Services – Available Help for the “tions”

Posted by Frank Fillmore on May 30, 2014 under Authorized Training Partner, Big Data, Data Studio, DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Federation, Frank Fillmore, Hadoop, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Pure Systems, IDAA, InfoSphere, InfoSphere Streams, MQT's, Netezza, Optim, Oracle, pureScale, Q-Replication, SQL Tuning, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

I was on a call this morning with an IBM technical team to discuss our progress filling the seats in one of our upcoming free IDAA classes.  Not surprising, given the number of people on the call (and who they were!) we went a bit off topic and ended up chatting about services and what appears to be – to IBM customers and sellers at least – a shortage of skilled consultants available to help with the “tions” – replication, implementations, migrations and federation.

The Fillmore Group has skilled consultants available to support these efforts, at rates that are typically about half of those being charged by “the competition”.

If your team has a project pending, or one in process, where a skilled consultant, at a reasonable hourly rate, can get things back on track, please contact me.  We are ready to work!  A list of our IBM Information Management capabilities is attached here.


Free Hands-on IDAA Classes for Columbus and New York Announced!

Posted by Frank Fillmore on May 5, 2014 under DB2 Education, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IDAA, Netezza, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

We were so pleased with the response to the *free* hands-on IDAA class delivered in Baltimore in April that we’ve decided to do two more in June!  Back again, to repeat their successful presentations will be Frank Fillmore and IBM IDAA experts Saghi Amirsoleymani and Mike Hood.

Class is open to any current DB2 for z/OS customer considering an IDAA acquisition, and will provide attendees with the opportunity to test drive an IDAA.

IBM® DB2® Analytics Accelerator for z/OS is a high-performance appliance that integrates IBM Netezza and zEnterprise technologies. The solution delivers extremely fast results for complex and data-intensive DB2 queries on data warehousing, business intelligence and analytic workloads.

IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator for z/OS helps you:

  • Query data at high speeds—to significantly improve response times for unpredictable, complex and long-running query workloads.
  • Extend the capabilities of DB2 for z/OS—to support a cost-effective analytics solution for data warehousing, business intelligence and predictive analytics.
  • Lower operating costs—by reducing System z disk requirements and offloading workloads and archiving infrequently used data using the High Performance Storage Saver (HPSS) technology.

DB2 Gold Consultant Frank Fillmore will present these 2-day, hands-on training classes to introduce experienced DB2 for z/OS DBA’s to the IDAA.  Starting with an overview of the unique hybrid technology behind the IDAA, and covering topics including installation, security, and operational management, the classes will deliver an understanding of how the IDAA can quickly integrate into your existing zEnterprise infrastructure and rapidly provide value.  Frank will be joined by IBM’s Saghi Amirsoleymani and Mike Hood for sessions focused on the IDAA tools.

There is no charge for these classes, however attendees are responsible for their own travel and lodging.  Please note that due to the technical nature of the hands-on labs, there is no distance learning/remote option available for these classes.

A continental breakfast and lunch will be provided each day.

Dates and locations scheduled are below.  Click on either session to register.  We hope you will join us!

IDAA Hands On Training NYC June 11 and 12 Terrace Club

IDAA Hands On Training Columbus June 25 and 26




Two *Free* IDAA Hands-on Classes Coming Soon

Posted by Frank Fillmore on April 25, 2014 under DB2 Education, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IDAA, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , .

The IDAA class feedback was terrific as the attendees had the opportunity to expand their understanding of the potential use cases and opportunities to use the IDAA to:  1) speed analytic queries, 2) archive rarely used data, and retrieve it quickly, and 3) reconsolidate workloads on System z.

We hosted the class in Baltimore, since it’s our backyard.  At the recommendation of the IBM Big Data team, we are planning to host two more sessions in June.  The dates are confirmed:  June 11th and 12th, and June 25th and 26th, but the locations are still TBD.

If you are interested in attending, the outline is available here, and my email address is here.  If you let me know you are interested I will contact you – before the end of April – with the two locations.

IBM zEnterprise Technology Summit – May 6th, Washington, DC

Posted by Frank Fillmore on March 21, 2014 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 for z/OS, IBM DB2 Services, IDAA, Optim, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , .

IBM has scheduled a second presentation of the 2014 zEnterprise Technology Summit due to the snowstorm that hit in January when the event ran originally.  If you are in the area and have time to attend, please do!  Information on the event is below; register on the IBM site here.  There are several other events scheduled across the US in 2014 – view them on the IBM site here.

IBM zEnterprise Technology Summit Tuesday, May 6, Washington, DC

New technology is stretching IT budgets in many directions, forcing IT to find better ways of meeting business demands in increasingly complex data centers. Read More…

Optim Query Capture Replay PoT – Next Week!

Posted by Frank Fillmore on September 13, 2013 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, Optim. Tags: , .

If you are in the Baltimore/Washington/NoVA area next week please join the local IBM technical team to learn more about Optim™ Query Capture and Replay (OQCR) for z/OS and LUW.   The presentation is being led by IBM’s Baha Majid, who many local DB2 users know from his volunteer work on the board of the Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group, where he helps secure top notch IBM speakers for our meetings.

OQCR is a new product that helps organizations minimize business disruption with the ability to perform realistic workload testing during the quality testing process.

InfoSphere Query Capture Replay enables organizations to:
•    Capture representative production workloads needed for comprehensive real-life test scenarios.
•    Replay the workload to reproduce the original application timing, order of execution, transaction boundaries, isolation levels, and other SQL and application characteristics without the need to setup complex client or middleware environments.
•    Analyze accuracy and performance reports to identify the impact of software, hardware or database changes may have on critical workloads and the environment.

This Proof of Technology describes the key functions of InfoSphere Optim Query Capture Replay and consists of both presentations and hands-on lab exercises for z/OS and LUW platforms.

The PoT will be held at:

8401 Greensboro Drive
Suite 120
Room EBR
McLean, VA 22102

08:30 – 09:00  Breakfast
09:00 – 11:30  Product Presentations and Lab – 1
11:30 – 12:15  Lunch Break
12:15 – 14:00  Lab – 2

To register click here.

Frank’s IDUG Session on QCR – Thursday at 3:30pm

Posted by Frank Fillmore on April 29, 2013 under DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG). Tags: , , .

Frank is attending IDUG in Orlando this week to present on one of our favorite new IBM Information Management solutions, Query Capture Replay (QCR).  If you are heading to Florida this week, please say hi to Frank and join him on Thursday, May 2nd, from 3:30pm – 4:30pm in Bonaire 7&8 for his session.  

“Don’t Guesstimate! Migration Testing with Query Capture Replay”

This presentation focuses on several migration use cases for IBM’s new InfoSphere Optim Query Capture and Replay tool, announced in 2012. Query Capture and Replay (QCR) enables users to capture database activity on a production database and run it to analyze and evaluate the performance when changes – to SQL, hardware, operating system software and even the underlying database – are completed. It’s a great new migration tool.

Big Data Forum in Virginia

Posted by Frank Fillmore on March 11, 2013 under Big Data, Frank Fillmore, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Pure Systems, Netezza, Optim, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , .

I had the pleasure of attending and participating as a Business Partner in the IBM Big Data and Governance Forum road show event in Reston, Virginia, last week.  Many of the attendees were from Federal government agencies – no surprise – and most of the attendees, at least in my opinion, seemed to be trying to satisfy their curiosity about  Big Data. 

The first session presenter was Tracey Mustacchio, the Director of Marketing for Big Data.  Tracey came to IBM from Vivisimo, one of the latest IBM Information Management acquisitions.  She started her session with a standard show of hands opening.  The amazing thing was, with about 100 people in the room, only THREE were actually using any Big Data solutions in their IT shops.  3%!!  That meant – with the simplistic way I do math –  the other 97% of the attendees were, like me, still trying to figure out how to apply this new technology.  And of course, overcome the skepticism that comes from hearing a solution referred to as a “game changer” a few too many times.

The information delivered was excellent, with the presenters using clear, understandable business use case examples to demonstrate the Big Data solutions at work.  I thought it was great. 

As a Business Partner The Fillmore Group raffled off the gorgeous, huge coffee table book, “The Human Side of Big Data”, by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt.  After reading a glowing review I bought the book about a month ago for myself, and while I am bit overwhelmed by the book’s size (did I mention it’s huge?) which made it impossible to stuff in my laptop bag like my Kindle, it is simply beautiful and the perfect way to get excited about the potential of Big Data.  Each article is short – maximum length 2 pages – and tells about how Big Data has changed the way people are doing something.  And yes IBM fans, page 208 features Jeff Jonas.  Because what book about Big Data could leave out Jeff Jonas and his fascinating life and experience developing the IBM Entity Analytics solutions.

The forum delivered lots of great ideas and use cases.  It’s time to start moving beyond the ideas.  We all need to figure out how to apply this amazing technology and reap the benefits!  The next step, recommended by IBM’s Crysta Anderson, is to attend the IBM Big Data announcement on April 30th: to hear more about how you can move from theory to practice with Big Data.

Introducing Query Capture Replay – Webinar

Posted by Frank Fillmore on September 13, 2012 under Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , .

IBM’s recently announced InfoSphere Optim Query Capture Replay (QCR) captures production workloads and replays them in nonproduction environments to reproduce realistic activity complete with change impact reports.  Join DB2 Gold Consultant Frank C. Fillmore, Jr. for this introduction to QCR and learn how your organization can use QCR to assess the impact of application and infrastructure changes in advance by providing the ability to test with actual production workloads.  QCR produces change impact reports that find problems before production deployment.

QCR can be used to efficiently manage lifecycle events such as changes in hardware, workloads, databases or applications without production impact.  QCR can be used to test SQL performance, and compliments your existing regression, functional and performance testing methods with a deeper analysis of impacts to the data layer.  

Date:  Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Time:  11am-12pm ET

Register HERE

Presenter: Frank Fillmore, President, The Fillmore Group
Frank Fillmore is a DB2 Gold Consultant and IBM Information Champion.   Frank has worked with DB2 customers for over 25 years to optimize their DB2 data assets, through his consulting practice and as an IBM Authorized Training instructor.  A popular blogger ( and award winning presenter, Frank manages a team of 25 expert consultants at The Fillmore Group.  Frank participated in the QCR beta program and is excited to work with another new IBM technology that allows DB2 customers to outshine the competition.


InfoSphere Optim Query Capture and Replay – What’s the value?

Posted by Frank Fillmore on August 8, 2012 under DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, InfoSphere, Optim, Oracle. Tags: , .

Database recovery logs have been around for a long time.  They support rolling back transactions that abend – providing a logical unit of work (LUW).  The also provide roll-forward recovery so that if a database crashes, a full backup restored can be supplemented by all of the transactions, in chronological sequence, that have occured since the last backup was taken.

For many years now, clever engineers have been using this record of transactions for other purposes.  The most prominent is changed data capture: the technique of reading the database recovery log and replaying the transactions on another server to, say, feed a data warehouse or load-balance between two transaction servers.

IBM has packaged its Guardium technology to provide a new way to capture in-flight SQL statements: InfoSphere Optim Query Capture and Replay (IOQCR).  Not the most lyrical of names, but the idea is sound.  Rather than exploit the database recovery log, IOQCR imbeds a Guardium S-TAP in a database server to gather the SQL as it occurs.  This SQL can then be replayed in another environment.  The use case is to take SQL running in a production system and rerun it against Performance, QA, or Test/Dev database servers.

In May I participated in the IOQCR beta and installed it in a small DB2 9 for Windows server.  The purpose was to evaluate basic functionality and usability.  The IBM development team graciously assisted me with the installation and configuration.  It took a few tries – remember, this was an early beta – but I was able to successfully use all of the features.  SQL statements executing on a database server were captured and replayed flawlessly on another.

Rather than drive transaction load through scripting or third-party products, you can use IOQCR to validate database configuration changes or even the viability of running an SQL workload developed for one database server (we’re looking at you, Oracle) on a different vendor platform entirely.  This is a nifty way to test DB2 9 support of Oracle APIs using your own production PL/SQL code- especially dynamic SQL generated on the fly or by an IDE.  DB2, Informix, Netezza, Oracle, Teradata, SQL Server, Sybase, and MySQL are all supported in v1.1 announced on July 10th.

There’s a demonstration on developerWorks.  The Announcement Letter is also useful.