SuperBowl Pre-Game

If you know me, I'm not a sports person.  I observe what seems to me like a bunch of rather funny things related to sports, if you look at them as an outsider.  One of them is the SuperBowl Pre-Game.  Pre-Game?  They start it so early that soon it will be every day of the year.  All pre-game means to me is that I'd better have my snacks ready within the next hour.

If you think of z/OS V2.1 as the "SuperBowl", then I've got a pre-game item for you!  Mary Anne has brought up the topic of "good stuff" that you can look forward to in z/OS V2.1.  There's one item that I particularly want to talk about that was in the z/OS V2.1 Preview. You may have missed it, as it was just one little line:

In z/OS V2.1, the Health Checker address space is planned to be started at IPL time...

What does this mean to you?  A lot, a whole lot, if you haven't already got IBM Health Checker for z/OS running.  (I'm thinking about making it a "fire item" of mine, when talking about z/OS V2.1, in fact.)  Of course, if you are already using the Health Checker like you should be, then it means a lot less to you.  At the end of the day, everyone will need to do something for this (translate:  there's a migration action in the z/OS V2.1 Migration book for this).  However, if you get your guac ready during Pre-Game, you'll be able to enjoy it much better than if you were in the kitchen peeling avocados while the SuperBowl actually was in the first quarter.

What to do right now.  And I mean right now.  Doing this stuff before you even order z/OS 2.1 will make this migration action go much easier.

  1. Turn on Health Checker.  Use a proc name of HZSPROC, if you possibly can.  Things can go much easier for you if your proc is named HZSPROC now, as that is the proc name we are going to start on z/OS V2.1 IPL.  If you've already called it that, there is less for you to do later.  (Yes, you will be allowed to use a name other than "HZSPROC".)  We are going to ship an HZSPROC into SYS1.PROCLIB, and it would be so nice if your HZSPROC was found in the concatenation before ours, and yours has all the good stuff you want in it.  Use the IBM Health Checker's User Guide to find the steps.  Literally, this may take you no more than an hour to do, if your security person happens to reply to your request promptly.  (You don't need to set up log streams for Health Checker right away, skip that for now if you want.)   
  2. Get your HZSPRMxx the way you want it.  If you are running Health Checker already, you should already have this done.  If you have just turned on Health Checker, and are looking at a screen of blood red messages from exceptions, this is for you.  The number one reason I hear (besides "I'm too busy") that folks don't turn on Health Checker is that so many exceptions appear to them when they start it.  OK, fix it!  The easiest way is to make Health Checker stop bleeding all over the place is to send the WTOs to hardcopy.  Cut and paste this into your HZSPRM00:

****** ***************************** Top of Data **

000001 ADDREPLACE POLICY(HCONLY)                   


000003   REASON=('STOP BLEEDING')                  

000004   DATE=(20130101)                           

000005 ACTIVATE POLICY(HCONLY)                     

****** **************************** Bottom of Data **

There you go, instant triage.  The patient is still alive.

For now, that's enough to talk about.  But hopefully you can see where I'm going with this...this is some good advice for those that are interesting in going to or through z/OS V2.1.  Your guac will be ready before that first ex-football player talking head gives you the backstory on Johnny Quaterback's elementary school days of dreaming to be in the NFL.  


Love Health Checker!

February 21, 2013 02:34 PM by Sam Knutson

Hi Marna,

Great points!   

One suggestion for your policy recommendation.  I did something very similar but used symbols in DATE so that when newer checks showed up I didn't get a nasty message from Health Checker.

/* ---------------------------------------------------------------- */

/*  We set HZS0004I low-lite as the default WTO for Health Checker  */

/* ---------------------------------------------------------------- */



REASON('route all WTO output to log not operators for now')



Some checks I would bump back up to force a WTO and drive some more active alerting i.e.




REASON('Can cause S106 abends and other failures            ')



Best Regards,     

Samuel Knutson

CA TechnologiesVP, Product Management

Mobile: 1-202-809-1918


February 21, 2013 02:43 PM by Mary Anne Matyaz

Dang. I have to change this, I guess. For whatever reason, my guys used HCHECK. :(


February 21, 2013 04:38 PM by Marna Walle

Mary Anne, luck of the draw!  You won't HAVE to change it, but you'll need to do a smidgeon more than if you had chosen the name HZSPROC.  It may be easier to keep HCHECK (and not have to redo security definitions), but that depends on what mood your security admin is in :).   If you haven't set anything up yet, HZSPROC would be the wisest choice to pick. 

Have others not choosen HZSPROC as the name???


February 22, 2013 02:52 AM by Edward Jaffe

Funny. Due to a typo (or dyslexia), our proc was called HSZPROC for years. :D

I like the name HCHECK. (Wish I had thought of it.) It's more mnemonic (and less redundant) than having a proc called HZSPROC.


February 27, 2013 11:42 AM by Jamie Gibson

Ours is just called HZS.

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