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This Week @ the MC Press Bookstore

February 29, 2008 | Vol 5 Issue 9


In This Issue:

>> The CL Corner: Incrementing a Numeric Value Across Jobs
>> Better Spool File Management Can Result in Big Savings

Feature Article - Programming
The CL Corner: Incrementing a Numeric Value Across Jobs

You probably won't need Compare and Swap (CMPSWP) often, but when you do, you'll appreciate its high level of performance.

By Bruce Vining

There are some types of data, an invoice number for instance, that have characteristics such that the "next" value...

•     needs to be generated concurrently by several jobs,

•     needs to be unique within the application,

•     and is generally sequential in nature.


This type of data requirement historically has been satisfied with approaches such as using a data area (*DTAARA) to store and share the next available invoice number across the users of the application. While *DTAARAs work fine for this type of application, other options can provide this level of function at a much higher level of performance. One such option is the Compare and Swap (CMPSWP) Machine Interface (MI) instruction.


Feature Article - Application Software
Better Spool File Management Can Result in Big Savings

Automating reports and distributing documents electronically is both good for the planet and great for the bottom line.

By Chris Smith

We don't have detailed demographics on all our MC Press Online readers, but my guess is there aren't too many who were working on computers in the early 1960s when IBM coined the term "spool file."


The acronym stands for Simultaneous Peripheral Operation On-Line (SPOOL), but folklore has it that the name actually was conceived after the term "spool" came into widespread use, since a spool is what is used to wind magnetic tape.


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