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Modernization and SOA
IMS Transaction Efficiency IMS and SOA: Service Oriented Architecture SYS-ED IMS Training Service
Physical and Logical Database Design Courseware for Teaching Professional Distance-learning Service
IMS Implementation, Application Development, and Administration Grow Your Own IMS Programmers IMS and Web Enablement Training Program


CICS, Db2, DB2, IBM MQ, IMS, Rational, VSAM, WebSphere, TSO/ISPF, and z/OS are registered trademarks of IBM Corporation.

Courseware for Teaching - IMS and Mainframe Training
Courseware for Teaching

Cloud Programing - 2018
Open Source Software GSA Submission

Application Maintenance and Repurposing Code

IMS Transaction Efficiency

Designed and brought to market in the 1970's, IBM's IMS hierarchal database system software is used for processing and computation in high volume environments. IMS on the mainframe is known for its transaction efficiency and low cost per transaction. It remains well suited for applications that have structured data and access patterns that must scale to volume with high availability: ATMs, orders, claims, and assembly lines.

IMS DB system software provides a database environment which:

  • creates and manages data efficiently.
  • optimizes storage and retrieval.
  • ensures integrity and recovery.
  • implements security.
  • delivers excellent performance.
  • integrates with IBM WebSphere MQ middleware.

Although to a significant degree supplanted by IBM's Db2 and third party enterprise relational databases, there is an inventory of IMS applications and code which needs to be maintained and evaluated for repurposing as part of a SOA: service oriented architecture. In response to client usage and request, IBM continues to support IMS system software in order that advancements in mainframe hardware can be translated into improvements in price and performance through the leveraging of existing applications and data.

Rational Developer for System z is a IBM development platform to modernize software assets and deploy applications. It is used interactively to develop and test mainframe applications, low-level programming languages, and cross platform web technologies. Rational Developer for System z creates, maintains, and debugs IMS system-based code and SQL: Structured Query Language. Configuration files are created which enable an IMS SOAP Gateway to make web service calls to IMS transactions. Fault Analyzer integration is used to browse IMS abend reports.

IBM WebSphere MQ is the industry leading message queuing middleware platform. It is used in a SOA environment to route and transport messages among nodes and manage services in the enterprise. A message queuing infrastructure built upon and extended with WebSphere MQ is scalable and secure. Organizational enterprise with an investment in IMS applications are using IBM software and tools to evaluate the operational efficiency of its IMS software and develop a plan quantifying a return on investment.

IMS and SOA: Service Oriented Architecture

IMS assets contain business rules and billions of lines of legacy programming language code. Replacement of legacy code is economically unfeasible and results in loss of valuable business information. Within IMS mainframe installations, there is value in utilizing IMS assets and business logic in SOA modernization. IMS leverages running back-end processes and provides reliable integration points to support new business requirements. The modeling of business processes can be used to identify points of integration and interface. Efficient and reliable IMS applications can significantly lower risk, cost, and time to market. IMS can be extended using web services and connectivity for SOA. 


The IMS adapter connects a queue manager to IMS Transaction Server so that applications can use the MQI. The WebSphere MQ IMS bridge enables an application to run without an MQI. The application programs and the IMS adapter run in the same address space. The queue manager has its own address space. When a WebSphere MQ event occurs, the IMS CSQQTRMN trigger monitor initiates the IMS transaction.

LPAR: logical partition location determines the utilization of IMS Universal drivers: ODBA: Open Database Access or DRDA: Distributed Relational Database Architecture with IMS Connect. IMS Connect is the entry point for IBM DRDA. It is the TCP/IP gateway to IMS transactions, operations, and IMS data. IMS Open Database supports distributed TCP/IP access to IMS data both within an IMSplex or platforms other than System z.

EJB: Enterprise Java Bean components and JSP: Java Server Pages create web services with existing MFS-based IMS applications. New applications can be deployed to run on WebSphere Process Server.

SYS-ED IMS Training Service

SYS-ED staff has first generation experience with IMS: logical and physical design, application development, administration, and system programming. The orginal IMS curriculum was developed by technologist entrepreneurs and practitioners: Shaku Atre, Jonathan Clarke, Tina Connelly, Joan McInnes, Franz Schneider, and Karen Schwartz. Their database design, program logic, examples, case studies, exercises, and skeleton programs served as a foundation for the IMS courseware. If your organization outsourced its IMS coding and maintenance to consulting companies in the 1980ís, it more than likely was SYS-ED which trained the personnel who did the actual design and coding.

The SYS-ED IMS Transaction Server courses taught in conjunction with legacy programming languages and as part of mainframe training programs are a premium training service. Our staff reviews client documentation and interprets the system analysts and designers original work. SYS-ED trained IBM software developers evaluating Compuware's IMS File-AID which later became involved in the design of IBM Tools as an alternative to Compuware and other third party software - CA: InterTest, CA: Endevor, and Serena Software Changeman.

Given the scarcity of up to date IMS Transaction Server textbooks, SYS-ED has maintained its student handouts. With the hybrid implementation of open source software and IBM middleware, documentation is important to an effective learning experience. When information technology professionals complete a SYS-ED IMS course, they have the documentation and training aids to design, develop, and debug IMS applications.

SYS-ED receives training assignments and follow-up questions from system engineers with software companies: IMS control blocks, DL/1 coding, and architecture. Few software or consulting companies know IMS and teach better courses than SYS-ED.

Upon completion of a instructor-led course at the client location, it is standard policy to organize content for future utilization in a web-based training infrastructure.

Physical and Logical Database Design

The SYS-ED IMS curriculum incorporates customer experience and best practices in multiple fields: automotive, commuter rail transportation, financial services, public sector government services, healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies, and telecommunications. In conjunction with qualifying IMS training assignments at client locations, SYS-ED staff and CETi technology partners participated in the review and application of the structured methodologies for logical and physical implementations of the IMS database.

Structured analysis is the use of data flow diagrams and data modeling inclusive of implementation-independent graphical notation of documentation.

Structured design is a systematic approach to programming which includes the use of graphical notation for documentation, communication, and design guidelines.

Structured programming techniques impose a logical structure on application development. Large routines are subdivided into smaller modular routines. Indentation is used to make loops and other program logic easier to follow. SYS-ED provided IMS training for Amtrak, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, IMS Systems, State of Indiana, Johnson and Johnson Healthcare Systems, MCI Worldcom, McKesson Coporation, and United Parcel Service. There are installations where superb structured design and coding has IMS outperformed Db2.

The newer methodologies are associated with object oriented analysis and design; our staff also is experienced with these techniques and tools. This multi-generational skillset allows us to teach the modernization and repurposing of the IMS hierarchical database with WebSphere MQ middleware and Rational Developer for System z. We identify areas where inefficient processing is occurring and provide guidelines for developing applications with operational and diagnostic business intelligence. 

IBM's information agenda is built on its commercial operating systems and system software. Its foundation is to simplify, collaborate, reuse, and standardize. SYS-ED IMS Transaction Server courses and mainframe training programs augment the IBM information strategy: 1- Implement information-driven strategies consistent with business priorities. 2- Use unified tools to competitive advantage for managing data and designing reliable data structures. 3- Assess and when warranted deploy OSS: open source software to leverage existing information assets. 4- Accelerate the return on investment associated with information technology projects.

Courseware for Teaching

The courseware used in SYS-ED courses consists of student handouts, training aids, and industry-specific examples and exercises. The CETi knowledge base aggregates and analyzes information in the public domain. Content is added selectively to courseware. The long term strategy is to have our courseware recognized as a NRV: Nationally Recognized Vendor.

Distance-learning - Hands-on Mainframe Training Service

Technology Driven IT Training

IBM IMS Hierarchical Database
IMS Fundamentals Programming Skills
IMS Programming IMS System Administration

Program Development
Assembler Language
COBOL Language and Development Environment
PL/1 Programming


Web-based Training Services


Distance-learning Service Web-based Training Services
IBM Mainframe Environment
Mainframe Utilities VSAM
Db2 Fundamentals Db2 Database Design
IBM Web Enablement Software
IBM MQ: (WebSphere MQ) Java Language
WebSphere and Rational Development Platform

Grow Your Own IMS Programmers

There have been inquiries regarding whether SYS-ED still offered IMS courses for information technology professionals.

The typical comments were that:

1. It is extremely difficult to find IMS training which develops the specialized skills needed for application development and maintenance tasks.
2. There is a scarcity of IMS courses, 5 or fewer days in duration, geared to Fortune 1000 corporations and their employees.
3. A high percentage of IMS courses are cancelled.
4. Travel costs and living expenses in a majority of situations are a significant constraint when it comes to attending a IMS course.

In response to these questions:

IMS Training Services Yes, SYS-ED offers multiple levels of IMS training: Fundamentals, DB DL/1 Application Programming, and tailored courses.
IMS Training Services Yes, since 1980, SYS-ED has taught IMS programming courses and IMS training programs.
IMS Training Services Yes, we have the flexibility and resources to conduct personalized training for small groups.
IMS Training Services IMS courses are available in multiple formats: distance-learning, classroom instruction, and blended web-based delivery.

SYS-ED has been conducting courses in the public domain since 1980; however, there have been changes in the laws and regulations governing computer training in the state of New York. The schedule on our websites reflects a projected time frame for licensure with the New York State Department of Education - Bureau of Proprietary School Supervision and submission and approval of curriculum.

Professional Distance-learning Service

The distance-learning service is an extension of the SYS-ED schedule, inclusive of courseware and training aids. A distance-learning course is 65% lecture with pre and post course validation, review questions, examples, workshops, and website support services.

Teaching Models - Adult Learning Theory

Enrollment requires a consultation with the manager sending the employee for the training. The prospective trainee needs to be qualified for the course and service transmission to the client location tested: bandwidth, firewall, base operating system, software requirements, web browser, and set-up of hands-on machine exercises.

SYS-ED reserves the right to deny enrollment in its courses.

IMS Implementation, Application Development, and Administration

IBM has extended the software products used with IMS Transaction Server to model database schemas, streamline development, and improve system and database performance. The software integrates with IMS Tools for system resource and real-time database management. Interaction with IMS Tools previously had been through ISPF interfaces and JCL. The IBM Tools Base Administration Console can be used to design and deliver graphical user interfaces.

IMS Training Services IMS Training Services Internet Programming - Java Platform and Open Source Software

IMS Transaction Server

SYS-ED Clients
IMS Hierarchical Database Banking and Financial Services
Healthcare Providers

Java and Internet Programming


IMS Transaction Manager - Hierarchical Database

  Installation and Operations   Application Development   Database Administration Tools  
      Development Tools and Administration      
  IMS Control Center   IMS Enterprise Suite   IMS Tools for z/OS  
  IMS Type-1and Type-2 Commands   IMS Batch Terminal Simulator   IMS Configuration Manager  
  TSO SPOC: Single Point of Control   ADF-II: Application Development Facility   IMS HALDB Toolkit  
  DRD: Dynamic Resource Definition   Rational Application Developer   IMS Library Integrity Utilities  
  CSL: Common Service Layer   IBM InfoSphere Data Architect   IMS Online Reorganization Utility  
  IRLM: Internal Resource Lock Manager   InfoSphere Optim pureQuery Runtime - zOS   IMS Sysplex Manager  
      IBM Data Studio      
      Backup and Recovery      
  IMS Recovery Solution Pack   IMS High Performance Image Copy   IMS Recovery Expert  
  IMS Database Recovery Facility   IMS DEDB Fast Recovery   IMS Cloning Tool  
  IMS Performance Solution Pack   Performance Management   IMS Performance Analyzer  
  IMS Buffer Pool Analyzer   IMS Problem Investigator   Transaction Analysis Workbench  

IMS and Web Enablement Training Program

Personnel will learn the skills to maintain and transition IMS Transaction Server application in the z/OS mainframe environment: COBOL, VSAM, WebSphere/Rational, and WebSphere MQ. Some very experienced people will be learning web enablement technologies; while first generation IT staff will be using ISPF, JCL, and mainframe programming languages and IBM system software for the first time.

Program for Client A

  • Distance-learning will be used for operator training fundamentals and object oriented programming concepts.
  • SYS-ED classroom instruction will be used for IMS DB DL/1 Application Programming, VSAM for Programmers, and IMS: File-AID Batch courses.
  • The SYS-ED WebSphere MQ Application Programming will be taught using a distance-learning delivery medium.
  • IBM Education Center offerings will be used for WebSphere MQ Administration - operating system specific and specialized systems programmer training.

Based upon feedback, adjustments in scheduling will be made.

If required, the classroom instruction can have a distance-learning extension affording staff in remote locations to also have the training.

IMS Training Services

IMS Courses
SYS-ED's IMS Transaction server courses are tough, but they're worth it. Our IMS training is used by Fortune 1000 companies, government municipalities, healthcare providers, software houses, and consulting companies to meet their staffing requirements and acquire specialized skillsets.1

SYS-ED's IMS courseware library consists of sample programs, exercises, case studies, and training aids for use in IBM mainframe operating systems and third party emulation workbench/platforms.

Teaching is Our Business
Most computer training companies are divisions of large software companies or consulting companies. Not SYS-ED. Our only goal is to provide quality IMS training for motivated IT professionals. This independence allows us to concentrate on teaching.

Our Teachers Know How to Teach
SYS-ED instructors combine teaching skills with experience in the mainframe, client/server, and web server environments: operating systems, database, programming languages, third party utilities/development aids, middleware, and system software. After a course, they are available to answer questions.

Enrollment - SYS-ED IMS Courses are Not for Everyone
No one is allowed to enroll in a SYS-ED mainframe course, without a consultation with our Director of Education. We review the operational objectives and project specifications for the organization evaluating whether to send its employee for the training. The employee only is allowed to enroll if they have the background corresponding to the course.

IMS Training - Distance-learning or at Your Office
SYS-ED IMS courses are provided over the Internet through a distance-learning delivery medium or classroom instruction. Client location courses can include the same workshops and examples as the SYS-ED schedule.

Technology Exchange Websites

SYS-ED's websites compile, organize, and present software specific and established operational categorizations of information technology. They provide a framework for assessing knowledge transfer: web-based training, classroom instruction, technology updates, courseware, learning paths, and validation assessment.

Footnote 1:
SYS-EDís core IMS and mainframe curriculum have been submitted to the New York State Department of Education - Bureau of Proprietary School Supervision for technical review and licensing.