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This course teaches the students the fibre channel connection (FICON) channel and the System z High Performance FICON (zHPF) operating environment. Planning and implementation considerations will be discussed to go from Enterprise Systems Connections (ESCON) to FICON or to zHPF configurations. Topics covering all aspects of the various FICON features across the latest System z servers, including error recovery and problem determination.
The course compares the operational protocols that is used with zHPF, FICON, ESCON, and even parallel channel. You will discuss topics such as how the FICON operating environment and configurations can be tied into the open systems operating environment, the reasons why a new FICON channel was introduced, and how it can replace or supplements the existing ESCON channels. New terminology is covered along with all the new enhancements that are now available with various FICON configurations in the mainframe environment. Valid and invalid FICON configurations are identified, including the new zHPF FICON architecture and persistent IU pacing for extended distances available on the System z10 servers. The zHPF architecture will be discussed in detail identifying the differences between transport mode and command mode channel operations.
In addition other recent channel subsystems enhancements concerning FICON will be identified and discussed, such as, FICON channel-to-channel (CTC) capability, and FICON cascaded director support. Channel operation and performance between ESCON and FICON and zHPF will be compared and discussed.
System z Linux Fiber Channel Protocol (FCP) channel planning and channel sharing implications within a storage area network (SAN) and hardware configuration definition (HCD)/ input/output configuration program (IOCP) coding requirements will be discussed. Student should learn and understand the security requirements of logical unit number (LUN) masking, zoning, FICON channel sharing and multipathing as they apply to Linux on the System z servers.
The course describes FICON error recovery and path problems, what type of indications surface, potential trouble areas, and corrective action. Operator messages and indications on the z/OS console, Hardware Management Console (HMC) and Support Element (SE) will be shown. HMC and z/OS command usage will be identified to display current FICON channel and path status.
The class should consist of hardware planners, technical support personnel, system programmers, or anyone who needs a complete understanding of FICON.