Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Attend a webcast on what's new with OMEGAMON V5

There's a webcast tomorrow, September 4th, on "What's new with IBM OMEGAMON V5 monitoring and management".

The topics to be covered include:
     -  Additional historical information and problem-solving scenarios with the e3270ui
     -  Improvements to installation and configuration usability
     -  Single view of a workload that may have services across multiple components of System z

The speaker is Kevin Hosozawa, OMEGAMON Product Manager.  The event will happen at 11 AM Eastern Time.

Start learning what's new and what's coming with OMEGAMON V5.

If you are interested in attending, here is a link:

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

V5.30 Integrates history and real time into a consolidated interface

As I mentioned in an earlier post, OMEGAMON V5.30 integrates historical data very seamlessly into the real time monitoring interface.  The ability to show history detail within the e3270ui is one of the key deliverables of V5.30.

The following is an example.  Here you see detailed history information for z/OS CPC level history.  Note now the appearance at the bottom of the display of push buttons to navigate back and forth through the history data.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Share conference last week

The Share conference took place last week in Pittsburgh.  The focus at Share was on many topics including Cloud, Analytics, and the latest on z/OS 2.1.

There were several sessions on OMEGAMON and OMEGAMON related topics at Share.  Here's a list with links for the material:

 Learn the Latest Problem Solving Solutions for z/OS and Storage Subsystems with OMEGAMON

 Learn the Latest Problem Solving Solutions for CICS and MQ with OMEGAMON

 OMEGAMON XE for Storage - VSAM RLS and z/OS copy Services Monitoring

If you are interested in V5.3 I suggest you check out the first two links.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

What to look for with V5.30

When you are looking at V5.30 there are several things in general that you will find as a common theme in the new release. 

The first is to look at many enhancements in the area of enhanced 3270 user interface (e3270ui).  e3270ui is getting more robust and is finally becoming industrial strength.  Some of the things you will find in the new e3270ui include:
     Improved diagnostics and deployment flexibility
     Expanded history and near term history capability
     Additional trace/analysis support
     More robust cross tool navigation using what is called embedded data

History is going to be a big area of enhancement in V5.30.  Look for quite a few new capabilities in the area of history. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

New OMEGAMON Versions announced - V5.30!

A new version of OMEGAMON is always a festive occasion for this blogger, and the announcement of OMEGAMON V5.30 is an important event.  V5.30 includes a lot of new functionality and capability.  It includes major enhancements to e3270 user interface, and to the core OMEGAMON monitoring capabilities.  I plan to be blogging extensively about what's new in V5.30 in the coming months. 

The planned GA date for V5.30 is September 5th.  The following are the new OMEGAMON releases:
Note that Messaging is V7.3.  That is because Messaging version numbers will correlate to the corresponding MQseries versions.

There are also bundling options for OMEGAMON.  There is the  OMEGAMON Performance Management Suite for z/OS V5.3.  This suite consists of the following:

There is also a  OMEGAMON for z/OS Management Suite that includes the following:

If you want more information on the announcement, here is a link to the announcement letter:

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

How to use OMEGAMON IMS to monitor the response time of an individual transaction

I recently had a customer ask me about how to use OMEGAMON IMS to monitor the response time of an individual transaction.  The RTA function of OMEGAMON IMS is based upon the notion of RTA groups.  These groups are typically defined using the KOIGBLxx macro that specifies the group and startup options for RTA and for Bottlneck Analysis.  The groups may be transaction based, scheduling class based, program based, or based on combinations of trans/classes/programs.  Since you have a limited number of RTA groups, most groups represent multiple  trans/classes/programs.

But, if you want to isolate just one specific transaction there are three ways to do it.

1-  Add the transaction to its own RTA group in KOIGBLxx.

2-  Use the OMEGAMON Application Trace Facility.  This will provide very detailed response time data.

3-  You can add the transaction dynamically to its own RTA group.  This is easy enough to do, but keep in mind the transaction will only be there until OMEGAMON is recycled.

To add the transaction dynamically, do the following:
      Logon to the classic interface
      Go to the RTA menu
      Select E for controls and stop RTA
      Select F for options
      Use the SETG command to alter the group
      As in the example below     aSETG01 tran=addpart          will add the addpart tran to group 1

Monday, June 30, 2014

Another zScala dashboard example

I showed in an earlier post an example of how you can use SmartCloud Analytics - Log Analysis with the System z Insight Pack (aka zScala) to create dashboard views that allow you to view and analyze z/OS SYSLOG message traffic.

Here's another example of using zScala to create a dashboard.  In this example you see a dashboard that shows abends, B37s, RACF errors, and DB2 resource unavailable messages over the past 24 hours.

 This dashboard was easy to build, and shows information, such as RACF errors and B37s that you would not necessarily see from an OMEGAMON display.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Upcoming System z virtual summit

On June 25th there will be what is called a Systemz "virtual summit".  The virtual summit is a set of presentation briefings on what is happening with System z. 

There are 5 tracks that cover a variety of topics.   You can take as many sessions as you desire.

Virtual doors open at: 10:30 a.m. EDT in the U.S.

Here's a link for the event and the event agenda:

Friday, May 30, 2014

Upcoming hands on Proof of Technology events for zScala

If you are interested in learning more about analytics, and more about IBM's offerings in that area specific to z/OS management, there will be a set of Proof of Technology events coming next month.  A Proof of Technology event lets you take the technology for a test drive in a live running environment.

There are two events coming in June.  The first is June 18th in downtown Minneapolis, and the second will be June 25th in downtown Chicago.  This is a free event, and IBM will provide lunch.

If you are interested in attending, please email my colleague, Lih Wang, at

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Enhanced 3270 UI enables unique integrated monitoring views

One of the advantages of moving to the enhanced 3270 UI is its ability to allow you to create unique monitoring views.  Once you get used to the panel language, panel creation is a fairly easy process.  It's also easy to customize existing panels.

You can also create custom panels, such as the following, that allow you to integrate monitoring information from multiple sources onto a single panel.  It takes some additional setup and coding, but it's not that hard to create.

In the example I show a panel focused on monitoring a DBCTL environment.   DBCTL involves the interaction of CICS and IMS, so it's nice to have information from both monitoring sources pulled together.  This particular panel pulls in region and service level information from OMEGAMON CICS, as well as thread performance, bottleneck and lock conflict data from OMEGAMON IMS, all to a single screen.

In subsequent posts I will go through how I created this screen.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Using zScala (SmartCloud Analytics Log Analysis) for DB2 message analysis

zScala (SmartCloud Analytics Log Analysis) is a tool for doing the analysis of messages coming from a variety of sources (z/OS and non-z/OS sources).  zScala also offers a customizable dashboard facility where you can summarize and aggregate message information across systems and LPARs. 

The example below shows an example of a dashboard for DB2 message analysis across 2 LPARs, MVSE and MVSF.  From the dashboard you may drill down to see message detail for specific time interval or message type.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

OMEGAMON DB2 V5.20 added a nice DSNZPARM display to e3270ui

Among the various enhancements when OMEGAMON DB2 V5.20 became GA a few months back was an enhancement in the e3270ui to show the various DB2 subsystem DSNZPARM settings.  The layout of the display is nice in that the various zparms may be listed by category, or you may opt to see that all on a single panel.  Note the tab options on the panel that control the navigation.  OMEGAMON DB2 V5.20 makes use of this tab feature in a couple places.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Upcoming OMEGAMON hands on events

If you are in the Chicago or Minneapolis areas you may be interested in new OMEGAMON hands on proof of technology events coming soon to these cities.

The focus of the new OMEGAMON hands on labs will be on the following:
Enhanced 3270 Customization
OMEGAMON Classic Customization
Tivoli Enterprise Portal Customization
Tivoli Data Warehouse Customization And Usage

If you are interested in learning on how to become an OMEGAMON Power User feel free to attend.

The events will be held on May 13th in Chicago and May 20th in Minneapolis.  If you are interested in attending, please email me at

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

IBM Smartcloud Analytics - Log Analysis

IBM SmartCloud Analytics - Log Analysis lets you analyze unstructured data to help identify, isolate and resolve problems. The software integrates data from multiple sources including logs, events, metrics, support documents and trouble tickets.

Recently IBM has added support to  IBM Smartcloud Analytics - Log Analysis for System z logs and WebSphere on z logs.  In the next few weeks we will be doing hands on lab events to allow users to see what you can do with IBM Smartcloud Analytics - Log Analysis to address System z management issues.  I will be posting more information on the dates, times, and locations of these events.

For more on IBM Smartcloud Analytics - Log Analysis, here is a link:

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

OMEGAMON related sessions at the Share conference in Anaheim

There were quite a few OMEGAMON and systems management related sessions at Share in Anaheim.  Here's a list with links to the handouts:

Become an OMEGAMON Power User

RMF: The Latest and Greatest

OMEGAMON XE for Storage V5.2 Enhancements for z/OS 2.1

 IT Analytics and Big Data - Making Your Life Easier

 Monitoring IMS Performance for Faster Problem Solving

 Managing z/VM & Linux Performance Best Practices

OMEGAMON Thresholds, Profiles, and User Interfaces

OMEGAMON XE for Storage - Hints and Tips to Improve Performance and Usage

Friday, March 14, 2014

Some notes from the Share conference in Anaheim

I was at the Share conference this week in Anaheim.  Share is, as always, what I consider to be the premier user-driven mainframe and z/OS event.  There were a lot of very good technical sessions this week.

The themes of the conference included some items that have been covered before, such as cloud, z/OS 2.1, and security.  There was also a focus on analytics, with quite a few good sessions in that area.

Starting out the week there was a good session on IMS V13.  There was also a DB2 11 for z/OS Overview. 

Here's a link for DB2 11:

At Share I presented on "Become an OMEGAMON Power User".   In case you missed my webcast from last year on the topic, here's a link to the presentation:

Thursday, February 27, 2014

More on Pulse

On Tuesday there was an interesting user session on OMEGAMON deployment.  Representatives from three OMEGAMON customers (Lockheed Martin, Total Systems, St of CA) led a Q&A session to discuss their deployment and usage of OMEGAMON in their respective shops. 

Two of the three shops reported that they have converted their install process to PARMGEN and have seen very good results.  Install times and maintenance windows have been reduced markedly by using PARMGEN processing.  Lockheed Martin has deployed the e3270ui and have already customized quite a few screens in the e3270ui.  They reported that screen customization seemed relatively easy and straightforward (although some screens can take longer).  State of California reported they have seen much benefit out of being able to deploy OMEGAMON and ITCAM using the Tivoli Portal and being able to present customized views to various user audiences, depending upon their respective requirements.  On the other hand, Total Systems still seemed to prefer traditional "green screen" approaches.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Some observations so far from the Pulse conference.....

Well, I just attended the Pulse general session.  It's always interesting and educational, since it's here that you get a feel for the tone and perspective of what's happening technology and business wise.

There are some clear themes that I'm sure will be repeated often at the show.  The first one is, of course, cloud.  Cloud, and the support of cloud, will continue to be a dominant theme.  Along with SaaS (software as a service).  Look for much more to emerge from this paradigm.

Other buzz words to be aware of?  Mobile is one.  Mobile will be a pervasive them going forward, as is Open.  There has been a big emphasis on IBM adhering to open standards. 

From a specific technology perspective, what does this mean?  A couple things were mentioned.  One was Bluemix (a development environment based on open standards), and another was IBM's acquisition of Cloudant (a cloud based database service).

Bluemix sounds interesting, and if you want to learn more go to:

Friday, February 21, 2014

Smartcloud Analytics Log Analysis and System z

Smartcloud Analytics Log Analysis refers to an IBM solution that looks at log data from a variety of sources (servers, applications servers, middleware, you name it), and parses through the log data looking for indications of issues and anomalies.  Smartcloud Analytics Log Analysis, or SCA LA for short, provides the backbone, if you will, for employing Big Data type techniques to analyze system activity, and identify issues. 

I will be posting more on SCA LA in the coming weeks.  SCA LA is interesting technology, and I see this area of Big Data and Analytics as being a major area of innovation in the realm of systems management. 

Meanwhile, here is a link for more information (and a free download to try the tool out):

Pulse begins this coming Sunday the 23rd in Las Vegas

I will be attending the Pulse conference in Las Vegas beginning this Sunday.  Pulse, for those who are not familiar with the event, is the annual Tivoli (aka Cloud and Smarter Infrastructure) event.  There will be sessions and labs on a wide variety of Tivoli (aka C&SI) technologies.  I'm sure there will be some announcements on new and emerging technologies, and I will try to forward the announcements that I think are most relevant to System z.

For those of you attending Pulse, there will be a reception on Tuesday night for System z people.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Some interesting upcoming technical presentations

Coming next week is a set of presentations on DB2 11.  "DB2 11 for z/OS: Technical overview and hot topics" will cover much of what has been added to the new DB2 release.  Announced in October 2013, DB2 11 offers many improvements in performance and CPU savings, including management of large volumes of data with minimal disruption for running applications. Hear about hints and tips for a fast migration, pitfalls to avoid and important lessons learned from early client experiences. Learn about many important enhancements and other DB2 11 news.

The event is delivered in two parts, on February 18th and 19th, at 11 AM Eastern time.  To attend here is a link to register:

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

I will be presenting next week at MDUG

If you happen to be in the Detroit area, I will be presenting next week at the Michigan DB2 User Group.  I've built  a new presentation,  "DB2 Systems Management: It's What You Don't Know That Can Hurt You".  This is some new material, and will provide a slightly different spin on DB2 and systems management on z/OS.

The event is next week, on the 13th in Novi, MI.  To attend, here's a link for more information:

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Pulse conference is coming up next month

Pulse is the Tivoli conference event that happens each year in Las Vegas.  Pulse will again take place at the MGM conference facilities, beginning February 23rd. 

There is System z content at Pulse.  If you are interested in what's happening specific to System z and Tivoli at Pulse, here is a link with more information:

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The most common passwords of 2013

If you use one of these passwords you may want to make a change.  A study has released a list of the most commonly used passwords in 2013.  Some of the usual suspects remain on the list.  The top five are 123456, password, 12345678, qwerty, and abc123.

Needless to say, having a weak password is one of the most common security exposures out there.  Remember watching 'Jurrasic Park' ?  How did the kids hack into the bad guy's computer system?  He left the UNIX root password remain the default (which is usually root).

Here's a link to the article:

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Upcoming z Technology Summit events

Beginning next week there will be a series of z Technology Summit events at various cities in the US and Canada.  The z Technology Summit will provide multiple tracks and a set of updates on what's new and interesting in System z.

Here are the event tracks:
Track 1 - The Gold Standard for Enterprise Computing
Developed for: IT Management, IT Architects and Line-of-business Managers in zEnterprise installations
Track 2 - DB2 for z/OS® – The Database for Big Data and Analytics
Developed for: DB2 DBAs, database architects and Database Managers
Track 3 - Enterprise DevOps
Developed for: Software and application developers and testers, IT application architects
Track 4 - Middleware is the Growth Engine for the Mobile Revolution
Developed for: Application system architects, CICS programmers and administrators
Track 5 - Data Center Operations – Cloud and Systems Management Update
Developed for: Operations managers and system programmers

Washington, DC January 21, 2014
Costa Mesa, CA February 4, 2014
Chicago, IL February 12, 2014
Toronto, Ontario March 20, 2014

To attend here's a link:

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The mainframe turns 50!

It's a new year and it promises to be an interesting one in the area of the mainframe.  It was a milestone for me when I turned 50 (I won't admit to when that was).  Well, guess what.  Believe it or not the mainframe turns 50 on April 7th of 2014. 

It's been quite a run, and to commemorate the event IBM is publishing a weekly mainframe journal.  This journal will aggregate mainframe content across many sources.  Here's a link: