IBM CICS Operational Insights open-beta, cloud-hosted service provides insights into your CICS environment to help improve operational efficiency

IBM United States Software Announcement 215-057
February 17, 2015


Table of contents
 Overview Overview  Publications Publications
 Key prerequisites Key prerequisites  Technical information Technical information
 Planned availability date Planned availability date  Terms and conditions Terms and conditions
 Description Description   Order now Order now
 Program number Program number


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At a glance
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IBM® CICS® Operational Insights™ (CICS OI) is a new cloud-based service that is designed to allow IT managers to perform a self-assessment of potential CICS efficiency improvements.

The CICS OI open beta offering is available for preview direct from IBM. Visit

http://ibm.com/software/products/en/cics-oi

For ordering, contact your IBM representative, or IBM Americas Call Centers at 800-IBM-CALL (Reference: LE001).



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Overview
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CICS OI is a new service that is designed to provide insights into potential improvements to your CICS environment. This cloud-based service offering uses operational data securely provided by the user. A web interface provides access to insights generated from their data that highlight areas of potential improvement, such as showing CPU savings by implementing thread-safety for CICS transactions.

The CICS OI open beta offering previews this self-service offering that helps managers of CICS Transaction Server for z/OS (CICS TS) systems to understand potential operational efficiency improvements to their CICS TS environment by analyzing operational data.

The CICS OI open beta offering is available for preview with no obligation to purchase. Capabilities will be updated in the course of the open beta offering. Further details can be found at

http://ibm.com/software/products/en/cics-oi


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Key prerequisites
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The following browsers are verified to function with this offering:



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Planned availability date
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February 23, 2015



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Description
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The CICS OI open beta offering is a cloud-based service that uses operational data securely provided by the user. A web interface provides access to automatically generated insights that highlight areas of potential improvement. This helps managers of CICS TS systems understand potential improvements that can be made to the operational efficiency of their CICS TS environment. The initial insight shows potential CPU savings that might be achieved by implementing thread-safety for CICS transactions.

CICS OI open beta offering is built and deployed on IBM Bluemix™, an open standards-based cloud platform and key platform APIs to enable rapid assembly of the next generation of interactive applications.

The CICS OI open beta offering uses a snapshot of CICS SMF 110 data, which is collected using the CICS Monitoring Facility on the client site and uploaded to the cloud. The collection step requires action by a CICS system programmer. SMF field specifications and data upload guidance are available on the web interface.

CICS OI open beta offering facilitates the secure transfer through HTTPS of client data to, and its secure storage in, an IBM public cloud. Customers may upload multiple snapshots for analysis, each upload replacing the previous data.

The CICS OI open beta offering web interface provides a portal for the customer to view the initial insight: Transaction thread-safety insight, which showns potential CPU savings that are achieved by implementing CICS thread safety. Additional insights may be added transparently to the portal during the course of the open beta offering.

A sample data snapshot, which is based on the General Insurance Application (GENAPP) CICS SupportPac, allows users to explore the insights provided by CICS OI open beta offering before collecting and uploading their own snapshots. GENAPP is widely used as a sample application in IBM Redbooks® publications, and is available at

http://www.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=swg24031760

CICS OI open beta offering also provides a method for providing feedback from within the offering. Participants in the beta offering can offer feedback on the offering's capabilities, show support for future insights, and suggest additional insights. They might also learn about IBM strategy and direction, and can build skills and develop expertise. A forum for public discussion of current and future capabilities can be found at

https://ibm.biz/cicsoi-forum

If the offering is made commercially available, participants might obtain earlier benefit and payback, gain competitive edge, and achieve public recognition as a technology leader. Participants are encouraged to provide feedback and articulate their own requirements to IBM, with the potential to help influence the shape of CICS OI and other IBM products.

IBM beta offerings for software allow customers to sign up for and acquire early releases of a product for the purposes of testing, before it is made commercially available. Open beta offerings do not usually require customers to register before taking part in the program. Typically, product offerings provided by a beta offering:

Details of the terms and conditions of the beta offering can be found in the supplied license files when registering for the offering.

Accessibility by people with disabilities

A US Section 508 Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) containing details on accessibility compliance can be requested at

http://www.ibm.com/able/product_accessibility/index.html


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Reference information
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For information on CICS TS, V5.3 open beta offering, refer to 215-020, dated February 17, 2015.



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Program number
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Program          Program
number    VRM    name
 
5725-U56  1.0    IBM CICS Operational Insights
 


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Offering Information
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Product information is available via the Offering Information website

http://www.ibm.com/common/ssi


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Publications
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Help for the CICS OI open beta offering will be provided in the offering. Information will also be available alongside the rest of the CICS portfolio in IBM Knowledge Center

http://www.ibm.com/support/knowledgecenter/


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Technical information
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Specified operating environment

Hardware requirements

A workstation that is capable of accessing the IBM cloud.

Software requirements

A workstation with a web browser to access CICS OI in the cloud.

The program's specifications and specified operating environment information may be found in documentation accompanying the program, if available, such as a readme file, or other information published by IBM, such as an announcement letter. Documentation and other program content may be supplied only in the English language.

Limitations

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 Passport Advantage® Agreement, the International Passport Advantage Express® Agreement, the Cloud Services Agreement (CSA) and associated Service Descriptions, or the IBM SaaS Terms of Use.

IBM Electronic Support

The IBM Support Portal is your gateway to technical support. This includes IBM Electronic Support tools and resources, for software and hardware, to help save time and simplify support. The Electronic Support tools can help you find answers to questions, download fixes, troubleshoot, automate data collection, submit and track problems through the Service Request online tool, and build skills. All these tools are made available through your IBM support agreement, at no additional charge. Read about the Electronic Support portfolio of tools

http://ibm.com/electronicsupport

Access the IBM Support Portal

http://ibm.com/support

Access the online Service Request tool

http://ibm.com/support/servicerequest

Planning information

Security, auditability, and control

The CICS OI open beta offering uses the security and auditability features of the operating system under which it is running.

The customer is responsible for evaluation, selection, and implementation of security features, administrative procedures, and appropriate controls in application systems and communication facilities.



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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 Passport Advantage Agreement, the International Passport Advantage Express Agreement, the Cloud Services Agreement and associated Service Descriptions, or the IBM SaaS Terms of Use.

Terms of use

The program's Terms of Use document and CSA Service Description is available on the IBM Software as a Service Agreements website

http://www.ibm.com/software/sla/sladb.nsf/sla/saas/

Limited warranty

If warranted, refer to the warranty as stated in the Terms of Use document or the Cloud Services Agreement for this offering.

Money-back guarantee

No

Other terms

Volume orders (IVO)

No

IBM International Passport Advantage Agreement

Passport Advantage applies

No

Usage restriction

Yes. For full terms and conditions, refer to the base license agreement document and any supplemental beta services agreement document that accompanies the offering, and is available on the IBM Software License Agreement website, at

http://www.ibm.com/software/sla/sladb.nsf

System i® Software Maintenance applies

No

Variable charges apply

No

Educational allowance available

Not applicable for open beta offerings.



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Statement of good security practices
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IT system security involves protecting systems and information through 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 comprehensive security approach, which will necessarily involve additional operational procedures, and may require other systems, products, or services to be most effective. IBM does not warrant that systems and products are immune from the malicious or illegal conduct of any party.



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IBM Electronic Services
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Electronic Service Agent™ and the IBM Electronic Support web portal are dedicated to providing fast, exceptional support to IBM Systems customers. The IBM Electronic Service Agent tool is a no-additional-charge tool that proactively monitors and reports hardware events, such as system errors, performance issues, and inventory. The Electronic Service Agent tool can help you stay focused on your company's strategic business initiatives, save time, and spend less effort managing day-to-day IT maintenance issues. Servers enabled with this tool can be monitored remotely around the clock by IBM Support, all at no additional cost to you.

Now integrated into the base operating system of AIX® V5.3, AIX V6.1, and AIX V7.1, Electronic Service Agent is designed to automatically and electronically report system failures and utilization issues to IBM, which can result in faster problem resolution and increased availability. System configuration and inventory information collected by the Electronic Service Agent tool also can be viewed on the secure Electronic Support web portal, and used to improve problem determination and resolution by you and the IBM support team. To access the tool main menu, simply type smitty esa_main, and select Configure Electronic Service Agent. In addition, ESA now includes a powerful web user interface, giving the administrator easy access to status, tool settings, problem information, and filters. For more information and documentation on how to configure and use Electronic Service Agent, refer to

http://www.ibm.com/support/electronic

The IBM Electronic Support portal is a single Internet entry point that replaces the multiple entry points traditionally used to access IBM Internet services and support. This portal enables you to gain easier access to IBM resources for assistance in resolving technical problems. The My Systems and Premium Search functions make it even easier for Electronic Service Agent tool-enabled customers to track system inventory and find pertinent fixes.

Benefits

Increased uptime: The Electronic Service Agent tool is designed to enhance the Warranty or Maintenance Agreement by providing faster hardware error reporting and uploading system information to IBM Support. This can translate to less wasted time monitoring the symptoms, diagnosing the error, and manually calling IBM Support to open a problem record. Its 24x7 monitoring and reporting mean no more dependence on human intervention or off-hours customer personnel when errors are encountered in the middle of the night.

Security: The Electronic Service Agent tool is designed to be secure in monitoring, reporting, and storing the data at IBM. The Electronic Service Agent tool is designed to securely transmit either via the Internet (HTTPS or VPN) or modem to provide customers a single point of exit from their site. Communication is one way. Activating Electronic Service Agent does not enable IBM to call into a customer's system.

For additional information, please refer to IBM Electronic Service Agent

http://www-01.ibm.com/support/esa/

More accurate reporting: Because system information and error logs are automatically uploaded to the IBM Support center in conjunction with the service request, you are not required to find and send system information, decreasing the risk of misreported or misdiagnosed errors. Once inside IBM, problem error data is run through a data knowledge management system and knowledge articles are appended to the problem record.

Customized support: Using the IBM ID entered during activation, you can view system and support information in the My Systems and Premium Search sections of the Electronic Support website at

http://www.ibm.com/support/electronic

My Systems provides valuable reports of installed hardware and software using information collected from the systems by Electronic Service Agent. Reports are available for any system associated with your IBM ID. Premium Search combines the function of search and the value of Electronic Service Agent information, providing advanced search of the technical support knowledgebase. Using Premium Search and the Electronic Service Agent information that has been collected from your system, you are able to see search results that apply specifically to your systems.

For more information on how to utilize the power of IBM Electronic Services, contact your IBM Systems Services Representative, or visit

http://www.ibm.com/support/electronic


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Order now
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To order, contact the Americas Call Centers or your local IBM representative.

To identify your local IBM representative, call 800-IBM-4YOU (426-4968).

Phone:      800-IBM-CALL (426-2255)
Fax:        800-2IBM-FAX (242-6329)
Email:      callserv@ca.ibm.com
Mail:       IBM Teleweb Customer Support
            ibm.com® Sales Execution Center, Americas North
            3500 Steeles Ave. East, Tower 3/4
            Markham, Ontario
            Canada
            L3R 2Z1

Reference: LE001

The Americas Call Centers, our national direct marketing organization, can add your name to the mailing list for catalogs of IBM products.


Note: Shipments will begin after the planned availability date.
Trademarks

Insights, Bluemix and Electronic Service Agent are trademarks of IBM Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

IBM, CICS, z/OS, Redbooks, Passport Advantage, Express, System i, AIX and ibm.com are registered trademarks of IBM Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

Windows is a trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

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

Terms of use

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:

http://www.ibm.com/legal/us/en/

For the most current information regarding IBM products, consult your IBM representative or reseller, or visit the IBM worldwide contacts page

http://www.ibm.com/planetwide/us/

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