What is the z/OS Connect Designer?

The z/OS Connect Designer is a low-code tool that makes building APIs for your z/OS applications and data easier than ever before. Try the new tooling for free today!

z/OS Connect Designer capabilities

Intuitive web-based user interface
z/OS Connect features an intuitive web user interface that provides a low code approach, built specifically to create APIs for IBM Z®. This graphical interface is designed to speed up development time, and shorten the learning curve for new developers who use z/OS Connect. Additionally, this interface aligns with IBM®'s portfolio of integration offerings, providing consistency to developers who work with multiple IBM products.
Figure 1. The z/OS Connect Designer Web UI
The z/OS Connect Designer Web UI
Support for OpenAPI 3.0 specification
You can use this OpenAPI specification to create APIs that meet your company and industry standards. To find out about the capabilities of the OpenAPI 3.0 specification, see What is OpenAPI?
Contract first API creation
Developers can import a pre-defined OpenAPI contract, then map the operations of that API directly to their IBM Z application and data. This method ensures that the API looks exactly as you want it to, and meets your company’s API standards.
Tooling that is served as a container image
To simplify out roll, z/OS Connect tools are served as a container image called the z/OS Connect Designer. This container image can be instantiated in a container runtime on Red Hat® OpenShift® alongside Wazi for Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces to deliver a cloud native experience for creating and managing end to end API flows, or, a hosted developer workspace on a developer's workstation. When the image is run as a container, the user interface is accessed with a web browser.
Editable API project source files
API project source files are fully accessible and editable from any development environment of your choice. This feature enables developers to change an API independent of the user interface, and offers more flexibility when refactoring or merging projects. You can also use templates, or even fully automate API creation.
Powerful mapping experience
When you enable the zosconnect:zosConnect-3.0 feature (available from V3.0.55 onwards), z/OS Connect uses the powerful transformation language What is JSONata?. This offers z/OS Connect greater flexibility when mapping data between an OpenAPI contract and IBM Z data and service. You can use this feature to create an API that looks exactly as you want it to, no matter the data structure you expose from IBM Z.

The z/OS Connect Designer Image [ibm-zcon-designer]

The z/OS Connect Designer image is used by an application developer to build and test the z/OS Connect API project. When this image is run in a container runtime such as Docker Desktop, the z/OS Connect tools can be accessed in a web browser. A developer can then create their API project and when finalized, check it into source code management as a WAR file.

Figure 2. The z/OS Connect Designer image.
The z/OS Connect Designer image.

z/OS Connect Designer is supported by any OCI-compliant container platforms. For more information, see System requirements.

To download and start z/OS Connect Designer to develop and test APIs, see Developing APIs with the z/OS Connect Designer.

To access the Getting Started tutorials for z/OS Connect Designer, see Getting started tutorials.