Session O424 - JES2: User Modifications

SHARE 73
August 21-25, 1989

The current JES2 mods tape is #90 (the most current version we have on hand is #82).

Don Baird from Prudential talked about his homegrown Xerox 9700 support (9700s are faster cousins of the 8700 and 4050 printers). Prudential has 54 of these at last count - scattered throughout their network and channel-attached via Paradyne PIX devices.

Prudential runs an external writer for each of their Xerox printers. That's 54 - count 'em - fifty four address spaces to support 9700s. Each address space requires 68K out of the common area, which works out to something like 3.6 megabytes of CSA if all printers are active. Yow!

Prudential precompiles most of their form definitions and stores them on the 9700 hard disk. These form definitions have six-character names. They specify the form definition name in JCL as the "writer name". They also indicate whether to print one-sided or two-sided in the "writer name" field. They fool with the BURST parameter to cause output datasets to be separated, and they specify OPTCD=J to indicate font indexing. Example: to print a dataset one-sided, using a JDE with the name "TSTFRM", with font indexing, they might specify:

           //SYSPRINT DD  SYSOUT=(A,TSTFRM),OPTCD=J
They allow dynamic form specification in the output datastream (called "DJDE" in Xerox parlance), but they security-check these (the 9700s are used for printing checks, and the printers have signatures stored on them - they don't want just anybody to write checks on demand). This is a good feature.

Now Don Baird is a super guy, and it's not my intention to run down what he's accomplished, but... we did most of what Prudential did, cheaper and faster. We implemented generic laser printer support, not just support for 9700s. We did it in JES2 exits, while Prudential did it in external address spaces. We use the standard operator interface, while Prudential had to implement new operator commands in order to control their printers. What Prudential did that we do not is security check output datastreams for acceptable DJDE commands. As I mentioned earlier this might be desirable, but our sensitive data (signatures and MICR fonts) reside on removable cartridges and are physically secured.

Chris Bytnerowicz (from NAS) gave a talk about a bunch of his exits and mods, but I didn't find much interesting here. I confess that I lost my love for NAS a few years ago when they tried to win my business by suing me for it.


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