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Maintenance Philosophy for CA's z/OS-based Products

CA Technologies formerly delivered product maintenance using Service Packs. We have replaced this model with CA Recommended Service (CA RS) for z/OS, which provides more flexibility and granular application intervals. CA RS is patterned after the IBM preventive maintenance model, Recommended Service Upgrade (RSU). With CA RS, you can install preventive maintenance for most CA Technologies z/OS-based products in a consistent way on a schedule that you select (for example, monthly, quarterly, annually, and so on).

We recommend that you develop and implement a proactive preventive maintenance strategy whereby you regularly apply maintenance. You could follow the same schedule that you use to apply IBM maintenance, or you could implement a schedule for CA Technologies products only.

Keeping your products current with maintenance helps your team remain productive and minimizes errors while safely protecting your systems. If you do not install preventive maintenance regularly, you risk encountering known problems for which we have published and tested PTFs.

Our mainframe maintenance philosophy is predicated upon granting you the flexibility to maintain your sites and systems in a manner that is consistent with industry best practices and your site-specific requirements. Our philosophy focuses on two maintenance types. Understanding each of these types can help you maintain your systems in the most efficient manner.

Note: This philosophy applies to the CA CSM Installable products. For legacy products, contact CA Support for maintenance details.

Corrective Maintenance
Helps you address a specific and immediate issue. This type of maintenance is necessary after you encounter a problem. CA Technologies may provide a test APAR if a new problem is uncovered, or a confirmed PTF if the problem has already been resolved. Your primary goal is to return your system to the same functional state that it was before you experienced the issue. This type of maintenance is applied on an as-needed basis.

Preventive Maintenance
Lets you apply PTFs that CA Technologies has created and made public. You may or may not have experienced the issue that each PTF addresses. CA RS provides a way to easily identify published maintenance that has been successfully integration-tested with other CA Technologies products, current z/OS releases, and IBM subsystems such as CICS and DB2. CA RS levels are published monthly and include PTFs, HIPERs and PE-resolving PTFs. After you test the CA RS level, we recommend that you accept the level prior to applying a new CA RS level.

You can initiate a maintenance installation activity at any time, and install the current CA RS level of maintenance (recommended) or an earlier level. In addition, you may want to install maintenance to support a new hardware device, software upgrade, or function using our FIXCAT method.

For all maintenance, before you initiate any maintenance action, obtain the current SMP/E HOLDDATA.

Important! CA Chorus™ Software Manager (CA CSM) - formerly known as CA Mainframe Software Manager™ (CA MSM) - is an intuitive web-based tool that can automate and simplify many CA Technologies product installation and maintenance activities. We strongly recommend that you use CA CSM to maintain your CA Technologies z/OS-based products.

More Information:
For a high-level overview of the steps to apply maintenance, see Maintenance Procedure Overview.

For the detailed steps to apply preventive maintenance using CA CSM or from CA Support Online on, see your product Installation Guide.