Tag Archives: supportpac

Dynamic Scripting and CICS/TS 4.2

Are you using the new Dynamic Scripting Feature Pack? If so, you must be running CICS/TS 4.1 … There was only a limited SupportPac for CICS/TS V3, and IBM just announced that the Dynamic Scripting Featue Pack is not supported on CICS/TS 4.2.

CICS/TS 4.2 supports only 64-bit JVM’s, and the feature pack has environment variables set for using 31-bit JVM’s. We will be watching for an update from IBM soon, as supporting dynamic scripting was listed on the CICS/TS 4.2 Announcment Letter‘s Statement of Direction.

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Make CICS/TS V3 Function Like 4.1 (For Free!)

Still running CICS/TS 3.1 or 3.2, and cannot upgrade yet to the recently released 4.1 version due to budget constraints or other restrictions? You can still get some of the benefits available in 4.1 by installing these free SupportPacs for CICS available on the IBM web site!
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Sending Email from CICS

If you are not sending email from CICS in your shop, you really need to add that capability. If you do not currently have a need for it, “build it and they will come” … The reasons for sending email from within CICS will start popping up like nobody’s business once it is in place.

Assuming you have SMTP set up on z/OS, sending email from CICS is a snap. If you do not have SMTP set up, I would recommend reviewing the info available on Lionel B Dyck’s site and Dave Alcock’s Planet MVS site. Once SMTP is set up, all you have to do is write records to the punch queue in the correct format, and SMTP will take care of the rest.

To get kick-started, I recommend reviewing three different products. They are all easy to use, and they are all FREE!

First, if you are not already running Lional B Dyck’s XMITIP, then go to his site now and download it. It is a facility to send email from batch, so you can integrate that into your batch processes and you can consider generating JCL from CICS that uses it to send email.

Next, take a look at IBM SupportPac CA1H. It shows how you can create the records in the correct format and send them to the punch queue so that SMTP will pick them up and send them out as an email message.

And if that’s too much work, grab a copy of XMITCICS. It is very easy to install, and with it you can just assign values to working storage and link to XMITCICS from your application to send email messages. It also has a convenient batch facility called XMITMAIL.

If you haven’t already done so, check these out and bring 21st century functionality to your CICS applications!

CICS/TS 4.1 Beta Now Available

IBM has made the beta release of CICS/TS 4.1 available at no charge. In it, we are promised the uncut version of CICS Explorer. Originally released in a SupportPac with the update options grayed out, CICS Explorer in the CICS/TS 4.1 beta is said to have all of those options available. John Knutson, IBM Marketing Manager, reports that the full CICS Explorer will be available for version 3 in a future SupportPac.

If you are interested in CICS/TS 4.1, I would encourage you to check out the free beta. And also take the poll on my site!

4/2/2009 Update: The beta software will expire on July 31, 2009.  The last beta required re-installation when the product went GA, so I presume this beta will be the same. If you can’t or do not want to install the beta, but you do want to follow what problems and questions people are encountering, visit the forum that IBM has set up for comments and feedback.

CICS Meets PHP

CICS has supported REXX for a bit now, but The Master Terminal is reporting that now there is a supportpac (CA1S) available to allow another type of scripting – PHP. PHP is a very popular scripting language for web sites (maybe the most popular scripting language), so it is great to see it being welcomed into the CICS environment.

When you think about it, it is amazing how CICS is where the old meets the new – CICS supports IP as well as VTAM, HTML as well as BMS, and COBOL, PL/I, and Assembler as well as C++, Java, and now PHP.