Overall z/OS Inspection
System Inspection, a “Virtual z/OS IPL”, begins like a “Real IPL” with the validation of a discovered or provided IPL Unit Address and LOADPARM. LOADxx is filtered, relationships examined, Members in PARMLIB are checked for syntactical correctness, referential integrity, the existence and attribute characteristics of system datasets are validated. These and other inspections report problems that could result in an IPL failure. Subsystem and Sysplex relationships are inspected and/or cross-checked with other Images to determine overall Sysplex Integrity.
You start your ICE/IFO session by logging on to the Integrity Control Environment (ICE). In this, the Workbench View, you will discover or define one or more Sysplexs and its Images for full System Inspections or their individual components for Unit Inspections. Your work is interactive and recursive.
When finished naming and defining a Sysplex and its Images you will use this, the Production View, to promote the definitions into production. Production in this case is a Background exception process where Sysplex definitions or run and findings distributed on a continuous defined schedule.
Always concerned for recovery from a failed z/OS component, in this case TSO, ICE/IFO carries forward the tradition of system recovery set with the Stand Alone Environment, ICE/SAE. In this, the Recovery View, you gain access to true ISPF functions, JOB Submission and System Console.
New Release Analysis is an ICE/IFO Application you will want to use to your immediate advantage. VTAM-based, this 3270 application that can accurately simulate the operational environment of every available, documented, release of z/OS. This is really important because it means that you won’t have to install a new release of z/OS before you begin your migration project. Begin when you like, on your schedule, when time is available.
z/OS System Programmers generally want the same thing, to be technically current, not necessarily at the “Bleeding-Edge” but close enough to be knowledgeable of release-to-release changes and the impact they will have on their z/OS systems anthed organizational users. But, daily routine when you start a migration project, new release level research, existing system adaptation, new system testing and QA will eat up chunks of your time. Some organizations fill this “Time Gap” with consultants adding yet additional cost to the migration process. We have a better way.
New Release Analysis is a sub-component ICE/IFO. ICE, The Integrity Controls Environment, and has long been a destination for z/OS System Programmers. Many use ICE as an integral, indispensable part of their z/OS management and migration processes. Based on a foundation of IBM documentation, years of real world experience and industry best practices.
The internal core of ICE – the z/OS Inspection Server – that is used to provide constant vigilance over the integrity of defined z/OS Sysplexes and their Images is the same Inspection Server that makes New Release Analysis possible.
Finally, why is Keeping z/OS Current So Important? Simply put, when your system is back-leveled, you begin to lose your technical knowledge base. Some would say you also lose your competitive footing and your organization misses out on increasingly valuable service improvements in reliability, availability and serviceability (RAS), the foundational elements that make z/OS the most reliable and trusted and secure operating system available.
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