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Posts Tagged ‘Application Performance’

SoftBase Announces a Free Download of the TestBase SQLCODE -805 Tool

All Baseline Posts, Application Testing

SoftBase announces a free download of the TestBase SQLCODE -805 Tool which helps identify the source of Db2 SQLCODE -805 on z/OS.  Please see https://www.softbase.com/testbase_sqlcode_805_tool.php to get your copy today!


SoftBase Announces General Availability for TestBase Release 6.1

All Baseline Posts, Application Testing

TestBase 6.1 further improves performance and Db2v12 support.


New features in TestBase 6.1 include:

  1. Pre-Compiled with Db2V11 and Db2V12
  2. Testbase divided into 7 different components that can be licensed separately ( * New Components)
    Db2 Mask – Mandatory masking of sensitive Db2 data and files
    Db2 Subset – Subset, generate data in Db2 data and files
    Db2 Edit – Edit/View data in Db2 tables and views
    Db2 Slice – Test together or independently within one set of tables and tools to unload and load data
    * Db2 Query Build – Build complex SQL statements easily
    * Db2 SQL Debug – Executes and explains SQL in Source Programs
    * Db2 Catalog Guide – View Db2 catalog objects and their relationships like ISPF option 3.4
  3. Db2 Slice and Db2 Subset can now use Db2 Utilities to load and unload
  4. TestBase display commands for use anywhere in the product:
    Option ==> RS (release summary display)
    Option ==> LI (component & license status display)
    Option ==> LIMIT (panel to reset volume limit)
  5. TestBase uses Enterprise COBOL for z/OS®, V5.2


As TestBase continually strives for better performance, items 1,3,4, and 5 deliver just that.


Interested in TestBase?

Click here to learn more about TestBase or contact us by clicking here or calling 800-669-7076.

SoftBase Announces General Availability for TestBase Release 5.2

All Baseline Posts, Application Testing

TestBase 5.2 further improves test data management with Enterprise COBOL optimization, improved data privacy features, and DB2v11 support.


TestBase helps DB2 shops test new database applications faster and with fewer resources, reducing both time to market and overall development costs. The newest version, 5.2, includes several features that enable faster extraction and manipulation of test data by through Enterprise COBOL optimization, in addition to performance enhancements inherent in DB2v11. Enhanced data management features enable users to extract a subset from an existing subset, in addition to being able to mask data by replacing the target data with data from a different source.


New features in TestBase 5.2 include:

  • Pre-Compiled with DB2V11 and DB2V10
  • V5.1 with highest level of optimization which seems to yield about a 10% performance enhancement resulting in faster file extracts, data masking and load
  • TestBase Privatize and Populate option now provides the ability to extract from an existing subset of slice data
  • TestBase Mandatory Masking (Data Privacy) now allows users to replace the object being masked with a different source (table, view, TestBase view, etc.)
  • TestBase Slice – Lock table process allows for the removal of statements from a source library
  • Some TestBase install tables add keyword VOLATILE to protect against inadvertent RUNSTATs
  • TestBase file compare – Option added to eliminate tables that match from the report


Click here to view the full release summary.

Interested in TestBase?

Click here to learn more about TestBase or contact us by clicking here or calling 800-669-7076.

Webinar Replay: 6-Steps to Determining if DB2 Multi-Row Fetch is Right for Your Shop

All Baseline Posts, Baseline Videos, Webinars

We had  a great turnout yesterday for our webinar 6-Steps to Determining if DB2 Multi-Row Fetch is Right for Your Shop. Scott did an excellent job explaining how to identify the programs and cursors with the highest potential savings from MRF and how to calculate the overall potential CPU savings from implementing MRF. Our DB2 Tech panel also did a terrific job answering attendee questions during the Q&A session.

Watch the video replay of the presentation below. The actual presentation ends at about the 18:50 mark, the remainder of the video includes the detailed Q&A session with our DB2 tech panel. Enjoy!

DB2 Multi-Row Fetch can reduce CPU time – but is it worth the effort?

All Baseline Posts, Webinars

6-Steps to Determining if DB2 Multi-Row Fetch is Right for Your Shop


SoftBase is providing a free tutorial on how to identify the programs and cursors with the highest potential savings from MRF and how to calculate the overall potential CPU savings from implementing MRF.

After this webinar, you will be able to:

  • Identify the best program and cursor candidates for MRF
  • Calculate your potential CPU savings from MRF
  • Access free tools to help you calculate ROI from implementing MRF manually or automatically
  • Determine if an MRF retrofit project is valuable enough to pursue

Wednesday, May 8

2:00-3:00pm Eastern


DBTA Article: Using Multi-Row Fetch to Lighten the Load of Big Data

All Baseline Posts, Multi-Row FETCH

The explosion of big data has presented many challenges for today’s database administrators (DBAs), who are responsible for managing far more data than ever before. And with more programs being developed and tested, more tools are needed to help optimize data and efficiency efforts.  Using techniques such as DB2’s Multi-Row Fetch (MRF), DBAs are able to cut down on CPU time – and improve application efficiency. This article will explore the benefits of MRF, including the ability for DBAs to improve their application performance and lighten their workloads.

Click here to read the rest of the article


SoftBase’s Attach Facility enables you to implement MRF in your DB2 applications automatically, no recoding required.

Click here to learn more about implementing MRF automatically

Survey Says: Upgrades Not the Answer to DB2 Performance Improvement

All Baseline Posts, Multi-Row FETCH

A survey of more than 900 application developers and DB2 administrators across an array of industries including financial services, insurance, retail and government found that database administrators are frustrated with the lack of performance and associated costs to run and maintain their existing DB2 and SQL servers. 

Polling results of note include:

  • 20 percent spend more than half of their week or a minimum of 8-12 hours per week addressing SQL performance issues.
  • 59 percent agreed that SQL standardization is a recurring problem.
  • When asked the best option for DB2 application performance improvement, an overwhelming 84 percent noted performance tuning as a solution.
  • Only 8 percent saw a need for hardware/software upgrades as a solution.

“Spending a high percentage of the work week addressing SQL performance issues is outrageous and unnecessary,” said Steve Woodard, CEO, SoftBase.  “The polling results, combined with customer feedback have made it very clear: IT is beyond frustrated with the current state of DB2 performance and cost.  They are looking for solutions that don’t require manual coding and arduous upgrade cycles.  Thus far, a more seamless and automated experience is non-existent, which is why so many developers and DB2 administrators are turning to our proven solutions for better coding, testing, batch analysis and performance tuning, ensuring more reliable DB2 applications and higher performing DB2 software.”

Two polls were conducted during recent SoftBase sponsored webinars.  During each session attendees listened to industry leaders discuss how to dramatically improve the performance of DB2-based database applications as well as SQL and application performance improvement best practices.

Additional points of interest stemming from the real-time polling:

  • 43 percent of participants noted the importance of mainframes as virtual environments become more prevalent – minimizing hardware expenditures and an organization’s carbon footprint.
  • When asked why organizations have not implemented Multi-row Fetch (MRF) capabilities offered by IBM for performance improvement, 34 percent noted lack of developer resources and 29 percent called out other priorities taking precedence – MRF on its own requires expensive manual recoding and testing processes.
  • Less than 3 percent felt that the technology did not provide enough benefit, re-iterating a market need.

SoftBase’s Attach Facility (with Multi-Row FETCH capability) sits between the application and DB2, providing an interface that enables administrators to pull multiple rows of data into a temporary memory space, immediately eliminating the need for the application to “go back” and retrieve additional information.  It is the most widely used call-attach facility on the market and allows users to execute applications more efficiently, in less time and with greater flexibility.

To watch the two webinars, go to https://www.softbase.com/blog/?cat=4

To learn more about Attach Facility with MRF capabilities, go tohttps://www.softbase.com/batch_healthcare_attach_mrf_feature.php.



Reduce your 4-hour peak window

All Baseline Posts, Multi-Row FETCH

Today, most organizations using IBM mainframes are paying based on their peak 4-hour usage window. An increase in utilization of even a few percentage points can mean tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional utilization fees. Several of our customers have staff dedicated to simply monitoring this 4-hour peak window and rearranging job schedules to prevent overages. Not surprisingly, many of our customers have also started initiatives dedicated to reducing their 4-hour MSU peak.

Our patented Attach Facility MRF feature can help you reduce your batch window and your peak 4-hour CPU usage. Reducing your 4-hour peak will save your CPU resources and, ultimately, money. In fact, if you had implemented SoftBase’s Attach Facility MRF feature on May 16, the day it was released GA, you could have already saved:

We created this estimate using our MRF ROI calculator, and the following variables:

  • Shop MIPS: 2,000
  • DB2 Applications: 1,200
  • Cost per CPU minute: $25

We’ve seen ROI forecasts with the potential savings estimated between $500K and $8M over 5 years for our customers. Check out our ROI Calculator here ROI calculator here to determine your own shop’s potential savings!

DB2 Multi-Row FETCH Savings and ROI Calculator

All Baseline Posts, Multi-Row FETCH

With ever-tightening IT budgets, it’s becoming harder and harder to justify new the cost of performance tuning projects. Management needs to see a clear bottom-line cost justification before signing off on these projects, placing the burden on DBA’s and team leads to develop a convincing argument. While implementing multi-row FETCH in existing DB2 applications has been shown to reduce FETCH CPU time by as much as 74%, it can be difficult to translate that into actual dollars saved.

SoftBase recently developed a Return on Investment (ROI) calculator that creates a 5-year savings and ROI forecast. The calculator estimates the amount of money your organization could save if it were to implementing multi-row FETCH in existing DB2 applications. You can view the calculator at www.softbase.com/mrf_roi.php

Here’s an example of the calculator’s output:

We designed the calculator to show you how much money your organization would save by implementing multi-row FETCH using developers vs. purchasing our Attach Facility tool to implement multi-row FETCH automatically, without recoding and testing. Because Attach Facility can implement multi-row FETCH in your existing DB2 applications almost instantly, you will immediately see significant CPU savings. Attach Facility can literally pay for itself within a few months of use! In the example above, Attach Facility pays for itself more than twice within 12 months.

Implementing multi-row FETCH manually in all of your existing applications can take months or years, and can result in unexpected headaches. Attach Facility does it nearly instantly, freeing up time for developers to work on other projects.

Try our Multi-Row FETCH ROI calculator to see how much your organization can save!

Announcing Attach Facility’s MRF General Availability

All Baseline Posts, Multi-Row FETCH

SoftBase today announced the availability of a new product feature, Attach Facility’s Multi-Row FETCH (MRF), enabling DB2 users to automatically retrofit older applications for IBM’s Multi-Row FETCH technology. With Attach Facility’s MRF, DB2 administrators can simultaneously improve application performance by as much as 74 percent while bypassing the expensive recoding and testing process required to upgrade by hand.

IBM introduced Multi-Row FETCH to enable users to process multiple records (rows) simultaneously – saving time and reducing CPU overhead – a significant cost factor for DB2 shops. However, upgrading existing applications from single-row to multi-row requires an expensive manual recoding and testing process. SoftBase’s Attach Facility sits between the application and DB2, providing an interface that enables administrators to pull multiple rows of data into a temporary memory space, immediately eliminating the need for the application to “go back” and retrieve additional information.

“We decided to run some test scenarios using SoftBase Attach Facility’s Multi-Row FETCH feature,” said Jeff Boggess, senior database administrator, NC Farm Bureau. “Because we didn’t have to manually code and test the processes, we were up and running much more quickly than expected. Being deployed so soon enabled us to run a SQL statement in which the CPU time went from 45 seconds to 11 seconds …that is a 74 percent improvement! The time savings translates to immediate dollar savings and reinforces the value we derive from SoftBase DB2 z/OS tools every day. ”

Key benefits of SoftBase Attach Facility’s Multi-Row FETCH includes:

  • the ability to improve legacy application performance, minimizing CPU utilization
  • reduction of mainframe computer usage, thus reducing IT expenses and
  • little-to-no recoding and testing of applications.


Read the rest of the press release here