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AS400 System Adm Book

AS400 System Adm Book

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Published by: rajeshsmooth on Apr 27, 2010
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Chapter 1:
Introduction to the AS/400
Chapter Overview
This chapter introduces you to the basics of the AS/400, including
single-level storage (memory)
the function of licensed internal code
the differences among versions, releases, and modification levels of OS/400
the difference between batch and interactive jobs
the function of system values
the purpose of Control Language (CL)
the function of the Integrated File System (IFS)
AS/400 objects, libraries, folders, and queues
AS/400 Architecture
The AS/400 has a highly complex architecture that includes hardware, software, security,and other components. To effectively manage this complex system and the daily tasks itperforms, as a system operator, you must understand the AS/400's basic architecturalconcepts and related terminology. The AS/400 supports a great variety of hardwaredevices and software, but in this book we discuss only the most commonly usedcomponents and those that a system operator typically needs to know about or workwith.
Storage Management
One of the unique characteristics of the AS/400 is its use of the
single-level storage
concept. Other hardware manufacturers separate storage management into twoseparate hardware components: main memory, which is also called RAM (randomaccess memory), and disk (more correctly called DASD, for direct access storagedevices). With single-level storage, these two hardware devices are combined into alogical unit because they are inseparable. To help you understand this concept, consider your car. The transmission and the engine are two separate, physical pieces of hardware; but if either one is not functioning, the car doesn't run. Single-level storage (or storage management) applies the same principle. Both components of memory must befunctioning and be properly integrated, or users can't access the data they need.The AS/400 also uses a nontraditional method of storing data on the disk drives and diskplatters. Traditionally, systems store files contiguously. If a part of the disk is unused buttoo small for a particular file, the operating system bypasses the small space and uses a
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larger space. This approach causes gaps on the disk platter that the system must later "compress."On the AS/400, a single database object is usually spread over several disk drives andmultiple disk platters. This approach allows for several users' data to be retrieved(seemingly) simultaneously and quickly displayed on multiple workstation screens. Thedisk drives actually retrieve data at the same speed as before; but data retrieval appearsfaster to the user. This method not only improves performance but also eliminates theneed to compress unused disk space. Distributing data in this way does, however, makecomprehensive backup mandatory.
Licensed Internal CodeLicensed internal code (LIC)
, also called system licensed internal code, is software thatinteracts directly with the AS/400 hardware. LIC typically performs the followingfunctions:
storage management
pointer and address management
program management
expectation and event management
data management
I/O management
security managementTo support specific hardware models and processors of the AS/400, IBM also issuesModel Unique Licensed Internal Code (MULIC) or, for some models, Feature UniqueLicensed Internal Code (FULIC). MULIC/FULIC programs are model or processor dependent and change as more models are added and others are upgraded. As thesystem operator, you may be required to install
Program Temporary Fixes (PTFs)
for licensed internal code. A new release of LIC may be required when a new machine isbeing installed, if the IPL disk crashes, or if you are restoring your system after acomplete system loss. We discuss installing LIC PTFs in the next section and in greater depth inChapter 7.
Versions, Releases, Modifications, and PTFs
The AS/400 is not a static combination of hardware and software. IBM continuouslyimproves OS/400 and repairs reported problems so the system remains at top efficiencyfor its users. These improvements and repairs take the form of versions, releases,modifications, and PTFs.A new
version
of OS/400 contains significant new code or functions for the OS/400. Anew
release
represents a major improvement to the operating system (see the Prefacefor the version and release being used for this edition). A release can be a new product,
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or it can incorporate new functions or PTFs into an existing version of the operatingsystem. A release can be a smaller upgrade than a version. A
modification level
isfrequently a collection of PTFs issued since the previous modification, release, or version; this collection of PTFs may be shipped as a single package. A change inmodification level doesn't add new functions to the release. IBM may ship a new releasewith a modification level of zero. When the release is shipped with one or more additionalchanges incorporated, the modification level is incremented accordingly (i.e., for Version4, you might receive Release 1, Modification level 2).PTFs generally correct problems or potential problems found within a particular IBMlicensed software product (e.g., RPG IV, COBOL/400, or AS/400 Client Access). PTFlists are updated daily and are available through IBM's Electronic Customer Support,which gives online access to IBM service facilities, technical information, and marketingsupport information. You should review PTF lists regularly for applicability to your hardware and software.
Subsystems
The AS/400 hardware and software join to make a secure and efficient platform for jobsperformed on the system and the work management concepts associated with these jobs. To help manage jobs, you can divide the system into separate work groups called
subsystems
. All work on the AS/400 is done within subsystems. The AS/400 can bedivided into myriad subsystems for more efficient processing of different types of jobs.The subsystem description (
*
SBSD) is an object that describes a subsystem and controlsthe tasks the subsystem performs. The subsystem and subsystem description allocateresources and manipulate system objects for the most efficient use of the differenthardware and tasks the system has been designed to perform.
Interactive vs. Batch Subsystems
Subsystems may run either 
interactive
jobs or 
batch
jobs. Interactive jobs begin when aperson signs on to the terminal, and they usually have a higher priority than other tasks.Generally, interactive jobs require the user to type a command, wait for the machine todisplay the requested material, type another command, and so on. While waiting for theuser to enter the next instruction, the operating system is either checking (polling) to seewhether other users have completed a command or executing tasks for another user.Batch jobs generally run with minimal or no interaction with the user. They usually have alower priority than interactive jobs; consequently, they usually run when the AS/400 hastime available. For example, a batch job might post all the detail journals to the generalledger. Batch jobs may also be held until a certain time of day. For example, a givenbatch job may automatically run each night at 11 o'clock. An example of such a batch jobwould be the nightly deletion of work files before a system backup.
System Values
System values
(
*
SYSVAL) are AS/400 attributes that let each installation customize themachine to the organization's needs and specifications. Consider, for example, thediffering needs of an AS/400 installed in China and one installed in Holland. Eachmachine needs different alphabet characters, different displays of the time and date, andpossibly different security levels and hardware.
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