screen shot showing the utility profile panel used to identify which utilities to be included. This example shows the use of REORG.

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Once you run through the steps to define the object, exception and utility profiles, you're ready to build the jobs. You can return to the dashboard to check the symptoms, actions and maintenance window for job execution.

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Hovering the mouse on a symptom opens a pop-up message that explains the action taken:

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Having access to these demos through the z Trial Program is a great way for anyone lacking access to a mainframe to learn more about these tools, and the z platform itself. I encourage you to give it a try, and when you do, let me know what you think in comments.

Posted March 27, 2018| Permalink