Swift, precise software development requires sufficient access to environments necessary for performing daily activities, such as learning, prototyping, editing, compiling, testing, and debugging. And with the push towards DevOps, the need for on-demand access to environments is vital.
Yet mainframe development shops are sometimes impacted by insufficient z/OS access and control to enable them to rapidly spin-up and tear down the z/OS environments necessary to adopt DevOps practices such as test driven development and continuous integration.
The IBM z Systems Development and Test Environment (zD&T) provides an emulated IBM z Systems architecture environment on Linux, x86 processor-compatible platforms. This compatibility enables teams and individuals to perform z/OS development, test, employee education, and application demonstration activities in a lower cost, flexible, isolated and controllable setting. zD&T is the only offering on the market that:
- Delivers a high fidelity z Systems environment for developing and testing with current z Systems software: zD&T emulates z Systems hardware, in contrast with the z Systems software emulation offered by others. This enables z Systems middleware (eg z/OS, CICS, IMS, etc…) to run unchanged on zD&T, providing unmatched application portability and compatibility. The technology that powers zD&T is z Personal Development Tool (zPDT), which supplies z System processor (CP) operation emulation of various I/O devices. This means that all the functions (instructions and I/O) needed to run current z System operating systems are provided. zD&T’s functional compatibility minimizes rework required when applications move from unit test and functional test on zD&T to the quality assurance or preproduction environment on the mainframe. Other vendors offer z/OS software virtualization, which requires an “off host” recompile and requires re-validation when moved back to the mainframe, increasing overall compile and test effort, which increases risks.
- Includes starter z/OS software distribution: zD&T gives you access to current levels of z/OS plus 50+ IBM z/OS middleware products so that you can try new z/OS software capabilities without impacting mainframe resources. This z/OS software stack is underpinned by IBM DevOps for the Enterprise development, test, and deployment tooling, such as IBM Developer for z Systems, Debug for z Systems, Rational Team Concert, and UrbanCode Deploy Agent for z/OS Workloads. Performing investigation, experimentation, and verification on zD&T first can reduce costs and speed time to market.
- Is developed in lock step with the z Systems hardware: The underlying zPDT technology and the next generation hardware are developed in parallel. Prior to z Systems hardware being available, zPDT gives the IBM z/OS and compiler development teams access to an environment to develop and test new architectural implementations. And in turn, zD&T, running z/OS on commodity hardware offers you an economical and agile way to experiment with and take advantage of current z Systems hardware and software capabilities.
With recent updates that include:
- Cloud friendly, software-based licensing
- More frequent z/OS software stack updates
- Ongoing beta development of tools to ease creation of zD&T images (check out the preview)
zD&T delivers additional capacity for mainframe development, test, and learning on commodity hardware that can easily be virtualized and reset, providing a sandbox environment that development teams crave, and agilistas recommend. To learn more about zD&T, click here.