January 2021 Newsletter

This newsletter includes:

By now it is clear that 2020 was an unprecedented year, and 2021 has already been eventful. It is hard to say what will happen a month from now, much less a whole year! This is one of the reasons why we stress the importance of planning, preparing, educating, and having the right team. While we are all making resolutions to maximize our opportunities in the year to come, so are hackers resolving to increase their strength and productivity in 2021. So, if you’re making resolutions to improve your health and well-being, let’s not forget about the health of your systems.

Having a good security plan, backup strategy, OS & PTF Upgrade strategy, disaster recovery, and high availability are no longer nice to haves, but requirements. When you add encryption, performance, single sign-on, and learning about new features and functions, the average IBM i shop can quickly become overwhelmed.  This is where iTech Solutions can help you. Whether it is a block of hours, bringing us in for an individual project, or having us as your technical support team, we are here to help in so many ways.  We have the knowledge, experience, and know-how to help you with any IBM i project. Start the year off on the right foot, and give us a call.

Amazingly, we did 81 virtual events in 2020, with a total of 114 sessions. I don’t know another Business Partner who even comes close to that.  I had someone ask “Why?”  It’s simple. We love what we do, we are good at what we do, and we enjoy sharing our knowledge with the entire IBM i community.  We plan on continuing to be there for you this year and beyond, eventually in-person, but until then virtually.

We are having our second customer day event on February 10th.  The theme of the meeting will be IBM i 2021 and beyond, and we are delighted to have Alison Butterill presenting IBM i in 2021 and Beyond, and I will be presenting A Quick Review of 2020 and Looking Ahead to 2021. Afterward, we have some time for Questions and Answers with Alison and myself.  Plus we are taking everyone to lunch that day. While we can’t physically all be in a restaurant due to COVID, we will send everyone a $15 DoorDash or UberEats gift card to order their lunch for the meeting.  Looking forward to spending time with you that day.  If you haven’t registered please look for your registration or email Ron Dolan rdolan@itechsol.com for an invite.

2020 in Review 

A quick review of 2020 here at iTech. We took precautions like everyone else and tried to make the best of a bad situation. From a company perspective, we knocked it out of the park, even with all the COVID issues going on around the world. We increased our IBM i services and offerings, added significant staff, many new customers, and are continuing to assist our existing customers.

We started a very successful weekly webinar series, called Sips and Tricks with iTech when we all first went into lockdown.  It started with work from home issues, and morphed into everything IBM i, in short easy to consume 30-minute webinars. We added our spring and fall two-day iAdmin conference, which had over 1,500 attendees between the two.  We started the iBasics webinar series as a 14-week program to teach the basics of IBM i to System Administrators. We started our IBM i System Administrator Hangouts and had some great conversations. Also, not to be forgotten is the Women in IBM i sessions we did this year as well. We also had our first customer virtual luncheon, where we sent “lunch” to everyone and invited them to hear about IBM i and the future.

We continued to publish our monthly newsletters, blogs, IBM i video tips (we call them iTech iTips), and lots of our podcast episodes. These things are our way of helping our customers and the entire IBM i community enhance their skills and learn more about what is happening in “IBM i land”.  We look forward to continuing and expanding this trend. Our VERIFi products have also been enlightening many IBM i shops with a daily email of the health, security, and well-being of their machines. If there is anything that we do that doesn’t exceed your expectations, please contact me directly.


iBasics: IBM i Education for the Beginner System Administrator

I want to make sure you take advantage of our IBM i Admin Basics, referred to as iBasics.  It started on November 18th, but you can catch any sessions you missed On-Demand. It is a 14-week series. These weekly sessions will cover the basics of IBM i, helping new people be able to learn about IBM i System Admin. If you have someone in your company who would benefit from these, you can view sessions and register here. These will take place at 11 AM EST on Wednesdays each week, except for Holiday weeks. So the actual sessions will take about 20 weeks to cover the 14 weekly topics.

[ Register Here ]

End of Support for POWER7 and IBM i 7.2

People keep asking me what is going out of support and when. Let’s just summarize this. All POWER7 (B&C models) and POWER7+ (D models) machines are already no longer supported.  Then there is IBM i 7.2, which goes out of support on April 30, 2021.  It’s time to upgrade. We can get you into a new POWER9 with twice the performance than what you are paying for a few years of maintenance, which is a no brainer.  For less than the cost of one year of Extended Support for 7.2, we can do an OS Upgrade to either 7.3 or 7.4. Why are you waiting?

Here’s a video we created talking about the importance of moving off of IBM i 7.2:

IBM i OS Upgrade Resource Page

We’ve also created an entire IBM i OS Upgrade Resource Page equipped with eBooks, blogs, podcast episodes, and videos to help with your IBM i OS Upgrade journey, no matter where you are in the process. Check out the page here.

New IBM Storage Announcement Coming February 9th

Wait till you see what is coming from IBM Storage for your hybrid cloud and container environments. Mind-blowing performance and capacity in ONLY 1U, scale-up and scale-out capabilities, and up to 100% Data Availability. Join them on Feb 9th and see how IBM Storage is driving down your CAPEX and OPEX with robust, extensive enterprise benefits.

To register for the announcement, you can do so here. 

2021 IBM Power Systems Champions

IBM recently announced the IBM Power Systems Champions for 2021, and returning are Richie Palma and SteveIBM Champion Pitcher, as well as Lifetime Power Champion Pete Massiello.  It’s a great honor to be recognized as a champion, and amazing that a company our size has three IBM Power Systems Champions.

Here are our upcoming webinars: 

View our full PDF February Calendar Here

Stay safe, wash your hands, wear that annoying mask, and take care of one another.  I look forward to seeing everyone when this is all over at the many conferences we will be attending.

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