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Attain your SOA deployment goals more easily with CICS Transaction Server for z/OS V3.2.

Attain your SOA deployment goals more easily with CICS Transaction Server for z/OS V3.2.
Illustration by Michael Austin

For major enterprises, service-oriented architecture (SOA) implementations are no longer considered to be just an option, but a crucial strategic element, and as the SOA market matures, customers are looking to SOA to solve many business problems. The Aberdeen Group conducted four surveys in 2006 with 600 respondents that showed management of IT complexity and implementation speed are the primary drivers behind the adoption of SOA. Technology simplification also ranks high while transforming existing applications into reusable Web services is a priority for those further advanced in their adoption of SOA. 

As SOA becomes broadly adopted, the key challenges that enterprises face in their SOA projects are:

  • Scaling their solution to production volumes
  • Achieving high levels of reliability and availability

To a great extent, addressing these challenges depends on the choice of hardware and software chosen for their SOA implementations. It becomes essential to choose the company that best fits with your SOA solutions.

Vital to the solution is the application infrastructure. This is the middleware that underlies and controls the runtime execution of business applications. It also provides business-application developers with the tools and libraries that enrich the programming of applications beyond the basic language compiler. This capability is important because applications are valuable business assets, and the capability to enhance, grow and reuse these assets to meet new business opportunities without doing major redesign is an important criterion in selecting application infrastructure software.

If infrastructure elements are ill-matched, then the required IT infrastructure changes can take longer and the agility and flexibility needed for taking advantage of new business opportunities can be lost. To avoid these potential problems, key infrastructure requirements should include:

  • Integrated environments for application deployment that are simple, lightweight, low-cost and that offer fast time-to-value
  • Architectures that give efficient, dynamic deployment of "just the right functionality"
  • Low-maintenance, inexpensive and easily adapted infrastructure elements
  • Optimized IT resource usage, with manageable complexity and high performance

The IBM* application infrastructure offers many capabilities to meet these needs. It offers secure, scalable environments for applications and services, making use of existing IT investments and resources without "rip-and-replace." Moreover, IBM application infrastructures are based on open standards and can be quickly extended and adapted to suit changing business needs.

This article explains how the latest version of CICS* Transaction Server - CICS Transaction Server for z/OS* V3.2 - extends CICS support for SOA objectives even further, as well as enhancing the more mature qualities that CICS has always brought to core applications. CICS Transaction Server for z/OS V3.2 should be generally available by the end of June 2007.

IBM application infrastructures are based on open standards and can be quickly extended and adapted to suit changing business needs.

Nick Garrod currently works in CICS Transaction Server worldwide market enablement. He has worked in various business roles in CICS and MQ, based at IBM Hursley. He can be reached at Nick_garrod@uk.ibm.com.


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CICS Advances on All Fronts

Attain your SOA deployment goals more easily with CICS Transaction Server for z/OS V3.2.

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