IBM i 7.3 TR10 offers enhanced performance, usability, and integration

IBM United States Software Announcement 221-074
April 13, 2021

Table of contents
OverviewOverviewTechnical informationTechnical information
Key requirementsKey requirementsOrdering informationOrdering information
Planned availability datePlanned availability dateTerms and conditionsTerms and conditions
DescriptionDescriptionPricesPrices
Program numberProgram numberOrder nowOrder now
PublicationsPublications


Overview

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IBM® i integrates a trusted combination of relational database, security, web services, networking, and storage management capabilities. It delivers a broad and highly stable database and middleware foundation for efficiently deploying business applications.

IBM i 7.3 Technology Refresh 10 delivers the following new features and capabilities for small, midsized, and large companies:

  • IBM Db2® for i is enhanced to help enable database engineers to programmatically supervise the SQL Query Engine.
  • IBM i Services, the SQL alternative to APIs and CL commands, provide enhanced productivity and insight to all IBM i users.
  • Save/Restore is enhanced to save time by automatically bypassing ENDSBS command processing if the system is already in a restricted state.
  • IBM i Common Cryptographic Architecture Cryptographic Service Provider (CCA CSP), delivered as IBM i Option 35, now includes support for Release 5.6.x for CCA for the IBM 4767 Cryptographic Coprocessor.
  • IBM Rational® Development Studio for i provides several new features for the RPG programming language.
  • IBM Backup, Recovery, and Media Services for i (BRMS) adds new functionality based on user requests.
  • IBM PowerHA® SystemMirror® for i brings a new set of enhancements centered around switchover, automation, and simplification.
  • IBM i supports the hardware and I/O that are being announced on April 13, 2021, providing operational efficiency and increased configuration flexibility.

The Description section includes detailed information about these new functions and enhancements for this release.

For additional information on the IBM i 7.3 TR10 enhancements, see the following:



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Key requirements

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IBM i 7.3 TR10 is supported on selected IBM Power® Systems servers with:

  • IBM POWER9™ and POWER8® technology-based processors
  • IBM POWER7 or IBM POWER7+ processors

Clients using blades or IBM PureFlex® systems, and those using servers with IBM POWER6, IBM POWER6+, or earlier processors, need to move to newer systems to take advantage of the features in IBM i 7.3 TR10.

For up-to-date information on all types of code levels needed for support of a particular feature, see the IBM Prerequisite website.

See the Technical Information section for specific hardware and software prerequisites.



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Planned availability date

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April 16, 2021



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Description

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Db2 for i

Db2 for i, the integrated database for IBM i, is known for containing the attributes valued by business computing solutions. Db2 for i is enhanced to include new capabilities for database engineers to programmatically supervise the SQL Query Engine.

To learn more about these and other Db2 for i enhancements, see the database section of the IBM Db2 for i - Technology Updates wiki page.

Db2 for i enhancements

With this update, Db2 now offers the Query Supervisor feature. The Query Supervisor feature allows clients the ability to establish automated controls for supervising the on-going consumption of system resources by SQL Query Engine (SQE) activity.

User-established threshold levels for CPU consumption and other criteria guide the Query Supervisor. When a threshold is met, a user supplied exit program is called during query execution. The exit program can initiate immediate notification, log the detail, terminate the query, or otherwise take immediate action.

The Query Supervisor feature will be delivered with the Db2 for i PTF group (SF99703) on May 14, 2021. For more information, see the Db2 for i 2021 PTF Group Schedule support page.

Db2 for i Services

Db2 for i continues the tradition of providing advanced and easy-to-use tooling to the database engineer by providing new procedures, such as:

  • GENERATE_SQL and GENERATE_SQL_OBJECTS: These procedures, used to generate the SQL statements for corresponding database objects, are enhanced to include an option to direct the output to an IFS stream file
  • CLEAR_PLAN_CACHE: This procedure, which removes plans from the SQL Plan Cache, is enhanced to give the caller the ability to clear specific plans, providing a granular and programmatic tool for plan management
  • DUMP_PLAN_CACHE_TOPN: This procedure, which captures deep detail about the most expensive SQL queries, is enhanced to include dump categories, allowing the DBE to easily focus on the top consumers of CPU, storage, and other resource categories

These and other enhancements are delivered with the Db2 for i PTF group (SF99703) on May 14, 2021.

For complete details on these enhancements and other Db2 for i Services enhancements, see the IBM i Technology Updates wiki.

IBM i Services

IBM i Services are the strategic method for gaining access to IBM i objects, system information, and much more. Leveraging the power of SQL and the Db2 for i SQL Query Engine (SQE), application developers, database engineers, and system managers can now explore IBM i objects and data in ways that were not possible with previous technologies.

In this technology refresh, these IBM i Services are added and enhanced, providing useful SQL-based alternatives to IBM i commands and APIs, such as:

  • SYSDISKSTAT: The service that provides statistical insight into spinning disk and solid-state drives (SSD) is enhanced to include fuel gauge detail for SSD devices.
  • OBJECT_STATISTICS: This popular and powerful table function used to find objects is enhanced for improved performance through support for generic object names.
  • SECURITY_INFO: Using SQL to manage security takes a step forward with this new view that provides one place to look for the current IBM i security configuration.
  • USER_SPACE_INFO and USER_INDEX_INFO: New views that provide details and attributes about user spaces and user indexes.
  • USER_SPACE and USER_INDEX_ENTRIES: New table functions that can be used to query the contents of user spaces and user indexes.
  • MESSAGE_QUEUE_INFO: The table function is documented and enhanced to include a message type filter, providing a performance-advantaged approach to finding specific messages.
  • QCMDEXC: The scalar function is added, providing an essential building block for clients to modernize to SQL-based systems management solutions.
  • System Limits: New controls are provided, allowing IBM i clients to control the system limits alerting capability. The alerting support is expanded to include more system limits.
  • ACTIVE_JOB_INFO: The SQL alternative to WRKACTJOB is enhanced by adding return columns for the job name, job user, and job number, which makes it much easier to search and subset active job detail.

SYSTOOLS

Db2 for i provides working examples and tools in the SYSTOOLS schema. Like previous technology refreshes, SYSTOOLS is enhanced with tools to help clients move forward with extreme automation using SQL:

  • GENERATE_PDF: The table function is pointed to a spooled file and a PDF file is produced into a user specified location within the IFS.
  • CHANGE_USER_PROFILE: The table function can be used to evaluate or deploy changes to one or more user profiles, greatly easing the complexity in managing user-based security.
  • Audit journal functions: Table functions unique to specific audit journal entry types are added to SYSTOOLS. The table functions return the basic audit journal detail, but also extract the entry-specific detail into easily consumed return columns.

Additional information

For complete details on these enhancements and other IBM i Services enhancements, see the IBM i Technology Updates wiki.

Base operating system

Save/Restore enhancement - Improvement to Restricted State Processing for GO SAVE and GO RESTORE

A recent PTF enhancement improves restricted state processing when performing the GO SAVE and GO RESTORE menu options 21, 22, 23 and GO LICPGM menu option 40.

The ENDSBS command is processed as part of the GO SAVE or GO RESTORE menu options 21, 22, 23, and the GO LICPGM option 40. Traditionally, while in an unattended mode, the ENDSBS command was issued even if the system was already in a restricted state. The ability to manually bypass the ENDSBS command was offered only while in an attended mode and only for user data menu option 23 of the GO SAVE and GO RESTORE menus.

With the application of the new PTF, a pre-check will be performed to automatically bypass the ENDSBS command processing if the system is already in a restricted state. This applies to both attended and unattended modes. The advantage is avoiding the unneeded ENDSBS processing, thereby saving time. An additional benefit is that it can avoid ending limited mode TCP/IP services that can operate while the system is in a restricted state.

See Improvement to Restricted State Processing for GO SAVE and GO RESTORE in the IBM i Technology Updates wiki for more details.

IBM i CCA CSP Enhancements

IBM i CCA CSP, delivered as IBM i Option 35, is updated to support Release 5.6.x for CCA from 5.3.x for the IBM 4767 Cryptographic Coprocessor.

This support is provided with IBM i PTFs, which will be available by June 30th, 2021. For the latest information, including PTF numbers, see IBM i Security in the IBM i Technology Updates wiki.

LPPs

Rational Development Studio (5770-WDS)

IBM is delivering key new features requested by RPG developers. The following features are included in this update:

  • %LOWER and %UPPER built-in functions convert contents of a char variable from lowercase to uppercase or vice versa
  • %SPLIT built-in function to split a string into an array
  • %MAXARR and %MINARR return the index of the maximum or minimum element of an array

For more information about details and updates, see the RPG Cafe website.

BRMS for i (5770-BR1)

BRMS for i 7.2 and later has several enhancements.

  • New SQL services that provide similar views of BRMS log information as those provided by the DSPLOGBRM command.
  • BRMS network sync job improves performance by reducing the number of journal entries processed.
  • Improved cloud support for Network Installations using Network File Systems.
  • Integrated support for full system backups using IBM i iSCSI supported devices.

For BRMS 7.3, these enhancements are available with PTF SI74478.

PowerHA SystemMirror for i (5770-HAS)

In this technology refresh, PowerHA a SystemMirror for i brings a new set of enhancements centered around switchover, automation, and simplification.

Streamlined switchovers

PowerHA continues to provide simple and easy switchovers. The latest enhancements provide simplified node selection with automated recovery domain management.

FlashCopy® automation

The integration of IBM FlashSystem® FlashCopy technologies are enhanced with integrated automation to simplify FlashCopy operations. Previously, FlashCopy operations required externally developed tools and scripts that performed multi-node operations.

Additional enhancements

PowerHA SystemMirror for i.7.3 offers the following additional enhancements, including:

  • Continued simplified management of PowerHA with interactive prompting
  • Additional simplified commands that provide contextual F4 prompt options that are optimized for a specific environment and configuration.

For more information on these enhancements and to get started, see the IBM PowerHA SystemMirror for i wiki page.

The PowerHA enhancements will be available on June 25, 2021.

Hardware and I/O topics

With IBM i 7.3 TR10, IBM i supports new hardware and I/O offerings for Power Systems:

  • 12-core POWER9 processor option for Scale Out 2U servers
  • IBM i as a client of Virtual I/O Server (VIOS) for configurations with new 2-port, 32 GB and 4-port, 16 GB Fibre Channel adapters
  • Enterprise PCIe4 NVMe disk in U.2 form factor with a new lower capacity of 800 GB
  • New mainstream SAS SSDs
  • New enterprise SAS SSDs

See the Hardware and Firmware support page in the IBM i Technology Updates wiki for more details.



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Reference information

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For information about IBM i 7.4 TR4, see Software Announcement 221-073, dated April 13, 2021.

For additional information about Hardware and I/O, see:

  • Hardware Announcement 121-013, dated April 13, 2021, IBM Power Systems enhancements
  • Hardware Announcement 121-001, dated April 13, 2021, Hardware Management Console (7063-CR2) based on POWER® technology


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Program number

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Program number VRM Program name
5770-SS1 7.3 IBM i 7.3 TR10


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Offering Information

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Product information is available on the IBM Offering Information website.



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Publications

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None



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Services

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Software Services

IBM Software Services has the breadth, depth, and reach to manage your services needs. You can leverage the deep technical skills of the lab-based software services team and the business consulting, project management, and infrastructure expertise of the IBM Global Services team. Also, IBM extends the reach of IBM Software Services through IBM Business Partners to provide an extensive portfolio of capabilities. IBM provides the global reach, intellectual capital, industry insight, and technology leadership to support a wide range of critical business needs.

To learn more about IBM Software Services, contact your Lab Services Sales or Delivery Leader.



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Technical information

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Specified operating environment

Hardware requirements

IBM i 7.3 TR10 is supported on select Power Systems servers with POWER9, POWER8, POWER7+, or POWER7 processors. Clients using blades or PureFlex systems, and those using servers with POWER6 or POWER6+ or earlier processors, need to move to newer systems to take advantage of the features in IBM i 7.3 TR10.

For up-to-date information about all types of code levels needed for support of a particular feature, see the IBM Prerequisite website.

For additional information, see the System to IBM i maps website.

Software requirements

To find the supporting technical details and software requirements for IBM i 7.3, see the TR10 enhancements website.

IBM Support

IBM Support is your gateway to technical support tools and resources that are designed to help you save time and simplify support. IBM Support can help you find answers to questions, download fixes, troubleshoot, submit and track problem cases, and build skills. Learn and stay informed about the transformation of IBM Support, including new tools, new processes, and new capabilities, by going to the IBM Support Insider.

Planning information

Packaging

This offering is delivered through the internet and as physical media.



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Ordering information

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Consult your IBM representative.

Charge metric

Not applicable.



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Terms and conditions

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The information provided in this announcement letter is for reference and convenience purposes only. The terms and conditions that govern any transaction with IBM are contained in the applicable contract documents such as the IBM International Program License Agreement, IBM International Passport Advantage® Agreement, and the IBM Agreement for Acquisition of Software Maintenance.

Licensing

IBM International Program License Agreement including the License Information document and Proof of Entitlement (PoE) govern your use of the program. PoEs are required for all authorized use.

This software license includes Software Subscription and Support (also referred to as Software Maintenance).

Software Maintenance

The IBM Agreement for Acquisition of Software Maintenance (Z125-6011) applies for Subscription and Support (also referred to as Software Maintenance) and does not require client signatures.

Licenses under the IBM International Program License Agreement (IPLA) provide for support with ongoing access to releases and versions of the program. IBM includes one year of Software Subscription and Support with the initial license acquisition of each program acquired. The initial period of Software Subscription and Support can be extended by the purchase of a renewal option, if available. Two charges apply: a one-time license charge for use of the program and an annual renewable charge for the enhanced support that includes telephone assistance (voice support for defects during normal business hours), as well as access to updates, releases, and versions of the program as long as support is in effect.

License Information number

Follow-on releases, if any, may have updated terms. See the License Information documents website for more information.

Limited warranty applies

Yes

Limited warranty

IBM warrants that when the program is used in the specified operating environment, it will conform to its specifications. The warranty applies only to the unmodified portion of the program. IBM does not warrant uninterrupted or error-free operation of the program or that IBM will correct all program defects. You are responsible for the results obtained from the use of the program.

IBM provides you with access to IBM databases containing information on known program defects, defect corrections, restrictions, and bypasses at no additional charge. For further information, see the IBM Support Guide.

IBM will maintain this information for at least one year after the original licensee acquires the program (warranty period).

Program support

Subscription and Support includes telephone assistance, as well as access to updates, releases, and versions of the program as long as support is in effect. You will be notified of discontinuance of support with 12 months' notice.

Money-back guarantee

If for any reason you are dissatisfied with the program and you are the original licensee, you may obtain a refund of the amount you paid for it, if within 30 days of your invoice date you return the program and its PoE to the party from whom you obtained it. If you downloaded the program, you may contact the party from whom you acquired it for instructions on how to obtain the refund.

For clarification, note that for programs acquired under any of IBM's On/Off Capacity on Demand (On/Off CoD) software offerings, this term does not apply since these offerings apply to programs already acquired and in use by you.

Volume orders (IVO)

No

Passport Advantage applies

No

Software Subscription and Support applies

Yes. All distributed software licenses include Software Subscription and Support (also referred to as Software Maintenance) for a period of 12 months from the date of acquisition, providing a streamlined way to acquire IBM software and assure technical support coverage for all licenses. Extending coverage for a total of three years from date of acquisition may be elected.

While your Software Subscription and Support is in effect, IBM provides you assistance for your routine, short duration installation and usage (how-to) questions, and code-related questions. IBM provides assistance by telephone and, if available, electronic access, only to your information systems (IS) technical support personnel during the normal business hours (published prime shift hours) of your IBM support center. (This assistance is not available to your end users.) IBM provides Severity 1 assistance 24 hours a day, every day of the year. For additional details, go to the IBM Support Handbooks page.

Software Subscription and Support does not include assistance for the design and development of applications, your use of programs in other than their specified operating environment, or failures caused by products for which IBM is not responsible under this agreement.

IBM Operational Support Services - SoftwareXcel

No

System i Software Maintenance applies

Yes

Variable charges apply

No

Educational allowance available

Yes. A 15% education allowance applies to qualified education institution clients.



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Statement of good security practices

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IT system security involves protecting systems and information through intrusion prevention, detection, and response to improper access from within and outside your enterprise. Improper access can result in information being altered, destroyed, or misappropriated or can result in misuse of your systems to attack others. Without a comprehensive approach to security, no IT system or product should be considered completely secure and no single product or security measure can be completely effective in preventing improper access. IBM systems and products are designed to be part of a regulatory compliant, comprehensive security approach, which will necessarily involve additional operational procedures, and may require other systems, products, or services to be most effective.

Important: IBM does not warrant that any systems, products, or services are immune from, or will make your enterprise immune from, the malicious or illegal conduct of any party.



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Prices

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Not applicable.

IBM Global Financing

IBM Global Financing offers competitive financing to credit-qualified clients to assist them in acquiring IT solutions. Offerings include financing for IT acquisition, including hardware, software, and services, from both IBM and other manufacturers or vendors. Offerings (for all client segments: small, medium, and large enterprise), rates, terms, and availability can vary by country. Contact your local IBM Global Financing organization or go to the IBM Global Financing website for more information.

IBM Global Financing offerings are provided through IBM Credit LLC in the United States, and other IBM subsidiaries and divisions worldwide to qualified commercial and government clients. Rates are based on a client's credit rating, financing terms, offering type, equipment type, and options, and may vary by country. Other restrictions may apply. Rates and offerings are subject to change, extension, or withdrawal without notice.



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Order now

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To order, contact the IBM Digital Sales Center, your local IBM representative, or your IBM Business Partner. To identify your local IBM representative or IBM Business Partner, call 800-IBM-4YOU (426-4968). For more information, contact the IBM Digital Sales Center.

Phone: 800-IBM-CALL (426-2255)

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Note: Shipments will begin after the planned availability date.

Trademarks

POWER9 is a trademark of IBM Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

IBM, Db2, Rational, PowerHA, SystemMirror, Power, POWER8, PureFlex, Passport Advantage, FlashCopy, IBM FlashSystem and POWER are registered trademarks of IBM Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

Other company, product, and service names may be trademarks or service marks of others.

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IBM products and services which are announced and available in your country can be ordered under the applicable standard agreements, terms, conditions, and prices in effect at the time. IBM reserves the right to modify or withdraw this announcement at any time without notice. This announcement is provided for your information only. Additional terms of use are located at

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