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October 29, 2007

More DB2 9 Fundamentals Certification Exam Tips

Continuing on the theme of DB2 certification, let's return to the planning section of the exam 730, "DB2 9 Fundamentals." This section requires you to understand what tools are available, so we'll review them and the menu options they fall under within the DB2 Control Center.

Tools included with DB2 free of charge are grouped into the following:

DB2 command-line tools:

  • Command Editor--GUI front-end to edit and save scripts containing DB2 commands.
  • Command Line Processor (CLP)--DOS window gives you a DB2 command prompt. All commands entered are assumed to be DB2 commands. Operating system commands must begin with "!"--!HELP, for example, displays a list of DOS window commands.
  • Command Window (CW)--DOS window with option to invoke DB2 commands by prefixing them with DB2 (e.g., DB2 GET DBM CFG).

DB2 general administration tools:

  • Control Center (CC)--Central command center used to launch the other DB2 tools, including Replication Center, Satellite Administration Center, Command Editor, Health Center, Journal, License Center and Configuration Assistant.
  • Journal--DB2 stores messages related to task history, database history, messages issued and notification logs.
  • License Center--Displays the status of your license and usage information.
  • Replication Center--Administers replication between a DB2 data server and other relational databases (DB2 or non-DB2).
  • Task Center--Allows you to run tasks immediately or schedule them. You can also notify people when a task has completed.

DB2 information:

  • Check for DB2 Updates--Find and download fixpacks.
  • Information Center V9--Access the latest DB2 documentation online.

DB2 monitoring tools:

  • Activity Monitor--Helps monitor database activity to improve performance.
  • Event Analyzer--Analyzes resource usage at the time of the event.
  • Health Center--Monitors the state of DB2 and takes necessary action to resolve the issue and notify you of the problem.
  • Indoubt Transaction Manager--Resolves transactions that are in an in-doubt state.
  • Memory Visualizer--Displays systems memory allocations by instance.

DB2 set-up tools:

  • Configuration Assistant (CA)-- Configures client/server communications.
  • Configure DB2 .NET Data Provider--Supports ADO.NET development.
  • Default DB2 Selection wizard--Sets the default DB2 copy on your server that applications will connect to by default.
  • First Steps--Great jump-start feature for quickly building a sample database and getting updates. Includes technical information and general help documents.

The tools have some basic functions that you should be aware of, including Generate DDL, Show SQL, Show Command, Show Related, Filter and Help.

Also included with the tools are wizards, which help take you through the steps of accomplishing a task and make recommendations on answering questions. Wizards are available through both the Control Center and Configuration Assistant.

Control Center wizards include Add Database (catalog existing database), Create Database, Backup and Restore Database, Create Tables, Create Table Space, Configure Two-Phase Commit, Configure Database Logging, Update Documentation, Setting up High Availability Disaster Recovery (HADR) and Tuning Performance.

Think of advisors as wizards on steroids. These intelligent services process complex algorithms to provide advice based on input from workloads or statistics. Advisors are part of IBM's autonomic computing effort, which aims to make software and hardware SMART (self-managing and resource tuning). You can call advisors from the GUI, APIs or the command-line interface. Advisors are included free of charge in all DB2 editions, including DB2 Express – C.

The two primary advisors are the Configuration Advisor and Design Advisor. A third, DB2 Recommendation Advisor, is found in the Health Center.

The Configuration Advisor can set instance or database-level configuration parameters based on answers to questions. These parameters can be tuned for OLAP or BI workloads.

A new advisor in DB2 9 is the Self Tuning Memory Manager (STMM), which automatically tunes shared database memory working set.