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Replace IEBCOPY by SERCOPY where possible

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A lot of ChangeMan ZMF submitted jobs like promote, demote, install, backout, etc. typically suffer, occasionally, these kinds of IEBCOPY related issues:

  • space abends (B37, D37, etc) which require datasets to be extended or reallocated (followed by a manual intervention to restart the failed jobs).
  • joblevel enqueues of certain DSNs while performing a promote, install, etc because of dozens (or hundreds ...) of jobs that are all waiting for the same promotion / production DSNs to be updated.
  • certain types PDS members (e.g. IMS format blocks with the funny PDS member names) cannot be selectively copied by IEBCOPY (e.g. during selective promote, or within install or backout steps).

So far the bad news about IEBCOPY. The good news however is that ChangeMan ZMF is shipped with an extremely interesting utility, PGM=SERCOPY, which has the following advantages over IEBCOPY:

  • SERCOPY can automatically intercept various space abends, and can take remedial actions like extending or reallocating datasets.
  • SERCOPY has a special feature that can reduce dataset enqueues from joblevel to steplevel, so that you can process many more change packages in parallel.
  • SERCOPY can selectively copy certain PDS members that IEBCOPY cannot copy (e.g. IMS format blocks with the funny PDS member names).

The bad news about this good SERCOPY-news is that as delivered (the vendor version of ChangeMan ZMF) PGM=SERCOPY is not used in a lot of ChangeMan ZMF submitted jobs (like promote, demote, install, backout, etc.). Instead these jobs will ALWAYS use PGM=IEBCOPY (and hence never automatically intercept the various problems like SERCOPY can do).

If you give it some more thought (why jobs like promote, demote, install, backout, etc. do NOT use PGM=SERCOPY also), it turns out that one has to be prudential in using PGM=SERCOPY. This because there are situations (exceptions) where it is not allowed to e.g. just extend or reallocate a DSN. These exceptions are probably also the reason why ChangeMan ZMF is NOT shipped with all IEBCOPYs replaced by SERCOPYs.

So here we are, ChangeMan ZMF comes with an extremely interesting utility (PGM=SERCOPY), but to fully take advantage of it, you are facing a lot of (relatively easy) customisations which will result in many benefits ... on condition you don't make mistakes about where to not use PGM=SERCOPY. What you really need to address all this, is a safe, intelligent replacement of PGM=IEBCOPY by PGM=SERCOPY (that can easily be upgraded with each new release of CMN/ZMF).

Consider the approach to address this issue as documented in the Z-Clues (login required).