October 26, 2023 By Amy McCormick 4 min read

IBM MQ provides scalable, resilient and secure connectivity for mission critical systems and applications within and across hybrid and multi-cloud environments.

In this blog, we’ll look at some of the feature highlights in this v9.3.4 Continuous Delivery release and how you can use them to get even more value from your IBM MQ solution. Continuous Delivery releases contain the latest innovations along with security patches and defect fixes.

v9.3.4 was officially announced on 31 October 2023 and will be made generally available on 19 October 2023 for Hybrid Cloud software (Distributed), IBM MQ Appliance and in the IBM MQ SaaS Service on IBM Cloud and AWS.

IBM MQ v9.3.4 improves resiliency, connectivity and ease of use across platforms. Here are the feature highlights:

See how IBM MQ can drive value for your business

IBM MQ token-based authentication

A new method for authentication with tokens is added, improving security and centralizing identity management for queue managers running on OpenShift Container Platforms, Linux and AIX. This important new feature enables administrators to move towards a password-less approach for authenticating MQ applications.

This feature is available for IBM MQ Distributed & MQ Appliance.

IBM MQ Console: Rapidly identify and resolve issues

The MQ Console is a powerful user interface that lets you visualize and manage your MQ objects, including queue managers and queues. Inside it, you can create queue managers and queues, see your messages, set permissions and properties, and much more. No software other than a browser is required and the views are built with intelligence and cross references that connect information in ways that would normally require a deeper understanding of MQ commands and related data fields. This makes the Console perfect for both new users, enabling them to rapidly get started with IBM MQ, as well as for existing more experienced users who are managing large estates across hybrid and multi-cloud.

In v9.3.4, a new overview dashboard in the MQ Console is made available that enables rapid identification and resolution of issues based on key health parameters in the MQ estate, regardless of where or how IBM MQ is deployed.

This feature is available across all IBM MQ form factors.

IBM MQ Developers: Assured connectivity between IBM MQ and Apache Kafka

IBM MQ Kafka Sink & Source Connectors are available in the Kafka Connector Framework and they offer connectivity to and from Apache Kafka-based systems respectively. These connectors are open source and free for use with IBM MQ. Latest version of these Connectors were offered to clients in IBM MQ Advanced v9.3.3.

In v9.3.4, updated Sink and Source Kafka Connect connectors for IBM MQ are made available, which offers assured, bi-directional delivery of data (“once-and-only-once” and “exactly-once”) so businesses can discover and act on events without data loss or duplication.

This feature is available across all IBM MQ form factors.

IBM MQ Developers: Deploy MQ in containers on Apple Mac

MacOS developers can now build and run an IBM MQ container image natively on Apple Silicon without the need for Rosetta emulation. It’s simple: just 3 steps to get running! This will improve the ease-of-use experience for the MacOS developers.

This feature is available across all IBM MQ form factors on MacOS.

IBM MQ improved resiliency

In v9.3.4, IBM MQ uses the “application patterns” support for uniform clusters in the Queue Manager and this automatically balances Java SE application workloads, enabling users to build resilient, horizontally scalable messaging systems.

Also, in v9.3.4, automatic media imaging is improved for Native HA queue managers, reducing the network load between Native HA queue managers. No new image is taken if there has not been a significant amount of work performed since the last image was taken.

This feature is available only to Hybrid Cloud (Distributed) software Clients.

IBM MQ z/OS Administrators: Exposing events to Kafka

In v9.3.4, IBM MQ z/OS Administrators can now expose events to Apache Kafka event streaming platform and connect disparate applications and files using their existing MQ skills. Businesses can improve their performance by tapping into the value of mission-critical data to act on events in real-time. For more information about this and how you can put business events to work, read this blog.

This feature is available only on MQ on z/OS.

IBM MQ on Containers: Enhanced security — containers run in read-only mode

In v9.3.4, Containers get enhanced security by enabling read-only mode for security purposes, thus administrators can make containers tamper-proof and ensure no foreign executables can be written to disk in the event of a security breach.

This feature is available only to IBM MQ on Containers Clients.

IBM MQ appliance: Industry standard authentication for SSH

In v9.3.4, support of industry standard authentication for SSH enables administrators to use certificate authentication (more secure than passwords) and thus prevent security breach.

This feature is available to clients running IBM MQ v9.3.4 and above firmware on IBM MQ Appliances.

Availability of non-production parts

To help clients optimize costs and gain better visibility of the size of their production and non-production environments, new ordering options for non-production is available for IBM MQ software for hybrid cloud from IBM MQ v9.3.3. Reduce the cost of licenses in non-production environments and gain better visibility into the size and deployment of license distribution across your estate. Check this link for further details on the licensing options.

As noted in the announcement letter, IBM intends to release v9.3.4 for “IBM MQ for z/OS” and details on the feature/functionalities will be made available at the earliest.

Visit IBM TechXchange for all the information on v9.3.4

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