Much has changed in information technology since the turn of the millennium. New processing technologies, new platforms, and new databases have become part of a revolutionary information technology. The further development of the tcVISION solution takes this technological change into account. As a result, tcVISION is now one of the leading solutions for real-time, bidirectional data synchronization, replication, and data streaming. The tcVISION solution includes a variety of modern Change Data Capture technologies to capture data changes at the data source.
The objectives for using tcVISION have changed over the years. From gradual migrations of data, platforms, and applications in heterogeneous system environments to the coexistence of traditional mainframe-based IT and innovative cloud- and streaming-based solutions, modernization of existing IT infrastructures, and mainframe offloads to leverage real-time data in data lakes and data hubs for analytical processes and Big Data requirements.
Let's take a closer look at the classic areas of application and also take into account the IT developments of the last few years.
Migration and Coexistence
The constantly growing importance of relational databases in the first decade of the 2000s also led to a high acceptance of tcVISION by customers. In previous times parallel as redundant data storage was mostly rejected. Already during the design of the tcVISION solution the decision was made to support all relevant mainframe file and database systems with a change data capture technology. The first customers decided to use tcVISION to realize migration projects, i.e. to move data from VSAM, Db2, Db2/VM, DL/I, IMS, IDMS/DB, Datacom/DB and Adabas to Oracle, MS SQL Server and Db2 LUW (Linux, Unix, Windows). Important was the commitment of B.O.S. to support the two IBM mainframe platforms at that time still MVS (OS/390, z/OS) and VSE (z/VSE) equally and thus to offer a replication platform for all strategic IBM mainframes. The list of supported target databases quickly grew, and the requirements for coexistence and constant synchronization of data in a system environment with mainframe and distributed systems consequently led to the implementation of bi-directional data replication, which is still one of the most important areas of application for the tcVISION solution today.
Application Examples of tcVISION Customers:
Migration from DL/1 to Db2 with creation of a completely new database model and development of new applications. The daily changes (online and batch) of the DL/I databases are recorded by tcVISION in real-time and replicated to Db2. Additionally, the changes are buffered on VSAM in case Db2 is not available.
Service Data Center
Migration from IDMS/DB to Oracle and MS SQL Server and equal parallel operation (Master/Master concept) with bi-directional replication until complete migration. Special procedures had to be considered when importing changes into IDMS (DBKEY).
Bidirectional replication between z/OS IMS and Db2 z/OS and replications between Db2 z/OS and worldwide remote Db2 LUW installations
Migration of z/OS VSAM applications to Oracle by directly determining the changes and eliminating daily VSAM offloads, FTP of offloads and programmed loads to Oracle Savings of over 40% of the required batch processing time.
Modernization and Digitalization
For decades, the relational database was the tool for storing, managing and editing data. However, due to ever-increasing amounts of data and the requirement to move them from different sources, traditional SQL databases now quickly reach their limits. As a result, non-relational databases are moving more and more into focus. These include the NoSQL (Not Only SQL) databases (e.g. MongoDB, Couchbase, Elasticsearch, to just name a few).
Due to growing data volumes and the associated increase in data-intensive applications, indexing of large data volumes, streaming and applications, traditional relational databases (RDBMS) are increasingly reaching their performance limits. The classical and efficient use of RDBMS is given when frequent and small transactions or large batch transactions with few write accesses are available. RDBMS are only conditionally suitable for dealing with high data requirements and frequent data changes at the same time. NoSQL databases, on the other hand, are designed to handle many read/write requests with high performance.1
The growing importance of document-oriented databases (e.g. MongoDB), streaming platforms like Kafka, Azure Event Hub, JMS Pipes, MQ, cloud-based systems like Google, AWS, Azure, Oracle, IBM, T-Systems or data storage technologies like Data Lakes, HDFS, Hive, HBase, which are based on Apache Hadoop, is also considered in the further development of tcVISION.
More and more of our international customers use tcVISION in combination with these new technologies.
The focus of tcVISION customers is to modernize the existing IT infrastructure by integrating new technologies (cloud and streaming platforms), to reduce dependencies in the mainframe environment and to extend existing infrastructures with innovative technologies like Big Data Processing. The traditional ETL (Extract-Transform-Load) procedure for mainframe offload is no longer up-to-date and sufficiently performant in view of the increasing data volumes. Therefore it is time to replace this procedure with near-realtime replication methods using tcVISION. This will enable the use of real-time data in data lakes and data hubs for analytical processes and big data requirements.
Application examples of tcVISION customers:
A financial institution in Europe uses tcVISION to reduce mainframe load and associated costs by providing real-time data from the core banking system in a lower-cost system under Hadoop to drive read operations on the new infrastructure.
tcVISION is used to replicate the data and Apache Hadoop is used as a cost-effective system to store the data. This includes real-time event handling & stream processing, analytics on data available in real-time and the possibility to evaluate structured and unstructured data in a high performance way. The system is operated on commodity hardware at very low cost and is linearly scalable with practically no limits. The replication costs (CPU consumption) are very low and cost savings of up to 46% have been achieved.
tcVISION enables the customer to significantly reduce mainframe costs, while using very few resources even with logfile-based replication.
Service Data Center
A service data center for banks uses tcVISION to stream VSAM data and data from a Db2 z/OS to Kafka. There the data is processed by applications developed in-house.
The advantage for the customer is real-time replication on the mainframe and the focus of tcVISION on pure change data. In this way the volume of data exchange can be reduced to a minimum. Furthermore a high degree of synchronicity of the data on all platforms is guaranteed. The tcVISION solution makes it possible to realize latencies in the millisecond range for the data exchange.
tcVISION supports a large university with the request for a solution that allows to keep the university's legacy mainframe database running while replicating data in real-time to AWS (Amazon Web Services). By using tcVISION the university was immediately able to take advantage of some of the most advanced cloud tools and services in the world.
tcVISION enables the university to synchronize mainframe data with Amazon RDS for PostgreSQL. In addition, the bidirectional data synchronization in real-time allows changes on one platform to be reflected on the other platform (e.g. a change to a PostgreSQL table is reflected back to the mainframe database). The university is able to modernize the application to PostgreSQL without disrupting the existing productive mainframe process, and modern tools can now be deployed in the PostgreSQL environment, greatly improving business agility and solution growth.
tcVISION - Partner for all Platforms and Technologies
tcVISION is an extremely powerful and agile replication platform. It acts as the central supplier of data resulting from online processing on a mainframe system (CICS, IMS/DB, Adabas/Natural, CA IDMS) as well as transactional data from distributed applications and various cloud systems. Changes to the datasets on all platforms are captured by tcVISION in real-time (Change Data Capturing) and replicated to the target database systems or transferred as a data stream to a Big Data environment (Streaming).
The tcVISION solution is ideally suited to synchronize data on the traditional mainframe for all Z mainframe operating systems such as z/OS, z/VSE and z Linux with a variety of database systems in a distributed environment, a big data environment or cloud systems.
The tcVISION solution has proven itself in practical use at many customers around the world. The BOS team is characterized by its outstanding competence in the implementation of synchronization concepts and replication methods in a variety of application environments. The tcVISION solution is a database vendor independent solution and is not automatically paired to a given analytics platform. It therefore offers customers with a mainframe history and hybrid architectures the freedom to choose new technologies and platforms. tcVISION is a future-oriented technology that offers IT users independence from databases, platforms and solution providers.
An overview of all supported input and output destinations can be found here.