Overview

This three-day, hands-on course is vital for all z/OS technicians who need to be able to understand and work with the ICF catalog environment. The prime objective is to teach attendees how to evaluate catalog problems and then to take the appropriate and necessary corrective actions. The course also introduces and explains the tools available for catalog recovery.<br><br>This course is also available for one-company, on-site presentations and for live presentation over the Internet, via the Virtual Classroom Environment service.
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Prerequisites

At least one year of experience with z/OS. Familiarity with TSO/ISPF and JCL is essential. VSAM knowledge, as provided on the course VSAM Essentials Workshop, is also recommended.
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Delegates will learn how to

  • explain the relationship between the data related components
  • detect and isolate the failing component of an ICF catalog
  • utilise the available diagnostic tools
  • perform appropriate recovery and repair procedures
  • list the factors that affect catalog performance.
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Outline

ICF Environment

Catalog overview; Catalog search order; Catalog environment; Multi-level aliases; Catalog address space; VTOC and IXVTOC; ICF environment review.

VSAM File Structure

VSAM file types; VSAM hierarchy; CI structure and usage; RDF usage; Spanned record RDF usage; BCS - a KSDS; Index CI format; Alternate index; Class exercise - VSAM file structures.

Catalog Component Structure

Catalog environment; Basic Catalog Structure (BCS); VSAM Volume Data Set (VVDS); BCS record structure; BCS record types; BCS record cells; Sphere records - cluster; 3.9 Cluster name cell; Ownership cell; Security cell; Data/index name cell; Volume cell; Class exercise - BCS cluster record; Sphere records; Alternate Index name cell; Association cell; Relation cell; Path record; Pass name cell; Truename record; Truename cell; Class exercise - KSDS cluster record; Sphere records - GDG; GDG base name cell; Generating Aging Table (GAT) cell; GDS name cell; Volume cell; Extension name cell; Non-VSAM record and name cell; Alias record and name cell; Catalog connector record and name cell; Class exercise - user catalogs; BCS/VVDS relationship; VVDS record types; VVDS record cells; VVDS record structure; VVCR and extensions; VSAM Volume Record (VVR); VVR header cell; VVR data set info cell; VVR AMDSB cell; VVR volume info cell; Class exercise - VVCRs and VVRs; Non-VSAM Volume Record (NVR) and header cell; NVR data set info cell; Volume Table Of Contents (VTOC); VTOC structure; Describing a data set; Managing the volume; VTOC usage; Solving VTOC performance problems: VTOCIX; VTOC index structure; How the index works; VTOC index entry record.

Problem Diagnosis

Problem analysis; Data set processing flow; Allocation; OPEN; I/O processing; File extensions; CLOSE; DEALLOC/CATLG; Problem severity; Diagnostic tools; IDCAMS EXAMINE; IDCAMS DIAGNOSE (VVDS); IDCAMS DIAGNOSE (ICFCATALOG); Class exercise - problem diagnosis.

Backup Techniques & Considerations

User catalog backup; Export/import; Export/Import advantages; Backup frequency; User catalog strategy; Validation; User catalog backup recap; Master catalogs; Alternate master catalogs; SYSCAT format; Creating an alternate master catalog; VVDS backup; REPRO NOMERGECAT; REPRO MERGECAT; EXPORT DISCONNECT; IMPORT CONNECT with ALIAS; IMPORT CONNECT; Practical exercise.

Recovery, Repair & Maintenance

Recovery vs. repair; Entries; Recovery/repair outline; VTOC and IXVTOC; VVDS catalog utility; VVDS delete; VVDS entry - VVCR; VVDS entry - delete VVR/NVR; BCS recovery import; Import BCS; Delete a user catalog; Delete a user catalog with Noforce; Delete a user catalog with Force; Uncatalog a data set; Catalog an existing VSAM object; Delete TRUENAME; Deleting VSAM data sets from a volume; Forward recovery; ICF SMF records; Recovery tips; Practical exercises.

Performance & Integrity Considerations

Sizing the BCS; Sizing the VVDS; Sizing the VTOC and index; Catalog performance; Performance - BCS data component; Performance - BCS index component; Performance - CAS; Sharing catalogs with other systems; Catalog SHROPTS; Performance - CDSC; Activating CDSC; Sharing catalogs in a CDSC environment (VVDS); Sharing catalogs in a CDSC environment (ECS); Monitoring and controlling CDSC; CDSC report information; Monitoring catalog performance; VVDS performance; Implementing SYS% conversion; Extended alias support.

Hands-on lab exercises

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Dates & Locations

Frequently asked questions

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How do QA’s virtual classroom courses work?

Our virtual classroom courses allow you to access award-winning classroom training, without leaving your home or office. Our learning professionals are specially trained on how to interact with remote attendees and our remote labs ensure all participants can take part in hands-on exercises wherever they are.

We use the WebEx video conferencing platform by Cisco. Before you book, check that you meet the WebEx system requirements and run a test meeting (more details in the link below) to ensure the software is compatible with your firewall settings. If it doesn’t work, try adjusting your settings or contact your IT department about permitting the website.

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How do QA’s online courses work?

QA online courses, also commonly known as distance learning courses or elearning courses, take the form of interactive software designed for individual learning, but you will also have access to full support from our subject-matter experts for the duration of your course. When you book a QA online learning course you will receive immediate access to it through our e-learning platform and you can start to learn straight away, from any compatible device. Access to the online learning platform is valid for one year from the booking date.

All courses are built around case studies and presented in an engaging format, which includes storytelling elements, video, audio and humour. Every case study is supported by sample documents and a collection of Knowledge Nuggets that provide more in-depth detail on the wider processes.

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When will I receive my joining instructions?

Joining instructions for QA courses are sent two weeks prior to the course start date, or immediately if the booking is confirmed within this timeframe. For course bookings made via QA but delivered by a third-party supplier, joining instructions are sent to attendees prior to the training course, but timescales vary depending on each supplier’s terms. Read more FAQs.

When will I receive my certificate?

Certificates of Achievement are issued at the end the course, either as a hard copy or via email. Read more here.

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