We are pleased to announce the CICS TS plug-in for IBM UrbanCode Deploy is now out of beta and generally available. The plug-in enables automated deployment of CICS applications supporting a modern DevOps infrastructure and continuous delivery.
UrbanCode Deploy is a suite of frameworks and plug-ins that together provide application release automation to all your environments such as development, test, and production and across the systems used in them, such as WebSphere, DB2, IMS, z/OS, and now CICS.
The plug-in... [More]
As part of the IBM API Management V4.0 announcement support for custom registries was added. This post makes available an example WebSphere Liberty Web application which exposes a custom registry made up of an existing collection of CICS web services WSDL documents and bind files.
The code is provided as an IBM SupportPac CA0E and can be obtained here . This enables selected CICS web services to discovered through API Management and then exposed as managed APIs. The application will run in a CICS Liberty... [More]
Having built a RESTful API for managing customer data I produced some mobile applications to demo the functionality. With these apps reaching a wider audience through a public app store, it became clear that it would be useful to record and easily monitor the usage of the API.
Using the application runtimes and services available in IBM Bluemix I'll show how a webpage was put together showing how many times each part of the API has been called and the response times for each of them, using CICS TG monitoring data.
In a previous post I described how some sample code in support of blog posts was available on GitHub. Well now I'm pleased to announce the new home of these samples ' CICSdev on GitHub '. Here you will find all the example code that we've published and you have the freedom to take a copy to use as you see fit; report issues and request updates; or make adjustments and feed them back to the author(s) for potential inclusion.
Feel free to take a look at what's currently there and keep and eye out for new... [More]
Getting started with CICS Deployment Assistant
Are you trying to understand your z/OS topology? Wondering how all those CICS regions link together in a CICSplex that has grown beyond recognition? Or perhaps you’re trying to create a test environment that accurately reflects production?
If you’re trying to do any of these then IBM CICS Deployment Assistant for z/OS V5.2 (CICS DA) can really help you. Hopefully this blog post will start to show you how!
Pretty much everything I’ll be discussing will be done... [More]
The beta release of the CICS TS plug-in for UrbanCode Deploy is now out, allowing you to manage deployment of your CICS TS components along with other components across your enterprise. We've put together a little video to show you how to get started with the plug-in.
Installing the CICS TS Plug-in
There are a few things you will want to set up. The first step is to download the CICS plug-in from the UrbanCode Deploy plug-ins site . To install the plug-in into your UrbanCode Deploy server, click ... [More]
The CICS team are very proud to announce the beta release of the CICS TS plug-in to enable deployment of CICS applications using IBM UrbanCode Deploy .
UrbanCode Deploy is a tool to orchestrate and automate the deployment of applications, middleware configurations and database changes into development, test and production environments. UrbanCode Deploy V6.1 and enhancements in V6.1.1 announced today include the zOS Utility plug-in to deploy zFS files and MVS datasets, and to run your REXX, UNIX,... [More]
This article describes how it is possible to define a CICS policy and deploy it into a CICS region such that the policies rules are only applied to specific CICS user tasks rather than all user tasks that run in that CICS region.
CICS TS V5.1 introduced the capability to define policies to monitor the resource utilisation of a user task, and to automatically respond when resource usage exceeds the thresholds you define. In this way, excessive resource usage and looping and runaway transactions can be detected and dealt with... [More]
Do you find it hard to manage CICS resource definitions split across multiple repositories and interfaces?
How do you migrate changes to definitions through your different environments, or track changes to help in problem determination?
Can you compare what definitions you have in your repositories and runtimes? Or simulate the result of a cold start of a CICS region?
If you struggle with any of these issues then IBM CICS Configuration Manager for z/OS V5.2 (CICS CM) could help your organization! This blog post will... [More]
To support some earlier blog posts the sample code is now available on GitHub in repositories that are ready to be cloned and forked as required.
Restricting CICS TG client applications
Using JCA with the CICS TG in WebSphere Liberty Profile
This page will be updated as... [More]
CICS DA provides insight into your z/OS topology, simplifying the management of your CICS environment, including deployment, consolidation and upgrade.
Why do you need it?
Reduce costs and complexity through region consolidation, facilitated through a graphical representation of system topology to aid understanding.
Reduce risks in production through effective testing of your applications in a representative, cloned environment.
Enhance existing tooling ; empowering migration, scaling, reporting and other... [More]
There are various reasons why businesses choose to use CICS Transaction Gateway (CICS TG) in their environment.
In this blog I discuss three of them:
To act as a network concentrator
For intelligent routing
For offering simple, flexible solutions
As a Network Concentrator
Do you need to consolidate disparate systems and applications?
Do you want to protect your CICS resources?
Do you want to simplify your network?
If the answer to any of these... [More]
This article makes it easier for you to try out the examples in the new IBM Redbooks publication Cloud Enabling CICS (SG24-8114-00).
The IBM Redbooks publication explains how you can cloud enable your CICS environment with step-by-step incremental examples.
By following the steps you can:
Manage a CICS application as a single entity
Provide automated controls via CICS policies
Deploy and back-out application versions with no service downtime
And even deploy multiple versions... [More]
It's a well documented fact that the earlier a bug is discovered the easier it is to fix. One of the challenges of writing applications to run in CICS is that you have to have a region available for running the applications in. If this is then shared with other developers you can run into issues as only one remote debugger can be attached to a JVM server at any one time.
A potential solution is to write automated unit tests that run inside the development environment, but before we can do that we need to be able to use the JCICS APIs... [More]
Do you have Java applications running in pooled JVM? Are you considering the upgrade to CICS TS V5? If so then this article should help to smooth the migration of those applications.
The introduction of JVM server in CIC TS V4.2 offers a number of advantages over the existing pooled JVM implementation. The multi-threaded industry standard environment allows a single JVM within a CICS region to host all Java workload previously handled by a pool as well as the opportunity to consolidate multiple application regions. The OSGi framework... [More]
Have you been wondering where to get started with CICS applications, platforms and policy? Are you unsure whether the CICS cloud enablement capability in CICS TS V5 applies to your applications or environment? The recently released Cloud Enabling CICS redbook takes an existing 3270-COBOL-VSAM application and describes how to exploit these features including a fully worked example of how to use multi-versioning to safely and reliably apply and back-out application changes without service interruption. It also shows you how CICS... [More]
One of the advantages of using the latest version of CICS TG to provide mobile enablement of CICS programs is that we are not limited to using CICS Transaction Server, we can use any of the CICS family of transaction servers that are supported by CICS TG.
In this post I show how to create a RESTful API for customer data using the mobile support introduced in CICS TG V9.1, to invoke transactions on TXSeries. With this API a user can add, retrieve, update or delete a single customer record as well as getting a list of all the customer IDs... [More]
Java in CICS used to be a strange place. When I started working on CICS Transaction Server V3.1, having previously worked on WebSphere Application Server, I was frustrated to find an unusual Java environment inside CICS. It had strange options for its configuration and the idea that each CICS task had its own JVM (yes, a whole one) was baffling, and it didn’t understand Java threads. That was 10 years ago, but everything is different now.
The CICS JVM is a first-class enterprise Java environment. It’s so... [More]
Thanks to everyone who came to my Wednesday session “Managing Multi-version Applications in CICS” in Pittsburgh and especially to those who spent the time providing an evaluation. It was a really interactive session and the feedback helps the project plan what we should do at future meetings. As well as comments there were some questions that I have answered below for the benefit of the SHARE attendees and anyone else interesting in the application multi-versioning capability in CICS TS V5.2.
CICS Transaction Server V5.1 introduced the capability to combine and manage multiple disparate application resources as a single entity, which can be versioned and moved rapidly through the development, test, and production lifecycle. Dependency management is handled, and you can measure entire applications for resource use and internal billing. You can also dynamically manage applications by applying policies during run time.
CICS Transaction Server V5.2 builds on this functionality by introducing the concept of application... [More]
This post is an iframe for the CICS Social Media Aggregator. The page is dynamic will update as new content arrives. The links and buttons are active so you can participate.
For a full page experience, visit https://www-304.ibm.com/social/aggregator/cics
If a customer finds a bug in your application, wouldn't it be great if you could build, test and deploy a fix in hours or days, rather than in weeks or months? Reducing turn-around time and aiming for continuous delivery allows your organization to constantly improve and evolve the applications and services provided to customers. There's no reason why your CICS-based applications and services shouldn't be included in the continuous delivery model.
Continuous integration and CICS
Let's say you have two... [More]
In our recent blog post about the new mobile support in CICS Transaction Gateway (CICS TG) we discussed how easy it was to create a new application to access existing CICS resources. In this blog post I'll show you how I put together a sample application which makes use of the programs and data provided by the the GENAPP support pac .
The architecture of the completed solution looks like
Setting up CICS TG
Configuring the Gateway daemon for http requests
To allow the Gateway daemon to receive and process http... [More]
One of the frequent questions we receive from customers is "How can I customize the CICS Explorer GUI, for instance by removing items that confuse my internal users?"
While removing GUI items is not something we provide support for, because CICS Explorer is built on top of Eclipse technology there is an Eclipse technique you can use to hide some elements of the GUI.
In this blog post I'll walk you through some using an activity to hide a GUI item, techniques for establishing whether a GUI item might be hideable, and... [More]
It's been a busy 18 months for the IBM CICS and Problem Determination Tools development teams, keeping pace with the latest and greatest in CICS TS for z/OS V5.2 and adding lots of new capabilities as well. New releases of five core CICS Tools plus an updated Solution Pack, together with enabling PTFs (where required) for PD Tools will help you to maximize the benefits from the latest run-time release. Don't worry if you are running an earlier release of CICS - most of the new capabilities will help you too.
Here's a... [More]
The CICS Transaction Gateway for z/OS V9.1 open beta includes new capabilities enabling HTTP clients to invoke COMMAREA or Channel-based CICS programs using JSON data, while benefiting from the established high availability and instrumentation features which CICS Transaction Gateway customers already rely upon.
Based upon the WS BIND data transformation technology and tooling already used for CICS Transaction Server web services, the proven reliability and scalability of CICS TG delivers further options for robust... [More]
Using JCA with the CICS TG in WebSphere Liberty Profile
The April betas of the WebSphere Liberty Profile provide an optional feature which enables support for the Java Connector Architecture (JCA) part of the Java Enterprise Edition (JEE) specification. As this has been one of the primary methods for connecting to CICS with the CICS TG, it made sense for me to check not only that it works in Liberty, but also how to make use of the CICS TG resource adapters from applications in a remote mode topology.
Getting the beta
Many of us have used CICS Explorer to manage CICS. But did you know that you can use the underlying CICS Management Client Interface (CMCI) from your browser (or any other HTTP client)? The CMCI request structure consists of
an HTTP header with a method (GET, PUT, POST, DELETE)
followed by a URI (Universal Resource Identifier) and
an optional XML body containing details of any changes to be made to CICS or CICSPlex SM resources
To try out the examples you need to know the hostname (called yourHostName in this... [More]
Abstract: CICS CMCI connections can only be defined manually in CICS Explorer. This is suitable if you have to create a small number of connections but does not fit if you have to define a large number of connections. This document will show you how to generate Connections.pref from an Open Office spread sheet. This article is based on CICS Explorer 5.1.1
Objective: Generate Connections.pref from Open Office spread sheet (See picture below)
How you will reach your objective: By following this guide you will define an XML... [More]