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Mainframe Technology

Infrastructure and Operations
IBM Mainframe Systems Mainframe Infrastructure Challenges Mainframe Technology in Transition
z/OS, z/VSE, and z/VM Operating Systems Mainframe Training by SYS-ED Mainframe Courseware for Teaching
IBM Mainframe Cross Operating System Support Distance-learning_Service Mainframe Training Programs

 

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CICS, DB2, IMS, Rational, TSO/ISPF, VSAM, WebSphere, and z/OS are registered trademarks of IBM Corporation.
Courseware for Teaching - Mainframe Training Service
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IBM Mainframe Modernization and Resource Management
 

IBM Mainframe Systems

IBM has made significant improvements to its next generation of mainframe machines. The z series mainframe runs more than 40 percent faster than its predecessor and is up to ninety percent more energy efficient. Mainframes remain an important part of IBM hardware and software technology and its data center management strategies.

IBM Mainframe System Resources and Strategies

IBM_Mainframe_System_Resources

The capability to have other computers plug into an IBM mainframe system serves to extend mainframe strengths in security and always-on availability to other systems. The mainframe can then be used to manage the hardware and software applications.

In 2012, IBM introduced its zEnterprise EC12 line of mainframe computers. The new models added capabilities to address rapidly growing areas of enterprise technology: cloud computing, flash-memory storage, green computing, web data accumulation / analytics, and business analytics.

Advantages associated with the new IBM mainframe design include:

  • Providing data center integration and the ability to treat the data center as a single system.
  • Efficiently blending tasks and parceling out parts of a complex application to different computer systems.
  • Incorporating Linux and UNIX machines to perform complex applications - easier and at less cost.


Mainframe Infrastructure Challenges

Organizational enterprise has a substantial investment in mainframe infrastructure and inventory of applications specific to its business model and operations. Applications developed 30 or more years ago with legacy programming languages and IBM system software remain in use. The challenge is to integrate back-end legacy systems with newer client/server and web-based systems and deliver reliable message queuing between applications. There is considerable complexity associated with the efficient and reliable movement of data. The goal is to accurately identify and model the business logic, structure of the data, and processing throughput. Then to cost effectively repurpose existing software assets and establish a framework for long term maintainability.

There are multiple operating strategies to select from: SOA: Service Oriented Architecture, web servicization, platform migration, and application migration. A web-enabled application can be accessed through the organization web site or a native application. An advantage associated with a web-enabled application is the utilization of other web services for security and personalization. The web service information also can be used in helping administrators troubleshoot mainframe applications.

In many situations the work force which designed, coded, and maintained these applications will be reaching retirement age.


Mainframe Technology in Transition

IBM z/OS Operating System Scalability, Performance, and Problem Determination

The IBM z/OS mainframe operating system provides for economies of scale and adaptability of resources. Used in conjunction with the IBM System z10 Enterprise Class server, the z/OS operating system can significantly reduce requirements for partitioning application and data on unnatural boundaries. For large z/OS mainframe installations, a proper configuration will: 1- Consolidate enterprise datastores. 2- Co-locate applications close to the data. 3- Reduce the incidence of siloed data in the enterprise. HiperDispatch provides improved performance by distributing and managing z/OS workloads on scalable n-way systems.

The z/OS V1.10 operating system has an expanded featureset and administrative interface for problem identification, recommended solutions, and resource migration.

Featureset and Utilities Purpose
Capacity Provisioning Manager Monitors z/OS systems on System z10 servers. It can be used to activate and deactivate temporary capacity automatically or by user input.
Configuration Assistant for z/OS Communications Server Adds file import capabilities and support for IP address group definition; this serves to make the Configuration Assistant more responsive to networking requirements.
IBM Health Checker for z/OS Provides additional checking capability and support for log browsing and saving data across IPLs: Initial Programs Loads. It also supports and integrates Migration Health Checks.
Hardware Configuration Manager Supports configuration packages and the importing and exporting of I/O configuration data.
z/OS Management Facility A utility with a new interface used in the system administration of the z/OS operating system.
z/OS PFA: Predictive Failure Analysis Monitors the rate at which SMF records are generated. Alerts are generated for proactively reacting to system problems.
z/OS Runtime Diagnostics Monitors the system message log and address space resources. It is used in the gathering of data required for real-time decisions in the event of a system problem.


IBM z/VSE Operating System - Technology Support

The z/VSE mainframe operating system builds upon IBM zEnterprise 196 and IBM System z10 technology:

  • The ability to dynamically add logical CPs for reduced preplanning and the need for planned outages; the z/VSE system has the capability to adjust workload requirements.
  • Large 1 megabyte page support for data spaces to more efficiently utilize large processor storage and provide the capability for improving performance in long-running applications with intensive data space access.
  • The use of the AP: Adjunct Processor-queue
    adapter-interruption facility for accelerating SSL throughput during cryptographic operations.
  • Configurable Crypto Express3 support for data encryption and SSL acceleration.


IBM z/VM Operating System - Scalability, Efficiency, and Throughput

The z/VM operating system has been optimized for: 1- scalability and reducing system overhead. 2- increasing system and guest throughput. 3- consolidating workloads on the zEnterprise 196 and System z10 servers. Data-in-memory techniques enhance the scalability and performance of memory-intensive workloads.

The z/VM operating system provides flexibility in managing enterprise application workloads:
   
  • By virtualizing processor, memory, communications, I/O, and networking resources.
  • Through the use of HiperSockets for the implementation of virtual networks.
  • Through the utilization of DCSS: Discontiguous Saved Segment support for storing Linux program executables in a single z/VM memory location, and sharing the executables with hosted Linux systems.
  • With a z/VM performance toolkit for monitoring and performance reporting.

Mainframe Training by SYS-ED

Mainframe information technology is in transition. However, application development is not going to be exclusively JEE or Microsoft .NET. IBM system software still will have a significant role.

  • IBM CICS Transaction Server will account for a substantial share of overall application server processing.
  • IBM DB2 is and multiplatform object-SQL Database Management System; DB2 for z/OS has few direct competitors.
  • IBM WebSphere MQ middleware is the industry leading message switching and routing software; it supports IBM's WebSphere Application Server and Rational development platform, and a variety of third party database and web server platforms.
  • Enterprises are still utilizing IBM-IMS, CA-IDMS, and Software AG ADABAS legacy datastores.

Since 1980, SYS-ED has been offering industry standard mainframe courses and training programs for Fortune 1000 corporations, government municipalities, healthcare providers, and consulting companies. We have a history of success in providing specialized training services on IBM mainframe systems: operations, programming skills, programming languages, telecommunications, and system software. SYS-ED's mainframe training service has been developed and extended to serve as an alternative to the IBM academic initiative for mainframe education. It has been designed to augment IBM support centers.

Our staff of system consultants are teachers who can demonstrate and explain. And truth be told, we get called upon by industry leading software and consulting companies, including IBM, to teach courses both for clients and their own in-house staff of software engineers and application developers

When information technology professionals leave a SYS-ED mainframe course, they will have documentation, training aids, and sample and skeleton programs which can be used back on the job to help in performing specific tasks. In addition to instructor-led classroom instruction, industry standard mainframe courses also are available for presentation in a distance-learning delivery medium.


Courseware for Teaching

The Computer Education Techniques courseware used in SYS-ED courses consists of student handouts, presentation slides, training aids, and industry-specific exercises. The CETi knowledge base aggregates and analyzes information in the public domain. It also is a service for reviewing and answering questions. Content is selectively added to courseware. The long term strategy is to submit comprehensive courseware products for evaluation as a NRV: Nationally Recognized Vendor with the New York State Department of Education. In conjunction with presenting an instructor-led mainframe course at the client location, courseware is organized for subsequent use in a web-based infrastructure and delivery medium.

Mainframe Courseware as a Learning Center
z/OS Mainframe - Basic Mainframe Courseware for Teaching
Courseware for Teaching
Mainframe Student Handout
Student Handout
Mainframe Reference Guides
Reference Guide
PL/1 Programming
Programming Skills and Languages
Programming Skills
Mainframe Utilities and Development Tools
Mainframe Programming Languages
Java Development Platform and Language
VSAM
System Software
CICS Transaction Server
DB2 Relational Database
IMS Transaction Server
WebSphere MQ Middleware
WebSphere and Rational

Grow Your Own Mainframe Personnel

Over the past year, we have had inquiries regarding whether SYS-ED still offered mainframe courses for information technology professionals.

Portfolio of Mainframe Clients

Programming Language Training Services

CICS Transaction Server COBOL Programming
DB2 Relational Database IMS Transaction Server
Mainframe Utilities
and Tools
Java Language
VSAM WebSphere MQ

Financial Services Healthcare Providers

The typical comments were:
1. That it is difficult to find mainframe training which develops the specialized skills needed for mainframe systems and operational maintenance.
2. That there is a scarcity of fast-track programming language and system software courses, 5 or fewer days in duration, geared to employees for Fortune 1000 corporations, government municipalities, and healthcare providers.
3. That a high percentage of mainframe courses are cancelled.
4. That travel costs and living expenses in a majority of situations are a significant constraint when it comes to attending a mainframe course.
5. That it is important to have a resource for asking mainframe questions once the training is complete.
   
In response to these questions:
Mainframe Training Services in New York Yes, SYS-ED offers multiple levels of mainframe training.
Mainframe Training Services in New York Yes, since 1980, SYS-ED has taught mainframe courses and training programs.
Mainframe Training Services in New York Yes, we have the flexibility and resources to conduct personalized training for small groups. We very rarely cancel mainframe courses.
Mainframe Training Services in New York Mainframe courses are available in multiple formats: classroom, distance-learning and blended web-based delivery.
Mainframe Training Services in New York Upon completion of a SYS-ED course, our staff is available to answer mainframe questions.

IBM Mainframe Cross Operating System Support

IBM System z servers are supported under z/OS, z/VSE, Linux on System z, and the z/VM hypervisor. Cross operating system support provides an integrated scalable development and production platform for both large and middle size enterprise environments: 64-bit architecture, compilers, data access methods, security, enterprise middleware software, SOA development and usage, and web development.

 
IBM_Mainframe_Operating_System_Utilization

Distance-learning Service

SYS-ED's distance-learning training service is 65% lecture and 35% hands-on machine exercises, with optional validation assessment. Support services are provided through SYS-ED websites.

 Mainframe Training Service 
     

Enrollment is contingent upon the prospective trainee's having been qualified by our Director of Education to have the appropriate background for the training and review of a checklist of items required for transmission of the service to the client location: bandwidth, firewall, base operating system, software requirements, web browser, and set-up of hands-on machine exercises.


 
Web Server and Internet Programming
IBM WebSphere and Rational Commercial Utilization of the Java Language Implementing the Linux Operating System UNIX Solaris and Red Hat Linux Oracle Java and WebLogic Infrastructure Modernization WebLogic Administration and Application Development Internet and Mobile Programming Systems

Mainframe Training Programs

SYS-ED offers tailored entry-level and fast-track mainframe training programs.

Standard entry-level training programs consist of four components: z/OS operating system, programming skills, programming language, and system software. These programs have been developed and refined over a quarter century of consultancy and teaching and draw upon the CETI courseware library.
Tailored fast-track programs are comprised of course modules selected by the client organization: topics, examples, workshops, validation assessments, and duration. Many clients also elect to incorporate an educational consulting component which reflects their standards and implementation strategy for project development.

New York State Department of Education Standards

Premium Training Service
Entry Level Mainframe
Training Program
Assembler Language
Training Program
COBOL Language
Training Program
PL/1 Language
Training Program
z/OS Operations and System Programming
Training Program
CICS Transaction Server
Training Program

Web-based Training Services

Web-based Training


Evolving IT: Interrelated Technologies

There are new web server and web enabling technologies which in many situations will require integration with the existing mainframe systems and enterprise databases. Virtualization plays an important role in mainframe hardware. By implementing virtualization software, it is possible to virtualize the processor, memory, storage I/O and networking resources into aggregated pools - applications can utilize resource pools without regard to specific hardware. This improves utilization of the mainframe and reduces the need for upgrades. For example, the z/VM operating system can support hundreds of Linux images simultaneously. Web-enabled applications can be accessed by the company web site or a native application. An advantage associated with a web-enabled application is the utilization of other web services such as security and personalization. Web service information can also help administrators to troubleshoot mainframe applications.

Along these lines, SYS-ED clients have been upgrading mainframe hardware in order to improve processing for utilization with Linux and UNIX.

UNIX- and Linux- variant Training Programs Web Servers Java Language Training Program

SYS-ED trained first generation mainframe personnel in a variety of industries during the 1980ís. And look forward to the opportunity and challenge of training their successors in the 21st century. Albeit, with a more comprehensive set of delivery options for conducting the training.


Mainframe Training

Mainframe Courses
SYS-ED's mainframe courses are tough, but they're worth it. Our challenging hands-on mainframe training provides a foundation and framework for Fortune 1000 companies, government municipalities, healthcare providers, software houses, and consulting companies to meet their mainframe staffing requirements and acquire specialized mainframe skillsets.1

Courseware
SYS-ED's mainframe courseware is highly respected in information technology. We draw upon our extensive library of courseware, sample programs, and case studies to explain, demonstrate, and teach real-world mainframe information technology. Our mainframe curricula include industry standard and consultancy derived content. We have the capability to provide tailored workshops and integrated training programs on z/OS, z/VSE, z/VM, and third party emulation workbench and platforms.

Teaching is Our Business
Most computer training companies are divisions of large software companies or consulting companies. Not SYS-ED. Our only goal is to provide world class mainframe training for highly motivated IT professionals - no more and no less. Because we're independent, we're free to concentrate on teaching - and since 1980 we have been doing it very well.

Our Teachers Know How to Teach
SYS-ED instructors combine teaching skills with broad practical experience as consultants. Our instructors average 30 years of experience in the mainframe environment - operating systems, programming languages, third party utilities and development tools, and system software. And they know how to teach it. We teach not only "how to", but "why", building a solid foundation in fundamentals and insights into advanced materials. After a course, they are available to answer questions.

Enrollment - SYS-ED Mainframe Courses are not for Everyone
No one is allowed to enroll in a SYS-ED mainframe course, without a consultation with our Director of Education. We review the operational objectives and project specifications for the organization evaluating whether to send its employee for the training. The employee is only allowed to register if they have the background corresponding to the appropriate learning path: mainframe, COBOL, REXX, SAS, VSAM, CICS, IMS, DB2, WebSphere MQ, and system software - web enablement.

Mainframe Training - Distance-learning or at Your Office
SYS-ED mainframe courses are provided over the Internet through a distance-learning delivery medium or in classroom instruction on-site at the client location. Client location courses can include the identical workshops, case studies, and hands-on approach as the distance-learning service offered through the SYS-ED schedule.


Footnote 1:

SYS-EDís core mainframe curriculum have been submitted to the New York State Department of Education - Bureau of Proprietary School Supervision for technical review and licensing.