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Vol. 7 No. 2 April 2008

Need persists for mainframe storage skills

MAINFRAME STORAGE systems, once the default setup for enterprises, have been supplanted in many businesses by open-systems networked storage. Seemingly passé mainframe skills like Cobol haven't disappeared, but what about mainframe administration? Barry Katz, a mainframe storage management pro at IBM, believes that's where the shortage will occur. "If all the mainframe storage folks went to a desert island, over time, applications would stop running," he says. Mainframe batch environments use the JCL scripting language to run jobs. JCL uses space parameters that define how much space should be allocated to a data set (the mainframe's file). Over time, data set sizes change and space parameters are no longer accurate. Affected applications suffer continuous application space abnormal ends, and might not complete on time. "If there's no experienced storage management people with the skills to analyze that space change, whoever's around will guess what the changes should be and cross their fingers," says Katz. By Katz's estimate, ...

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Features in this issue

  • Is iSCSI good enough?

    by  Deni Connor

    Organizations of all sizes have adopted iSCSI because it's easy to install, inexpensive, behaves just like Ethernet and doesn't require specialized skill sets like Fibre Channel does. But do analyst claims that iSCSI performance falls short of that for Fiber Channel hold up?

  • Survey: Fibre Channel rules planned purchases

  • Automate application recovery

    by  Eric Burgener

    Today's application continuity computing (ACC) products are best suited for small- and medium-sized businesses, and are focused exclusively on Exchange, which most companies now consider a business-critical application. But the concentration on Exchange will likely change over the next few years, as several ACC vendors plan support for SQL Server and SharePoint in the future.

Columns in this issue

  • Best Practices: High hopes for thin provisioning

    Thin provisioning is a promising way to address allocation and performance. One of the biggest challenges when using the technology is knowing where your data lives, and whether it can be tracked or recovered if there's a catastrophic component failure.

  • Storage Bin 2.0: Winds of change push storage into a new era

    The transactional computing era is over. The Internet computing era is dragging data into the "cloud," and this new era will rain more files--and bigger files--down on you than you can ever imagine.