Welcome to the first in a series of articles where I’m going to write about CPSM workload management and how it can be configured in CICS Explorer.

CPSM Workload Management

CICSplex System Manager (CPSM) has a feature called workload management, which routes transactions remotely to a pre-defined set of regions. A variety of routing algorithms are available, which affect which region is selected from the set of eligible targets. This affects how your workload is distributed across your CICS regions, so you can ensure that you’re getting the most out of your system.

You can read more about the details of CPSM Workload Management in the Knowledge Center.

CPSM workload management is very flexible, providing a plethora of options which give you great control of how specific transactions get routed when they enter the system. However, this flexibility means that configuring CPSM workload management is complicated, and can be confusing.

We added support for CPSM workload management in CICS Explorer 5.2 to try and address some of these concerns. You’ll note that was quite a long time ago, so it’s probably available in the CICS Explorer you’ve got installed today. It’s quite discreet, so it’s entirely possible that you’ve never noticed it, particularly if you’re not a user of CPSM workload management.

CPSM Workload Management in CICS Explorer

Your launchpad into CPSM workload management from CICS Explorer is from the CICSplex Explorer view, where we’ve added a Workload Management node.

The CICSplex Explorer view showing the Workload Management node

When expanded, the Workload Management node shows you details of your active workloads (coloured icons) as well as workload specifications that aren’t currently active (grey icons). CICS Explorer takes a different approach to workload management configuration than the CPSM web UI. In CICS Explorer, you make changes to the routing rules used for the entire workload at the same time. You can right click on the active or inactive workloads and select Open Workload Specification to view details of the routing rules for your workloads, and make changes.

Workload Specification Editor

CICS Explorer’s Workload Specification Editor lets you see the entire hierarchy of routers, and routing rules for a single workload.

CICS Explorer Workload Specification Editor

We’re using data from WLMSPEC, WLMGROUP, WLMDEF, TRANGRP, and DTRINGRP records for the routing rules, and LNKSWSCG and LNKSWSCS for the routers. We also pull information about your system topology from the CSYSDEF, CSYSGRP, CSGLCGCG and CSGLCGCS tables. Changes you make in the editor aren’t applied until you hit save, but once you do, we reconcile the changes you’ve made in the editor with the state in CPSM, and update all the records, and the links between them.

I’ll go into further detail in future blog posts about specific tasks you can accomplish using the editor.

Compatibility

We’re not introducing any new workload management concepts here, we’re just presenting the data from CPSM differently, and giving you a more fluid way to make changes. As such, this will work with any existing workloads you might have defined in the CPSM web UI. As noted above, you’ll need CICS Explorer 5.2+ for the client support, but this will work with any version of CICS TS that’s supported, though you’ll need a CMCI connection if you want to make updates. If you’ve got existing workloads defined in CPSM, try opening them in CICS Explorer and see what they look like.

Further Reading

CICS Explorer WLM in the Knowledge Center

If you’d prefer to listen to a little discussion about Workload Management in CICS Explorer, I recently recorded a podcast on the topic with Nick Garrod

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