We put together a short list of FAQs for the Software Management task (part of the Software Deployment plug-in). We hope you find them useful. For more details on the Software Management task of z/OSMF V2R1, see the IBM Redbooks publication, IBM z/OS Management Facility V2R1, SG24-7851-01.
z/OSMF V2R1 Software Management FAQ
Q: Is Software Management in z/OS V2.1 a renaming of what was Software Deployment in z/OS V1.13?
A: Yes. In z/OS V1.13, the z/OSMF configuration included a plug-in component that is called Software Deployment, which provided a task that is called Deployment. In z/OS V2.1. The z/OSMF configuration still includes a plug-in component that is called Software Deployment, but the task it provides is now called Software Management. The design intent is that a z/OSMF plug-in can provide multiple tasks, as the RMF plug-in already does.
The old z/OS V1.13 Deployment task and the new z/OS V2.1 Software Management task are functionally equivalent.
Q: Does Software Management do SMP/E work to install and maintain software?
A: No. You still install and maintain software as you do today by using SMP/E. The positioning of Software Management is to simplify and enhance reporting, and to control the deployment of software from the installation/maintenance data sets into productive use.
By having your SMP/E environments defined to Software Management, you gain the benefits of enhanced reporting. By using Software Management to deploy software, you gain the benefit of enhanced checking for regression, toleration, and missing fixes.
Q: Does Software Management clone SYSRES DASD volumes?
A: No, Software Management does not clone DASD volumes; it works with data sets. Although Software Management does not clone DASD volumes, it can produce a similar result through its sophisticated data set copy controls. Software Management knows about initializing DASD, indirect cataloging, retaining consistent data set placement for indirect cataloged data sets, SMS pools for selected data sets (such as zFS), and correcting z/OSMF DDDEF references to reflect new locations.
Q: Can Software Management deploy software by using tape?
A: No, tape is not supported. Software Management deploys software only by communicating with remote instances of z/OSMF over a network.
Q: Can Software Management deploy software to all z/OS systems in the enterprise?
A: Yes, if the systems have Internet Protocol network connectivity for HTTPS and FTP protocols and z/OSMF is implemented.
Q: I have deployed software to half my systems, then encountered a problem. Can I fix the problem and continue the rollout?
A: Yes. Software Management manages software instances independently, and you can deploy from anywhere to anywhere. For example, say that you deploy from system ‘A’ to system ‘B’, and then you encounter a problem on system ‘B’. You can fix the problem (apply a PTF) on system ‘B’ and then deploy the upgraded software from system ‘B’ to system ‘C”. You can even deploy the upgraded software from system ‘B’ back to system ‘A’.
Q: Can I choose which data sets I want Software Management to deploy?
A: Partially. Software Management ensures that product level information always migrates with a product. For this reason, a TARGET SMP/E CSI always must be deployed so that software level information may be queried. Data sets containing TARGET SMP/E elements always must be deployed to ensure the full integrity of the product. You can choose not to deploy DLIBs and the DLIB SMP/E CSI.
Q: Does Software Management support non-SMP/E installed products?
A: No. But, Software Management does support non-SMP/E data sets, so a non-SMP/E product can be deployed if it is bundled as part of an SMP/E product. Alternatively, a small dummy SMP/E configuration can be defined to negate this design restriction.
Q: Can I limit system programmer access to specific software?
A: Yes. Security profiles in the ZMFAPLA class can be set up in various ways to control access to Software Management functions and data. Deployment work runs with the credentials of the user, so traditional controls (such as data set profiles) are still valid.
Q: Will I lose visibility or control of how software is deployed?
A: No. You drive Software Management through a web browser, but Software Management does not manipulate the SMP/E data (CSIs, SMPPTS, TARGET, and DLIB data sets) directly from the web browser. When you initiate a deployment, Software Management uses the information that is provided through the web browser to construct a JCL data set. The members in the JCL data set are jobs that use standard IBM utilities that are available on any system. You are meant to manually submit each member in sequence; nothing is automatically submitted. You have full control to examine each job, and submit them only at a time of your choosing, and only if you are satisfied with what they do.
Q: Can Software Management replace my heritage process for cloning software?
A: Probably. Software Management might not work the same way as your heritage process for cloning software, but with a little effort, it can be customized to produce a same or similar result. The reward for migrating to Software Management is that you gain all the inventory and reporting benefits, plus you no longer must maintain your own processes and tools.
Q: Where can I get more information about Software Management?
A: The detailed Help pages in z/OSMF are the primary source of information; there are no specific z/OSMF or Software Management user guide publications, but you can refer to the following publications:
IBM z/OS Management Facility Configuration Guide Version 2 Release 1, SA38-0657
IBM z/OS Management Facility Programming Version 2 Release 1, SA32-1066