IBM Ships Latest Mainframe Transaction Server

IBM has announced the release of CICS Transaction Server for z/OS, Version 5 Release 5, with features intended to enable development teams to create mixed-language applications while allowing operational teams to manage these applications from a single point of control.

Recent investments in Java Platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE) and Eclipse MicroProfile support enable CICS TS clients "to do more with their application platform than ever before," according to an IBM statement.

CICS TS V5.5 provides modernized features, such as support for JavaScript Node.js applications. Node.js is a server-side runtime for applications that are written in JavaScript. Designed to be lightweight, efficient, and best suited for data-intensive applications, Node.js applications are typically event-driven, single-threaded, and process requests in a non-blocking manner to achieve high throughput.

The latest release also incorporates support for including common configuration in JVM servers. A new JVM profile directive INCLUDE is provided that loads additional configuration from another file. The file may contain configuration information that is common to several JVM profiles, such as security, logging, timeout settings, or database driver configuration and shared debug controls. In addition, a new JVM profile option LIBERTY_INCLUDE_XML is provided that enables Liberty to load shared configuration. This makes it easier to administer, clone, and control OSGi and Liberty JVM servers.

In addition, an enhanced CICS Explorer provides more capability. The new release also includes advancements in systems management, and enhanced security.

The release also includes system management advancements that help improve control and ownership. CICS TS V5.5 delivers new policy system rules that enable users, who want to monitor the state of system resources or the overall health of a CICS system, to define system rules in CICS policies. With the introduction of statistics for policy rules, CICS now collects resource statistics for each rule that is defined in a policy, and supplies a summary report.

The CICSPlex System Management (CICSPlex SM) exploitation of the workload manager (WLM) API is modified. A zero-health value now means that the application-owning region becomes non-selectable as a routing target. The management of Db2 threads that are used by CICS tasks and subject to PURGE is enhanced.

"IBM is committed to a continuous delivery roadmap for CICS TS, to deliver regular updates in capability for all current releases," the company also said. Many of the enhancements and features described in this section are available on CICS TS V5.4, or earlier, by using the standard CICS TS service channel and continuous delivery model.

Mainframe support vendors have announced support for the latest release of CICS, including Compuware and Macro 4.

"CICS TS V5.5 promises customers technical innovation and improved business value and includes a significant number of enhancements that have been requested through IBM user groups,” said Michelle Harris, Customer and Product Services Manager at Macro 4. "One of the many interesting new features in CICS TS V5.5 is the support for JavaScript Node.js, a server-side runtime environment for applications that are written in JavaScript, which is designed to deliver time savings to developers through its module-driven, scalable approach to application development. There are also enhancements to CICS Explorer which are expected to simplify and improve the user experience. Our software will work with the new version from day one so our customers can start seeing these improvements immediately."

For more details, go here.