Monday, July 1, 2013

DB2 v11 – expected timeframe & features

Although IBM does not provide an exact schedule for their new versions of DB2, one can guess that DB2 v11 will be available pretty soon, probably in Fall 2013. Indeed, looking at a the release schedule of DB2 over the last 15 years, you will notice that IBM releases a new version of DB2 consistently every 3 years, and that the support of each version lasted 8 years – with the exception of DB2 version 8, which had an additional year of support. Worth mentioning as well, it’s no secret that the IBM development labs transitioned several years ago to an Agile development methodology. This method which tends to fix schedule (date of delivery) over amount of features delivered, and tends to make new version delivery cycles very predictable.

I represented this graphically, with my best guess of dates for DB2 v11 :


Only members of the ESP program (Early Support Program) of IBM have the chance to see what new features are really in DB2 v11 (with ~monthly drops of new features (Agile Rally)), but some clues are given by IBM on their official marketing ESP page. In addition, IBM representatives gave more specific details during several DB2 Regional User Groups since a couple of months. Let’s summarize the information here:

IBM DB2 marketing materials:

DB2® 11 for z/OS® expands the value delivered to your business by IBM's industry-leading mainframe data server in the following ways.
  • Help save money, save time, and reduce costs
  • Provide unmatched availability, reliability, and security for business critical information
  • Provide enhanced analytics for business growth
  • Offer simpler, faster migration for faster ROI
Selected features that deliver these valuable benefits to your business include:
·         CPU reductions and performance improvements for certain online transaction processing (OLTP), heavy insert, select query workloads, and when running queries against compressed tables
·         Improved-data sharing performance and efficiency
·         Improved utility performance and additional zIIP eligible workload
·         Cost-effective archiving of warm and cold data with easy access to both within a single query
·         Intelligent statistics gathering and advanced optimization technology for efficient query execution in dynamic workloads
·         Additional online schema changes that simplify management, reduce the need for planned outages, and minimize the need for REORG
·         Productivity improvements for DBAs, application developers, and system administrators
·         Efficient real-time scoring within your existing transaction environment
·         Enhanced analysis, forecasting, reporting, and presentation capabilities, as well as improved storage management, in QMF™
·         Expanded SQL, SQL PL, temporal, and XML function for better application performance
·         Faster migration with application protection from incompatible SQL and XML changes and simpler catalog migration

Additional information from User Groups’ events:

As seen at the SQLAdria event in Croatia in June 2013, IBM Curt Cotner presented “Future Directions for DB2 for z/OS” which highlights the following “DB2 11 Major Themes”:

Performance Improvements
– Improving efficiency, reducing costs, no application changes
– 0-5% for OLTP, 5-15% for update intensive batch
– 5-20% for query workloads
– Less overhead for data de-compression
– Exploitation of new zEC12 hardware features
Continuous Availability Features
– Improved autonomics which reduces costs and improves availability
– Making online changes without affecting applications
– Online REORG improvements, less disruption
– DROP COLUMN, online change of partition limit keys
– Extended log record addressing capacity (1 yottabyte)
– BIND/REBIND, DDL break into persistent threads
Enhanced business analytics
– Faster, more efficient performance for query workloads
– Temporal and SQLPL enhancements
– Transparent archiving
– SQL improvements and IDAA enhancements
Simpler, faster DB2 version upgrades
– No application changes required for DB2 upgrade
– Access path stability improvements
– Product stability: support pre GA customer production

Some of these features look very interesting such as the Extended RBA and LRSN addressing and the transparent archiving via IDAA.

A word of caution: The following statements regarding IBM plans, directions, and intent are subject to change or withdrawal without notice at IBM’s sole discretion.

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