IBM Corp’s Hursley, Hampshire laboratory has created a systems management suite for managing CICS under AIX, come up with a new release of CICS for AIX, Distributed Computing Environment and Encina to support multithreading AIX, and developed a CICS internet gateway for processing queries from World Wide Web browsers. As well as providing a single […]
IBM Corp’s Hursley, Hampshire laboratory has created a systems management suite for managing CICS under AIX, come up with a new release of CICS for AIX, Distributed Computing Environment and Encina to support multithreading AIX, and developed a CICS internet gateway for processing queries from World Wide Web browsers. As well as providing a single system management point of view, IBM said CICS Systems Manager for AIX V1.1 – .1 products are IBM’s first production releases these days – it also delivers a single application image for grouping together and managing applications, processes and other programs associated with a logical application, such as inventory, or billing, that may be distributed around and organisation’s computing infrastructure. In addition to workload management, the software also keeps, on the client, a cached map of servers and their data partitions so that query components can be routed to a particular destination rather than addressed to the system as a whole, saving network traffic and processor time, IBM says.
In traditional transaction processing environments relatively small amounts of data are accessed a large number of times. IBM has essentially moved many of the features found in its CICS for MVS systems manager over to the AIX version – an OS/2 agent is promised. The company has also completely re-worked CICS for AIX to support the multithreading features in AIX 4.1 and upwards. CICS for AIX 2.1 requires AIX 4.1 to run and also supports the PowerPC-based systems and Power Parallels. The release works in conjunction with a 2.1 version of IBM’s Distributed Computing Environment implementation for AIX, enhanced to take advantage of the merging of Distributed Computing Environment and AIX threads under the recent operating system release. The company has also tinkered with release 1.1 of its Transarc Corp subsidiary’s Encina transaction processing monitor for symmetric multiprocessing AIX, dubbing the new release version 2.1. Customers will have to recompile existing CICS for AIX applications for the multithreading-enabled CICS for AIX 2.1, which will also be available for OEM CICS Server-on-Unix customers Digital Equipment Corp, Hewlett-Packard Co and Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG, as well as for Windows NT systems. There is still no time frame for the c onversion of CICS Server for SunSoft Inc’s Solaris – the forthcoming implementation for Sinix Unix has been designed specifically to take advantage of business opportunities in Germany, the company said. The Internet gateway, unveiled as part of the company’s Internet product blitz – or wish list – a couple of weeks ago, delivers data from a CICS server over CICS ICS communications to a World Wide Web server running the Web to CICS interface and CICS client application. The data is converted to HyperText Markup Language format and supplied to end-user browsers by the Web server. Intially up on OS/2, AIX and MVS versions of the interface will follow.
By William Fellows
Universities are said to be particularly interested. Use and application of CICS data retrieved by a browser is restricted to the browser’s functions, ruling out, under current technologies at least, the subsequent customisation and manipulation of that data. Given that the majority of Web servers in the market are run on Sun Microsystems boxes it makes even more sense for IBM to make the gateway available for distributing data from CICS clients under Solaris. However, what the company has got already is only four months old and it said it hasn’t thought that far ahead yet. The plan is to begin bundling the Web services with CICS clients sometime in the future and possibly offer to a dial-in service. The initiative is part of an ongoing plan to convert CICS’s system-dependent and proprietary communications infrastructure over to a message-independent architecture. The plan is to create a standard set of forms specifications and application programming interfaces that will be common to the various CICS impleme ntations, mak
ing development and querying a more system-independent task. HyperText Markup Language could form at least part of that link, the company said. The model is analogous to the company’s Lotus Notes link, where a CICS Server pushes data out to CICS Link and Client modules residing on a Notes Server, which in turn distributes query data out to Notes clients in a form that means users don’t have to know they are accessing a CICS server. New also is CICS for OS/2 version 2.01, which adds with TCP/IP communications for CICS clients, C++ and PL/1, and its availability with Micro Focus Plc’s Cobol Workbench.
A 3.1 implementation of LANDP/2 now supports OS/2 Warp, MS-DOS and Windows. CICS for AS/400 3.6 supports the new PowerPC boxes; CICS for VSE/ESA 2.3 supports Cobol and PL/I, and other security and migration features are due later this year; CICS for MVS/ESA 4.1 supports N-way data sharing for DB2 and IMS/DB on the ES/9000 parallel transaction server, workload management via CICSPlex, Distributed Computing Environment and Open Network Computing Remote Procedure Calls and C++; CICS Client for OS/2 1.0 has new TCP/IP and SNA communications. All of IBM’s CICS products are now priced on a per-user basis. Meanwhile, the latest set of numbers from the Standish Group show that the Unix transaction processing monitor market is forecast to reach $547m in 1998, up from just $109m in 1994. The research company estimates that Tuxedo led the market in 1994 with a 32% share, followed by Top End with 17%; Encina with 15%; CICS (which shares Encina’s structured file server and toolkit) 11%; UniKix (Compagnie des Machine Bull SA’s CICS-compatible system) 6%; and the shadowy others 19%. In 1998 it estimates Tuxedo will have dropped to 29% of the $547m market; CICS jumping to 20%; Top End down at 14%; Encina falling to 12%; UniKix up to 9%, and others at 16%.