IBM i and IBM Power courses out there

(the original article can be found HERE)

“We are leaving the platform, because we cannot find RPG programmers” I am sick and tired of this comment. For me this is pure BS and I will tell you why.

First of all, to be a bit more humble, if you are still running RPGII and RPGIII code from 1970s and 1980s you might be correct (It is awesome you can still run this on completely different and hyper modern hardware architecture that would have blown the programmer away when the code was written). You will even find it impossible to get someone who wants to learn those versions (even if I have a very inspiring example when this happened and they are now using AI in the modernised RPG application). Learn, yes people are still interested in learning things such as MODERN programming languages where Full Free Form RPG is one of them. Remember new programming languages comes out every now and then and people learn how to program in them.

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To be successful you therefore need to do your homework and give the developers an environment that is attractive to them. Most likely you have a pretty cool business to support with the application already, IBM i is always involved in business critical stuff after all. Btw, an attractive environment for developers today includes modern IDE’s, open source and modern tooling like Git based stuff. I hope I don’t have to remind you that SQL should be your other No1 programming language. It is time jump off the steam locomotive and jump on the high speed train that is on the same platform.

Learn modern RPG is not difficult for a decent smart person. To learn your or your clients business though is often the tricky part. If you have other developers in house already who knows at least the basics of your “business logic” I would start by reaching out to them. If you hired people with the right attitude and curiosity to begin with they will say H*LL YEAH!

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By the way, like Paul Tuohy (the picture is not of his best side should be mentioned) says there are two kinds of programmers. Maintenance programers and business application developers. You should most likely to go for the latter. Well, not if you are still looking for a RPGII person perhaps 🙂

“No schools educate people in RPG”, is another comment I virtually punch people in the face when I hear. One reason is because this is not true, the second reason is I rarely hear companies in the need of programming skills in R, D, Rust, Go or any new programming language crying out the same complaints. Instead they are reaching out to schools and companies learning these languages or just put courses up themselves if they have the resources, like Asseco PST in Portugal or Sanmarco Informatica in Italy.

Therefore I have put together a list of alternatives for you (Thank you Michael Mayer for your list on your great site https://ibmireference.blogspot.com for a number of links) when you are planning for the future of your IBM i application.

IBM Education (still around and updated)

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In Europe you have a number of local provides teaching in their native (speaking) language as well.

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There are also hundreds of smaller firms helping out if needed.

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And my own little hobby www.ibmicompetence.com

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Now repeat after me

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Infor Clients Cloud Concerns

We are collecting Infor Clients Cloud Concerns into a list.

Infor Cloud is a completely new product with all that means

What about all our modifications

Cost of changing the business processes

Compliance for different industries, who is responsible (Irland Tax Regulations…)

Regulations don’t allow us to go to AWS

MA costs in the long term. 5x as for 13.4

Requires high quality bandwidth all the time

License models

Operations, ticket when a batch job doesn’t’ go through that we manage ourselves today

Performance issues over all 

Latency over all

Project costs, not an upgrade, a completely new implementation

Response Times when AWS moves instances, going from 25-35 ms to 5000 ms (AWS can do this without permission)

Subscriptions model. What happens the day you stop paying the fee?

Data growth – archiving. Solutions?

Storage tiers.. higher costs. How to avoid.. 

No saving in head counts as customers have to hunt Infor doing their job.. 

AWS is not in our cloud strategy

AWS outages

A general uncertainty and even war in the world makes us wanna keep a computer in the basement

Infor is not following AWS recommendations when it comes to availability zones because of performance issues

AIX Certification Preparation

There is a new certification in place for AIX admins and we would like with this post try to help you get a better grip of what you need to know and how to acquire the right skills to become certified.

There are different ways of learning stuff as always. Courses are one way but reading Redbooks and other documents could be a good alternative and/or complement. Most links are taken from the original landing page for the certification, but we’ve added a bunch of other good links that hopefully helps in your journey to become certified.

(IBM Champion Dmitry Mironow has written about the certification process and gives some tips in THIS ARTICLE)

IBM AIX v7 Administrator Specialty

You can get a sample test HERE

By IBM recommended courses:

AIX Basics (Course code AN10DG)

Power Systems for AIX II AIX Implementation and Administration (Course code AN12G)

Pre-reqs for AN12G:

AN10G: AIX Basics

AN11G:Power Systems for AIX I: LPAR Configuration and Planning

Power Systems for AIX III: Advanced Administration and Problem Determination (Course code AN15G)

Pre-reqs for AN15G
AN11G: Power Systems for AIX I: LPAR Configuration and Planning
AN12G: Power Systems for AIX II AIX Implementation and Administration

AIX Network Installation Management Concepts and Configuration (Course code AN22G)

Pre-reqs for AN22G
https://www.ibm.com/training/course/AN11G
https://www.ibm.com/training/course/AN12G

Areas and objectives in the exam

System Management

Related Link

  • Set user’s environment
  • Create and troubleshoot a shell script
  • Connect to AIX system console
  • Create and verify a system backup using mksysb, volume group backups with savevg,
  • Manage file backups and file archives
  • Define AIX management tools including SMIT
  • Manage devices and attributes
  • Document the systems configuration
  • Identify the LPAR configuration
  • Manage system time
  • Manage services using System Resource Controller (SRC)
  • Start and stop programs / scripts in /etc/rc.local etc
  • Manage the AIX boot and shutdown sequence
  • Manage root email
  • Define the process lifecycle and priorities
  • Scheduling execution of commands using cron, at, batch

Software Management

Related Link

  • Install AIX fixes and updates
  • Manage open source packages with rpm
  • Use NIM

Storage Management

Related Link

  • Explain the LVM terminology
  • Manage volume groups
  • Manage root volume group specific tasks
  • Manage logical volumes
  • Manage file systems
  • Manage raw physical volumes

System & Network Security

Related Links

  • Log-in to AIX and configure SSH
  • Manage basic system security
  • Manage users and groups
  • Explain file permissions

Network Management

Related Link

  • Manage basic IP configuration
  • Manage hosts and name resolution order
  • Manage network services with inetd
  • Mount and export NFS

Performance Management & Tuning

Related Link

  • Define performance bottlenecks
  • Explain the difference between logical, physical and virtual CPU
  • Define basic VMM concepts
  • Monitor usage of memory
  • Expand and monitor usage of the paging space
  • Define basic IO performance concepts
  • Display system tunables

Problem Determination & Management

Related link

  • Monitor for hardware and software messages using errpt, syslog and alog
  • Define the requirements to generate files for IBM support
  • Troubleshoot client log-in issues
  • Troubleshoot boot errors
  • Boot AIX from an external source
  • Troubleshoot the file system
  • Use diag for basic troubleshooting and maintenance

IBM Power Resource Center

Are you looking for content to your own presentation or article around IBM Power Systems? One issue is to find good information as source to the text. Here you can at least find some things to start with.

Sources

2021 IBM Power Systems ISV Marketing Toolkit

IBM Power Systems

Power Systems website

ITIC 2020 Gobal Server Hardware, Server OS Reliability report

Navigating your hybrid multi cloud vision with IBM Power Systems

IBM i

IBM i Website

IBM i Strategy and Roadmap (From 2020)

IDC Whitepaper: IDC discusses the benefits of IBM i 7.4

IBM i Technology Updates

IBM i Customer Stories

Forrester – The Total Economic Impact Of IBM i

AIX

AIX Website

AIX strategy and roadmap (From 2019)

AIX running on IBM POWER9 is a winning combination for your business

Modernizing your mission-criticalworkloads with AIX on IBM PowerSystems

AIX IDC: “The Importance of the Operating System When Modernizing on Hybrid multicloud”

Open Source

IBM Over all strategy around Open Source

IBM Open Source Support

Power vs x86

Open Power Foundation

Other sources

Why Power Systmes will overtake x86 server in the in-memory database marketplace

Pictures

https://newsroom.ibm.com/image-gallery-systems?l=100

IBM on Flickr (not updated)

IBM Power Family Tree