iTech Solutions - for all of your IBM i System needs

April 2019 Newsletter

A Word from iTech Solutions President, Pete Massiello.


Last Tuesday morning I wrote in a tweet “It’s a good day to be an IBM i customer”.

Someone replied, “Isn’t every day a great day to be an IBM i customer?”  I can’t argue with that. But last Tuesday was IBM announcement day, and who  doesn’t love announcements? Especially new releases of IBM i.

Three years is certainly a long time coming, but I think the wait was well worth it, especially when you hear what IBM i 7.4 contained.

Internally, we have been calling this iNext for the longest time, and it is great to be able to call it by its real name and not have to remember to use “iNext” as we couldn’t say 7.4 until announcement day. This release is packed with lots of cool new features and functions, the biggest is certainly Db2 Mirror for i, a synchronous replication for continuous availability for customers who can’t afford any downtime at all.

Basically, we have two IBM i partitions (preferably on different Power machines in the same computer room), connect these two systems with very high-speed Ethernet connection called RoCE, and then the two systems appear as one database spread across the two systems. This is an active-active configuration, where the database operations happen synchronously across the two systems. Updates can follow in either direction, and this appears as one database being hosted on two different machines. 

I won’t go into all the details here about the new release, as I wrote a blog with many of the details you will need to know, and we provided a video which you can watch to get a good overview of many of the new features and enhancements. As I play with 7.4, I am finding new things every day. There are two additional releases currently being planned after 7.4, and I know from my trips to Rochester they are actively working on iNext already. You can now see the expected release dates, and the support roadmap below. 

Support for IBM i is going out past 2031!!!!  Tell me one other operating system with a roadmap that long?[CONTINUE READING]


Updated IBM i Roadmap



Read Pete's Full Article 

This newsletter includes:


[Blog] What You Need to Know About IBM i 7.4

If you remember in a statement about my predictions for 2019, I said that the next release of IBM i would contain some of the biggest enhancements ever put out by IBM for OS/400 or IBM i. 

Well, it is now announced and being unwrapped today, and IBM i 7.4 (formally known as iNext) comes out with Db2 Mirror for IBM i, Synchronous Replication for Continuous Availability as the biggest enhancement.  This is very very cool technology, not just cool, even better than very cool, this is crazy cool technology.  It’s not the only thing being delivered, but certainly the biggest part of 7.4. While the announcements are today, April 23, 2019, the software currently has a General Availability of Friday, June 21.

When I think about IBM i 7.4 and all that is in the release, it has been a long time in the making.  Having been to the IBM Development Labs in Rochester, MN quite a few times over the past few years, I know that IBM has been working long and hard on bringing this release out. Since the database is so integrated into the operating system, almost every part of the operating system had to be touched to add this enhancement. [CONTINUE READING]

Read Full Artcile 


[Live Webinar]

May 9th | 1 PM ET

7.4 Things You Need to Know About 7.4

Join Pete Massiello as he gives you a heads up on some of the things you need to be aware of with IBM i 7.4


Topics include:

  • What machines support 7.4

  • Which Consoles are supported on 7.4

  • Increasing License Internal Code Space – how to get ready

  • Preparation PTFs that would be needed on 7.2 & 7.3 to upgrade your machine

  • NetServer file share issues to be aware of

  • Changes to SSL & TLS to start thinking about

  • What supported version of the following work with 7.4

    • Java

    • Domino

    • WebSphere

    • MQ


[Live Webinar]

June 5th | 1PM ET

What You Need to Know to Successfully Upgrade to IBM i 7.4


Join Pete Massiello as he gives the details on how to successfully upgrade to IBM i 7.4.


When doing an upgrade to IBM i, there is more work involved in the planning of the upgrade than in the actual upgrade itself. When you have done the planning, the actual upgrade is simple. We will cover planning tips, pre-requisites, and then post-installation requirements. Your upgrade isn’t complete until this last step is done. 



IBM i 7.4 Tip #1: Save Changes 

pete_LP2Someone asked me what my favorite item was on IBM i 7.4, and I thought, “Well, that is a tough one”. 

I thought instead of picking one, I would start a series over the next few months covering my favorite tricks and tips with IBM i 7.4.  

This was one request that I had put in as a Request For Enhancement (RFE), so I thought this would be a good one to start our series.

Have you ever needed to do a full system save, and after the save is complete, you don’t want the system to restart all the jobs?  So, what you wind up doing is standing there waiting for the Save 21 to complete and as soon as it does cancel the startup job or do a ENDSBS *ALL? [CONTINUE READING]

Read Full Artcile 


[Video] New Features of IBM i 7.4

Click to Watch Video

IBM has just released the new IBM i 7.4. Here are some helpful features you may want to know about the most exciting release yet.


Power Hardware Age Calculator 

Let us know the make/model of your system, and we’ll calculate the following:

Age of current server
IBM Announcement Date
IBM General Availability Date
IBM Marketing Withdrawal Date
IBM Service Discontinuation Date
IBM i (First supported release)
IBM i (Last supported release)
Most Current IBM i Release

[Calculate Now]

Webinar Replay:
Rapid Fire Admin 

Topics include:

This overflowing session is designed to help ensure every IBM i administrator and operator has at least a backpack full of valuable tips for when they return home. From command line to shell to IBM Navigator for i, Steve will sprint through these tips at a pace of at least two tips per minute, for at least 150 tips! This session is updated every quarter with new and relevant information so that you don’t miss good foundational tips but are keeping up with what updates IBM is releasing on a regular basis. 

[Watch Replay]


Upcoming Events 

IBM Technical University
April 29th – May 3rd | Atlanta, GA


Learn About Tech U


 Join Pete for the following sessions:

  • What you need to know to successfully upgrade to IBM i 7.3 & IBM i 7.4
  • Step-by-step guide to creating IBM i partitions hosted by IBM i
  • Cool things in Navigator for IBM i to make you a rock star system administrator
  • Tips and tricks to saving disk space and improving performance
  • Moving from HMC Classic GUI to the new enhanced GUI



POWERup19 – COMMON Conference
May 19th – May 22nd | Anaheim, CA


See Details on POWERup 19


We’ve created a page with all of our sessions and details about the event. 
Learn about iTech and POWERup19.

See Our Sessions

How We’re Giving Back (And how you can help)

Visit the iTech Booth


Did you attend NEUGC? Watch our recap video of the event!

[Watch the Video]


Additional Upcoming Events:

LISUG in Long Island
MiTech in Michigan
COMMON Europe in Germany
Ocean/400 in Southern California.
Release Levels and PTFs

Release levels and PTFs



Below is a table of the major group PTFs for the last few releases. This is what we are installing for our customers on iTech Solutions Quarterly Maintenance program.

  7.3 7.2 7.1 6.1 V5R4
Cumul Pack 18242 18249 17192 15063 12094
Tech. Refresh  5 9 11    
Grp Hipers 82 145 241 210 204
DB Group 14 24 43 33 33
Java Group 12 20 35 41 34



It’s Working Fine. Why Do I need to Upgrade My IBM i?

Read the Blog


Questions to Ask Yourself When It Comes to Backup and Recovery

Read the Blog


5 Things to Consider When Selecting a Cloud Provider 

Read the Blog


IBM Offers Hardware Support Extension


Read the Blog

iTech Tip Videos

Installing Open Source Utilities Using IBM Access Client Solutions

With 5733-OPS Open Source Solutions now deprecated, it’s important to know the modern and far more rewarding method of installing open source software on IBM i.

Watch Video >


Set up a LIC macro for summarizing encrypted information

If you’re currently using any type of network encryption and want to understand the protocols in use, you can easily do this with a LIC macro. This is quite handy especially if you’re looking at turning off a less secure protocol like TLS 1.0….[Read More]

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