Friday, May 29, 2015

Bluemix: Combining the Cloud App with my On-Premise DB2 Using the Secure Gateway

Bluemix Secure
Another Friday, another opportunity to have some fun with Bluemix and DB2. Today, I fiddled with the Secure Gateway service that enables everybody to combine cloud-based applications with internal, on-premise services. It kind of is the building block to create a hybrid solution or, how it is sometimes called, to link systems of engagement (cloud apps) with systems of record (enterprise database systems like DB2, hosted in your own data center). After this introduction, let the fun begin...

Monday, May 11, 2015

My DB2 pureScale / Parallel Sysplex Moment

Last week, members of the German union for train operators/engineers were on strike and only a fraction of trains were operating. I had to go to Zurich, Switzerland, but most of the trains on my usual route were out of service. That's when I had my DB2 pureScale or DB2 Parallel Sysplex moment.

What is special about a DB2 Parallel Sysplex or DB2 pureScale configuration? It is a data sharing cluster. If one node in the cluster or a network connection goes down and is inaccessible, the other components can pick up the work. All this is usually transparent to the application. In my case I was the application and data at the same time: Try to get me to Zurich, discuss some issues in person, get back home.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Using dashDB or DB2 with Apache OpenOffice (or LibreOffice)

Yesterday evening, I had some time on my own and didn't want to read. Why not surf in the Internet? That's why there are services like YouTube or Bluemix where you can spend hours without too much thinking...  :) I ended up fiddling with dashDB on Bluemix and building reports with my local OpenOffice. Here are the details of my evening activity.

Run query against dashDB in Excel
When I played with dashDB, a fully managed data warehouse service, I came across the "Run Query in Excel" button. That button shows up in the web-based query interface where you can compose SQL queries and execute them against the dashDB database. I got curious because my Linux machine only has Apache OpenOffice installed. ODC (Office Data Connection) files are not supported (yet) by OpenOffice and LibreOffice, but the programs offer the component "Base" as database (front-end) similar to Microsoft Access. So why not try to hook up the cloud-based dashDB and my local OpenOffice? This can be done using a JDBC connection.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Dealing with DB2 Security and my Stupidity...

Today I wanted to test some options around encrypting DB2 backups and restoring encrypted database backups. I can report that the security features work, only my stupidity (or call it "vacation readiness") caused some delays.

In my previous blog entries I already showed you how to create an encrypted DB2 database using the new "native encryption" and how to rotate the master keys using built-in procedures. Next in my list to test was taking an encrypted database backup. It is pretty straight-forward, just call BACKUP DATABASE and add the ENCRYPT option:

[henrik@mymachine]$ db2 backup database enc1 encrypt

Backup successful. The timestamp for this backup image is : 20150504135739