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CICS/TS Webservices
Mainframe Training Overview

Interacting with the WEB is no longer an option. IBM has implemented a number of facilities in its CICS product to facilitate the integration of traditional CICS applications to the Internet. This is a process that started 5 years ago with the implementation of CICS/TS 1.3. CICS/TS 3.1 has continued this trend; today, CICS applications can talk to web browsers just as well as they can talk to web servers; with the introduction of web services and SOAP, they can also talk to UNIX and .NET platforms. All in all, CICS/ST 3.1 is now an important player in implementing Service Oriented Architecture in your organization.

In the first class, we covered basic functions of the CICS/WEB interface. This course will concentrate on the new facilities implemented in CICS/TS 3.1. We will discuss HTTP 1.1 support, CICS transactions acting as clients in a CICS/WEB scenario, XML, SOAP and webservices.


Mainframe Training Audience

Programmers, designers, system architects and system administrators interested in this subject. Please note that there are 5 exercises which will require a little programming; all exercises will be using COBOL program skeletons.

Mainframe Training Prerequisites

Some knowledge the CICS/WEB interface or the "CICS/WEB Programming I" course

Mainframe Training Course duration

4.5 days

Mainframe Training Course outline

 

Introduction

This section will provide a quick review of the web facilities available in CICS; it will discuss the CICS Business Logic Interface, CICS/WEB API, CICS DOCUMENT API and TCP/IP API that have been available for a while now. IT will also provide an overview of the various ways one can connect to a CICS system and provide some information on some of the products available in this area which could help you build a web application that will interact with your CICS systems.

HTTP 1.1 support

HTTP 1.1 opens new doors to CICS applications. We will discuss the new date format and the CICS commands that will help you get to these new formats, chunked and pipelined messages, virtual hosts, CICS URIMAP and TCPIPSERVICE definitions, new compliancy rules, new behaviour of the CICS Web Monitor transaction. The exercise will be about formatting dates so they can display in HTTP RFC format.

CICS Channels and Containers

This chapter describe the CICS/API commands related to implementing CONTAINERS in your CICS programs. We will discuss the GET, PUT and MOVE commands as well as providing information on how to browse through the list of CONTAINER names available within the CHANNEL. It will review existing CICS/API commands that can be used to pass CHANNEL to other programs, namely XCTL, LINK, START and RETURN. The hands-on exercise will consist on converting 2 programs which are using COMMAREA to CONTAINERS. This technology is required when writing webservice requester applications.

WEBSERVICE, SOAP and XML

CICS/TS 3.1 introduced WEBSERVICE and SOAP support; a brief overview of these facilities will be provided. Since these facilities rely heavily on XML, we will also discuss the tools that are available to programmers for dealing with XML messages.

CICS as a WEBSERVICE provider

In this section, the attendant will build the necessary objects that will make CICS a provider of webservices. We will discuss the webservice assistant DFHLS2WS in detail, review the parameter to the utility, the rules that the application program must follow in order to have a successful implementation. In this chapter, we will also introduce the concept of PIPELINE. The exercise will be about building a pipeline and preparing a server program which will be used as webservice provider.

CICS as a WEBSERVICE requester

In this section, the attendant will build the necessary objects that will make CICS a requester of webservices. We will discuss the webservice assistant DFHWS2LS in detail, review the parameter to the utility, the rules that the application program must follow in order to have a successful implementation. A review of the CICS commands available to the programmer to invoke a webservice will also be provided. The exercise will be about building a pipeline and preparing a requestor program which will invoke the webservice provider application prepared in the previous exercise.

Security

A brief overview of the security available in CICS/TS 3.1 will be provided; we will discuss the changes to SSL support, certificate revocation lists, behaviour changes of the EXEC CICS VERIFY PASSWORD command and the introduction of the support for TLS.



 
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