3 things you need to know about new file dependencies

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Put file dependencies to work for you. In a previous post, we introduced conditional dependencies, and here you can watch how to get started with them. Using IBM Workload Scheduler, you can define different types of dependencies for your workflow. This post is about file dependency, which prevents the execution of a task until the file is created on a particular machine. This is one of the most critical points of a business workflow because it is directly responsible for the workflow execution time.

IBM Workload Scheduler has introduced the possibility to define the file name with the dynamic variable substitution method already used for dynamic job definition. This makes file dependency easier to manage, and gives you more way to use it.

We’ve identified the top three reasons why IBM Workload Scheduler dynamic variable substitution should be used for file dependencies.

Reduction of workload execution time

With dynamic variable substitution, the file name is automatically resolved at job execution time. This dynamic variable is useful if the file name is unknown or when the name is dependent on the run cycle – for example, a file with the timestamp in the file name, such as myFile_103120161820.txt.

Since the name of such files cannot be known until they are created, you can use now dynamic variables instead of file name in the file dependency. The variable in the specific variable table is the only thing that needs to be modified.

In addition to the reduction in workload execution time, service management costs can be reduced since additional artifacts do not have to be created, preventing delays and associated maintenance.

Rapid adoption and ease of use

The new dynamic variable table job type in IBM Workload Scheduler gives you the ability to add or modify a variable in a variable table at runtime. With this feature, you can easily add a native collaboration between different application of your workload without adding code.

ibm-workload-scheduler-ui-file-dependency

Here’s a screenshot from IBM Workload Scheduler user interface, showing the variable table job. The variable value is updated at runtime using the dynamic job properties values exported by previous job in the same job stream. Once these variables are updated in the variable table, they can be accessed by any other job stream that shares the same variable table.

This new job type allows quick and easy adoption of dynamic variables into file dependencies.

Workload flexibility

Using dynamic variables, you can extend the size of the file name for a dependency. For example, extending the variable name size from 16 to 64 characters and the variable value size from 72 to 1,024 characters allows your file name dependency could reach a longer path.

ibm-workload-scheduler-ui2-file-dependency

To learn more about how IBM Workload Scheduler can help with release management, watch this video. Want to try it out? Browse the IBM Marketplace portal to try new IBM Workload Scheduler features.

This post was co-authored by Eliana Cerasaro and Riccardo Rossi.

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