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By Sowmya Kameswaran and Jens Müller


As we all know, Db2 for z/OS has one of the largest footprints in the enterprise database world. Your organization may have all or most of its' business critical data on Db2 for z/OS (you are not alone and we wouldn't recommend you to change a thing about that!). We realize though that many organizations are experimenting with or, rearchitecting and extending their infrastructure to take advantage of hybrid cloud.
With the changing environment and importance of hybrid cloud, cloud-based applications need easy, secure access to this data for modern applications. IBM Db2 Data Gate for z/OS makes data from Db2 for z/OS readily accessible on the IBM Cloud Pak for Data platform for business users and application developers.
As-is scenario
We have embarked on an exciting era of compelling modern application development. There is a surge in both reporting applications requiring read-only access to transactional data as well as data-intensive analytics applications requiring access to historical data. Organizations are developing new compelling applications for differentiating services delivered to their customers. Since much of this data originates in Db2 for z/OS, many organizations have built custom ETL (extract, transform, load) jobs to extract and load this data into other databases to support their application needs. While this approach may work in the short term, some of the problems with this approach are:
  1. Expensive to create and maintain over the course of time (due to complexity, and the costs of synchronizing source and target databases, and ensuring transactional consistency if necessary)
  2. Data security concerns once data is moved from where it originates
  3. Increased operational processes and cost on IBM Z
Why Db2 Data Gate
  • It is an integrated solution to securely access data from Db2 for z/OS on the cloud without the need for direct access to Db2 for z/OS.
  • Avoids significant investment in building and maintaining custom ETL solutions to move Db2 for z/OS data.
  • Provides better data currency via the Integrated Synchronization feature that replicates data from Db2 for z/OS to IBM Cloud Pak for Data.
  • Significantly reduces (operation) cost of data replication on mainframe since 96 % of the underlying data synchronization technology is zIIP eligible.
  • Enables modernization and transformation in your enterprise's Journey to Cloud.
  • With Integrated Synchronization, the data availability for applications accessing data from the source is not affected (source tables are fully online for reading and writing) while data is replicated to the target.
  • HA/DR is built directly into IBM Cloud Pak for Data 


Architecture highlights



Db2 Data Gate is based on Db2 (row store) or Db2 Warehouse (column store) as the target databases within IBM Cloud Pak for Data. This model makes it suitable for supporting  applications that require row level access  as well as analytical applications that benefit from column based data store. Only one Db2 for z/OS database can be used as the data source. The key aspect of the architecture is the Integrated Synchronization feature which is optimized to replicate data from Db2 for z/OS to Db2 running under IBM Cloud Pak for Data.
With Db2 Data Gate and the target database running on the IBM Cloud Pak for Data platform, the solution works wherever the platform is able to run – private, public or hybrid cloud implementations, thus making relevant data readily available to application developers and business users where they need it.
Lab performance benchmarks
Db2 Data Gate boasts unrivaled performance when compared to any other data synchronization tool synchronizing data from Db2 for z/OS to Db2 (Warehouse).
With IBM Cloud Pak for Data and Db2 Data Gate installed on Linux on IBM Z, using Db2 Warehouse as the target database using hostPath data storage:
  • Peak load performance (for making initial copy): 2.1 TB/h
  • Peak synchronization performance: 200k rows/sec at 1.2 secs peak latency
Db2 Data Gate does not:
  • Replace traditional transactional systems since it only provides read-only data access to source data
  • Serve as a replacement for other data replication technologies because it supports only one source and one target and also does not support bidirectional replication or data transformation
  • Support data versioning and hence is not an operational data store
  • Guarantee data currency for high-volume transactional workloads. It is not a carbon copy of source data. Meaning, applications requiring absolute currency should access data at its point of origin.
User Interface snapshots
Db2 Data Gate provisioning
Select the target database type and deployment, resource allocation and network routing to proceed with creation of the Db2 Data Gate instance.
Setting up source
Once the instance is created, the first step is to point the Db2 Data Gate instance to the Db2 for z/OS subsystem to be used as data source.
Select and add tables from source to target
The next step is to select the tables to synchronize data from source to target.
Db2 Data Gate dashboard
Overview of status and activities associated with the provisioned Db2 Data Gate instance.
Db2 Data Gate in action
The video below demonstrates the Db2 Data Gate end user experience. One of the key aspects to note is that when the source tables are added, loaded and setup for synchronization with Db2 Data Gate, there is no impact to concurrent workloads executing on the source tables. The source tables are fully online for reading and writing while Db2 Data Gate makes the copy and starts synchronizing.
Our next blog ...
Next time we will look at Db2 for z/OS Data Gate and Watson Knowledge Catalog integration.
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IDUG President's Letter: September 2021

September is usually a "back to" month. Back from holiday, back to work, back to school, and more. The "back from holiday" was missing for most of us last year as we adapted to living under COVID-19 restrictions and I hope everyone had a chance to take a much-needed break with their families and loved ones this summer.

As we closed in on summer, ripples of sadness were felt throughout the Db2 community as we grappled with the unexpected loss of a dear, long standing  Db2 member from COVID-19 on August 18. Scott Hayes was a Db2 community leader, technical expert, mentor, speaker, and Gold consultant. He was indeed a Db2 legend (and so much more). His sudden passing away is a major loss for our community. Scott will surely be missed by us all. 

 In my last letter, I talked about my excitement in having the IDUG 2021 EMEA conference onsite--finally-in Edinburgh and in meeting with many of you in Scotland. However, due to uncertainties still prevailing around the COVID-19 situation, we could no longer hold this year’s EMEA event in person. The conference will now be a virtual event on December 6-10, 2021. I would like to thank our members and partners for their continued flexibility and support during these still-challenging times. I know the IDUG EMEA Conference Planning Committee is already working hard to deliver an excellent conference for you. Please watch out for the registration details which will be out soon.  As for IDUG 2022 EMEA—that has been scheduled as an onsite event for October 22-26, 2022, in Edinburgh. As they say: third time’s a charm!

As always, please reach out to me with any questions, suggestions, or concerns about IDUG. I am always just an email away at

Thanks – Iqbal

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REGISTER NOW starting at 11am EST 4pm UK
Live Webcast 21st September 11:00 AM EST live Q&A panel
Title: Get ready for Vnext - become AI enterprise!

Get a sneak preview into what around the corner in the World of Db2, and get a head-start for planning your migration to Db2 VNext. This is an event you do not want to miss. 
IBM Db2 for z/OS is investing for leadership in the AI, cloud, and analytics era, extending our Z platform heritage of 24x7 availability, security, scalability & performance, while simplifying & modernizing to maintain Db2 as a top choice for next-gen IT professionals without requiring deep Z skills. This webcast will provide guidance on how to ensure that you get a head-start and are ready to upgrade to Db2 Vnext 

Cris Molaro - IBM Gold Consultant will be giving an independent user view regarding challenges clients are facing during the current technological industry trends. 

#db2z #ai #scalability #cloud #security #analytics #IDUG #Db212#machinelearning #agile #automation #ibm #IBMZ #innovation #event

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DB2 on Apple Silicon

By James Cockayne

Apple’s Macs have been a popular development platform for many years now, but IBM have never really committed to supporting DB2 servers on macOS it seems.  There was a version of DB2 Express-c v9.7 made available some years ago, but it was lacking features and is obviously way too far out of date to consider these days.  A useful solution was to run Docker containers, or full virtual machines with Linux or Windows to make DB2 available locally, but the switch to the new Apple Silicon processors, or the M1 chip, means the Mac now uses the ARM64 instruction set rather than sharing the Intel/AMD x86-64 processors common to Windows and Linux platforms – and there is no option to download a copy of DB2 that runs on this processor.

So is that the end of having DB2 installed locally?  Not quite.

Click to continue reading


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IBM Db2 12 for z/OS Function Level Activation and Management

This technical paper follows on from an IBM Gold Consultants survey of business strategies for handling CI/CD in Db2 for z/OS, and in particular for advancing Function Levels.

Subject: Advancing Db2 12 for z/OS Function Levels safely.

Target audience: Executive-level decision makers and Db2 for z/OS system administrators.

Db2 12 z/OS represents a significant change in the way new features and functions are delivered with the introduction of continuous delivery: new features are introduced in the maintenance stream; and the activation of those new features is user-scheduled.

Db2 12 for z/OS has built on the capability introduced in Db2 11 to separate system migration from application migration using Application Compatibility, where application migration is under user control. It can be delayed until after system migration and scheduled on an application-by-application basis.

However, some users are still concerned about managing the introduction of new features and functions, particularly system-level features; for them, it is imperative that this be done without impacting the production service.

This IIBM Gold Consultants Technical Paper on Function Level activation with Db2 12 for z/OS continuous delivery is aimed at exactly that audience, and in particular it is targeted at decision makers and executives responsible for the production service. It describes how to turn off those features, and provides detailed guidance on eliminating or managing the impact of any incompatible or unavoidable changes even when advancing function levels. This allows Db2 customers to position themselves for the next release of Db2 for z/OS, which requires that the latest Db2 12 function level be activated before starting the migration process.

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This article is the second of a four-part series addressing Db2 for z/OS and modern development utilizing an Agile methodology and DevOps processes. The first article of the series can be found here. In this article we try to define modern development terms in a manner which people most familiar with Db2 for z/OS might better understand. While Db2 for z/OS is not the first database that comes to mind when considering a DevOps development methodology, there is no reason why it shouldn’t be!

I took some of the terms used in modern application development and attempted to approach them in a manner in which most long-term Db2 for z/OS professionals might understand. Hopefully, for the Db2 for z/OS DBA this is a nice condensed version of what may be a whole set of mysteries surrounding modern application development. I did the searching, researching, and discussions with colleagues so you don’t have to. As our information technology departments transition their development practices you do not have to be left out in the cold. use this information as a jumping point to kick start your transition to these modern technologies!

To read the entire article follow this link:

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Check out this new "Complimentary" Db2 AI for z/OS Version 1.4 Red paper Installation and Configuration

Learn More



Artificial intelligence (AI) enables computers and machines to mimic the perception, learning, problem-solving, and decision-making capabilities of the human mind. AI development is made possible by the availability of large amounts of data and the corresponding development and wide availability of computer systems that can process all that data faster and more accurately than humans can.

What happens if you infuse AI with a world-class database management system, such as IBM Db2®? IBM® has done just that with Db2 AI for z/OS (Db2ZAI).
Db2ZAI is built to infuse AI and data science to assist businesses in the use of AI to develop applications more easily. With Db2ZAI, the following benefits are realized:

  • Data science functionality
  • Better built applications
  • Improved database performance (and DBA’s time and efforts are saved) through simplification and automation of error reporting and routine tasks
  • Machine learning (ML) optimizer to improve query access paths and reduce the need for manual tuning and query optimization
  • Integrated data access that makes data available from various vendors including private cloud providers.

This IBM Redpaper® publication helps to simplify your installation by tailoring and configuration of Db2 AI for z/OS®. It was written for system programmers, system administrators, and database administrators.

Table of contents

Chapter 1. Architectural overview
Chapter 2. Road map for planning to installing
Chapter 3. Planning
Chapter 4. Security and configuration considerations
Chapter 5. Installation, customization, and configuration
Chapter 6. Administration and maintenance

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By Julian Stuhler


With the advent of DB2 12 for z/OS, IBM has moved to a more agile approach for delivering new function to DB2 customers, known as “continuous delivery”. Major new releases of DB2 will now happen more rarely, with smaller packets of new functionality being delivered via the routine product maintenance process. This allows IBM to develop and release new features much more frequently, thereby reducing “time to value” – a familiar DevOps message.

To allow DB2 customers to absorb this new function in a flexible and efficient way, IBM has also delivered a comprehensive set of capabilities that allow the “function level” of the overall DB2 system to be easily progressed while insulating individual applications from the impact of any changes via the “application compatibility level” set for each program.

Read Julian Stuhler's article in full


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Db2 for z/OS and JSON

I wrote a very short story about using the JSON/SQL support in Db2 for z/OS. I also wrote an introduction to JSON support in Db2 for z/OS article for IDUG.

The story and link to the IDUG article is here:

This is a direct link to the IDUG article, but you need an IDUG login account (which is free).

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Live Db2 12 Client Panel 30th June 2021 - Sign Up today!




Db2 for z/OS is the strategic enterprise database that has evolved and adapted to meet client needs for over 35 years. John Campbell IBM Distinguished Engineer has been one of key developers from IBM Silicon Valley Lab that has been extremely influential in driving some of the innovation around the core strengths and business value of Db2 for z/OS.

We are bringing together some of our Db2 for z/OS clients so that they can share some of their "use cases" and experiences around Db2 12 upgrade journey and discuss how they are exploiting, planning to exploit the new technology to leverage  their Db2 for z/OS data to gain data insights and drive competitive business advantages.

Register Now to join this Db2 for z/OS client panel where John will host a live interaction panel with some of our clients that have traveled this journey with IBM.

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This article is the first of a four-part series addressing Db2 for z/OS and modern development utilizing a Agile methodology and DevOps processes. In this article we define traditional versus modern development and how Db2 for z/OS, while remaining the premier database for high volume system of record applications, might be left behind when it comes to best practices involving innovation. Did you notice that “Db2” follows “Traditional” in the title of this article, but “Database” follows “Modern”? It is my opinion that Db2 for z/OS is not the first database that comes to mind when considering a DevOps development methodology. However, there is no reason why it shouldn’t be!

The first thing we need to do is to identify what we mean by traditional versus modern development. In this series of articles, we will be speaking specifically of the waterfall methodology versus an Agile methodology and DevOps practices.

To read the entire article please follow this link:

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In the previous blogs in this series, we’ve run through installing IBM Open Enterprise Python for z/OS and IBM z/OS Open Automation (ZOA) Utilities, which are the required pre-requisites for Ansible to perform actions on z/OS. In the third of this series, we will look at the installation of Ansible on Linux and an example playbook execution of Ansible to gather simple information and perform some tasks.



In this example, we will be working with a control node – where the ansible script (playbook) will execute – and one or more z/OS hosts which will be the target(s). In this case the control node will be on Linux. Note that connectivity is via SSH, which needs to be configured and available for the userids that will be used on the target z/OS hosts. 

Continue Reading


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Db2 Administration Foundation for z/OS 1.1 is the no-charge administrative offering in the transformation of Db2 Tools for z/OS. It provides many of the basic features and functions for Db2 users. This includes database administrators and application administrators responsible for managing Db2 for z/OS.

Db2 Administration Foundation for z/OS 1.1 is a zero-client install, browser-based graphical user interface to utilize the new open-source Zowe virtual desktop. Db2 Administration Foundation for z/OS 1.1 is complemented by Zowe capabilities that include the z/OS explorers.
Read the Announcement Letter

Some of the features in 1.1 include:

  • Intuitive, familiar web desktop interface
  • Modern SQL and Db2 command interface
  • Intelligent Db2 search, navigation, and user-driven administrative actions

Read Mo Townsend's Blog
Db2 Administration Foundation will release features via continuous delivery.  You will see SQL Tuning, support for the Db2 Analytics Accelerator and the consolidation of administrative capabilities of Data Server Manager, Data Studio, and more over time.
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IBM Watson Machine Learning for z/OS 2.3 and IBM Db2 AI for z/OS 1.4 enhancements boost functionality, performance, usability, and simplify deployment

IBM Extends Industry-Leading Enterprise AI

Announcing Watson Machine Learning for z/OS 2.3 and Db2 AI for z/OS 1.4


IBM Z continues to deliver AI innovation to help customers take the greatest advantage of their mainframe application infrastructure and data with enhancements to Watson Machine Learning for z/OS and Db2 AI for z/OS.


Read the Announcement Letter  


IBM Watson Machine Learning for z/OS 2.3

IBM Watson Machine Learning for z/OS (WMLz) 2.3 is the enterprise machine learning platform on IBM Z. It enables organizations to build, deploy, and operationalize machine learning models for in-transaction AI and real-time insights.


The latest release, WMLz 2.3, is designed to significantly improve online scoring service performance for various types of machine learning models, especially for deep learning models in Open Neural Network Exchange (ONNX) format. It also includes enhancements for integration with IBM Cloud Pak for Data, installation, configuration simplification, and usability of WMLz base services, and a WMLz model Integrated Development Environment.


Also, look for the new IBM WMLz 2.3 Online Scoring Community Edition coming soon -- a lightweight version that provides a no-charge option for clients to try out the streamlined up-and-running WMLz model inferencing, in-transaction approach.


Learn more about Watson Machine Learning for z/OS


IBM Db2 AI for z/O 1.4

IBM is also announcing IBM Db2 AI for z/O 1.4 (Db2ZAI), a separately licensed product, that uses machine learning to improve the operational performance of Db2 for z/OS systems. It is built on the services that are provided by IBM WMLz to help optimize performance. Db2ZAI 1.4 includes the following enhancements:


  • Enterprise readiness, including simplified migration and high-availability management
  • System Assessment graph drill-down, which provides correlation from System Assessment exceptions to potential candidate SQL
  • Enhanced Distributed Connection Control visualization for historical trend analysis and improved profile management
  • SQL Optimization Value Dashboard, which provides a progress report that demonstrates the value provided by Db2 AI for z/OS SQL Optimization


Learn more about Db2 AI for z/OS

Join the Launch Webcast: What’s new in Db2 AI for z/OS and Watson Machine Learning for z/OS

Register at  This live webcast will take place on June 1, 2021 from 11:00 am–12:00 pm ET with a panel of IBM experts that will share the latest on the new releases of  IBM Watson Machine Learning for z/OS and IBM Db2 AI for z/OS.


Speakers include :


Erika Adkins

Db2 for z/OS Program Director, IBM Silicon Valley Lab

Catherine Wu

Head of Development, Data and AI,  IBM China Lab

Eberhard Hechler

Executive Architect, Data and AI, IBM Germany R&D Lab


Read more…

The IBM Enterprise Data & AI Virtual Symposium is HERE


Join the live client panel and hear directly from our customers, see how data originating on IBM Z is accelerating the "AI Journey" for enterprises.

#IBMZ #Mainframe #AI #DATA #Analytics #cloudadoption  #machinelearning#deeplearning #dataanalytics #event #ibmcloud #digitaltransformation#artificialintelligence #ml #bigdata #Db2z #Db212 #deeplearning



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When:  Apr 27, 2021 from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM (ET)


Successful digital transformation demands integration between your AI and hybrid cloud strategy – with data at the core. This symposium will feature Tom Davenport who will share his insight on the role of AI and the new mandate to drive return on investment. 

IBM technology helps drive intelligent, efficient data serving for modern applications, real-time analytics from data at the point of origin and AI embedded transactions for insight when milli-seconds matter. This will be an event you do not want to miss! 

Keynote Tom Davenport - Return on AI:  The New Necessity 

Tom Davenport is an American academic and world’s top selling author specializing in analytics, business process innovation, knowledge management, and artificial intelligence. He has also been named one of the top three business/technology analysts in the world and one of the 100 most influential people in the IT industry. He earned his Ph D from Harvard University and has taught at the Harvard Business School, MIT and the University of Chicago, the Tuck School of Business.


Infuse Data, AI and ML into your core business processes for actionable insight - Sam Buhler, IBM Director, Offering Management

Keeping pace today requires that IT organizations think differently about how to leverage and modernize existing resources to drive change and innovation. With all the hype around new technology, cloud platforms and development approaches, you might be wondering how IBM Z and the transactional data that resides on it fit into this changing landscape. The optimal position for today’s IT organization is to be a full-fledged partner with lines of business to drive revenue and deliver on an organization’s strategy but IT organizations need to modernize. 

Client Experiences on Data, AI, Analytics & Db2 for z/OS - Tom Ramey, IBM Director, Data & AI            

Tom will lead a discussion around key use cases involving Db2 for z/OS data.  This will cover how IBM clients are leveraging data, AI, Analytics, Machine Learning, DevOps Hybrid Cloud and more to drive a competitive advantage. 

Followed by Live Q&A with all our presenters

This will be an event you do not want to miss! 

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Register Now for this double Db2 for z/OS webcast which will be hosted by John Campbell and Frances Villafuerte


Title: Achieving Optimal Availability, Usability and Performance with Universal Table Space - Part 1 & PART 2 

Date: Tuesday, May 11, 2021  and Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Time: 11:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

Duration: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Achieving Optimal Availability, Usability and Performance with Universal Table Space  -  Part 1 & 2 
In this two part webcast, John Campbell and Frances Villafuerte will introduce and discuss the various types of Universal Table Space type, and provide various hints and tips on how to best use and exploit Universal Table Space. In the second part of this webcast, John and Frances will discuss specifically discuss the performance impact of Universal Table Space, a case study on common PBG UTS INSERT performance issues and possible solutions, the insert space search algorithm for INSERT,  INSERT with APPEND, INSERT Algorithm 2 and index performance using FTB.


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Db2 12 for z/OS Continuous Delivery and Function Levels

The most significant change in the way new features and functions are delivered in Db2 12 for z/OS – and in future Db2 releases – is Continuous Delivery, where function levels can be activated to make new features available. Businesses have dealt with this in a variety of ways, from remaining at the lowest possible function level to pushing ahead with later levels as part of their maintenance strategy.

What is your strategy for advancing function levels under Db2 12 for z/OS, and what is the strategy being adopted by your fellow professionals in other businesses in your geography and round the world? Please help the IBM Gold Consultants understand the global and regional picture of how IBM customers are progressing through the Db2 12 for z/OS function levels in their production systems by filling out the following questionnaire on SurveyMonkey, where we will ask you about your catalog and function levels:

Db2 for z/OS Function Level Adoption survey.

The survey will only take a few minutes of your valuable time, and all your data will be anonymised and aggregated, so we won’t be able to identify you. To help preserve anonymity, we are not asking for your company name.

The objective of the survey is two-fold: we want to quantify the adoption of function levels; and we want to understand what the challenges are that prevent users from advancing function levels.  We plan to share our findings with IBM and publish them on the World of Db2 so that you and IBM will be able to understand the approach being adopted by your peers. We will also be issuing a white paper based on the survey data, with the objectives of: addressing the challenges to activating function levels; and promoting function level adoption.The white paper will be made availabale for download.

Additional Guidance on Survey Questions

You can find out most of the information requested in the survey by issuing the following Db2 command:


This applies to non-data sharing systems as well as data sharing systems. The output should look something like this (the display output lnes are truncated for readability):

                  CURRENT FUNCTION LEVEL(V12R1M100)
                  PROTOCOL LEVEL(2)
                  GROUP ATTACH NAME(....)
DB2                                   DB2    SYSTEM   IRLM
-------- --- ----   -------- -------- ------ -------- ----  
DB1A       1 DB1A    -DB1A   ACTIVE   121500 MVSA     DJ1A  
DB1B       2 DB1B    -DB1B   ACTIVE   111500 MVSB     DJ1B  
DB1C       3 DB1C    -DB1C   ACTIVE   121500 MVSC     DJ1C  


If you are non-data sharing, there will be only one member listed here.

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