Tuesday, February 09, 2010

IBM Announces DB2 10 for z/OS Beta Program

IBM announced the beta program for the next version of DB2 today, now "officially" known as DB2 10 (no more DB2 X). It is a closed beta program that will begin on March 12, 2010. That means you have to be selected by IBM to participate.

The announcement highlighted some of the areas of improvement to be delivered by DB2 10 for z/OS, and at the top of that list, to no one's surprise, is performance. DB2 10 promises to deliver out-of-the-box savings by improving operational efficiencies ranging from 5% to 10% out-of-the-box CPU savings for traditional workloads and up to 20% out-of-the-box CPU savings for nontraditional workloads.

Other areas called out by IBM in the announcement include
  • Improved business resiliency through scalability improvements and fewer outages (planned or unplanned).
  • Schema evolution or data definition on demand as well as query performance manageability enhancements support improved availability.
  • New features such as hash access, index include columns, inline large objects, parallel index updates, faster single row retrievals, work file in-memory, index list prefetch, 64-bit memory enhancements, use of the 1 MB page size of the System z10, buffer pools in memory, access path enhancements, member clustering for universal table spaces, efficient caching of dynamic SQL statements with literals, improved large object streaming, and SQL procedure language performance.
  • Rapid application and warehouse deployment for business growth including improved concurrency for data access, data management, and data definition.
  • The ability avoid an outage by adding active log data to a subsystem.
  • Improved application and data warehousing support including temporal data, a 64 bit ODBC driver, currerntly committed locking, implicit casting or loose typing, timestamp with time zone, variable timestamp precision, moving sum, and moving average.
  • Improvements to DB2's XML support including expanded pureXML, customer-driven performance and usability requirements, schema validation in the engine, binary XML exchange format, multiversioning, easy update of subparts of XML document, stored procedures, user-defined functions and triggers, XML index matching with date/timestamp, and a CHECK XML utility.
  • Enhanced query and reporting facilities, including QMF V10 with over 140 new analytical functions, support for HTML, PDF, and Flash reports, and more.
So it would seem that there is a lot of new functionality for us to begin to become acquainted with. As IBM rolls out more details, and customers begin to use the new version of DB2, we will examine some of these new features in more depth here on the DB2 Portal blog.

If you are interested in the beta program, the pre-requisite for DB2 10 is z/OS V1.10 (5694-A01) or later running in 64 bit mode. More information about the DB2 10 beta program is available on IBM's web site.

No GA date for DB2 10 has been announced.

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Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Deprecated Features Planned for DB2 X for z/OS

Everyone is always interested in the latest and greatest features of their favorite DBMS, in this case DB2. But sometimes features get removed from the DBMS when a new version is released. According to the IBM teleconference on DB2 X for z/OS today, there are several features planned to be deprecated (i.e. removed). Let's briefly take a look at them.

The first feature that will be removed is private protocol DRDA. This should come as no surprise to anybody since IBM has been indicating that private protocal distribution was on its way out for a number of releases now. And it really is not that difficult to convert to DRDA (and there will be some new help in DSNTP2DP).

Perhaps more troublesome to some shops will be the removal of support for plans containing DBRMs. You will have to convert the DBRMs to packages when you get to DB2 X. You would think that since packages have been available as far back as V2.3 that most shops would have converted to them already. But I do know that there are some shops out there" who still have DBRMs bound directly into their plans. So start planning to convert ASAP! IBM will offer some support in DB2 X to track down affected plans.

While on the topic of plans and packages, you will have to REBIND any that have not been rebound since V5 or before. But it is a good rule to REBIND everything when you go to a new version of DB2 anyway, and most (but not all) shops do that.

From a documentation perspective, BookManager will no longer be supported. Instead we get the PDF versions and the Info Center online.

And the DB2 Management Clients (DB2 Administration Server, Control Center, and Development Center) are deprecated. IBM's new management client direction for DB2 is Data Studio.

Other deprecated items include:
  • ACQUIRE(ALLOCATE) [change to ACQUIRE(USE)]
  • Workload capture through profile monitor
  • XML Extender [change to use pureXML data type]
  • DB2 MQ XML user-defined functions and stored procedures [change to XML functions]
  • msys for Setup DB2 Customization Center [change to install panels]
At this point, DB2 X is on track to become generally available at the end of next year, 2010. At this point IBM has announced that migration will be supported from DB2 9 NFM (and has hinted that they are considering supporting migration to DB2 X directly from DB2 V8 NFM).

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Monday, October 26, 2009

IBM IOD2009 Day One

It is Monday, October 26, 2009, and the annual IBM Information on Demand (IOD2009) conference is officially underway. Well, actually it kicked off with a bang on Sunday. The exhibition hall opened at 6:00 pm and the early goers traipsed through the vendor hall sharing stories, checking out the vnedor's wares, and looking for the latest tschotskes (the favorites seem to be a mini-book light being given out by SPSS and the nifty DB2 t-shirts being given out by SEGUS, Inc.).

But the event really does not get started (at least as far as I'm concerned) until the big Monday morning kickoff, which this year was emceed by Terry Fator (the ventriloquist impersonator who won America's Got Talent) last year. He did a very nice job, and his mimicry and ventriloquism skills are great... but I think ventriloquism works better in a more intimate setting.

Before Terry came on an IBMer shared several tidbits of data from research and from polls they have been taking at IOD. For example, did you know that 15 petabytes of data are created every day? Regarding the even, they shared that there are more overall attendees here than there were at last year's event (6,000+) and that the average distance folks traveled to attend #IOD2009 is 2500 miles. You can actually participate in the daily IOD polls at http://iodpoll.com.

In between the entertainment respites, we got to hear from several IBM folks, including Ambuj Goyal, Arvind Krishna, and Frank Kern. According to Mr. Goyal, IBM is building an information on demand software stack to deliver trusted information. This can solve a very real problem that organizations are experiencing today. You see, it seems that one in three business leaders frequently make critical decisions based on inaccurate or non-existing information. Business executives don't just need data, but trusted information that can be relied upon for analysis to make accurate business decisions.

Again, according to Goyal, he sees IBM's Information Agenda doing for trusted information what ERP did for enterprise resource processes. IBM will help move its customers from information projects to information-based architecture and operations, moving organizations from information on demand to information transformation.

Then Frank Kern hosted three IBM customers as he asked each of them to explain how they benefited from IBM's Information Management solutions. The representative from BlueCross BlueShield talked about their data warehouse with 54 millions records, which happens to be the largest healthcare data warehouse in the world. Their analytical data is made available thru a portal. Offering integrated healthcare details helps improve healthcare. And the Chevron representative spoke about how IBM has helped Chevron improve its supply chain operations using integrated information.

And
Arvind Krishna, GM of the Information Management group at IBM, told about IBM's on-going investments in research and development for IOD. So far, IBM has invested over $12 billion in R+D and acquisitions.

IBM also unveiled some announcements today at IOD including several new offerings to provide organizations with analytics capabilities to make better use of their archived information and improve business processes. These offerings are part of IBM's unified archiving strategy called IBM Smart Archive. Most intriguing to me is the preview of a SaaS offering called IBM Information Archive Cloud Services. The entire press release can be read here, if you're interested in the topic.

I also attended a presentation on DB2 X which was quite interesting, too. Delivered by Jeff Josten, there was much good news for mainframe DB2 folks including improved performance, temporal support, improved utility operations, hashed data and access paths, and more. I tweeted about this quite extensively on Twitter.

In fact, if you want to follow my tweets all week (well, thru Wednesday) be sure to follow me on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/craigmullins... even when I'm not at a conference like IOD, I regularly tweet on DB2, database, and information management topics.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Learn All About DB2 X for z/OS

IBM is hosting a free webinar on November 3, 2009, offering a technical preview of the next version of DB2 for z/OS, currently known as DB2 X (but we all know, err, ah, think it will be called DB2 10).

If you work with DB2 on the mainframe you will want to set aside some time to attend this informative DB2 X webinar. It will have information for DBAs, as well as for Managers, Application Architects, Developers, System Administrators, System Programmers, and System Architects... and that is just about anyone who works with DB2.

The speaker will be IBM Distinguished Engineer, Jeff Josten.

How do you participate, you may be asking? Well, that is easy. Simply click on over to DB2 X for z/OS Technical Preview and register yourself.

The webinar will be held on November 3, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, 4:00 p.m. UTC.

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