IBM Db2 Review
IBM is the king of servers (Infrastructure) , IBM DB2 the king of Database Servers


Valuable Features

I have benefitted from many features including:
  1. Product is built on RDBMS principles and principles of Normalization. Have benefitted by the normalization capabilities built into the product;
  2. SQL Query capabilities, Tools such as SPUFI, QMF, BMC Catalog Manager,DB2 File-Aid make it easy to query the data,
  3. Programming capabilities (such as host variables, cursors ) provided by languages such as COBOL to invoke DB2 DML statements to query, modify the DB2 Tables;
  4. Ability of DB2 rows to be presented to CICS screens, Batch Jobs, Web Programs;
  5. Entire 4 GL Tools such as Cool:Gen, Advantage Gen Encyclopedias implemented as DB2 tables;
  6. Entire Advantage Gen / Cool:Gen / IEF components viz. programs, program components are modeled as DB2 tables. Thousands of programs, program components built, accessed by thousands of programmers are stored as DB2 table entries. These are easily queried, extracted, modified, loaded to other regions by customized programs. Entire models can be created by copying DB2 tables. These are done reliably, consistently, and scalability is provided. This speaks about the power and capability of DB2;
  7. Entire Cool:Gen components / DB2 entries can be queried by IBM Websphere with ODBC connection and the results can be web enabled. This means DB2 is programmable for the web as well;
  8. DB2 entries can be extracted, modified and loaded to other regions and datawarehouses. IBM DB2 Unload, Load Utilities, products such as IBM Optim, IBM Websphere Datastage, IBM Websphere all enhance the capabilities and features of IBM DB2.

Improvements to My Organization

The product has improved our organization in many ways. IBM DB2 has been used in many client projects. These projects are used for a number of years (more than 20-30). Entire Enterprise Applications in the IBM Mainframes have been built with the capability of IBM DB2. Many applications have thousands of DB2 tables and millions of rows. These are accessed for Batch Programming via COBOL, for online / CICS programming via COBOL. Some entries can be accessed by IBM Websphere for Web Programming. This has provided the organization the ability to implement millions of business functions through online / batch / web programs.

Room for Improvement

It should be easier for web enablement. It is currently easy, but the more web products use the tool, the better it is.

Use of Solution

I have been using IBM DB2 (Mainframe Version) for more than ten years.

Deployment Issues

No. Occasional bind problems would occur, but were resolved through proper configuration management tools, such as ENDEAVOR or CHANGEMAN.

Stability Issues

No

Scalability Issues

No

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service: We didn't have to contact customer service. Our DBAs would contact customer service if and when needed. However, the near-100% availability of DB2 and Advantage Gen Encyclopedia that was housed in IBM DB2 speaks of the reliability of the product and its customer service.Technical Support: Very Good. When I contacted my DBAs, they were able to resolve the binding errors, authorizations etc. quickly and efficiently.

Previous Solutions

We switched from VSAM to DB2. DB2 is much more sophisticated and advanced than VSAM and provides a number of features which make it easier to access the data and present it, as well as use it.

Initial Setup

It was straightforward and easy. Many of the utilities provided by the vendor functioned very well. We were able to upgrade the Gen Encyclopedia easily.

Implementation Team

Through an in-house expertise.

ROI

It is enormous. We were able to implement many business projects on an ongoing basis without any issues.

Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing

I was not involved in the pricing negotiations. I would say it was cost effective based on the number of successful projects.

Other Solutions Considered

No, IBM DB2 has been used by the clients for a number of years; in some cases more than 20-30 years.

Other Advice

I would say that IBM DB2 is one of the topmost Database products. It has very high availability and scalability just like the other products from IBM, such as IBM Websphere server, IBM Websphere MQ Server, and IBM Websphere Datastage. IBM is the king of servers and infrastructure. You will do well going with IBM products such as DB2, Websphere. I would say that these are very stable and scalable and available products and provide much needed reliability for businesses.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.

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