DB2 101 Webinar – IBM Information Management Portfolio Review

Posted by Kim May on March 26, 2012 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, Netezza, Optim. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Frank delivered a terrific summary of the products in the Information Management portfolio at a lunch event at Baltimore’s Cinghiale restaurant earlier this month.  Unfortunately, we can’t offer everyone lunch (sorry!) but we will offer a repeat presentation via webinar on April 5th.  The invitation and registration information are below and the complete session abstract and Frank’s bio can be accessed by clicking ” Read More”.  Please share this event with anyone who may be interested in learning more about what IBM has to offer – it’s packed with great information.

Thursday, April 5, 2012, 3:00pm – 4:00pm EDT    Register here.  Read More…

Must-have iPad Apps for the DB2 DBA

Posted by Frank Fillmore on March 17, 2012 under DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, IBM Champion, Information on Demand Conference. Tags: .

At IBM’s Information on Demand (IOD) conference held in Las Vegas in October of 2011, I was awarded an iPad 2 at the IBM Champions luncheon for working on the “most significant” Oracle to DB2 migration to that date.  Although I had had a Kindle e-reader for a while, I was new to tablet computing.  Initially I used the iPad for personal productivity and communications (Skype, Twitter, GMail, etc.) and entertainment (Netflix, Kindle app for iPad, and so forth).

What surprised me was that I can use the iPad to actually do my job.  Here are a few iPad apps I have found useful.

  • TinyTERM ITX 3270 for iPad  Yes, you too can turn your iPad into a dumb terminal.  For the DB2 for z/OS DBA, TinyTERM 3270 provides a green-screen interface to TSO, CICS, and IMS.  For practical use, you will need a bluetooth keyboard.
  • IBM Cognos Mobile  Work with reports locally on your iPad or connect to a Cognos server to get your KPIs and dashboards.

At this point, you’re probably saying “Yeah, but any useful server is going to behind my company’s firewall.”  The Cisco Anyconnect VPN is available if, for example, you need to access IBM TECNet servers for a demonstration.  The iPad also comes with native VPN software which can be configured under Settings > Network.

There are some additional apps such as DB2 Mobile Database Client and iDB2Prog which I haven’t had a chance to test yet.  Any feedback from folks that are using them would be appreciated.

Finding the DB2 Mid Market – First of a Series

Posted by Kim May on March 13, 2012 under DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Migrations, IBM DB2 Services, TFG Blog. Tags: , , .

I decided to blog on my efforts to get engaged with Mid Market Information Management customers in 2012, as IBM is encouraging Business Partners like The Fillmore Group to support the Mid Market while they focus on larger accounts.  IBM is a huge organization, and as seems natural, they like to work with other huge organizations.  As demonstrated by the success of that 35-year-old tech start-up from Redmond, small and mid-sized businesses often grow, and share their growth with their vendors.  However, IBM is opting to stay focused on their core – integrated and aligned and named accounts – and delegating Mid Market customer support to Business Partners.

Makes sense, right?  Sure!  So then next…what if you are an IBM Business Partner that WANTS to work with Mid Market Information Management customers?  What if you are a Mid Market IBM Information Management customer that WANTS to work with a Business Partner?  How do you find each other?  How do you determine if you have the right chemistry?  It’s not easy. Read More…

IBM Data Strategy Luncheon

Posted by Kim May on February 13, 2012 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, Netezza, Optim, Oracle, Q-Replication. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

In 2011, Information Management was IBM’s largest software product family, based on worldwide sales.  What does IBM have that you should know about?  Join us in the beautiful Patrizio dining room at Baltimore’s award winning Cinghiale Italian restaurant on March 8th to find out.

DB2 Gold Consultant and IBM Champion Frank Fillmore will deliver a presentation on IBM’s 2012 Information Management product portfolio, including background on IBM’s recent acquisitions and information integration and data governance strategies.  Learn how IBM has accumulated and integrated data solutions to position themselves as the thought leader in information management.

Whether you already use IBM data products or are interested in finding out what IBM has to offer, the presentation will provide a dose of nutritious food for thought.

To register, click here.   We will send you a confirmation with directions to Cinghiale.  Valet parking will be provided.  We look forward to seeing you there!

DB2 101 Sessions Announced

Posted by Kim May on February 1, 2011 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Migrations, IBM DB2 Services, Optim, Oracle, Q-Replication. Tags: , , , , , .

The Fillmore Group will be hosting three sessions of what we are calling, “DB2 101” – sessions that provide an executive overview of the IBM Information Management product portfolio, one each month, in February, March and April.  We have selected three restaurants close to our Baltimore headquarters – 2 in Baltimore and 1 in Columbia, Maryland (about halfway between Baltimore and Washington, DC).  The purpose of each session is to bring attendees up to date on IBM’s Information Management product portfolio (an expanding target), and strategy. Read More…

Virtual Users Group “DB2 Connect: History, Today’s Functionality, and What’s Next”

Posted by Frank Fillmore on December 14, 2010 under DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG). Tags: , .

Curt Cotner presents DB2 Connect from a technical, historical perspective.  In his presentation Curt explains how DB2 Connect evolved as a technical solution, describes the changes to DB2 Connect and why organizations should consider eliminating the gateway.  Curt looks at what the future holds for DB2 Connect.  Curt covers best practices for moving from three-tier DB2 Connect topology using a gateway to the recommended two-tier architecture so attendees can begin to figure out how to get their organization from here to there.

db2-connect-history-dec-2010

Also, we would like to thank everyone for volunteering.  We are hoping to have three meetings a year and will be posting them through the IDUG website.  A special thanks to Michael McBride for all of this assistance with the website.

Please feel free to invite your friends and colleagues to join the Virtual Users Group!  Contact Blaire Crowley at blaire.crowley@thefillmoregroup.com for details.

DB2 Connect Virtual Users Group Inaugural Meeting on December 14

Posted by Frank Fillmore on November 24, 2010 under DB2 Connect, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG). Tags: , .

“DB2 Connect, History, Today’s Functionality, and What’s Next”

Tuesday, December 14, 2010 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. (US) Eastern Standard Time

IBM Fellow Curt Cotner will present DB2 Connect from a technical, historical perspective.  In his presentation Curt will explain how DB2 Connect evolved as a technical solution, describe the changes to DB2 Connect and why organizations should consider eliminating the gateway.  Curt will finish the presentation with a look at what the future holds for DB2 Connect.  Curt will cover best practices for moving from three-tier DB2 Connect topology using a gateway to the recommended two-tier architecture so attendees can begin to figure out how to get their organization from here to there.

The presentation will be delivered online via GoToWebinar.  Click here to register.

Summer Services Special

Posted by Kim May on July 21, 2010 under DB2 Connect, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, IBM DB2 Services, InfoSphere, Optim, Q-Replication, SQL Tuning. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , .

As much as I dislike the relentless repetition that’s part of the nature of the world of blogs and twitter and listserves and email blasts, here I go with a shameless pitch for a TFG special services offering I emailed to several DB2 users earlier today.  I am doing this because, at the end of the day, the rate disparity in today’s DB2 services market baffles me.  Are the ridiculously high rates being charged eroding product adoption?  I am afraid so, which is why we are offering a summer services special. 

Read More…

DB2 Connect Redux

Posted by Frank Fillmore on March 29, 2010 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS. Tags: , .

I’ve been seeing a lot of an old friend lately: DB2 Connect.  This is the software which enables Distributed Relational Database Architecture (DRDA) Application Requestor (AR) or “client” applications running on Linux, Unix, and Windows platforms to access DB2 “host” databases on System z and System i.  More precisely, DB2 Connect accesses an Application Server (AS) which can be DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Server for VSE&VM, or DB2 for i (Wait, shouldn’t that be DB2 for “me”?)

What we know today as DB2 Connect started out almost 20 years ago as Distributed Database Connection Services (DDCS).  Then it was amazing to access host DB2 data using a spreadsheet.  Of course it took an experienced consultant a few weeks to install and configure DDCS and it’s supporting software which relied on the Systems Network Architecture (SNA) communications protocol.  It was so difficult, The Fillmore Group had a services offering called “Client/Server in 10 Days” where we guaranteed to get DDCS working in your shop in two weeks.  Now you can install and configure DB2 Connect using TCP/IP in about an hour.

So what does DB2 Connect actually do?  At its most basic, DB2 Connect is a protocol converter that changes the character coding on the host (Extended Binary Coded Decimal Interchange Code or EBCDIC) into the equivalent used on Linux, Unix, and Windows platforms (American Standard Code for Information Interchange or ASCII).  It does lots of other things and can be a source of lots of troubleshooting and performance tuning, but EBCDIC to ASCII translation is a core function.

So what’s happening lately?  First, after a few years of no publicly available training in DB2 Connect, The Fillmore Group is holding classes: CF602 “DB2 Connect 9 to DB2 for z/OS DRDA Implementation with TCP/IP” and CF632 “DB2 Connect 9 for DB2 for z/OS Problem Determination and Performance”.  The CF602 beginning June 21 is actually nearing capacity, so if this is something you need, sign up to attend now.  CF632 starts May 17.

As a bonus, I’ve attached a DB2 Connect configuration worksheet.  If you know what it all means and can use it right away, great!  Have at it.  If not, we’ll see you in class.

Second, on the consulting side of the house we’re seeing lots of DB2 Connect activity – especially with DB2 for i.  Having a relational database directly integrated into the i5/OS operating system, System i always has been a bit of a land unto itself.  Now we’re seeing lots of activity integrating System i data into eCommerce and Business Intelligence applications.  If this is what you’re doing, let us know how we can help.

Recap: Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group

Posted by Kim May on September 10, 2009 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 Connect, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM. Tags: , , , .

DB2 Connect for DBA’s

We had a great meeting yesterday with both z/OS and LUW users in attendance, as well as a group of IBM’ers and our board members.  LUW sessions were delivered by Frank Fillmore, Dave Beulke and Chris Eaton (who flew in from Toronto for the day to present – many thanks!) 

Frank’s presentation on DB2 Connect was well attended.  The group selected the topic as most everyone in the group uses DB2 Connect, and few people know it well (although some have some very strong feelings about it!).  As Frank recently delivered both the Intro to DB2 Connect and the Tuning and Troubleshooting courses for IBM, he had ideas and suggestions gathered from the students that attended his classes on their most common issues.  If you use DB2 Connect, please take a few minutes and go through Frank’s presentation and see if it doesn’t give you an idea or two to improve DB2 Connect performance in your organization.