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IBM CICS Transaction Server for z/OS 5.6 is updated (April 2021) in the areas of resilience and management



Details are provided of recent continuous delivery updates to the latest release, 5.6, of IBM® CICS® Transaction Server for z/OS® (CICS TS).


CICS Transaction Server for z/OS overview

IBM CICS Transaction Server for z/OS (CICS TS) is a secure and scalable platform for hosting transactional business applications in a hybrid architecture. The Continuous Delivery (CD) update release for CICS TS 5.6 in January 2021 delivered significant capabilities in the areas of developer experience and DevOps, resilience, and management.

CICS TS 5.6 update (April 2021)

In addition to the features announced in the last CD update in January 2021, the following features are now available:

  • Resilience
    • Improved usage of BAS data space storage for large CICSplex environments

      The CICSPlex SM BAS component is enhanced in CICS TS 5.6 to enable use of all available BAS data space storage by spreading large resource deployment lists for BAS across multiple data spaces instead of being constrained to a single data space.

      Available for CICS TS 5.6 with APAR PH26781, and for CICS TS 5.4 and CICS TS 5.5 with APAR PH19761. This feature is enabled by setting feature toggle

    • Support for passing XID to Db2

      A new capability is provided to enable CICS to pass an XID to IBM Db2® and then instruct Db2 to share locks between threads that pass the same XID. Using the same XID, other threads that originate from other CICS regions or from other transaction managers, such as IBM IMS Transaction Manager, can access Db2 in the same global unit of work (UOW). The XID token is not used for recovery between CICS and Db2. The passing of an XID involves a partial sign-on to Db2 for each UOW. This action closes cursors, so held cursors across syncpoints are not supported when the passing of an XID is enabled and if required applications will have to reposition cursors after a syncpoint. Passing an XID avoids having to deal with UOW affinities.

      Available for CICS TS 5.5 and CICS TS 5.6 with APAR PH31012, and enabled by setting feature toggle

    • Enhanced adapter tracking for CICS applications using Db2

      The CICS Db2 attachment facility is enhanced to pass adapter data to Db2. If a CICS task that is accessing Db2 has adapter data in the CICS origin data, then the adapter ID is passed as appl-longname and the adapter data is passed as an accounting-string. Db2 writes the data in its SMF accounting records and the data is also available online through the Db2 special registers CURRENT CLIENT_APPLNAME and CURRENT CLIENT_ACCTNG.

      Available for CICS TS 5.4, CICS TS 5.5, and CICS TS 5.6 with APAR PH30252, and requires Db2 12 with APAR PH31447.

    • Enhanced support for IBM z/OS Workload Interaction Correlator

      IBM z/OS Workload Interaction Correlator (WIC) is a priced feature that provides infrastructure for z/OS software to generate synchronized, standardized, concise, content-rich data with common context for automated analysis by an analytics engine, such as the IBM z/OS Workload Interaction Navigator (WIN). Clients can use WIC to generate standardized SMF records for CICS, making it easier to identify and correlate workload across their mainframe environment.

      CICS uses the WIC IFAWIC service to register CICS regions for collecting data about transaction activities, and provides a WIC exit routine that SMF calls for WIC processing. The WIC exit routine aggregates and summarizes transaction activities from all registered CICS regions and records exceptional CICS regions into SMF type 98 subtype 1024 records.

      Available for CICS TS 5.4, CICS TS 5.5, and CICS TS 5.6 with APAR PH30291. CICS is updated to enable IBM z/OS Workload Interaction Navigator with APAR OA60478 to analyze multiple SMF files collected from multiple systems respectively and display on one screen the correlated anomalies across multiple systems for a single interval.

  • Management
    • New policy task rule for container storage

      This new rule allows a user to define a threshold for the amount of container storage allocated to a user task, and to take an automatic action if the threshold is exceeded. This rule applies to container storage associated with channels and does not apply to EXCI containers or CICS business transaction services (BTS) containers.

      Available for CICS TS 5.6 with APAR PH29187. The enhanced policy editor supporting this new rule is available with CICS Explorer

Planned availability

  • April 16, 2021: Majority of CD enhancements
  • June 30, 2021: Remainder of CD enhancements


Product documentation for CICS TS 5.6 is hosted online in IBM Documentation. The documentation is refreshed regularly to reflect feedback from users, and includes changes that result from continuous delivery and IBM Service.

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Document Information

Modified date:
16 April 2021