CICS Web Services: Background, Hints & Tips

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IBM has shipped the latest version of CICS Transaction server for z/OS. CICS Transaction Server V3.1 provides a range of enhancements that improve access to CICS, enable development and transformation of CICS applications, and further enhance the systems management capability of CICSPlex.

CICS Transaction Server V3.1

Web Service support is an important cornerstone of the enhanced access to CICS and represents an evolution of the ideas and functionality initially provided by the “SOAP for CICS” feature. It provides the ability to integrate new and existing CICS programs in a Service- Oriented Architecture (SOA). This enables CICS applications to be exposed as Web Services, extending their use and business value.

CICS Web Services Assistant (CWA) consists of z/OS batch jobs that produce files for deployment into CICS, which are then used to deal with conversion of SOAP messages to commarea format and vice versa. CWA also produces Web Service Definition Language (WSDL), language structures, and a log file for diagnostic purposes.

This article provides an overview of the Web Services support in CICS Transaction Server V3.1; it describes the concepts of this support from a CICS perspective and equates the new CICS resource definitions with related aspects of Web Services.

CICS Web Services Support Background

Understanding Web Services support in CICS begins with an appreciation of SOA itself. SOA can facilitate competitive advantage because it allows for the exchange of information and data in a heterogeneous environment (e.g., hardware, software, programs, vendors, and users).

With CICS Transaction Server V3.1, functional integration of SOAP for CICS is included as part of the CICS Web Services support. Moreover, enhancements to CICS to support Web Services were made in:

  • The Web and Security domains
  • The new Pipeline domain
  • Resource Definition Online (RDO) objects
  • Application and System Programming Interface (API and SPI) commands.

These work together to let CICS programs be exposed as Web Services, providing the reuse and exploitation of CICS business logic in an SOA solution.

For migration assistance, the SOAP for CICS feature is still supported and may be used with CICS Transaction Server V3.1. However, customers should migrate to the fully integrated Web Services capability of CICS Transaction Server V3.1.

3 Pages