Sparta logo

November 2023

SPARTA President’s Corner

contributed by Randy Springs

We've had to cancel our Tuesday, November 7 meeting because of challenges finding a speaker. Some possibilities spent the past week at the GSE UK (Guide-SHARE Europe United Kingdom) conference and were not available for our meeting date.

We fully expect to have our December 5 meeting at 3 p.m. via Zoom so wait for an announcement later this month.

This month, we will again be holding our SPARTA meetings via Zoom format. We'd like to consider going back to our in-person meetings if we can find an appropriate venue. Let us know if you have any suggestions for a meeting location.

For our November meeting, join us for a presentation from xxx yyy, of company xxx. XXX will be giving an overview of the technical information. Invite your fellow systems programmers to join us for this informative and interesting virtual meeting.

Please join your colleagues online on Tuesday, November 7, on Zoom. Watch for meeting connection information coming your way soon.

Randy Springs
Retired (Truist)

Future Speakers (subject to change)

November 7, 2023 - Canceled for lack of speaker

December 5, 2023 - TBD by TBA

January 2, 2023 - No January Meeting. Happy Holidays!

We need ideas and volunteers for future speakers. Presentations don’t have to be fancy, just informative and interesting. Even a 5 or 10 minute talk can start an interesting interaction. Contact Ron Pimblett by phone as noted below.

2023-2024 SPARTA

Board of Directors

Randy Springs - President

Retired (Truist)                  (919) nnn-nnnn


Raleigh, NC 27604

Ron Pimblett - Vice President

MDI Data Systems

Land line 613 599 6970

Mobile 613 981 6919

190 Guelph Private

Kanata, ON K2T 0J7

Chris Blackshire - Secretary

Retired (Dell, Perot Systems, Nortel)  (919) nnn-nnnn


Durham, NC 27713

Randy Springs - (Acting) Treasurer

Retired (Truist)                  (919) nnn-nnnn

see Randy

Springs earlier

Ed Webb -  Communications Director

Retired (SAS Institute Inc.)  (919) nnn-nnnn


Apex, NC 27523

Mike Lockey -  Web Master

Guilford Co. Information Services  336-641-6235

201 N. Eugene St.

Greensboro, NC 27401


Coronavirus Change: All meetings for the foreseeable future will be held online at 7 p.m. via the Zoom App. The link to meeting is sent to SPARTA Mailing list within 24 hours of the meeting time for security reasons. Stay safe.

Meetings are scheduled for the first Tuesday evening of each month (except no meeting in January), with optional dinner at 6:15 p.m. and the meeting beginning at 7:00 p.m.

These monthly meetings usually are held at LabCorp’s Center for Molecular Biology and Pathology (CMBP) near the Research Triangle Park (see last page). Take I-40 to Miami Boulevard and go north. Turn right onto T.W. Alexander Drive. Go about a mile or so. Then turn right into LabCorp complex and turn Left to the CMBP Building (1912 T.W. Alexander Drive). In the lobby, sign in as a visitor to see Bill Johnson. Bill will escort you to the conference room.

Call for Articles

If you have any ideas for speakers, presentations, newsletter articles, or are interested in taking part in a presentation, PLEASE contact one of the Board of Directors with your suggestions.

Newsletter e-Mailings

The SPARTA policy is to e-mail a monthly notice to our SPARTA-RTP Group. The newsletter is posted to the website about five (5) days before each meeting so you can prepare. The SPARTA distribution List is maintained by Chris Blackshire; if you have corrections or problems receiving your meeting notice, contact Chris at

April 2023 “CBT Tape” Shareware Online

The directory and files from the latest CBT tape V505 (dated April 24, 2023) are available from

If you need help obtaining one or more files, contact Ed Webb (see Board of Director’s list for contact info).

Minutes of the October 3, 2023 Meeting

• The October 3, 2023 meeting was called to order at 7:05 PM by Randy Springs, the SPARTA President.

• This Thirty-Eighth (April 2020 to October 2023) virtual SPARTA meeting was held via the Zoom Software.

• Five (5) people were present at the virtual meeting.

• The business portion of the meeting followed the presentation.

• The meeting started at the 7 PM time to accommodate the speaker's availability.


• The minutes of the September 12, 2023 meeting as published in the October 2023 Newsletter were approved.

• The September 30, 2023 Treasurer's report as published in the October 2023 Newsletter was approved. As of September 30, 2023, the current balance is $805.46.

• Call For Articles: Articles are needed for this newsletter. If you would like to write an article for this newsletter, please contact Ed Webb. Keep in mind that you don't really need to write the article, it can be an article that you read that you would like to share with the membership.

• The SPARTA Web page is available at this site: Please send any comments or suggestions about the Web page to Mike Lockey. Be sure to check the Web page every once in a while to see any new or changed information.

• 2023 meeting dates, Future Speakers and Topics (subject to change based on internal politics, budget, the weather):





November 7, 2023




December 5, 2023




If you have suggestions about speakers and topics, contact Ron Pimblett.

• The next SPARTA monthly meeting will be held virtually on Tuesday, November 7, 2023.

• The annual dues have been suspended (motion passed in the March 2021 monthly meeting).

• Thanks to Randy Springs for online hosting the October 3 meeting via Zoom.

• There are currently about 100 people on the SPARTA e-mail distribution list.

• Send any e-mail address changes to Chris Blackshire so he can update the SPARTA distribution List. The SPARTA meeting notices are being sent via a simple distribution list maintained by Chris.

• Randy Springs is looking for a new Treasurer volunteer. He projects about 2 hours per month is needed.
- Contact Randy Springs if you are interested.

• Randy Springs has setup a SPARTA group on LinkedIn. Please join.

• There was discussion about a possible 2023 in-person meeting, depending on vaccinations and room availability. Stay tuned.
- Randy will contact Bill Johnson to determine the LabCorp meeting place status.
- Jay Hall will look into using a NCSU Centennial Campus room.


• We will continue meeting virtually for now with a future in-person meeting date TBD. Stay tuned.
• The Business portion and the meeting ended about 8:45 P.M.

• The Presentation started at 7:05 PM after “Around-The-Table” brief introductions.

• Presentation Topic: SHARE 2023 New Orleans (142), August 13-18, 2023

by Ed Webb of SPARTA (retired from SAS Institute Inc.)

• Agenda
• Why Go to SHARE?
• Quotes of Interest
• Odds and Ends
• Best Sessions
• Other Sessions of Interest
• SHARE Status

• Presentation Access - See Below for a full outline of the presentation.

See the SPARTA webpage for all recent presentations including this October one with additional Notes.

Contact Info:
Speaker: Ed Webb
Retired z/OS Senior Systems Programmer

• The October 3, 2023 monthly meeting ended about 8:45 P.M.

Treasurer’s Report for October 2023

contributed by Randy Springs

The balance in the account is $805.46 as of October 31, 2023.

SPARTA Financial Report
09/01/2023 through 09/30/2023


Opening Balance 09/1/2023


Total Deposits

Food money donated











Web Site


Petty Cash


Bank Service Charges






PETTY CASH on hand




Items of Interest

SPARTA Schedule and Menu for 2023

contributed by Chris Blackshire

Nov 7, 2023 - Subs
Dec 5, 2023 - BarBQ

Sometimes A Requirement submitted to IBM is Satisfied

contributed By Ed Webb

"In z/OSMF Software Manager - Deployment Dataset Configuration. Allow a DATACLAS field in addition to the STORCLAS field. This will allow for the allocation of NON-SMS EXTENDED FORMAT ZFS files (that are greater than 4GB).

z/OSMF Software Management has been updated with the PTFs for APAR PH56073 to create portable software instances (PSWIs) that support allocating target data sets using a provided data class during a Deployment action. The PTFs are available on October 18, 2023. The IBM ServerPac production process will exploit this new capability, to produce PSWIs that support allocating target data sets using a data class starting in December 2023.

In addition, z/OSMF Software Management has also been updated with the PTFs for APAR PH56073 to support allocating work data sets for Deployment and Export actions using a provided data class. This support for work data sets is not dependent on whether the PSWI supports data class for the target data sets."

Here's the February 2022 IBM Idea that prompted this APAR and subsequent PTFs that are now available in October 2023.

A New Look at z/Architecture Principles Of Operation

contributed By Chris Blackshire

"What a change from the 360 POO that I learned on (now the z/Architecture Principles Of Operation).
Good discussion of the instructions, formats, and operation.
There are a lot of websites out there with lots of snippets and samples, but ...
This should give you a handy reference to a very extensive subject that you are wanting guidance on.

Here's the Free download.

‘Mind-blowing’ IBM chip speeds up AI

Contributed by Chris Blackshire

A brain-inspired computer chip that could supercharge artificial intelligence (AI) by working faster with much less power has been developed by researchers at IBM in San Jose, California. Their massive NorthPole processor chip eliminates the need to frequently access external memory, and so performs tasks such as image recognition faster than existing architectures do — while consuming vastly less power.

NorthPole is made of 256 computing units, or cores, each of which contains its own memory. “You’re mitigating the Von Neumann bottleneck within a core,” says Modha, who is IBM’s chief scientist for brain-inspired computing at the company’s Almaden research centre in San Jose.

The cores are wired together in a network inspired by the white-matter connections between parts of the human cerebral cortex, Modha says. This and other design principles — most of which existed before but had never been combined in one chip — enable NorthPole to beat existing AI machines by a substantial margin in standard benchmark tests of image recognition. It also uses one-fifth of the energy of state-of-the-art AI chips, despite not using the most recent and most miniaturized manufacturing processes. If the NorthPole design were implemented with the most up-to-date manufacturing process, its efficiency would be 25 times better than that of current designs, the authors estimate.

Read the rest of this October 2023 article from nature.

The 10 Most Influential [Personal Computer] CPUs of All Time

Contributed by Chris Blackshire

1. Intel 8088 (1979)
2. Motorola 68000 (1979)
3. Intel 386 (1985)
4. Intel Pentium (1993)
5. AMD Athlon (1999)
6. Intel Pentium 4 (2000)
7. AMD Athlon 64 (2003)
8. Intel Core 2 Duo (2006)
9. Intel i7-2600K (2011)
10. Apple M1 (2020)

The Details:

1. Intel 8088 (1979)
This little piece of silicon magic was the heart of the first IBM Personal Computer. The 8088 was a modified version of the 8086, tailored to be more cost-effective. Even though it was a compromise solution, its architecture placed the Intel 8088 in a league of its own. The decision to base the IBM PC on the 8088 kickstarted the PC revolution and established Intel as a significant player in the burgeoning microprocessor industry.

2. Motorola 68000 (1979)
Competing with Intel in the late '70s, Motorola's 68000 CPU was notable for its use in two iconic machines: the Apple Macintosh and the Commodore Amiga. With a more sophisticated 32-bit architecture, it offered a level of performance ahead of its time.

3. Intel 386 (1985) The Intel 386, officially known as the i386, was a major milestone in the CPU landscape. It was the first 32-bit x86 processor, and it introduced a new era of multitasking with its hardware-level support for protected mode.

4. Intel Pentium (1993)
With the arrival of the Pentium, Intel redefined performance expectations. The Pentium was the first x86 chip to use a superscalar architecture, which allowed it to execute more than one instruction per clock cycle. This CPU drove the multimedia revolution of the '90s, making real-time video playback and complex 3D graphics a reality for home computers.

5. AMD Athlon (1999)
AMD's Athlon was the underdog that could. It was the first processor to break the 1GHz barrier, challenging Intel's dominance and offering a credible alternative for PC enthusiasts. The Athlon series established AMD as a serious contender in the CPU market, leading to a more competitive, innovation-driven industry.

6. Intel Pentium 4 (2000)
In 2000, the Pentium 4 was released with a brand new NetBurst architecture, which took clock speeds to new heights. It represented a key period of evolution in CPU design, showcasing Intel's pursuit of higher frequencies and driving competition.

7. AMD Athlon 64 (2003)
The Athlon 64 marked a significant point in CPU history by introducing 64-bit computing to the consumer market. This allowed processors to handle vastly larger amounts of data, unlocking new levels of performance. It also introduced the world to AMD64 architecture, which is still the standard in the majority of today's PCs.

8. Intel Core 2 Duo (2006)
After learning lessons from the heat and power issues of the Pentium 4, Intel bounced back with the Core 2 Duo. This chip's multi-core technology brought a new level of multitasking efficiency to the table. The Core 2 Duo also brought back per-clock efficiency, marking the start of the "more cores" trend and the eventual end of the clock speed race.

9. Intel i7-2600K (2011)
The i7-2600K was a dream come true for PC enthusiasts. This quad-core CPU offered hyper-threading and had an unlocked multiplier, making it a favorite among overclockers. It showcased the maturity of the multi-core concept and cemented Intel's position as a high-performance CPU manufacturer. In fact, the entire Sandy Bridge quad cores family was something of a revelation.

10. Apple M1 (2020)
The Apple M1 chip made waves in the computing world by challenging the status quo of x86 dominance. This Arm-based processor brought unprecedented efficiency and performance levels to Apple's line of Macs, marking the first time a tech giant swapped out third-party CPUs for in-house silicon on a large scale.

Learn a little more about personal computer CPUs in this How-To Geek article.


Wit and Wisdom continued

contributed by Ed Webb

Experience is that marvelous thing that enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.
The greatest way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.
It doesn't take a very big person to carry a grudge.

Happiness is not doing what you like, it’s liking what you do.
Every path has some puddles.
If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.

It's A Pun-y World!

contributed by Ed Webb

Software Development Process
0. I can't fix this
1. Crisis of Confidence
2. Questions career
3. Questions life
4. Oh it was a typo, cool

A sign in a shoe repair store, "We will heel you,
We will save your sole,
We will even dye for you!"

At an Eye Clinic: "If you don't see what you're looking for, You've come to the right place.";

On a Plumber's truck: "We repair what your husband fixed";

In a Restaurant window: "Don't stand there and be hungry; come on in and get fed up.";

In the front yard of a Funeral Home: "Drive carefully. We'll wait.";

Sign on the back of Septic Tank Truck: "Caution - This Truck is full of Political Promises"

Membership Information

Don’t Forget the Next SPARTA Meeting

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Time: 3 p.m.

Location: Online

Information about access to our online meeting will be sent to our e-mail list by Tuesday, December 5.

Free Food before meeting: Your Food at Your Home


To Be Determined


To Be Announced

SPARTA Corporate Sponsors:

DTS Software

Rocket Software

Software Diversified Services


October 2023 Presentation outline

• Presentation Topic: SHARE 2023 New Orleans (142), August 13-18, 2023

by Ed Webb of SPARTA (retired from SAS Institute Inc.)

• Agenda
• Why Go to SHARE?
• Quotes of Interest
• Odds and Ends
• Best Sessions
• Other Sessions of Interest
• SHARE Status

- z16 Single Frame and LinuxONE 4 Announced April 4, 2023
- - 20 new instructions for COBOL and AI, CFLEVEL 25, Python is ZIIP-enabled
- - New quantum-safe CRYSTALS-Dilithium and -Kyber Encryption options
- - Validated Boot
- z/OS 3.1 Announcement Review and Upgrade Planning
- Late-breaking z/OS 2.5 and z/OS 2.4 News - 2Q2023 and 3Q2023 Continuous Delivery Functions
- Networking with peers and IBM developers and executives
- SHARE Requirements Carry More Weight with IBM than Ideas (were RFEs)
- On SHARE site, use Vote for Submission to more easily view text of requirement
- -
- - z/OS Ideas direct link
- Submit tactical rather than strategic Ideas

- Because I’m a Z Person who has attended these conferences since1979; first at GUIDE starting in 1979, then at SHARE in 1999
- Networking with Friends and Vendors
- Staying Current and Being Re-energized about z/OS
- First SHARE in New Orleans since 1996 (SHARE 2006 NOLA was moved because of Hurricane Katrina in 2005)

- 5 Days In-Person and Some Streaming with Recordings!
- Four Days Full of Content with some sessions live-streamed and recorded
- SHARE Tech Exchange Sunday, Monday and Tuesday evenings with food
- Lunch (free) and Learn Sessions on Monday and Wednesday
- Broadcom-sponsored Lunch (free) on Tuesday
- Recorded sessions are available now (Ends October 31, 2023)
- - 45-50 minute sessions - video and audio with handouts in most cases
- SHARE Partners with dedicated sessions on Wednesday

- “AI is not magic, it’s still garbage-in, garbage-out” - Elpida Tzortzatos of IBM
- “Properly written problem description+complete set of doc.+best maintenance practices=happy customer experience” - John Shelby and Laura Sperling of IBM
- “Desktops and server computers are puny mammals to be trodden underfoot” - Joe Winchester of IBM

- Curious about some new z/OS function? Then locate details here:
- -
- -
- New to Z Community - IBM Training for Z jobs


• What’s New in z/OS 3.1: The Big Easy Edition
By Gary Puchkoff of IBM
- New version (first in 10 years), updated license requirements, same pricing
- no V for version in front of 3.1 - it’s just IBM z/OS 3.1
- z/OS 3.1 themes are AI-Infusion, modernization and simplification, security and resiliency
- z/OS 3.1 is not supported on z13 and z13s
- z/OS 3.1 requires Java 11, Java 8 still works on 3.1 but z/OS needs Java 11
- - Java 17 Available and will be Required during life of z/OS 3.1 (Nov. 2024)
- - 25 years of Java on z/OS
- SCA (Security Configuration Assistant) line mode support can be used before z/OSMF starts first time
- z/OS Software Package signing (CD)
- - Portable Software Instance being signed with intro of 3.1 (optional use)
- z/OS memory limit raised to 16TB
- - New browser-based UI (Open Source Grafana) for monitor III and reports
- - New DDS with 64-bit support and ZIIP-eligible
- z/OSMF UI for SDSF being updated as well
- z/OS Change Tracker (priced)
- - z/OSMF plug-in with 90-day self-service trial available
- z/OS Management Services Catalog (CD)
- System Management
- - AI System Services for IBM z/OS
- - - WML for z/OS Core and Common Data provider
- SMF Explorer with Python (CD)
- JES2 Policy, Job Notifications, Resiliency improvements
- MEMLIMIT diagnostics, BCPii and HCM are 64-bit and support JAVA 11
- Data Serving and Storage
- - Cloud Storage via DASD or Tape or directly (cloud data access (CD))
- - DFhsm hierarchical support for cloud, other enhancements
- - DFdfp Catalog enhancements, exits, reporting
- - DFrmm z/OSMF plug-in
- - UNIX file backup and restore including EXCLUDE
- - NFS server and Union File System (CD)
- - Data Set File System (CD) for Unix access to z/OS data sets
- Security
- - Database encryption requires moving RACF DB to VSAM DB
- - Improvement for SPECIAL user revocation
- - ICSF Master Key Ownership, Read-Only Archive keyword
- - TLS improvements
- - z/OS Authorized Code Scanner and Monitor priced feature
- - - zACM monitor for production
- Compliance Support for z/OS - better reporting, health checks
- z/OS Education Assistant for z/OS 3.1 materials at z/OS Education github
- z/OS Requirements (RFEs) are now Ideas based on AHA platform:
- Here’s the Link to User Requirements satisfied by z/OS 2.5 (any in 3.1?):
- -
- Use SHARE requirements to submit requirements

• z/OS 3.1: Release Overview - z/OS Support Summary









End of


z/OS V2.2









9/23 (Defect support)

z/OS V2.3







9/25 (Defect support)

z/OS V2.4







9/27 (Generally supported)

z/OS V2.5






9/29 (Generally supported)

z/OS V3.1





9/31 (Generally supported)

1 - All statements regarding IBM's plans, directions, and intent are subject to change or withdrawal without notice.
2 - Extended support dates are projected and are subject to change or withdrawal without notice.
3 - WdfM - Server has been withdrawn from Marketing
4 - Defect support provided with IBM Software Support Services for z/OS

• What’s New for z/OSMF 3.1
By Joey Zhu, z/OSMF Development, and Fiona King, z/OSMF Product Manager
- z/OSMF Desktop
- - Multiple search windows (CD)
- - Upload and download files or data set (PH44157) (CD)
- - Compare and Merge files or data sets (PH39605) (CD)
- AI Control Interface (AICI) for z/OS
- - AICI plugin
- - AI framework Overview
- - AI Bridge and EzNoSQL
- System management
- - 3.1 and CD provide graphic-based CFRM policy editing
- - Sysplex policy editor, compares, exports to CSV
- - CF Sizing policy editor replaces CF Sizer Web application
- Security Configuration Assistant (SCA)
- - SDSF support (import SDSF SCA file) PH48846 for any source input
- - Fix security issues with a few clicks (PH39327) and REST API support
- PH44158 System Task to validate connection status among Sysplex members
- Ansible support
- - z/OSMF Ansible Collection
- - - see Ansible Galaxy and Red Hat Automation Hub
- Workflow Engine enhanced
- - RunAsUser
- - Signer
- - WF step signing process
- - WF definition + z/OSMF signing certificate
- - Improved Workflow UX (user interface)
- - Improved z/OSMF management
- IZUSECJL(SAMPLIB) and PROCLIB(IZUSECSV) to validate Nucleus setup before initial start
- Don’t Despair, There is help
- - One Stop Hub
- - Join IBM Z Communities to communicate with kindred spirits or lost souls
- - - z/OSMF Guild home page
- - - - Archived presentations back into 2021

• z/OS Containers
by Kershaw Mehta of IBM
- Open Container Initiative for container runtime and Kubernetes orchestration technology
- What is a Container?
- - Standard unit of software that package app code and all required dependencies
- - Use facilities in OS to run apps in isolated environment
- - Moving , stacking, unstacking of compliant software easier
- - - app portability and isolation containers, like applications, are OS and HW dependent
- - Containers are the currency for Cloud applications
- z/OS Container Extensions (zCX) - run linux, docker or OpenShift apps on z/OS
- Containers for Application Deployment
- - Personal computer>virtual machines >Containers
- - Remove VM layer and update OS to run containers
- Containers Today
- - X86, Linux on Z, z/OS Container Extensions, Windows Containers
- z/OS Containers (OCI-compliant) native on z/OS
- z/OS Containers are new
- - App, config, monitoring agent, software libraries
- - z/OS Connect will probably be the first z/OS containerized application
- - Enable sysprogs to create templates (images) for consumption by developers in a regulated manner
- Benefits behind containers
- - Skills consistency (tools and skills are aligned across organization)
- - Standardization, orchestration (deploy and management such as Kubernetes) across container-supporting platforms
- Open source tech being used to implement containers on z/OS
- - OCI, Kubernetes [kubelet is Started task], CRI-O (lightweight alternative to Docker - runs as Started Task), RunC is container runtime, Podman (POD manager) [CLI build, run for lifecycle of container], skopeo [CLI to manage images], umoci [image build]
- - Red Hat Open Shift runs these same technologies
- K Control Plane (zCX-like address space) - built to run as a appliance (zCPA)
- - K cluster has odd number of zCPAs that vote to manage apps
- z/OS Containers Rollout
- - z/OS Unix applications - z/OS Connect, Java, Node.js, Python
- - Traditional middleware apps - CICS, IMS, Db2
- z/OS Containers
- - Separate from z/OS release, available by EOY 2023
- - APF authorized libraries are a challenge

• ISPF Recent and Upcoming Changes
By Sam Reynolds, IBM RTP
- Upcoming in 3.1
- - ISPF development moved to Sofia, Bulgaria in 2022
- - - Should help in zOSNext enhancements
- - - Now 3 full time developers
- Sam Reynolds is still Product Owner
- Changes in ISPF 3.1 available
- - ISPF enhancements for pervasive encryption
- - Pre-3.1, no support for pervasive encryption
- - Could only be allocated via TSO command or by using JCL
- - Now “DSKEYLBL” field added to ALLOCATE panel (option 3.2) or in Define Cluster panel
- - ALLOCATE succeeds whether encryption worked or not so ISPF message “keylabel ignored”
- Case-Insensitive Sort for ISPF UNIX directory list
- - UDLIST similar to ISHELL except could not use caseless sort
- - ZOS-I-1298 Idea implemented case-insensitive sort
- - UDLIST Option to make CIS option default
- - SORT caseless option
- PDSE V2 member generation enhancements
- SCLM is still supported but not being enhanced

• Upgrading to 3.1: Planning (1 of 2)
By Marna Walle of IBM
- z16 HW workflow
- - /usr/lpp/bcp/upgrade/z16_zOS_Upgrade_Workflow.xml
- Content of 3.1
- - Crypto HCR77E0 is element of z/OS 3.1 - no web-deliverable needed
- - “Future function” related to IBM Documentation Function
- - Empty FMID that will be update later
- XML Toolkit V1.11 is now base element
- Order z/OS Security Level 3 (four elements) still have export controls
- - Comm Server SL3 added
- DFSMStvs priced feature is now part of base
- RMF enables z/OS Advanced Data gatherer, and enabling ADG enables zWIC
- Removed from 3.1
- - KC4Z, ISFPARMS, global mirror, JES3 and BDT
- - DOC4Z coming to replace KC4Z
- After 3.1 - DFSMS checkpoint/restart and CIM will be removed
- Ordering a deliverable
- - z/OS v2.5 - Ordering Sept. 17, 2021, ending Jan. 2024
- - z/OS 3.1 - Ordering starts Sept. 19, 2023
- - - requires entitlement (new version but no price change) so get human involved
- - Crypto 2.5 HCR77D2 and 3.1 HCR77E0 are incorporated
- No charge orderables but require S&S paid:
- - IBM AI System Services for IBM z/OS
- - SDK for Node.js 16.0 and 18.0
- Ordering a deliverable (continued)
- IBM Semeru Runtime Certified Edition [Java] for z/OS V1.11
- - ===>>> z/OS 3.1 requires this Java 11 - EOM Apr2024 and EOS Nov2024
- - Java 8 still runs on z/OS 3.1 but 3.1 itself requires Java 11
- - - EOM 20Jan2024 and EOS 30Sep2026
- - PFA, XML, CPM, and InfoPrint Server need Java 8 until PTFs are available
- - z/OS will move to Java V17 before end of life of 3.1
- z/OS Support policies
- - V2.4 end of service [EOS] Sept 2024 (5 years)
- - V2.5 EOS is Sept 2026
- - IBM.Coexistence.z/OS.3.1
- - - Use IBM.Coexistence.z/OS.* for FIXCAT
- Target System DASD sizing
- - Target, DLIB and Fonts libraries - PDS and PDSE (about same as 2.4 and 2.5)
- - Root 4500>5600 CYLs - Extended Addressability volume is strongly recommended
- Driving System
- - z/OS 2.4 with z/OSMF active and Software Management available
- - READ access to CB.OS* and CB.ST* data set names
- - APPLY Driving System PTFs using FIXCAT IBM.DrivingSystem-RequiredService
- - Optional Package signing needs Keyring with RACF-delivered STG Code Signing Certificate Authority-G2
- - - PTF signing is coming!
- Upgrade workflows
- - /usr/lpp/BCP/upgrade has Workflows for 2.4>3.1 or 2.5>3.1
- Updates to 3.1 upgrade workflow will have same FIXCAT
- - Post-GA APAR will update book links
- - “Create new based on existing” to pick up updates and continue your WorkFlow
- Reordered steps by time sequence instead of component order
- - HOLD Action PTFs are in WF, so WF determines if PTF is installed and skips steps
- - Automatically runs REPORT MISSINGFIX
- - Planning to provide as Exported 3.1 Workflow Upgrade after 3.1 book links are implemented
- - - see IBM Documentation
- Generic z/OSMF Portable Software Instance (ServerPac) for training
- -

• Upgrading to 3.1: Technical Actions (2 of 2)
By Marna Walle of IBM
- What is an upgrade action? Not exploitation, just getting current stuff running on 3.1
- Upgrade actions
- - Now, Pre-First-IPL, Post-First IPL is new order for Upgrade Workflows
- - Steps are Required, Required-IF, Recommended
- - Overview to 3.1 from 2.5 or 2.4
- - - 80+ new upgrade actions
- - - No new address spaces
- - - SDSF cleanup: ISF.SISFLINK and SISFMIG removed from LPALST and LNKLST
- - - New in 3.1: XML toolkit target, dlibs, paths
- - HealthChecks (HC)
- - - 2.5 added 9 checks, 3.1 added 3 checks
- Before IPL Upgrades
- - SSD-capable [System Status Detection] sysplex couple data sets are required- see upgrade HC
- - Req-IF:
- - - System now uses non-executable storage for passing parameters to a program (before 3.1, parameters areas are in executable storage), that is, via PARM or PARMDD keyword on EXEC
- - - DIAGxx CBATTR EXECUTABLE(JCLPARM) to override default
- - Verify default change for CHNGDUMP to OPTIMIZE=YES instead of NO
- - In 3.1, ASVT recommended to move above 16M
- - - DIAGxx set CBLOC VIRTUAL31(IHAASVT) because the default is 24-bit
- - In 3.1, OSPROTECT=SYSTEM but SYSTEM is different (is now level 1), fallback is MIN
- - - Affects unauthorized programs, may affect system performance
- JES2:
- - Now: Req-IF
- - - Enforce job resource limits for Track-groups (TG) and Job Output Elements (JOE) - action is JOB in WAIT except for privileged jobs are not subject to limits
- - - JOBCLASS LIMIT and ACTION values can be changed - Leave on by default but can be changed or bypassed
- - Now: Req-IF z22 by z/OS 2.5
- - - OUTCLASS BLNKTRC=YES/NO are no longer supported

• JES2 Product Updates
By Tom Wasik, IBM JES Architect
- JES2 3.1 Enforces Limits on TGs [Track Groups] and JOEs [Job Output Entries]
- - Environment for each option
- - - If small “job”, that is, TG<10K or JOE<600
- - - - then wait any job using more than 75%
- - - If Large “job”, that is, TG>10K or JOE>600
- - - - then wait job using more than 25%
- - Default is Wait
- - Any job will be waited
- - Control via JOBCLASS or Policy or Exit
- Job Resource Groups
- - Resource use recorded for the Group
- - Future ACTIONs are on the way
- - Input processing re-ordered so TG and JOE is determined after exit 2/52 and Input Policy are executed
- Policy updates
- - Policies were introduced in JES2 V2R4 to reduce or replace JES2 Exits
- - New V3R1 policies not being rolled back to earlier JES2 releases
- - JobInput Policy applies at end of input phase Right before exits 20/50 are called
- - JobCreate applies very early in life of JOB after JCL scan and before job resources are created
- - Variables
- - - policyVersion2 is Required
- - - Can be passed between policies, extract system symbols and JES symbols
- - - name, type, scope
- - - scope can be local or instance
- - - Action, variable, value to assign a value to a variable
- - - Variable can be prefixed by $ to make unique
- Built-in functions
- - JESSymbol(symbol-name) to get info from JES2 symbols
- - - Can be used by JOBInput policy
- - SysSymbolSub(string) to allow use of System Symbols
- - FailJob(option) determines how job should fail
- - - Use in JobInput and JobCreate type policies
- - New JOB attributes that can be queried
- - - See JES2 Installation Exits book
- Restricting JES Cancel Job ($C command)
- - - Set at job level or JOBCLASS
- - Symbols in NOTIFY Email subject Line
- Archive ICSF Key Label Support
- ASCB in 31-bit Storage
- 3.1 Upgrade and Coexistence considerations
- - Compatibility APAR OA65252 to tolerate new function and recommended for fallback to 2.4 and 2.5


• Mainframe Penetration Testing
By Mark Wilson
- What is Pentest?
- - Security test with permission
- - Use bad guy techniques
- MW says he has never failed to elevate his privileges
- Data Gathering and Footprinting
- Test: Using a non-privilege userid to try to elevate your privilege
- Results: Elevate privileges or exfiltrate and steal data

• Have You Heard of A.I. Foundation Models?
By Elpida Tzortzatos of IBM
- What is Generative AI (GenAI)?
- What are Foundation Models and why are they important?
- What does it enable you to do?
- How does it intersect with Z?
- What use cases take advantage of Foundation Models?

• Managing your z/OS Environment Using System Services
By Hiren Shah of IBM
- z/OS Management Services Catalog (zMSC)
- - Not a Service! A z/OSMF plug-in
- - Manage Complexity and Skills Transfer and reduce Errors
- - Services are based on z/OSMF Workflows

• Maximize Your z/OS Support Experience
By John Shebey and Laura Sperling of IBM
- Initial Problem description
- - What are the symptoms? Which z/OS release? Which release of associated products?
- - Use Problem Diagnostic Worksheet

• New z/OS Unix File Systems
By Kershaw Mehta of IBM
- Data Set File System (G.A. 2.5 and 3.1)
- - Unique to z/OS
- Union File System (G.A. 2.5 and 3.1)
- - Unix/Linux - logical filesystem on top of other filesystems
- Proc File System (coming PTF on 2.5 and 3.1 in 4Q2023)
- - Unix/Linux
- - Virtual filesystem in UNIX-like OSes that presents info about processes and other system info in a hierarchical file-like structure

• Mainframe, Movies and Me
By Joe Winchester of IBM
- Movies with mainframe references [that are mostly funny or wrong]
- - Independence Day
- - Hackers
- - Castle (TV series)
- - NCIS (TV series)
- - War Games 1983
- “Desktops and server computers are puny mammals to be trodden underfoot”
- Most entertaining Session of the conference


• SHARE 2023 New Orleans highlighted 2 Changes:
- SHARE Individual Membership (New in 2023!)
- - $199 starting January 2024
- - Affiliate Membership at $99 may still be available
- SHARE Changes for Program and Projects
- - They are now called Focus Areas and Tracks
- - Some ongoing impact at Future SHAREs
- SHARE 2024 Orlando will be a full four-day conference March 3-7, possibly at Rosen Centre on International Drive.
- - Call for Presentations Ended on October 1, 2023
- - Registration opens in late fall 2023
- SHARE 2024 Kansas City will be August 4-8 in Kansas City, MO
- Visit SHARE's Event Calendar for more details soon.


For Reference [From SHARE 2023 Atlanta]
• Digital Signatures for z/OS Software Packages
By Kurt Quackenbush, IBM z/OSMF Software Management and SMP/E
- Digital Signature support already delivered in recent PTFs
- SMP/E GIMZIP creates portable packages of ready to install SMP/E consumables, or already installed software.
- Extended GIMZIP to digitally sign packages
- SMP/E and z/OSMF are extended to verify packages signatures
- Signature is hashed data that is then encrypted with public/private key
- Digital certificate is certified by trusted authority and contains identity info and the public key
- In the GIMZIP package is a new file GIMPAF2.XML
- SMP/E does not require signature verification for a signed GIMZIP package (yet)
- Providers can start signing packages whether or not consumers are verifying the signature
- Signing certificate comes with GIMZIP package from provider
- SMP/E verification uses Java services
- RACF provides the IBM CA Root “STG Code Signing CA-G2” automatically
- - But marked Not Trusted
- READ Access to LISTRING Profile in FACILITY Class is good enough, but a provider may need RDATALIB Class active

• Next SHARE is in Orlando, Florida on March 3-7, 2024

The presentation ended about 8:40 and the meeting ended at 8:45 PM after a short business meeting.