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  1. Technology
May 8, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

In order to encourage users of the 4321, 4331, 4341 and 4361 to upgrade to either a 9370 or a 4381 and – God forbid! – not be tempted to defect to DEC, IBM is offering a discount of 10% on the 4381-11, 21, 22, 23 or 24, or any 9370 for people in the US here too, presumably – who order the new machine by August 31 for installation by September 30, and return their old one to IBM by December 31 (whatever is IBM going to do with all those obsolete but quite serviceable 4300s? Africa, here they come!

Software pre-load service on new 9370s

To make the migration even more painless, IBM will from July 15 also offer customers ordering a 9370 a Software Preload Service: the customer provides a tape copy of the software, and IBM installs it on the 9370 prior to delivery at a charge of $500. The software supplied can include third party programs as well as IBM licensed programs and customer applications. The offer is quite an attractive one because one of the biggest complaints among 9370 users is that the thing is not nearly so easy to use as expected.

IBM gives VM users a day in the sun with new VM/IS, additional features in VM/XA 2

On the VM front, IBM has announced a new 5.1 release of VM/Integrated System which it says includes new and upgraded products with significant function in the areas of communication and connectivity, transaction processing, change distribution, and application development, as well as office, data base, engineering and scientific, and intelligent workstation support. The VM/IS environment provides integrated testing (installation and function), ordering, and documentation for VM/IS Base and nine optional application packages containing 29 licensed programs as an easy-to-install, integrated system package. VM/IS Base integrates a defined set of system management and user functions and is designed to be installed and administered by someone with minimal system programming skills – although IBM and users tend to differ on exactly what that means. VM/IS Base 5.1 includes full-function VM/SP 5 and costs a one-time $28.200 to $106,620 according to processor group on IBM’s graduated 10 to 40 scale. On monthly licence its $2,384 regardless of CPU. It’s out May 27. VM/IS Productivity Facility 5.1 is a full-screen, menu-driven facility designed to provide easy access to system applications and to be tailored by the user to reflect a specific VM/SP application environment. Also out May 27, it’s a one-time $1,140 to $2,000 according to CPU size, or $107 a month. The VM/SP System Offering 5.1 is a VM package with VM/SP Release 5 and a predefined set of 66 optional feature programs, including support for four new products, and it now supports ordering for VM/SP High Performance Option 5.0. It became available on April 29. Giving VM a day in the sun for once, IBM has also added further enhancements to the VM/XA 2 release – the one that supports Systems Network Architecture. The additional enhancements include the use of Expanded Storage for caching CMS minidisks logical floppy disks that can be created by VM for CMS users during Logon and IPL. It will now also include Advanced Printing Subsystem support for Print Services Facility/VM, extensions to system management, support for guest operating systems using ESA/370, and operation in LPAR mode of the IBM 3090 E models using the PR/SM hardware partitioning feature for test and development. The new release, a one-time $112,500 on 4381s, $216,000 on 3090s, or $4,500 a month, is due out in the fourth quarter, but VM users, who, heaven knows, are used to waiting, will have to hang on until December for support for guests using ESA, and until first quarter 1989 to be able to operate in PR/SM hardware partitioned mode.

Statement of Direction: IBM promises that IMS will use ESA facilities

Now that the relational DB2 is getting all the attention, users of IBM’s former flagship database, IMS, are in danger of being made to feel like bag ladies. But IBM has made a Statement of Direction promising that future versions of IMS will use the facilities of MVS/ESA. It has als

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o enhanced IMS/VS 2.2 with a means to use the expanded storage capability of ESA/370 processors so that users can benefit from potential virtual storage constraint relief and performance improvements from lower input-output activity – it’s out in December.

TSO/E to be base for SAA support

Providing more details on the ESA version of TSO Extensions, IBM says that TSO/E 2.0 will be the base for future Systems Application Architecture enhancements to TSO, supports the Restructured Extended Executor Language, REXX, and uses the Virtual Lookaside Facility to provide performance enhancements to command lists. It is due to be available in the fourth quarter at a one-time $21,000 to $33,600 according to CPU, or $700 a month.

Resource Measurement for MVS/ESA

The ESA release of Resource Measurement Facility is 4.1, and provides disabled reference storage, page delete, and slot constraint relief support for MVS/SP 3. It supports MVS/Data Facility Product 3.1 by enabling the user to get input-output device activity reports by storage group. RMF 4.1 supports the Processor Resource/Systems Manager – PR/SM partitioning feature under MVS/SP 3. RMF 4.1.1 adds Monitor III operations support to provides new interpretive job reports, improved navigation via cursor sensitive control flow, new system status indicators in the workflow/exceptions report, colour highlighting, improved threshold reporting, and two new delay categories. It also provides two new Monitor III storage reports and Monitor III capability to write a new storage System Management Facility record to the SMF data set. It also provides counts for Hiperspace page movement under ESA. Promised for August 1988, it costs $24,000 or $38,400 on one-time charge, or at $800 a month.

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