It is not everyday that we announce a new release of WebSphere MQ. In fact past history has shown we typically bring them out every 2-3 years. So given we brought out an substantial new release – WebSphere MQ V7.1 in 4Q 2011, we clearly wouldn’t normally expect another release to be announced so soon – and certainly not today. But that is what we are very pleased to be doing.
Today sees the announcement of WebSphere MQ V7.5. But this is a different type of release. After all we did so many functional and performance improvements in V7.1, you wouldn’t expect to see more of the same. So we are doing something very different with this release.
WebSphere MQ V7.5 changes the way we are delivering not just the WebSphere MQ product, but the other related MQ offerings – WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition and WebSphere MQ Advanced Message Security. What this release does is it takes all those products, and together with WebSphere MQ Telemetry, it packages them together in a single offering – available through a single selectable install process. All the capabilities of the WebSphere MQ family are now delivered to every customer, making it easier to be aware of their capabilities, and to install them once entitlements have been purchased.
One of the changes that as made in WebSphere MQ V7.1 was to include the WebSphere MQ Telemetry capability as a chargeable component within the package – therefore ensuring that all customers had the function available if they wanted saw a need for it. Then all they would need to do is buy the additional entitlement for the chargeable component, and start building a solution to take advantage of it.
We have now taken the same approach with the WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition and WebSphere MQ Advanced Message Security products. These are being included in the WebSphere MQ V7.5 package as chargeable components. This means the price for WebSphere MQ itself is unchanged, but it increases the availability of these additional functions which are now simpler to add. Further to this we are now changing the name of WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition to WebSphere MQ Manafed File Transfer as we think this makes the function it performs much clearer – and instead of the two components being the Client and Server, they are now called Agent and Service.
There are some licensing changes as a part of this announcement, and these affect not just the WebSphere MQ V7.5 release but the previous releases – V7.0.1 and V7.1. One key change is to remove the charge for using the WebSphere MQ Extended Transactional Client. This client is used when you need the client/server connection to be performed as a transactional unit of work, taking advantage of a client side Transaction Manager. Unless the client side transaction manager was WebSphere Application Server, this client was previously charged as if it was a WebSphere MQ Server – from the date of this announcement there is no longer any charge to use this client – making it cheaper to connect up your application server farms to your WebSphere MQ environment for critical business information.
The second licensing change affects the WebSphere MQ Telemetry Client. Previously these clients have been charged on a per client connection to the server. So when a solution that used Telemetry clients was deployed – say connecting utility meters which would connect maybe once a day, a client would purchase entitlement for the maximum number of client connections that would connect to a MQ Server at any one time. It could be hard to predict this number of connections, and as deployment sizes increased, this additional charge could grow quite large. This pricing metric has now changed so that an additional flat charge is made for any MQ Server to which Telemetry clients will be connected, removing the cost per client and simply adding a very small cost on to each Server that will host these connections. This applies not just to WebSphere MQ V7.5 but also for WebSphere MQ V7.0.1 and WebSphere MQ V7.1. There is no change in the pricing or licensing for the WebSphere MQ Advanced Telemetry client.
We believe that these changes will bring in a new era of use of WebSphere MQ, allowing users to leverage more of their existing investment in WebSphere MQ through Managed File Transfer, Telemetry and also through end-to-end message encryption using WebSphere MQ Advanced Message Security. Previously these products were available with separate installers and could seem to be separate from WebSphere MQ itself – a particular problem on the distributed platforms – unlike the z/OS platform which has always been excellent at ensuring that products look and feel the same on that platform. Therefore with this release available for the distributed platforms, IBM has brought together all of its WebSphere MQ family offerings and increased their availability for customers, allowing all of us to move forward into this new era.
Just one more thing – if you are still using WebSphere MQ V7.0.1 or WebSphere MQ V7.1 – and you don’t plan to migrate for a while, you can of course start to use the existing function of the WebSphere MQ File Transfer Edition or WebSphere MQ Advanced Message Security products – as the separate products will remain in market – but bear in mind all future functional enhancements will be aimed at the new integrated offerings shipped within WebSphere MQ V7.5
If you are coming to Impact, you will no doubt hear a lot more about it, or ask me!