Intelligently Connected

3810 Pheasant Ridge Drive NE
Minneapolis, MN 55449

651.366.6140 / Toll-Free:888.340.2727

1. How does PDM control/secure access to the data?

Security credentials (USERID and PASSWORD) are obtained for both the sending and receiving systems. A separate task is created on both systems that performs the transfer operation, each running under the user’s supplied credentials. The existing security system on both the sending and receiving systems controls both the read and write data access.

2. How is the data protected during transport?

Parallel Data Mover provides an option for standard AES 256-bit encryption for additional data protection over TCP/IP networks.  Transfers over the z/OpenGate channel-based connection are inherently secure due to the Fiber Channel Security Protocol (FC-SP).  FC-SP is focused on protecting data in transit throughout the Fibre Channel network.  AES 256-bit encryption is optional.

3. What are the key differences between PDM and other file transfer products?

The key differences are the following:

  • Reliability – “It just runs!”, “I don’t have to think about it.” and “We chose Alebra to replace another solution because it’s more stable.” …are examples of user feedback that we receive.
  • High Speed – PDM is the fastest data movement product in the industry. Individual file transfers and many concurrent file transfers run at the maximum speed of the sending or receiving disk.
  • Efficiency – PDM requires 1/20th of the processing overhead as compared to traditional network data transfers.
  • Management Capabilities – thousands of file transfer operations can be managed effectively with limited human interaction.

4. Do I need to put the software on all my systems in the network?

PDM is only required on the source and target systems in the network.

5. Do all my systems need to have fibre-channel support?

No. Fibre-channel support is only needed for the z/OpenGate accelerator when the highest performance is desired for mainframe to distributed systems connections.  PDM supports standard network connections.

6. How do I open up support tickets? Can I do this on your web site? Please describe.

Support requests can be initiated via email or phone. Email requests are monitored during normal business hours (United States – Eastern Time Zone). Alebra Support will begin processing email requests received outside normal business hours the next business day. For all urgent requests, particularly those outside of normal business hours, customers should contact our 24/7 phone support line at 888-340-2727 for prompt assistance. Click here for additional Alebra Support contact information.

7. What operating system releases and platforms do you support?

Alebra supports all current and prior releases of the following operating systems, if the release is still supported by the operating system provider.

  • z/OS
  • Linux on System z
  • Windows
  • AIX
  • Solaris (SPARC)
  • HP/UX (Itanium)
  • Redhat and SUSE Linux (x86-64)

8. How can PDM be configured to allow for redundant transfer paths in case of some component failure?

The diagram below illustrates how two or more z/OpenGate accelerators can be configured to provide redundancy, fault-tolerance and pooled bandwidth between multiple mainframes and open systems servers.

z/OpenGate accelerators

9. How does the z/OpenGate work? What does it look like to LUW and z/OS operating systems? Do I need special drivers on the LUW system?

The z/OpenGate is an appliance that can be connected to a zEnterprise system to create an extremely high speed FICON to Fibre channel connection to open systems (Linux, UNIX, Windows) platforms.  The z/OpenGate performs 3 major functions:

  • FICON to/from Fibre Channel protocol conversions
  • Maps mainframe device addresses to/from the Fibre Channel logical unit number (LUN) address
  • Data buffering and flow control to drive maximum data throughput

On z/OS, the device addresses are generated as a Channel-to-Channel Adapter (CTCA). On LUW systems, the device LUNs are discovered as a tape device.

Parallel Data Mover is required on all attached systems to drive the transport. No additional software or drivers are needed.

10. What are your plans for 16Gb FICON and Fibre Channel?

Alebra is actively developing substantial improvements to our solution portfolio.  Among the many planned enhancements include utilization of 16Gb FICON and Fibre Channel connections to deliver the highest throughput possible and other performance improvements.  Stay tuned for upcoming announcements.