May 2019 Newsletter

This newsletter includes:

      Hectic. That is what the month of May has certainly been.  Well, perhaps hectic isn’t even close, it was “uber-hectic”.

      It seems like I was traveling more this month than I was home between conferences and customer visits. The good news is I was away at two of my favorite conferences in May: COMMON’s PowerUP19 conference in Anaheim and IBM’s Technical University in Atlanta.  I had the privilege of speaking at both, and we also had a booth at COMMON.  At both conferences, I had updated my sessions with 7.4 content and also presented “How to successfully Upgrade to IBM i 7.4”.  I have done over 25 upgrades to 7.4, in all different combinations virtual partitions, physical partition, new installs, installs from image catalogues and USB drives, and a few other types. There are a lot of cool new features in 7.4.   


      Quite a few people have asked me my opinion about 7.4, so here it is:

      “We have been in the IBM i beta program once again for 7.4, and it has been rock solid since the first installation/upgrade that I have done. I would say this release is just as solid as the previous releases and I will be recommending to our customers that this release is ready for production use on day 1 of General Availability (GA), June 21.  I have been going through all different upgrade paths and procedures, and I have yet to have any problems. The instructions were good, the documentation easy to understand, and the processes for upgrade have been flawless. I must have done about 25 upgrades already, using various different scenarios, and I am impressed.
      When we first saw the release notes, we thought everything would be centered around Db2 Mirror for i, but to myself and my teams surprise, we have enjoyed learning about all the new functionality in the release. Actually, we have been amazed by all the new functions and features. It has been 3 years since 7.3, but it looks like it has been worth the wait.”

      iTech was well represented at the at COMMON’s PowerUp19 Conference, as we had a lot of great IBM i presentations from Richie Palma, Steve Pitcher, Yvonne Enselman, and myself. Laurie LeBlanc and Rick Marcotte also at the conference, and they were mainly managing the booth. It was great to meet so many people who stopped by our booth in the expo and wanted to talk to us. It’s probably one of my favorite parts about going to a conference, which is meeting and talking to everyone. We had a video we played during the conference about what we can help you with, and then after the conference, we created a recap picture video of iTech at the conference. We also recapped the conference in a blog, as well as a podcast

      How to Upgrade IBM i 7.4

      If you didn’t get a chance to be at one of the conferences, we are doing a webinar on June 5th on “How to Successfully Upgrade to IBM i 7.4.  I know there are a few seats still available. 

      We have a Virtual Day of IBM i Education set for Wednesday, June 26th from 10am to 5:00pm EDT. 

      It’s free and a great way to learn tips, tricks, and information you need to know to successfully run your IBM i shop. With one registration you can attend the entire day or just sessions that pique your interest. Our sessions include:

          • IBM i and Our False Sense of Security
          • Cool Things in Navigator to be a Rockstar System Admin
          • Live IBM i Q&A
          • Anatomy of a Bad Password
          • Moving from Classic HMC GUI to Enhanced GUI
          • IBM i in a Modern Compute Environment

      We have quite a few other conferences and events coming up, and for those of you who came to last year’s baseball games, you all told me you had a great time.  Educational, informative, and fun was the consensus. 

      So, this year once again we are doing “9 innings with Power9”.  We will have a quick update on POWER9 and IBM i 7.4, and then we will sit back relax, have a few beers and hot dogs while we enjoy the game.  Our first game is next Thursday in Schaumburg Illinois.

      There is more info on the baseball games below, I hope to see you at a local game.

      So, I have to ask you a question now. Look at all the technical education we are providing not just for our customers, but the entire IBM i community. How is your Business Partner helping you leverage your investment in IBM i? What are they good at?  Bringing donuts to meetings doesn’t count.  If you want to work with an IBM Business Partner who knows and understands IBM i, then I think it is time to switch to iTech Solutions.  We might not always bring donuts to your meetings, but we certainly do help you with your IBM i & Power Systems issues.

      We have an exciting new few months ahead of us, and I am looking forward to it.  If there is ever a question you have, or would like to talk just reach out to me via email or phone.

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