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Mainframe Software Distribution

 
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Brian Tedesco
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2009 8:26 pm    Post subject: Mainframe Software Distribution
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Mainframe Software Distribution problem:

I am looking for a Mainframe Software Distribution solution to the below scenario.

I create Mainframe software which is distributed compiled to protect software logic.
All of the software is physically shipped on a 3480 tape or compressed and posted to a host site where customers can turn around and either order a 3480 tape or download the software in its compressed format and uncompress it using either ADRDSSU or PKZIP.

The issues I am running into is many companies are migrating away from tape completely and not everyone is licensed for PKZIP or ADRDSSU.

Many of the other Mainframe software companies I am familiar with distribute their software un-compiled which enables them to FTP and WINZIP their code in a simple process with no corruption issues.

I am aware of the TERSE / XMIT command to protect the loadlibs but it is not a feasible solution to upload each of our files from an unzipped PC. Some of our software has large databases associated with it.

One solution I have been looking into is to have the software downloadable from an FTP server. Either a UNIX or small Mainframe LPAR would accomplish this. Before I continue down this path which will be an uphill battle with all of the security issues I will face does anyone have any other ideas on this?

Thanks!

Brian.
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enrico-sorichetti

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2009 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply to: Mainframe Software Distribution
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Quote:
The issues I am running into is many companies are migrating away from tape completely and not everyone is licensed for PKZIP or ADRDSSU.

it' s Your responibility as a sofware vendor to adapt Your distribution media to the customer's expectations

Quote:
Many of the other Mainframe software companies I am familiar with distribute their software un-compiled which enables them to FTP and WINZIP their code in a simple process with no corruption issues.
not true in general, there is no reason to provide the source simply to avoid data corruptions, it can be avoided by one of the procedures here described

Quote:
I am aware of the TERSE / XMIT command to protect the loadlibs but it is not a feasible solution to upload each of our files from an unzipped PC. Some of our software has large databases associated with it.

I do not see how the problem could be related to uploading from a pc
the limiting factor would probably be the download from the distribution site to the customer site ( mainframe/pc ftp)

Quote:
One solution I have been looking into is to have the software downloadable from an FTP server. Either a UNIX or small Mainframe LPAR would accomplish this. Before I continue down this path which will be an uphill battle with all of the security issues I will face does anyone have any other ideas on this?

concern irrelevant to the issue being discussed

You are facing two scenarios here
1) ftp from a mainframe client
the preferred method would be an ADRDSSU/<other dump restore format>
... would receive the stuff on a sequential dataset and then restore from it
no issues with the VB format of the adrdssu dump

2) ftp from a PC client
I would wrap the adrdssu into an XMITed file
( the file size would not change that much , just e few kilobytes )
the VB dump would be wrapped into a FB container the upload to the MF on the client side would be a binary transfer to a FB dataset,
afterwards a RECEIVE indataset would create the ADRDSSU dump, ready for a restore

I would advise against using terse, it was never meant for general file wrapping

You could, even for the MF ftp approach wrap the dump with an xmit container
just an additional step for the receive indataset thing
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Brian Tedesco
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 14, 2009 11:48 pm    Post subject: Response to your response
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enrico-sorichetti-

I really don't like the arrogant tone of your responses.
Just a little background, I have well over 20 years on the mainframe platform from disaster recovery and technical support to systems and networking.


Now let’s look closer at your answers...

Quote:
it' s Your responsibility as a software vendor to adapt Your distribution media to the customer's expectations


Thanks for stating the obvious, perhaps that is why I am here to poll the mainframe community for their input on a viable solution?

Quote:
not true in general, there is no reason to provide the source simply to avoid data corruptions, it can be avoided by one of the procedures here described

You do understand that compiled loadlibs will get corrupted when you transfer them up / down to an ASCII platform without "packaging" them in some way?


Note that your solutions mention the method (ADRDSSU) I already discussed. Please take the time to read the posts and comprehend them before firing off your half baked thoughts.

I did state this is an option but some non IBM mainframe clients such as UNISYS are not always licensing the ADRDSSU utility.

Now that I have cleared the air I look forward to any subjextive solutions you may have to offer.

Brian – United States of America.
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dick scherrer

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:07 am    Post subject:
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Hello and welcome to the forum,

Quote:
I really don't like the arrogant tone of your responses.
Then you should demand a refund. . .
Quote:
I have well over 20 years on the mainframe platform from disaster recovery and technical support to systems and networking.
But little or none in software distribution. . .

Are you familiar/comfortable with SMP? Lots of mainframe products are distributed/installed this way.

If you prepare your distribution using a "zip" format, i suspect that every client you deal with has a way to de-compress a "zipped" file. I've only been directly involved with more than 100 IBM, UNIX, and Win-based data centers and 100% can "un-zip" a ".zip" file. . .

Quote:
Brian – United States of America.
icon_confused.gif . . . I believe everyone knew that. . .
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Brian Tedesco
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:18 am    Post subject:
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LOL...
Sorry, I was a little ticked at that last response and maybe vented a little openly on the forum....

The PKZIP overall was the best solution because you could select all of the software and database files in one JCL run and package it into a single .zip file on the mainframe. That could then be FTPed to the PC and posted or emailed depending on the size / requirements.

The problem is not everyone runs it and is costs are based on your processor MIPS I believe.

I'll look into SMP and see if that is an option.

Thanks.
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enrico-sorichetti

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:28 am    Post subject: Reply to: Mainframe Software Distribution
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You might be laughing out loud... I DO NOT

I was offended by the arrogant and condescending tone of Your reply
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dbzTHEdinosauer

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 2:09 am    Post subject:
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Brian,

if you had taken five minutes and read any of the threads in this forum,
you would have seen that except for some of the moderators
(ok guys,sorry, all of the moderators)
few have any experience for which you require expertise.

You need to be hitting forums that are basically systems programmers/analysts and not application forums.

and, everytime someone has to tell me of all the experience he has,
I know that it is very limited, regardless of the number of years he managed to hold onto a job.

Customer service seems to be a short point in your resume. If you had a brain, Brian, you would be canvassing your customers and asking them what method they want to use to take delivery.
I don't know of any software house that has delivered source since the 80's.

every thing-a-ma-bob-generating company has some type of affiliation.
these groups support one-another.

I imagine you got lucky, somebody went out of business
(that previously provided this software)
and you were one of the coders who got together with whoever had the bucks to buy the rights to the software. Now you are trying to make your retirement fund grow, and don't know how to do it. Probably was tasked by someone in charge to find the answer to this question. you should stick to what you know - whatever that is, and software distribution is not it
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Brian Tedesco
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 4:23 am    Post subject:
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Thanks for the info (I think)...

I figured since I am distributing an application I'd give this site a shot.

BTW - Your way off the mark on the out of business idea (I wish that was the case). I work for good old corporate America and have many more years to go before retirement if it is an option if at all...

Just trying to get a new direction on pushing out our software out to the clients.
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dick scherrer

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 4:30 am    Post subject:
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Hello,

Don't know how easily this might be available, but it might be worth a bit of time to learn how the competition does this.

You want to at least be as easy-to-use as they are. . .
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dbzTHEdinosauer

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 4:32 am    Post subject:
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That's the greatest drawbacks when one attempts to assume;
makes an ass out of u & me
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enrico-sorichetti

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply to: Mainframe Software Distribution
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Hi Brian,
my assumption was of an all blue ( IBM ) environment...
but in a subsequent post You tallked about UNISYS

I can talk for the IBM side
usually for this environment the options usually are ...

SMP packaging ( needs quite a bit of experience on FMID building for the base product, and SYSMOD building the maintenance
( maybe some coordination with IBM in order to get a proper product FMID )
or
iebcopy for the libraries
plus/and
<unloaded format for the databases>

for some products the database content is packaged inside some distribution library with the indication of what utility to use

or some companies gave the option of adrdssu/FDR dump restore format
that was my comments about meeting the customers expectations

still all of this must be wrapped in a <container> suitable for FTP transfer

to make things simpler on the receiver' s side I am still conviced that the best wrapper would be the XMIT format ( ease of uploading to the client mainframe)

on Your side a dfdss/fdr dump
dump include dataset(<yourappl-prefix>.**
to get a big sequential dataset
after that an XMIT <thedumpds> outdataset(<xmitds>
and on the receiving side the other way around

the dfdss dump would take care of the different organizations
anyway using the XMIT approach will preserve a LOAD library format
and a binary ftp will preserve all You need to preserve


a sligltly different approach ( which I prefer by the way ) would be

xmit every single dataset to a sequential dataset ( recfm fb 80/***)
( sources, load,unloaded databases)

store each xmitted image in a member of a pds , at the end
again an XMIT step to build a single dataset for the ftp thing

You might want to zip the final dataset

for example Lionel B, Dyck xmitip is packaged that way
download of the xmitip.zip
unzip to get an xmitip.xmi
upload to the MF
receive indataset ....
inside the xmitip distribution pds You' d find the other PDS to complete the installation
Code:
_receive  - exec           records(   36985) file(xmitip/exec.xmi)
_receive  - panels         records(    3064) file(xmitip/panels.xmi)
_receive  - msgs           records(      15) file(xmitip/msgs.xmi)
_receive  - asm            records(    3305) file(xmitip/asm.xmi)
_receive  - load           records(   16086) file(xmitip/load.xmi)
_receive  - notify         records(     240) file(xmitip/notify.xmi)
_receive  - tda            records(      41) file(xmitip/tda.xmi)


looks complicated but is really very simple
( done it myself )

but as far as the other systems You intend to support, I cannot tell icon_biggrin.gif
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Brian Tedesco
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:30 pm    Post subject:
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Yes, unfortunately some of our customers are not running true IBM hardware... I know UNISYS hardware is out there but I'm not sure if AHMDAL? is still around.

Your solution at the bottom is very close to one of the ways I distribute now.
I build my distribution files and then compress them into one single ADRDSSU backup file which XMIT is run against and the output is transferred to the PC. That file is posted to a download site and customers simply download the file, XFR to the mainframe, receive the XMIT and uncompress the ADRDSSU file and they are in business.

Since ADRDSSU is not a base O/S function (UNISYS Hardware I have found as an example) I'll look at removing the ADRDSSU option. I'll rewrite the build JCL to XMIT each dataset / PDS and then try to load them all into one PDS as you mentioned. How would you go about loading all of the XMITed datasets into one PDS?

Thanks!
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enrico-sorichetti

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply to: Mainframe Software Distribution
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Quote:
How would you go about loading all of the XMITed datasets into one PDS?


a IEBGENER step should be OK

for people with the desire to lurk into an xmitted dataset ( PDS and sequential printable)
there are a few tools than can be used on the PC platform

let me know if You are interested

the xmitip stuff was unXMITTED with a rexx script on a pc
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