Sunday, 15 November 2009
I was lucky enough to attend the Guide Share Europe National Conference on 4th and 5th November at Whittlebury Hall. This pulled together lots of mainframers, who were very interesting to talk to – including three young lads who are mainframe apprentices! – plus numerous excellent speakers. There were also a number of vendors there in the exhibition area who were keen to chat and pass on information about their new products – which was also very informative.
I managed to have a long chat with NEON’s Tony Lubrano who gave a presentation in the New technologies stream on zPrime. He explained how zPrime 1.2 now includes an Enablement Console, making it easier for users to select the applications they want to move from the central processor to the zIIPs or zAAPs. There’s also an LE (Language Environment) Initialization Exit feature that automates the task of enabling LE-compliant applications to migrate to the specialty engines. Tony explained how these requirements had come from users and had been delivered in the new release.
The people from Innovation Data Processing were keen to talk about their core FDR products, plus the newer FDRERASE, and FDRERASE/OPEN, and FDRVIEWS, FDRMOVE, FDRMOVE, and FDRPAS.
I had an enjoyable catch-up with the team from Compute (Bridgend) who demonstrated their new SELCOPY/i, which is part of SELCOPY or CBLVCAT and provides multiple windows for user action and produces what they call a “mainframe desktop”. It’s worth checking the huge number of facilities on the Web site (www.cbl.com).
I was surprised to find mainframe companies I didn’t know. There was Thesaurus (www.i-tcs.com), which offers products, consultancy, and managed services, and have expertise with mainframe Linux. There was EZLegacy (www.ezlegacy.com), who had EZSource, their application-oriented configuration management database. There were two EPV (www.epvtech.com) products: EPV for z/OS and EPV for DB2. Olga Henning represented Blue Sea Technology (www.blueseasoft.com). Stephen Golliker represented Higobi (www.higobi.com).
There were many other exhibitors who were friendly and helpful discussing their products
But I didn’t really go for the exhibitors, I wanted to see some of the presentations. There were streams for CICS, IMS, DB2, Enterprise security, zLinux, Large systems working group, Network management working group, Software asset management, and New technologies.
I was particularly interested in the IMS stream – because of my work with the Virtual IMS Connection user group (www.virtualims.com), and managed to see an excellent presentation by IBM’s Alan Cooper on “Rock solid security in the post-SMU era”. I also sat in on the “Birds-of-a-feather” session to see how real IMS users are finding the product and particularly what difficulties they have to overcome in their environments.
It was an excellent event. It was well-organized and run. It was in a lovely location. And everyone I spoke to was friendly and helpful, and keen to talk mainframe technical talk. Many thanks to the organizers for setting up such an excellent event, and to Mark Wilson who was conference manager for this year’s conference.
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