2020 Posted by James Cockayne

DB2 Nebula: REST API

On 30th June, 2020 IBM officially launched the latest DB2 release, DB2 Nebula 11.5.4. The Triton midrange team has been exploring some of the exciting features that the new DB2 release has to offer. In this series we take a look at our DB2 11.5.4 feature highlights and include our initial first impressions.

In the fifth in our series James Cockayne looks at REST API.


DB2 Nebula: REST API

I’m particularly interested in the new REST API features announced alongside DB2 v11.5.4 (code name DB2 Nebula).  Introduced on the mainframe some time ago, they provide a lightweight way for any client that can submit HTTP POST/GET requests and handle the returned JSON to interact with the database, without the need to install any drivers.  That means developers on virtually any modern platform can directly query DB2 – web, cloud, even iOS and Android applications – without learning the intricacies of the database.  And it’s not just good news for developers, as using REST decouples the database schema and code being run at the backend from the application request which gives the DBA more control over security and performance.

There are several steps involved to get REST services up and running as delivery of the functionality is via a Docker container downloaded from the IBM cloud, which then connects to an existing database. It will be interesting to go through the process of getting the software installed and configured, including the usual considerations around monitoring and high availability, for a service which sits outside of the DB2 product itself.

Once installed the more prosaic tasks of creating, maintaining and securing the services themselves are also going to be new.  Using REST calls to create objects in the backend database will have us exercising (or rapidly learning!) skills in JSON, Python or JavaScript.

We will be covering these details in a series of blogs coming soon.  In the meantime for an overview of the REST API features implemented on the mainframe, see the set of REST API blogs produced by James Gill.


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