Covid-19 has made this edition late, but I am doing fine. It seems everything is being postponed or celebrated in a different way. The one year anniversary of IBM Z Workload Scheduler 9.5 (March 15, 2020) and the end of support of Tivoli Workload Scheduler for z/OS 9.2 (April 30, 2020) have come and gone and I am writing this issue at home as I celebrate the 40th anniversary of my first day at work in the IT field (May 19, 1980).
Fix Pack 2 and Small Program Enhancement (SPE) for IBM Z Workload Scheduler
The Fix Pack 2 for Dynamic Workload Console (DCW) version 9.5.0 and the second Small Program Enhancement (SPE) for IBM Z Workload Scheduler 9.5 have been released.
End of Support IBM Workload Scheduler 9.3 distributed
You may have heard about the end of support (EOS) announcement for the distributed Workload Automation 9.3 release. This does not include the IBM Z Workload Scheduler 9.3 release. Since there was no IBM Z Workload Scheduler 9.4, IBM Z Workload Scheduler 9.3 will continue to be supported for 12 – 18 months after the next release becomes generally available. That being said, it is worth considering an upgrade from 9.3 to 9.5 to take advantage of some of the new features.
Zowe and SPE 9502
Before going into a discussion of the new 9.5 features, there is one update to 9.3 that is worth mentioning: Zowe, “an open source project created to host technologies that benefit the Z platform from all members of the Z community (Integrated Software Vendors, System Integrators and z/OS consumers)” per zowe.org, is shipped as part of 9.5 SPE 2 (SPE9502) and can be used with IBM 9.3 as well as 9.5 using the license files available via PH24029 (PTF UI69085 for 9.5 and UI69084 for 9.3).
More about SPE9502 follows. There is also an updated list of the HIPER PTFs for 9.3 available. A “master” technote includes all of the important technotes for all currently supported releases. You can bookmark this technote and use it to find any important updates. Once a new release of IBM Z Workload Scheduler is announced, the information for 9.2 will be removed and add the new release will be added.
SPE 9502: The second “small programming enhancement” of 9.5 is a large fix with several important enhancements. It includes APAR PH22448 (PTFS UI68882 and UI68881) along with a technote that summarizes the ACTION HOLDS and any information that became known AFTER the PTFs were closed. See what’s contained in this new SPE below:
- Controlling the system where a z/OS job is to be run: Allows you to control the system where a job will be executed; for example, if you want a critical job to run on a system that has better performance, or if you want to avoid having any jobs still running on a system when it is scheduled to be IPLed.
- Sending an email when an alert condition is met: You can have IBM Z Workload Scheduler send an email to a specific recipient or list of recipients when one of the following alert conditions occur: DURATION, ERROPER, LATEOPER, OPCERROR, SPECRES, WLMOPER. This uses the Communications Server (TCPIP) task CSSMTP.
- User-defined action postpone error setting: Prior to this change, if an operation did not start or complete within the time that you set, you could define that it is set to ERROR if its status allows this. With this enhancement even if the operation status does not allow it to be set to ERROR, the action is no longer ignored but it is postponed to a time when the operation status allows it to be set to ERROR.
- With the Dynamic Workload Console V9.5, Fix Pack 2 the following enhancements have been implemented:
- Enhance security by encrypting the passwords that you provide when installing Dynamic Workload Console and Z connector Connect to DB2 for z/OS (if using DWC installed on z/OS with zLiberty)
- See data from more than one engine at the same time via the Workload Dashboard
- The DWC now accepts special characters (#, $ etc. ) in the Application Description name.
- You can still access the usual plug-ins from the product, but for all subsequent versions any updates, and related documentation, can be found in the Automation Hub site.
- A new package to install the Command Line Batch Report on z/OS is available. Unload it from FixCentral
Furthermore, the continuous delivery of new plug-ins – now called integrations – enables you to download and use new integrations in the product, at any time. For more details visit Your Automation Hub.
Note the ACTION HOLD – install the DWC 9.5 Fix Pack 2 first then install the SPE9502 PTFs. For more information about the DWC 9.5 Fix Pack 2 see the README file.
Request for Enhancements (RFE)
Here are the three (3) “hottest” RFEs for IBM Z Workload Scheduler (most votes in a short amount of time). Add your vote if interested.
- Monitor the situation before EQQM975E FAILED TO ADD APPLICATION ADID BECAUSE MAXIMUM NUMBER OF OCCURRENCES REACHED.
- SUBSTR JCL command should support variables with up to 44 characters or allow a continuation with the SETVAR directive
- EQQJOBS support for the “million jobs” SPE (SPE9308) is missing in 9.5 release.
I hope to see you at ASAP University Automation 20/20 in September.