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GFS/AFM is a z/OS tape library manager. It ensures that data on tapes is kept for as long as it is needed, then once a tape is freed up, it is correctly released back to a scratch pool so that it can be re-used for another application. It also automates the movement of tape volumes between security vaults and external tape libraries. GFS/AFM integrates with other external data managers such as TSM and DFSMShsm and supports most robotic tape and virtualization systems out on the market. GFS/AFM is designed to be highly available thanks to the elimination of the requirement for shutdowns for configuration or maintenance.

Installing a new tape management system can be a difficult process as you must ensure that tapes are retained correctly at all times. GFS provides conversion programs and services to easily and seamlessly migrate from pre-existing tape management systems to GFS/AFM.

Retention control is also not a simple matter, as modern tapes are high capacity and each tape will typically contain several datasets. It is essential that a tape is not released for scratch until every dataset it contains has passed their expiry dates. If a collection of datasets (or files) are copied together, one dataset may span two or more physical tapes. In this case it is important that the spanning file is recorded as exisiting on all its volumes, and none of these volumes are released for scratch until the spanning dataset has expired. GFS/AFM retention control is by dataset, not by volume so a tape will not be released for scratch until all the datasets on that tape have expired. GFS/AFM Advanced File Manager manages the use of multi-file and multi-volume chains. With GFS/AFM each volume is released individually, immediately after the content expires.


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GFS features

  • It is possible to control vault movement by relative GDG position. For example, retain the most recent, or (0) GDG onsite in case it is required, but move the next oldest (-1) version offsite
  • A single physical tape library can be split into logical partitions, with each partition dedicated to a different LPAR. GFS/AFM supports tape library partitioning, ensuring that as volumes are assigned to an LPAR, they cannot be overwritten by other LPARS.
  • GFS/AFM understands and integrates with DFSMShsm
  • No JCL changes are required if GFS/AFM is installed
  • GFS/AFM does not use a proprietary database and no database maintenance is required
  • 'No LABEL' or NL volumes typically come from other sites and do not have a label at the front of the tape. That label normally contains the tape volser and the final characters of the dataset names. Tape management systems use these to decide what to do with the tape, but if the tape does not have a label, then this information does not exist. GFS/AFM protects NO LABEL volumes so they are not inadvertently overwritten.
  • GFS/AFM can be used to initialise both Standard Label (SL) and NL volumes.
  • GFS/AFM supports LBI (Large Block Interface)
  • Compatible with TSO, VTAM, ROSCOE, COMPLETE, BATCH, and Console
  • GFS/AFM can be dynamically installed and configured, so IPLs are not needed for installation or changes. Daily operations can be executed using simple commands.

GFS/Web Interface Module

You can access and manage all your tape library information without needing a z/OS connection by using the GFS/Web Interface. All this needs is an interent connection and it gives you complete emulation of the mainframe environment on any web browser. You can produce reports, summaries, charts, graphs, and lists from data that is extracted in real-time from the AFM database. The reports include thinks like volume capacity, volume occupation, the percentage of MVCs used, provision of volume release, and the number of retensioned volumes.

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