Towards Simpler Software Maintenance

CA & IBM Team Up for a Common Approach

Recently at SHARE Sacramento, CA and IBM announced a groundbreaking partnership to simplify z/OS software maintenance for system administrators, system programmers and security administrators. Under this partnership, CA will give to IBM  key service capabilities (installation of PTFs) from its Mainframe Software Manager (MSM), to become part of IBM z/OS Management Facility. This cooperation between CA and IBM provides a foundation that IBM, CA, and ISV’s including BMC and Compuware can use to provide further improvement and simplification to the installation process of PTF’s for z/OS software.

CA has been a leader in this space since 2008 with the release of MSM, which consistently rates highly with customers in satisfaction and rankings.  MSM was designed and developed in partnership with dozens of customers. MSM is a “no charge” software product, with the capability included in the maintenance charge for any CA customer with an active license for a CA Mainframe product. It provides a simplified install experience for acquisition, installation, deployment, configuration and maintenance of the CA Mainframe product set.​ Now, with this collaboration with IBM, CA is fulfilling its vision for a common standard across the z/OS ecosystem. This drives value for the entire ecosystem, as a common software install standard is an imperative both for the customer experience as well as for driving desired business outcomes such as simplification, cost reduction, improved efficiency and addressing the skills challenges faced by Mainframe shops.

The goal in the long term is that all CA Mainframe products including Mainframe management and analytics, Mainframe security and Mainframe testing tools, will be installed, maintained, configured and deployed via the IBM z/OS management facility. In the short and medium term, customers should expect no changes to the way that they currently maintain software using MSM. We continue to make improvements, for example delivering the capability for CA SMP/E Internet Service Retrieval in January 2018, designed to shave hours of time off of common maintenance activities. As we move towards the IBM z/OSMF standard, there will be clear communication and notification to customers on the timeframe for and the steps towards the transition to the IBM z/OS Management Facility.

Which leads us to our ask of you, the community of Mainframers and vendors. We can’t succeed in achieving a common software management experience without a team effort. That’s why I’m inviting all of you reading this to join us. We are actively looking for volunteers from our clients and from the ISV community to provide input during the design process in order to deliver a better experience for all. To get involved, reach out to me at david.stokes@ca.com.


David Stokes
David Stokes is Vice President & Business Unit Executive for CA's Mainframe business unit. David…

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