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Disappearing Channels

 
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pahiker

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 6:25 pm    Post subject: Disappearing Channels
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This is a long shot, but I thought I would ask here in case anyone else has run into this and has a solution.

First, we are currently at CICS 4.2 with no plans of updating any time soon. I know IBM has a fix for this problem in 5.2, but that is out of focus for now.

We have a product that allows the users to have multiple CICS sessions open concurrently, we refer to it as Windowing, but I am not sure of the actual product name. This is what is creating the problem, and the vendor has no plans on a fix from their end.

So, what is happening: our application creates a channel that gets passed back into itself, the area is too large for a commarea (54,404,491 bytes). We went with channels instead of a TD queue for ease of programming and concern about filling up the TD queues if multiple versions of the transaction were active simultaneously. If the user is in mid-session with the application (map is up awaiting input) and the switch to a different "window" CICS thinks the transaction is no longer active so it does a cleanup of resources, hence the channel disappears.

Any ideas on how the channel can be kept? I know I could do this using the channel name DFHTRANSACTION, but that requires level 5.2 and, as I said earlier, there is no chance of implementing that anytime soon.
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Rohit Umarjikar

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:26 pm    Post subject:
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If the user is in mid-session with the application (map is up awaiting input) and the switch to a different "window" CICS thinks the transaction is no longer active so it does a cleanup of resources, hence the channel disappears.
what do you mean different window? can you not be bale to increase the wait time on the screen?
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pahiker

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:39 pm    Post subject:
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Rohit Umarjikar wrote:
what do you mean different window? can you not be bale to increase the wait time on the screen?


As I said above, we have an application (3rd party) that enables the user to have up to 4 active CICS virtual sessions within the same CICS actual session, this is called windowing (vendor's term).

How would I increase wait time on the screen? Not something I remember doing before. The problem, if I understand what you are saying, is that the user can be in the other window for hours before coming back to the original window.
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Robert Sample

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:43 pm    Post subject:
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How would I increase wait time on the screen?
This would be something to discuss with the vendor of the software you are using; there are various times associated with CICS parameters but they may not have anything to do with the problem you have. If the vendor is not willing to work with you to address the issue, you really will have three choices to pick from:

1. Continue using the software as is, and live with channels disappearing every now and then.
2. Enforce a rule that every user can only have one session so the channels will not disappear.
3. Stop using the software and find a competing product (if one exists) that will allow you to keep the channels.

Which option is chosen may depend more upon your company and its politics than anything else.
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pahiker

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:55 pm    Post subject:
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Thanks. I had a feeling those were my choices. As you said, the choice of vendors is out of my control as this is a company-wide feature. Certainly not going to change things for just one app.

I am going to go with using TS queues, it's going to mean a lot of queue records to replace the channel, but until we can upgrade to 5.2 this is my only real option. The users won't give up the window option (already discussed that with them), and they won't accept losing channels, no matter how infrequently.
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Rohit Umarjikar

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:00 am    Post subject:
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How would I increase wait time on the screen? Not something I remember doing before. The problem, if I understand what you are saying, is that the user can be in the other window for hours before coming back to the original window.
I was thinking of TYPETERM SIGNOFF and then setting off time window before it kills itself.
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enrico-sorichetti

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:09 am    Post subject: Reply to: Disappearing Channels
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if the TS had been able to tell the name of the product used for <windowing> we would have been able to give better answers .

from the description looks like switching windows change the status of the old window

I have been using for a long time multi sessions managers like TPX and netview access
and the switching was seamless, even switching back and forth across terminal I/O would alway give clean and consistent outputs

the point I am wondering about is - if the windows are <bound> to different termids(LUs) or the product is tweaking things above any reasonable limit using the same termid(LU) for all the windows
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Robert Sample

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply to: Disappearing Channels
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Due to the costs associated with our previous 3270 client vendor, we are now using a browser-based 3270 client that exhibited similar behavior. However, our vendor happily worked with us to provide a solution to the context switching problem we were seeing.
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pahiker

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to: Disappearing Channels
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enrico-sorichetti wrote:
if the TS had been able to tell the name of the product used for <windowing> we would have been able to give better answers ...
the point I am wondering about is - if the windows are <bound> to different termids(LUs) or the product is tweaking things above any reasonable limit using the same termid(LU) for all the windows


I do not know the name of the product, it was inherited from a company acquisition.

From what I gather just by observation in Intertest is that it is a virtual product, not really creating different login sessions. The TermID (EIBTRMID) and tran number (EIBTRNID) do not change from one window to another.
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pahiker

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Reply to: Disappearing Channels
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Robert Sample wrote:
Due to the costs associated with our previous 3270 client vendor, we are now using a browser-based 3270 client that exhibited similar behavior. However, our vendor happily worked with us to provide a solution to the context switching problem we were seeing.


Lucky dog.
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