Dawn May is a leading authority on IBM i performance management, work management, systems management, and general system diagnostics. She has in-depth knowledge of the IBM i operating system developed through her distinguished career with IBM. A former IBMer, Dawn is now an independent consultant, assisting companies with system performance reviews and recommendations. She also teaches clients on the latest IBM i tools to enable them to get the most out of their IBM i systems. Dawn is the author of the "i Can" blog published by IBM Systems Magazine and a frequent speaker at local user group meetings and IBM i conferences around the world. You may contact Dawn by email at DawnMayiCan@outlook.com, find her on Twitter at @DawnMayiCan, connect with her on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/dawnmay, or visit her website at dawnmayi.com.
June 28, 2021 Dawn May
This is the second in a two-part series on how you can use the Performance Data Investigator (PDI) to investigate performance of Db2 for i. While the SQL Performance Center in Access Client Solutions is more commonly known than PDI, using both tools is a good way to analyze database performance.
In Part 1, I reviewed the Database content package, focusing on the charts for I/O reads and writes, SQL CPU utilization, and database locks. In this tech tip, I continue by reviewing the charts related to SQL Cursor and Native DB Opens as well as the SQL Performance …Read more
June 21, 2021 Dawn May
This is a two-part series on how to use the Performance Data Investigator (PDI) for investigating performance of Db2 for i. While the SQL Performance Center in Access Client Solutions is the tool of choice for Db2 performance analysis, there is valuable information that you can get from using PDI. PDI is often a useful starting point to help guide you in the correct direction when trying to identify performance issues. In my experience, PDI is under-utilized for Db2 investigation. For those not familiar with PDI, you may want to read the article, Getting Started with the Performance Data Investigator …Read more
May 17, 2021 Dawn May
In past articles about the Administration Runtime Expert, I mentioned that you install the ARE licensed program product on your central system, but I never documented steps on how you acquire the 5733-ARE program product. I apologize for this oversight since, as it turns out, obtaining ARE is not immediately obvious.
To get the 5733-ARE product, you must log into the IBM Support website and go to your Entitled Systems Support page. Under My Entitled Software, select Software Downloads. You need to select your system that is entitled to IBM software, the category of IBM i, and then …Read more
November 9, 2020 Dawn May
This fourth article in my series on using the Administration Runtime Expert (ARE) reviews how ARE is used to manage PTFs. This article assumes you have already learned the basics of how to use ARE from the prior articles.
PTF management with ARE features these key functions:
- Check your installed group PTF levels compared to the latest levels available from IBM
- Verify consistent PTF levels installed across multiple partitions
- Distribute PTF images to endpoint systems
- Optionally load and apply PTFs
The ARE Template Editor provides the interface to define your templates for PTF management.
Start by determining what type of …Read more
August 10, 2020 Dawn May
This third article in my series on using the Administration Runtime Expert (ARE) reviews how ARE can validate the attributes of your applications. This article assumes you have already learned the basics of how to use ARE from articles one and two.
There are an unlimited number of ways you can use ARE to validate application attributes. A few examples are:
- Verify application attributes on a single partition
- Verify application attributes are consistent across multiple partitions
- Verify application attributes in the test environment are the same as production
- Verify application authorities
When you are creating a template to validate …Read more
June 22, 2020 Dawn May
Using the Administration Runtime Expert (ARE) to validate system configuration settings is an easy way to confirm configuration values are set the way you want them to be. You can use ARE to ensure these system configuration settings are consistent across multiple IBM i partitions or to verify settings have not changed on an individual partition. In this second in a series of articles on ARE, we’ll walk through the steps to set up a basic template to validate system configuration settings.
The first step is to identify what system configuration attributes you want to make sure are consistent or …Read more
June 1, 2020 Dawn May
Business-critical applications must be up and running reliably without failure. When something unexpected occurs, you must identify the cause and correct it quickly. Whether you’re a developer launching a new application, enhancing an existing application, or maintaining a legacy application, or an administrator managing the infrastructure, we all want to find ways to make our jobs easier, and unexpected surprises are not fun. I expect the relentless push to do more with less is only going to intensify while the tolerance for failure keeps dropping. Yet identifying points of failure can be tricky as complexities scale.
IBM i offers a …Read more
March 23, 2020 Dawn May
The QMAXJOB system value specifies the maximum number of jobs that can exist on your IBM i partition. The default value is 163,520, with the valid range being 32,000 through 970,000. If you reach the maximum number of jobs as defined by this system value, very bad things can happen to your system. You can always sign on to the console as the system reserves one job table entry for the console, but if you hit the limit on the maximum number of jobs, you will not be able to start any new jobs. In the worst case, it will …Read more
October 14, 2019 Dawn May
Sending objects from one IBM i partition to another is a common task. Access Client Solutions’ IFS task makes it simple to copy or send objects. The IFS task was introduced in ACS in July 2016, so this is not a new development, but it may not be widely known.
Perhaps you need to send a save file to another IBM i partition. There are several ways to do this. FTP and Secure FTP are often used, but using FTP to transfer IBM i objects involves all sorts of complications. The IBM i Knowledge Center dedicates an entire section on …Read more
May 20, 2019 Dawn May
The IBM i operating system is extensively instrumented for diagnostic purposes to help IBM resolve issues should they arise. Instrumenting your application for diagnostics is also possible in a manner very similar to what IBM has done in the operating system.
STRTRC and the QTRC APIs
The operating system includes a trace facility called QTRC. This trace facility is a set of APIs (QTRC APIs) that allow you to instrument your application to collect trace data. This trace data can be whatever you may find helpful for debugging applications in a production environment, where using a debugger is …Read more