Yesterday, I saw a mention of my blog in SHARE'd Intelligence. Also, my podcast partner in crime (Martin Packer) has a business trip this month and we both have vacations, meaning that our next two podcast episodes - which were *almost* done - will have a delayed release. He's been very patient with my trips, so I certainly can't complain at all! That was enough to get me back here to post...And if that wasn't enough, I had three comments yesterday about the z/OS platform New Function APAR website, so now I've got a topic.
It seems like folks have been discovering a recent webpage that we provided at:
This web page will give you historical information about all New Function APARs (aka: SPEs) over the last year or five years. Nice if you want to peruse what you might have missed in the service stream for your favorite product or component!
For the comments I've gotten about this yesterday:
- We need to get the historical information off of "ftp" pages for the browser access (
ftp://service.boulder.ibm.com/s390/newfunctionapars/ ... ) and into an http location (such as something like http://service.boulder.ibm.com/s390/newfunctionapars/ .. ) My thoughts: this might not be a quick or easy thing, but I'll keep investigating it. In the meantime: could folks use an ftp job to pull the information via batch JCL, instead of using the browser from that ftp site? The files are updated approximately in the middle of the month, so running a job to pull it once a month (if you could access that ftp site!) would give you the files to do with as you pleased. I was able to anoynmously log onto that ftp site and pull all the files, so if your firewall isn't a problem, maybe this will be a workaround.
- Some of the new function APARs can't be found on that website. My thoughts: this is probably turning out to be how individual APARs are being flagged by the service organizations. The key to get them to show up both on the website and on any IBM Support Portal MyNotifications subscription you have, is identifying the function with a certain NEW FUNCTION flag. It is appearing that the flagging wasn't done in all cases, which means that those APARs are missed. As the flags are added, those APARs will start appearing on a screen near you. This is something we are following up with individual products and elements.
- The new function APAR abstract of only "NEW FUNCTION" is not descriptive. Since we are seeing all of the z/OS platform new function APARs, it would be extremely helpful if we saw more than "NEW FUNCTION" on the consolidated lists. My thoughts: I totally agree! We've put some reports in place to catch most of the z/OS ones, and then get them updated (which then gets picked up on the website the next month). For some smaller products, we've been individually contacting the service teams to get the abstracts updated with just one or two more helpful words. It will be a gradual thing, and we are chipping away steadily at this one. There still might be some APARs that initially have only "NEW FUNCTION" if the enhancement has a dependency on an unannounced product, but these should be very limited in nature and are expected to be updated when the announcement has taken place. I'm seeing the consolidated lists just as you are, so I can see who hasn't yet gotten on the bandwagon of helping out with just a word or two more of a description. I'm meeting some very nice people :).
If you have any other comments about that web page, I do welcome them! I'd like you to find value in this and deliver to you what you need.