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December 11, 2009

(E)JES users,

The purpose of this letter is to alert you to an issue, with potential for service interruption, in (E)JES releases V4R6 and V4R7.

(E)JES is designed to allow licensed customers to temporarily operate the product in an unlicensed environment. This mode of operation is known as Disaster Recovery Mode or DRM. The number of hours or days allowed for DRM execution varies depending upon the reason for the license failure. For example, an MSU overage is allowed for seven days; running with an unrecognized CPU serial number is allowed for one day only.

Disaster Recovery Mode is provided as a convenience to allow uninterrupted operation—albeit with persistent warnings—while customers work on their systems in an emergency. Customers are expected, at their earliest convenience, to obtain a license string with an embedded 7, 14, or 21-day grace period, from the Phoenix Software International web site, to suppress the DRM warnings and resume normal operation.

Recently, it was discovered that (E)JES can erroneously set the DRM start time even when everything is normal. This presents a potential problem for some customers because there will likely be no DRM time remaining if a real MSU overage occurs. With no DRM time remaining, an MSU overage will cause (E)JES to stop functioning until a license string with embedded grace period can be installed.

An MSU overage can occur when using any of IBM's Capacity on Demand (CoD) offerings. In addition, customers with sub-capacity licenses can experience an overage simply by setting the defined capacity of a licensed LPAR or z/VM guest to a value higher than the licensed amount.

The following service, recently delivered to address Disaster Recovery Mode issues, is referenced in this letter:

FixRef Release Date Serv-Item PTF
DRM001 V4R7 Oct 07 v470.0001 PEJ0639
V4R6 Oct 07 v460.0013 PEJ0640
DRM002 V4R7 Dec 10 v470.0003 PEJ0647
V4R6 Dec 10 v460.0015 PEJ0648

DRM001 surfaces the date/time Disaster Recovery Mode was last started via the new DRSTART= element within the output of the LICSTAT command. With this support in place, customers can see if they are exposed to the problem described by this letter. The presence of the DRSTART= element in the LICSTAT command output indicates the exposure exists. If DRSTART= is not present in the LICSTAT output, you are not exposed.

DRM002 ensures that (E)JES no longer erroneously sets the DRM start time.

Phoenix Software International recommends the above service be applied to your systems as soon as it is practical to do so.

For customers exposed to the problem, there are two ways to reset the DRM start time:

  1. Re-IPL the system with DRM002 applied.
  2. Install a new license string on a running system with DRM001 applied. Do not fall back to any older license. Be sure to also apply DRM002 to avoid a repeat exposure after the next IPL.

You can request a new license string from our automated system at: http://www.phoenixsoftware.com/grace_codes/lcejes.htm

We regret any inconvenience this situation might cause.

(E)JES Technical Support
Phoenix Software International, Inc.