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Get Started With Architecting Java Enterprise Edition In CICS Transaction Server


At its core, CICS* Transaction Server (TS) is a mixed-language application server that underpins enterprises worldwide. It has a long history of supporting a wealth of languages, and in the last few years this support has grown once again.

Building on the Java* functionality available through the CICS JVM server technology, CICS TS V5 enables application developers to create enterprise-grade Java applications that can be hosted in CICS TS.

This article introduces Java Enterprise Edition (EE) in CICS TS and explains how you can start architecting new solutions that harness this technology.

Why Use Java EE Applications in CICS?

Java EE gives a developer a range of tools with which to build new applications. From developing representational state transfer web services to database access and transactional support, Java EE delivers what enterprise developers need above and beyond the capabilities in Java Standard Edition (SE) and other languages.

When hosted in CICS TS, developers can build applications that harness the features of Java EE and integrate them with the systems of record that host their core business. Collocation of application and data can greatly reduce the complexity of the application architecture and exploit local z/OS* resources managed in CICS TS. This z/OS exploitation is also applicable to the existing infrastructure supporting your applications, taking advantage of z/OS and CICS TS high availability (HA), disaster recovery and backup plans.

In addition, eligibility for Java applications hosted in CICS TS to run on IBM z Systems* Integrated Information Processors or in CICS TS Value Unit Edition makes Java in CICS TS an attractive platform for Java applications.

Introduction to Java EE Applications in CICS

To understand Java EE in CICS TS, it’s important to understand IBM WebSphere* Liberty Profile (Liberty), which is a lightweight, composable and dynamic Java EE server runtime. Liberty allows server administrators to pick—based on the needs of their applications—which features of Java EE they want to include in their environment. This flexibility results in greatly improved start times (compared to traditional WebSphere Application Server), meaning a Liberty server can initialize in seconds. Liberty configuration is also dynamic, so it can be updated on the fly without restarting the runtime.

Liberty itself is multiplatform. The Liberty runtime was added to CICS in CICS TS V5.1. Using JVM server technology, you can configure a JVM server resource to host a Liberty runtime (configurable in a JVM profile on z/OS File System, or zFS). This Liberty runtime is then configured using a single configuration file (server.xml) and integrates with the deployment mechanisms of CICS bundles and CICS cloud applications. It also integrates with built-in deployment models available through Liberty.

Mark is a Software Engineer in the CICS Transaction Server development team. During his time in CICS Mark has specialized in the Java technologies, in particular using the WebSphere Liberty Profile hosted in CICS, in a production environment.



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