Supporting Skip Migrations and Upgrades to DB2 z/OS version 10
February 16th, 2012

As IBM Premier Business Partners, Triton Consulting Ltd is making customers aware of the impending necessity to migrate their DB2 z/OS software versions 8 and 9 to DB2 v10.

IBM announced the launch of DB2 10 z/OS for Mainframe back in October 2010 and users are reminded that from April this year, DB2 8 will no longer be supported by IBM. However, it has also just been announced that version 9 will come to the end of its supported life from 27th June 2014.

Assistance and information is available from Triton on the migration process. DB2 10 is the first release since version 7 to support ‘skip migration' from a previous release. The skip migration was tested by customers as part of the DB2 10 beta program and in fact the first customer to go with DB2 10 in production used this approach. Therefore, any organisations currently using v8 can either move up to v9 or bypass v9, moving directly to v10. Decisions need to be made quickly however due to the impending deadline for v8.

Julian Stuhler, Solutions Delivery Director at Triton states: ‘The skip migration process is a rare opportunity for back-level customers to catch up with the DB2 release schedule. It's necessary though to be mindful of the risks and benefits. It's essential that customers meet the prerequisites for both DB2 9 as well as the new ones for DB2 10 and we strongly recommend that you ensure you have a robust and mature regression test environment.' He explains that elapsed time and effort for the upgrade project will probably be greater than for a "normal" migration but less than two separate upgrades.

There are many significant business benefits for upgrading to DB2 10.

• CPC Reductions: The new version includes a raft of enhancements aimed at improving application performance and reducing CPU usage. Most customers can expect to see net CPU savings of 5-10% in their traditional DB2 workload when compared to DB2 v9, without any application changes being required. Significant additional savings are possible for other specific workloads and with some application changes.

• Scalability Improvements: DB2 delivers a spectacular increase in the number of threads that can be supported by a single subsystem; most customers will be able to achieve 5-10 times the number of concurrent connections compared to DB2 9. This will allow many customers to reduce the number of DB2 members needed to support their workloads, resulting in net CPU and memory savings and improving application performance.

• Productivity Enhancements: New features such as temporal tables, automated statistics and improved dynamic schema reduce the effort required by developers and support staff to deliver robust DB2 applications.

Themes running through the upgraded software include Efficiency, with reductions in cost and improvements in productivity; Resilience, via improvements in availability and security of data; Growth in supporting new and expanding workloads, and Business Analytics, providing enhanced query and reporting.

Migration workshops, implementation, support and new version training are services offered by Triton to ease users through the upgrade process. As the workhorse behind the IT systems of many of the world's largest organisations, planning and executing a successful version upgrade of DB2 z/OS is essential.