GFS/AFM is a z/OS tape library manager. It ensures that data on tapes is kept for as long as it is needed, then once a tape is freed up, it is correctly released back to a scratch pool so that it can be re-used for another application. It also automates the movement of tape volumes between security vaults and external tape libraries. GFS/AFM integrates with other external data managers such as TSM and DFSMShsm and supports most robotic tape and virtualization systems out on the market. GFS/AFM is designed to be highly available thanks to the elimination of the requirement for shutdowns for configuration or maintenance.

Installing a new tape management system can be a difficult process as you must ensure that tapes are retained correctly at all times. GFS provides conversion programs and services to easily and seamlessly migrate from pre-existing tape management systems to GFS/AFM.

Retention control is also not a simple matter, as modern tapes are high capacity and each tape will typically contain several datasets. It is essential that a tape is not released for scratch until every dataset it contains has passed their expiry dates. If a collection of datasets (or files) are copied together, one dataset may span two or more physical tapes. In this case it is important that the spanning file is recorded as exisiting on all its volumes, and none of these volumes are released for scratch until the spanning dataset has expired. GFS/AFM retention control is by dataset, not by volume so a tape will not be released for scratch until all the datasets on that tape have expired. GFS/AFM Advanced File Manager manages the use of multi-file and multi-volume chains. With GFS/AFM each volume is released individually, immediately after the content expires.

GFS features

GFS/Web Interface Module

You can access and manage all your tape library information without needing a z/OS connection by using the GFS/Web Interface. All this needs is an interent connection and it gives you complete emulation of the mainframe environment on any web browser. You can produce reports, summaries, charts, graphs, and lists from data that is extracted in real-time from the AFM database. The reports include thinks like volume capacity, volume occupation, the percentage of MVCs used, provision of volume release, and the number of retensioned volumes.

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Lascon updTES

I retired 2 years ago, and so I'm out of touch with the latest in the data storage world. The Lascon site has not been updated since July 2021, and probably will not get updated very much again. The site hosting is paid up until early 2023 when it will almost certainly disappear.
Lascon Storage was conceived in 2000, and technology has changed massively over those 22 years. It's been fun, but I guess it's time to call it a day. Thanks to all my readers in that time. I hope you managed to find something useful in there.
All the best