Dec 20 ’09

Pete Clark on VSE: VSE/ESA Hints, Tips & z/VSE Planning Information

by Editor in z/Journal

IBM has posted an updated version of “Hints and Tips for VSE/ESA 2.7 and Earlier” on the VSE/ESA Website at eserver/zseries/os/vse/. This is the eighth version of this exceptional document. Two previous versions are also still available on the Website:  

- “Hints and Tips for VSE/ESA,” Sixth Edition, July 2002

- “Hints and Tips for VSE/ESA,” Fifth Edition, May 2001

If you don’t already have a copy, download one now! If you have an older copy, download the latest copy. This document contains so much helpful information, it should be required reading for every VSE/ESA professional.

Simply reading through the “Contents” will give you an idea of what the document contains, including information about VSE/ESA commands, Traces, Hardwaits, Lock Manager, SDAID, the Dispatcher, and much more. Additionally, the latest copy contains useful information about the following VSE/ESA facilities: CICS/TS, POWER/VSE, VTAM, REXX, VSAM, ICCF, and Language Environment (LE).

This information is presented as hints, tips, how-to’s, suggestions, examples, and sometimes even undocumented commands. In fact, “Chapter 2: Internal Attention Routine Commands,” is worth its weight in gold all by itself.

z/VSE 3.1 Planning Information

If you are preparing for an early move to z/VSE, the VSE/ESA Website contains a great deal of information you should review as part of the planning process. Listed below are some major planning points to consider; be sure to check the VSE/ESA Website regularly for updates.

z/VSE will support only the following CPU hardware:

- zSeries 800, 900, 890, and 990

- S/390 Parallel Enterprise Server Generations 5 and 6

- S/390 Multiprise 3000 or an equivalent server.

  1. z/VSE will be a Fast Service Upgrade (FSU) from VSE/ESA 2.7 and VSE/ESA 2.6 only; all other releases must do an initial install and migration. The FSU does the upgrade to the same disk type where VSE/ESA 2.6 or 2.7 was resident, and that is expected to be ECKD. According to the announcement, only 3380, 3390, and FBA disk device support will be carried over to z/VSE.   

z/VSE will introduce support for the new SCSI-FCP disk on the 890 and 990. z/VSE 3.1 won’t support the following hardware:

- Disk: 0671, 3370, 3375, 3995, 9332, 9335, 9336, 9345  

- Tape: 2440, 3422, 3424, 3430, 9646, 9647, 9648  

- TP controllers: 3720, 3725-1, 3725-2  

- Other devices: CETI, 3881, 3886.

If you haven’t yet migrated to CICS/TS, the initial release of z/VSE will still contain CICS/VSE. VSE/ESA in-house CICS/VSE, CICS/TS, and batch application programs won’t require any changes.

There are no anticipated changes to JCL that would impact in-house job streams.

To run z/VSE under z/VM, any zSeries processor can use either z/VM Version 4 or z/VM Version 5; the S/390 Multiprise 3000 or S/390 Parallel Enterprise Server G5/G6 must use z/VM Version 4.

z/VSE 3.1 is designed to be installed and put into production without any increase in cost to the installation. The assumption is that the installation has the supported hardware installed and doesn’t have any unsupported hardware that must be replaced. A further assumption is that the installation already licenses LE. With z/VSE, LE is now included in the base product set, rather than as an optional product.  


Be sure to download the newest copy of “Hints and Tips for VSE/ESA and Earlier Releases” today and distribute it within your installation, as it’s a great source of information.

z/VSE will be here before we know it; if your site plans to quickly move to the new version, you should start the planning and positioning processes today!  

As always, thanks for reading.