Day: August 25, 2022


Getting Lots of Information Quickly – The Handy QLZARCAPI Tool

There seems to be an endless supply of “Easter Eggs” in IBM i that you can uncover and say to yourself “now that’s a handy thing to have”, and here is one of them…

Many situations can present themselves where you need to get detailed specs information on an IBM i LPAR running in your environment, for example, you need to get pricing and/or licensing for a new 3rd-party software package and the vendor needs to know critical things like “what processor group is the system in” or “what is the LPAR ID” or “what is the system’s processor feature code”.  Well, there is one very handy IBM i API that you can call from any command line that will give you all that information and more, it’s called QLZARCAPI.

The API is very simple to invoke, first, call the QCMD command line interface to show the full command line environment:

Next, simply call the API:

The API will create a comprehensive formatted output right in the command line interface that will give you a boatload of critical system information, it looks just like this:

The output is logically broken-out into three discrete informational groupings:

  1. System Information
  2. Partition Information
  3. Processor Pool Information

Under System information you can determine:

  • Serial number of the system
  • System model & type
  • Processor feature code
  • Processor group
  • Maximum physical processors in the system
  • Number of configurable processors in the system

Under Partition information you can determine:

  • Network name of the system
  • Partition name
  • Partition ID number
  • Processor sharing type and sharing mode
  • Minimum processors required
  • Desired processors
  • Maximum processing capacity
  • Entitled (licensed) processing capacity
  • Minimum, desired, maximum, & online virtual processors

Under Processor Pool information you can determine:

  • Number of virtual processor pools configured
  • Pool ID of current processor pool in use
  • Maximum processing units for processor pool in use

Invoke the QLZARCAPI tool on your system and see for yourself the wealth of information that it provides.  It’s another simple yet powerful tool deep inside of IBM i that is super easy to use and can make your life just a little bit easier.


This newsletter includes:

August 2022 Newsletter

This newsletter includes:

Did you ever hear the saying “The more things change, the more they remain the same”?  Well, that has pretty much been our first two months as part of Service Express. Same iTech Staff, same iTech procedures, same iTech customers, and same iTech commitment to IBM i.  Don’t get me wrong, we are looking at some cool new tools to help us become more productive and efficient, but our commitment to IBM i hasn’t changed.…


Utilizing Leasing for Technology Acquisitions

With the recent IBM Power 10 and FlashSystem Storage announcements, IT departments have been evaluating their installed technology assets, reviewing hardware budgets, and determining when they can upgrade their systems based on their technology lifecycle.  In many cases, current budgets impact making new acquisition decisions at the optimum time.  This may not always be necessary since there are attractive leasing options to keep cash resources for other needs and spread the payments for new equipment, software, and services of the equipment over the use period.

For companies considering a leasing alternative, iTech Solutions provides a terrific choice utilizing IBM Financial Services, with its vast financial resources, competitive lease rates, and ability to structure a lease to suit a particular client and their situation.

Leasing provides a terrific way to avoid upfront capital expenditure and pay for new assets over a period of time.

The main reason for choosing to lease is to conserve cash or to maintain asset flexibility. Some companies have a pre-determined period of useful life for the equipment or know that they will want to refresh their technology every X number of years.  For these customers, Fair Market Lease (FMV) is appropriate, where the client only pays for the use of the equipment during the specific term in exchange for lower payments. Clients who expect to anticipate a longer useful life of the equipment would likely choose a Full Payout or $1 Buyout Lease, which allows them to retain the hardware at the end of the lease term.

With either choice, the client benefits from not utilizing the organization’s capital to support its technology infrastructure so that it may be better utilized to invest in other areas of the business.

Depending on the Customer’s situation and specific request, there is quite a bit of flexibility that can be offered.  Typically, leases are structured as lease value divided by term.  However, if the client needs to suspend a number of payments in the beginning or have quarterly payments, these requests can be accommodated as well.

iTech Solutions is well versed in understanding a client’s financial needs and working with IBM Financial Services to provide the best solution.  Speak to your Account Manager regarding leasing alternatives and they can provide a lease quote for your consideration when next reviewing your next System or Storage proposal.

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IT Infrastructure – Hardware and Software Maintenance Considerations

There are several considerations when evaluating maintenance options for your IT infrastructure.  When you order new servers they generally include a three, four or five-year hardware and software warranty/maintenance agreement.  This is standard fare.  However, if you don’t plan to refresh your hardware to the next generation when the warranty/maintenance comes up for expiration then you will have to make some maintenance decisions.

Upgrading to the latest generation of hardware is always a great choice because you will not have to worry about expiring maintenance contracts.  However, there are often reasons that could delay, impede or prevent you from upgrading.  Some of these issues are you might be considering leaving the platform, you might have applications software roadblocks, you might be considering moving to the cloud, have long depreciation schedules or other financial reasons etc.

Regardless if you can’t or don’t choose to refresh your hardware then you will need to review your maintenance options.


Let’s first look at hardware maintenance (HWMA).  First and foremost you should always have a HWMA agreement either with the manufacturer (OEM) or a third party maintenance provider (TPM).  I’ve seen situations where the choice was made not to have any maintenance and if the machine goes down there is a scramble for support with vendors who are not familiar with your infrastructure.  This consumes considerable time, resources and cost.  Have you considered what your cost for down time is?

So if you will be keeping your hardware for while then you will need to consider whether to continue HWMA with the OEM or a TPM.   A key consideration is to determine if the OEM will continue to supply updates such as firmware.   If firmware updates are still being offered then OEM maintenance is recommended.  However over time updates will cease and OEM maintenance prices will continue to increase.  This is when the pendulum swings to TPM where you can continue to get HWMA at a substantial cost savings as compared to the OEM.  If you do choose to take advantage of TPM then it’s recommended that you update your hardware to the latest or final versions of firmware while the OEM HWMA is still in effect.

Software maintenance (SWMA) has similar considerations. Like HWMA it’s recommended that you keep SWMA in place as long as there are new Operating System (OS) levels or updates still available from the OEM. Once again over time …


Setting a User Profile’s Job Description to Produce a Job Log

If you need to set up a User Profile so it creates a job log when the user signs off, the following steps will allow you to set that up.

  1. Copy the QDFTJOB job description and give it a unique name. In this example, we will use “PRFLOGJOBD”.

  1. After creating the new Job Description, go to that job description and choose option 2 to change it and press F10. Page down and change the “Text” parameter under “Message Logging” to *SECLV and change the “Log CL program commands” parameter to *YES.

  1. Press enter.


  1. Next, you will change the user profile that you want the logging enabled for and set the newly created job description as the job description for that user.

  1. Press enter.

Now, when the user signs off, a job log will be created for that user profile.

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