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MQSeries.net Forum IndexGeneral IBM MQ SupportWho designs your MQ architecture?

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fswarbrick
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:58 pm Post subject: Who designs your MQ architecture? Reply with quote

Apprentice

Joined: 07 Jul 2014
Posts: 33

First, a couple of notes:
    - Our z/OS mainframe hosts our MQ queue managers (one production and one test/dev)
    - We currently have only two applications that utilize MQ:
      1) One case where an on premise inhouse built Java application uses MQ to communicate with an off premise (remote queue manager owned and managed by a business partner) application. I believe their QM is on Windows and I don't know what their application server is, but I don't think it matters.
      2) One case where an inhouse supported CICS application uses MQ to communicate with an on premise but off mainframe Java based vendor application.

My point in describing our environment is to make it known that we really don't use MQ that much at this point. Because of this we don't really have anyone who is truly responsible for the design of the MQ environment. The first setup was, I believe, architected by someone who is no longer with the company; and those who are (nominaly) in charge of the application don't seem to have a great understanding of the existing architecture. Perhaps I am being too hard on them, but that is my impression.

The second one I was pretty heavily involved in the design, as I am the application developer/architect responsible for the CICS side of the house for this application. Even then I was learning as I went along, as was the admin in charge of installing and configuring the (Java) vendor application.

From the "MQ admin" side of the house, the same z/OS System Progammer was responsible for setting up all of the queues and the like for both projects. But he didn't have (I believe) any MQ experience before we bought MQ, so he was also learning on the job. And now our mainframe is "in the cloud" (zCloud) so all of our sysprogs were assigned new (non-mainframe!) roles and the cloud vendor "manages" MQ. Yet even there, we are supposed to tell them what we need and they simply implement it. They're not involved in any of the design.

The environment is stable now, and working well, but we have a third application coming up and its all kind of defaulted to me to design the MQ portion, even though I am not an MQ admin nor am I actually working on the application that will use MQ. But no one else has stepped up, so here I am. I somehow managed to get myself MQ admin rights in our test/dev environment, so at least I can test out my "theories" of how things should work rather than just making guesses after reading some manuals. So with that, and after having set up MQ on my home laptop, I've become fairly comfortable with this support. But in the end it truly "isn't my job".

So I am wondering in other shops, what are the roles of the various groups that have to interact with MQ? Does the MQ admin take the lead and get requirements from the application groups? Or does MQ admin simply implement what some other role (who?) asks them to implement?

I keep nudging management to hire a dedicated MQ resource, but with the fact that the cloud provider insists (from my understanding) on actually being the MQ admin, there really wouldn't be much work outside of projects for this dedicated MQ resource to work on.

Anyone have any thoughts on how a shop such as ours might best "manage MQ"?

Thanks!
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gbaddeley
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:26 pm Post subject: Reply with quote

Jedi

Joined: 25 Mar 2003
Posts: 2146
Location: Melbourne, Australia

It looks like you have a fairly small MQ landscape, so a in-house dedicated MQ admin is probably not justified. The responsiblilty will probably fall on someone else, such as a z/OS sys prog or CICS support, who then becomes the "MQ guru", whether they are enthused about it or not.

I would be wary of vendors managing MQ, as they will do the minimum required to keep it running, and not invest any time in improvements or building an enterprise MQ architecture, unless that is part of their brief.
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fswarbrick
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:32 pm Post subject: Reply with quote

Apprentice

Joined: 07 Jul 2014
Posts: 33

Thanks for the reply. That's kind of the problem. Our cloud provider insists (if I am understanding correctly!) that they be responsible not only for the installation of the CICS and MQ systems (and z/OS, of course), but also the day to day admin of those environments. We no longer have in-house system programmers. Since they don't work directly for us I have a hard time seeing them in a design/architecture role. So it doesn't sound like your idea, while a good one, is going to work in our case.

FWIW, the cloud provider is IBM...
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gbaddeley
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:51 pm Post subject: Reply with quote

Jedi

Joined: 25 Mar 2003
Posts: 2146
Location: Melbourne, Australia

What are the MQ messaging requirements for the third app? We may be able to cut through the mountain of MQ tech and provide pointers on best practice design.
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fswarbrick
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2020 4:05 pm Post subject: Reply with quote

Apprentice

Joined: 07 Jul 2014
Posts: 33

gbaddeley wrote:
What are the MQ messaging requirements for the third app? We may be able to cut through the mountain of MQ tech and provide pointers on best practice design.


We've got this new one pretty well in hand. I'm just concerned on a going forward basis. Honestly, I am OK taking this responsibility myself, but I kind of just "fell in to it" because I seemed to me the only one with knowledge and willingness to do so, and I kind of need to be convinced that it really is appropriate for me, as an application developer/designer/analyst to take on this role.
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fjb_saper
PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:44 am Post subject: Reply with quote

Grand High Poobah

Joined: 18 Nov 2003
Posts: 20382
Location: LI,NY

fswarbrick wrote:
gbaddeley wrote:
What are the MQ messaging requirements for the third app? We may be able to cut through the mountain of MQ tech and provide pointers on best practice design.


We've got this new one pretty well in hand. I'm just concerned on a going forward basis. Honestly, I am OK taking this responsibility myself, but I kind of just "fell in to it" because I seemed to me the only one with knowledge and willingness to do so, and I kind of need to be convinced that it really is appropriate for me, as an application developer/designer/analyst to take on this role.

As an application developer / designer / analyst it should be in your purview to determine interactions with the messaging system, use of disconnected hand over etc... As MQ expert for your company you are then in the unique position to define the need and check if it can be satisfied and how to implement it.... Welcome to agile development...

Enjoy
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