IDUG EMEA 2015 Day 3

So, Day 3 of this year’s IDUG Europe is in the books, and as usual it’s been a busy one. After all of the frantic activity leading up to Monday’s Triton/DBI party, last night the DB2 Geeks stepped it down a notch and visited the excellent F.X. Buckley restaurant for our traditional Tuesday night Triton team meal. Wow. Several of us (including a couple of VERY serious meat eaters) are on record as saying that was the best steak we’ve ever tasted, and one of the Geeks has gone so far to change his Facebook profile image to a photo he took of his ribeye! I’ll be making a beeline for this place when I’m next in Dublin.

Back at the conference, I’m enjoying my first IDUG in 18 years without any volunteer duties. John Campbell kicked off the day with his usual mix of great technical information and customer war stories, this time focusing on the CPU and elapsed time gains possible in high-volume OLTP applications by exploiting thread reuse and RELEASE(DEALLOCATE). Nothing particularly new here, but it’s surprising how many DB2 10 and DB2 11 customers are leaving some fairly easy performance gains unclaimed by failing to exploit this now that the DBM1 31-bit virtual storage constraints are a fading memory.

Another standout presentation was Bart Steegmans sharing his experiences with Recent DB2 for z/OS Customer Pain Points and How to Address Them. This presentation covered a lot of ground, but each of the case studies was relevant and contained important lessons for us all. Bart finished up with a nice section on exception-based monitoring that could easily have filled an hour on its own! I’m seeing more customers willing to invest in some sort of DB2 performance warehouse, but there are still too many that are not.

Next up was the DB2 Experts Panel, which I was honoured to be asked to participate in this year. The hour set aside for the panel just flew by, and for the first time I can remember we didn’t have time to address all of the pre-submitted questions. I believe that this is a direct result of the new IDUG mobile app making it so easy so submit questions, and we’ll have to work harder to prioritise the questions if this happens again in the future.

Final session of the day for me was courtesy of BMC’s Ken McDonald, who shared several tragically entertaining tales of woe in his “Recovery Tales from Experience” presentation. Ken’s career as a DB2 recovery / logging specialist has put him in a unique position to share some of the common traps that many customers fall into. I suspect most people left the room with a resolution to finally make the time to revisit and test those recovery jobs they wrote 5 years ago. I know I’ll be using some of his war stories as an additional incentive to help my customers focus on the importance of a solid backup and recovery strategy.

Tonight is the eagerly-anticipated IBM customer event at the Guinness Storehouse in the centre of Dublin, so there will be no shortage of the famous Black Stuff. As a keen advocate of bringing the conference here during my years on the Conference Planning Committee and the Board, and it’s great to see so many people enjoying all that this great city has to offer. I hope we return here again, and soon.

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