A brand new Version 4.2 of IBM Z System Automation (formerly named IBM System Automation for z/OS) is generally available on Dec 6, 2019.
Here is a glimpse of System Automation V4.2 enhancements. To explore the full and detailed new features, check out the IBM Knowledge Center:
Improved Group Management
System Automation V4.2 provides an intuitive and modernized operator experience for application groups by introducing the application group model 2 to distinguish them from existing application groups that are referred as model 1 groups.
With the new application group model 2, the administrator can choose from a set of predefined scenario-driven behaviors and can assign roles to the group members, instead of defining complex preference values as in previous releases. The operator can use enhanced INGGROUP command to trigger different model 2 group actions without the need to understand and manipulate the preference values.
Automated Deployment of Dynamic Resources
System Automation V4.2 introduces the concept of dynamic resources, which enable dynamic provisioning and de-provisioning of applications, such as CICS regions or IMS message processing regions. The administrators can define the basic automation behavior of this kind of applications using the new TEMPLATE object type. After policy build and configuration refresh, no automation resources are created at build time. However, the template information is made available to the agents on all systems in the SAplex. Then, administrators or operators can use one single INGDYN command to instantiate the template at runtime, without need to change and build the policy.
This process enables you to apply enterprise policies to the content of a template via the existing change control mechanisms, while giving additional speed and flexibility to create resources at runtime based on template definition.
Enhanced Message Management
System Automation V4.2 introduces new capabilities in the Customization Dialog to more efficiently and intuitively define messages and their criteria related to alerting and event management. Along with the modernization on the customization side, V4.2 features new capabilities that streamline management of captured messages, such as for delete operator message (DOM) and for alerting.
- A new “Code Processing: CAPMSGS” dialog that facilitates the definition of captured messages and at the same time enables the administrator to specify not only the severity, but also the options regarding alerting and deleting obsolete messages.
- Improved INGMSGS command that can display an unlimited set of exceptional messages.
Other Miscellaneous Enhancements
- End-to-end automation enhancements
- Improved time to value for configuring the end-to-end automation adapter by supporting system symbols in the configuration files.
- The SSL configuration file can now be customized using an alternative way, that is, creating certificates residing in RACF.
- System Automation V4.2 now supports network isolation for E2E Automation components via multiple TCP/IP stacks.
- Processor Operations enhancements
- IBM z15 exploitation support for activating a temporary capacity record in support of System Recovery Boost to add reserved zIIP processors through the System Automation Base Control Program Internal Interface (SA-BCPii) via GDPS or through Processor Operations and automated triggering of System Recovery Boost at the beginning of a system shutdown phase initiated with the INGREQ command or via GDPS.
- Using the ISQCCMD common command PROFILE, users can now update up to 5 profile variable and value pairs at one time, instead of previous one pair.
- Service Management Unite Automation enhancements
- New SMU NetView dashboards are provided to show statistics and graphics about overall NetView domains, tasks utilization, and the distribution of sysplex IP connections for distributed dynamic virtual IP addresses (DDVIPAs) and ports.
- A new dashboard — Exceptional Messages and WTORs is provided for you to view and manage all exceptional messages and Write to Operator with Reply (WTOR) messages.
- Extended system shutdown: Resources can be automated after the termination of OMVS without any user-written REXX scripts. It is now possible to record and encrypt the SMF data of an OMVS shutdown and afterwards terminate the SMF recording process and subsequently the ICSF address space.
- More granular security controls for the INGSCHED, INGMDFY, INGPAC, INGVARS, INGLINK, INGNTFY, and INGSTOBS commands.
If you have any questions of these features, or want more details of any enhancement, feel free to comment on this blog.