Managing z/OS batch processes is a mission-critical function in enterprise businesses. IT data centers now include a growing number of applications running on a wide range of highly distributed devices, but mainframe batch schedulers cannot manage enterprise-wide workflow processes and workflow automation needs.
Integrating, automating, and managing business-critical applications is a difficult, expensive, and time- consuming operation, but a proven, scalable product—Tidal Workload Automation—can deliver enterprise-wide automation and integrate z/OS jobs and dependencies, even from the most demanding IT infrastructures.
Tidal Workload Automation for z/OS brings the power of business process automation to IBM mainframe batch processing and links it to the entire enterprise-computing environment. This industry-leading product can create, manage, and monitor jobs and job dependencies among z/OS environments and a wide range of databases and application resources, while bringing expanded functionality to z/OS batch processing.
IT operations staff can leverage the scheduler’s capabilities, such as exception-based management, fault tolerance, and a high-degree of scalability for z/OS-based jobs. This easy-to-use platform gives users the ability to monitor and interact with all types of batch jobs, even if they have been defined using other mainframe schedulers. More importantly, users gain the ability to integrate mainframe jobs into larger business workflows that involve enterprise resource planning (ERP), business intelligence, and extract, transform, and load (ETL) processes running on a wide variety of operating systems—even in service-oriented architecture (SOA) environments. Data files from partners and supplier can also be managed and integrated into z/OS jobs, and job dependencies originating from anywhere in the enterprise can be defined and managed via a single pane of glass.
Workload Automation for z/OS has two components. Each component is an independent entity that offers different functions.
The first component is an OS-level agent running under OpenMVS that uses UNIX System Services (USS) provided by the z/OS operating system. Via the agent, Workload Automation can submit jobs, run system commands, and execute programs and shell scripts. The agent transfers output to Tidal Workload Automation and manages file dependencies for files and datasets.
The second component is the Gateway for z/OS that runs locally as a set of processes in the z/OS environment that interact directly with the z/OS System Management Facility (SMF). The Gateway operates in the background, relaying job and job step information to Tidal Workload Automation These are output logs that record the stages in the life cycle of a z/OS job. The extraction of this information allows Workload Automation to track job dependencies based on condition codes of any submitted z/OS job.
As the needs of the enterprise expand, IT managers must be able to integrate z/OS business process data with other ERP applications. Most mainframe environments are the hub of IT operations, and the investment in this infrastructure is a substantial part of the overall IT budgets. This requires a comprehensive product to meet the challenge of workflow automation across heterogeneous environments.
Tidal Workload Automation allows IT managers to leverage their investment in the mainframe infrastructure by expanding their reach and visibility across the entire enterprise and to increase the manageability of their mainframe environment. Tidal Workload Automation for zOS enables IT managers to leverage their investment in the mainframe infrastructure by expanding its processing power across the entire enterprise.
Furthermore, IT organizations can no longer afford to manage data processing among workflow processes manually, especially in the face of increased business demands for efficiency and competitive advantage. By automating internal batch jobs, distributed workflows, and business intelligence reporting, efficiencies of scale are realized and complex services are executed faster with minimal down time.
Users can define, launch, monitor, and control z/OS jobs and job dependencies and respond to file events without modifying existing mainframe jobs or schedules. The following discussion provides more detailed descriptions of core features that deliver high-level business benefits, as well as many day-to-day usability- related benefits:
Batch and On Demand Processing – Tidal Workload Automation is designed to accommodate scheduled batch and on demand job processing on the z/OS platform, providing comprehensive support for the traditional date and time scheduling model, as well as complex event-and dependency-based processing.
IT Policy Alignment – Each job group can contain several job definitions that enable detailed control and error recovery procedures. These procedures make it possible for IT staff to follow documented best practices consistently. Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) processes in the areas of request fulfillment, incident management, and change management can be supported with interfaces and integration techniques available for a range of ITIL oriented operations environments.
Event-Driven Processing – In addition to time- and date-based scheduling, Tidal Workload Automation can dynamically introduce jobs—and entire business processes—into a mainframe environment when triggered by business events from a wide range of application adapters and platform-supported agents.
Flexible Monitoring and Alerting – Tidal Workload Automation allows users to view and manage alerts within the scheduling system. Alerts can be automatically sent to browser-enabled devices for anytime, anywhere status connectivity and can be configured to initiate process recovery steps. Automated actions are extensive and can be easily defined. They include sending an email message to the appropriate owner, generating a message to the central console, or triggering an incident to an IT support technician via the appropriate ITIL- oriented operations systems.
Robust Security and Audit Capabilities – Security policy—and changes to it—are tied to enterprise security management tools and processes. For example, access can be controlled in the areas of scheduling functionality as a whole or tied to specific jobs, events, or actions. Actions can also be linked to an individual user or on a workgroup basis.
Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux works with Workload Automation to bring Linux-based mainframe jobs into a single enterprise view. The adapter simplifies the process of defining and scheduling Linux-based mainframe jobs and job groups and seamlessly integrates jobs and processes into enterprise workflows. Tidal Workload Automation brings ease of use and a high degree of scalability to job scheduling for the zLinux environment. Its capacities include the ability to execute millions of jobs a day, exception-based management, role-based security, and the extensibility to include other technologies in heterogeneous environments.
Together, Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux and Workload Automation create a functionally rich, easy-to-use enterprise job scheduling solution that can leverage specific mainframe attributes—24×7 reliability, fast I/O processing, and enhanced security features—to support continuous, enterprise-class business operations.
Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux extends the power of Workload Automation to IBM zSeries mainframe computing environments running the zLinux operating system (OS). This highly scalable and flexible solution allows IT scheduling administrators to create, manage, and monitor jobs and their dependencies across complex enterprise workflows that may include zLinux instances and other z/OS mainframe instances, as well as Windows, UNIX, OS/400, and other Linux systems. The adapter enables script-free scheduling functionality for mainframe job processing in the zLinux environment, building on the inherent fault tolerance of the core scheduler itself. In addition to managing schedules across multiple OS platforms, application-specific jobs can also be run across a range of enterprise resource planning (ERP), database, business intelligence (BI), and web services integration platforms.
The adapter gives users the ability to manage cross-platform, cross-application workflows via a single pane of glass and to automate mainframe batch jobs by setting time, file, or a range of inter-job dependencies. Using Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux reduces operating costs and improves service levels, because there is no need for ongoing script management or costly manual intervention to coordinate job executions across the zLinux environment and beyond.
Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux can dramatically simplify the process of scheduling, tracking, and managing job workflows regardless of the number of dependencies, systems, and applications involved. This adapter, in combination with Workload Automation, offers the following capabilities:
Increased Mainframe Reach – The adapter makes it possible to manage dependencies among existing mainframe applications and other distributed job processes. Jobs running on the zLinux platform can be triggered by status changes, by the results of jobs running on other platforms, or by processes running in other applications. Users can define, launch, monitor, and control application and database jobs and can respond to file events without modifying existing jobs or schedules.
Batch and On Demand Processing –The adapter is designed to accommodate batch and on demand job processing on the zLinux platform, providing comprehensive support for the traditional date and time scheduling model, as well as complex event- and dependency-based processing.
zLinux Virtualized Environments – Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux is well suited to the rapid changes within a virtualized mainframe environment. Whether zLinux instances are implemented in individual logical partitions (LPARs) or z/VM virtual machines (VMs), the zLinux adapter allows users to schedule jobs effectively, and it scales to accommodate the growth and expansion of a zLinux infrastructure.
IT Policy Alignment – Each job group can contain several job definitions, enabling detailed control and error recovery procedures. These procedures make it possible for IT staff to consistently follow documented best practices. Information technology infrastructure library (ITIL) processes for request fulfillment, issue management, and change management can be supported, with interfaces and integration techniques available for a range of ITIL-oriented operations environments.
Event-Driven Processing – In addition to time- and date-based scheduling, the adapter can dynamically introduce jobs—and entire business processes—into a mainframe environment when triggered by business events from a wide range of application adapters and platform-supported agents.
Flexible Monitoring and Alerting – Tidal Workload Automation Adapter for zLinux allows users to view and manage alerts within the scheduling system. Alerts can be automatically sent to browser-enabled devices for anytime, anywhere status connectivity and can be configured to initiate process recovery steps. Automated actions are extensive and can be easily defined, enabling users to send an email message to the appropriate owner, generate a message to the central console, or trigger a support incident via the appropriate ITIL-oriented operations systems.
Robust Security and Audit Capabilities – Security policy—and changes to it— are tied to enterprise security management tools and processes. As an example, access can be controlled to scheduling functionality as a whole or tied to specific jobs, events, or actions—on an individual user or workgroup basis.