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The wait is over! Improved performance for BCPii's HWILIST and HWIQUERY services
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By Lowen Ho, z/OS BCPii Developer
I was waiting in a long line at the store yesterday and it made me think of BCPii's retrieval requests. Have you ever issued a BCPii retrieval request that left you tapping your fingers and looking for something else to do while you waited for it to complete? If so, BCPii has some good news! Starting in z/OS release V2R1, BCPii has improved the performance of the HWILIST and HWIQUERY services.
First, a little background. Many of the values that BCPii returns for HWILIST and HWIQUERY requests come from the support element (SE) and, in general, communication with the SE can be slow. Communication delays can be caused by many factors such as system performance, the load on the SE, and small bandwidth of the pipe communicating with the SE. On top of that, when the HWILIST and HWIQUERY services retrieve multiple values (for example, the list of CPCs in the HMC network, or the values for multiple query attributes), traffic to the SE can increase substantially, making the response time even slower.
Prior to z/OS V2R1, BCPii needed to retrieve multiple data values from the SE by asking the SE for one piece of information at a time. So, for example, if six names or attributes were to be retrieved, BCPii made six separate calls to the SE. Separate calls to the SE are okay when retrieving a small number of names or attributes, but are inefficient for retrieving a large number of names or attributes.
Performance is a top priority for the BCPii team. Starting with z/OS V2R1, BCPii takes advantage of a System z construct to bundle multiple attributes into one retrieval request to the SE. That allows BCPii code to run more efficiently and minimizes data flows to the SE. As a result, performance for HWILIST and HWIQUERY requests has shown significant improvement in IBM's test environment for z/OS V2R1. The performance improvement you will experience using BCPii on z/OS V2R1 will vary depending on the load on both the local and targeted SEs, the load on the z/OS system where your BCPii application is running, your hardware configuration, and the type of retrieval you are requesting. However, you should see a performance improvement for most BCPii retrieval requests.
How can your BCPii applications benefit from this performance improvement on z/OS V2R1? For HWILIST requests, the performance benefits are automatic so there is nothing for you to do. For HWIQUERY requests, consider bundling query attributes into as few HWIQUERY requests as possible. That will enable BCPii to retrieve the attribute values as efficiently as possible.
Why wait? Run BCPii on z/OS V2R1 and experience BCPii's improved performance for yourself.
Lowen Ho is an Advisory Software Engineer and a developer for BCPii. She has 22 years of experience in the computer industry; 15 of the 22 years are with IBM. Lowen was an application programmer and a Software Configuration Library Management (SCLM) Administrator before joining z/OS. Since joining z/OS, Lowen has worked in both development and function test for RRS. Her current role is in BCPii development. She enjoys swimming and traveling as well as watching her sons' basketball games.