Sunday, 4 October 2009

IMS – what’s new?

IMS – that’s Information Management System, IBM’s combined database-management system and transaction-processing system, not IP Multimedia Subsystem or anything else with the same three-latter acronym – is quite an exciting technology at the moment.

Apart from IBM releasing Version 11 into the wild and the useful upgrades incorporated into that, there have been lots of enhancements to IMS-related software recently.

For example, Mainstar announced a new product called Database Backup and Recovery for IMS (DBR for IMS) on z/OS, which maximizes investment in large system databases and storage systems. DBR for IMS is a storage-aware backup and recovery solution that integrates storage processor fast-replication facilities with IMS backup and recovery operations to allow instantaneous backups with no downtime, reducing recovery time, and simplify disaster recovery procedures while using less CPU, I/O, and storage resources. DBR for IMS provides backup and recovery techniques to address the high-availability and integrity needed by organizations.

CA announced CA Database Management r12 for IMS, its integrated solution that eases the management of IMS databases. This solution provides database administration, performance management, and backup and recovery capabilities for IMS Full Function, Fast Path, and High Availability Large Database (HALDB) structures. Key enhancements to CA Database Management r12 for IMS include support for IMS 11, performance improvements to both the CA products and IMS itself, and increased data availability during backups.

Most recently, Progress DataDirect has announced Release 7.2.1 of its Progress DataDirect Shadow mainframe integration platform with an enhanced ANSI SQL-92 engine for relational to non-relational data processing utilizing the IBM System z Integrated Information Processor (zIIP). The latest Release allows ANSI SQL-92 workloads for IMS DB databases and CICS VSAM files to be diverted from the mainframe's General Purpose Processor (GPP) to the zIIP specialty engine, which does the work without using any of the mainframe licensed MIPs capacity.

And if you think no-one is really interested in IMS, then you’re in for a bit of a shock! There are more IMS user groups around today than there were two years ago. One of those is the Virtual IMS Connection user group at This group holds virtual meetings, allowing members to share their ideas and listen to presentations without leaving the office – and so save on travel time and the expense of travelling to a meeting.

The next meeting is on Tuesday 6 October at 10:30 Central Time, when Rob Morris, Chief Strategy Officer with GT Software will give a presentation entitled, “Mainframe integration is not a strategy – get your MIPS back while delivering value today”. The talk will discuss how you can integrate with the mainframe, project by project, without major licensing requirements or MIPS concerns.

And if IMS were outside mainstream computing, how come this talk has been covered in so many publications? You can find the story at:,+Discussing...-a0208207837

So, IMS is an exciting technology. If you’d like to join the meeting, go the Virtual IMS Connection ( Web site and sign up. Details of how to join the meeting will be e-mailed to you.

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