IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe Edition - November/December 2011 - (Page 44)

Tech Corner Programming, systems operations and more Managing and Programming APIs Systems Director SDK leverages language-independent REST By David Egle ecently I installed a new digital video recorder at home. After reading the instructions and unwrapping the components, I realized I’d be adding yet another remote control to my collection. Sure, I could go to the store and purchase a universal remote for all of my media devices, but I really liked the layout of the one I have. If only I could integrate the new remote’s function into it. The concept of customization and extending function is also a big part of the software industry, particularly in the systems-management arena. After you gain familiarity with a particular systems-management interface, it would be nice to know you could extend its functionality. Maybe you’d like to use data from one piece of software in another program, or integrate a new program into the console interface. Enter the IBM Systems Director* Software Development Kit (SDK), a powerful set of APIs and command-line interfaces that let you maximize control of your computer network and harness the power of Systems Director. to provide a single point of control, reducing IT-management complexity and cost. The Systems Director SDK documents a set of Representational State Transfer (REST) APIs that provide a consistent, easy-to-use mechanism for accessing and interacting with Systems Director server data. (It also provides a way to integrate Web applications into the Systems Director interface.) First released with Systems Director 6.1.2, the REST APIs let you discover, request access, collect inventory, monitor events, execute tasks, retrieve managed resource data from Systems Director, and more. The APIs allow for programmatic interaction with Systems Director, providing a means to retrieve information from the server and create new resources (e.g., jobs, inventory profiles or dynamic groups). R REST as an elegant, standard and simple software architecture style based on HTTP. RESTful APIs are used in a stateless client-server topology, where information about the client’s state isn’t stored on the server. Important to REST is the concept of resources and relationships, addressed via HTTP uniform resource identifiers (URIs). The standard HTTP methods GET, POST, PUT and DELETE are used to manipulate RESTful resources and relationships. (The concept of a RESTful resource shouldn’t be confused with a managed resource within the context of a Systems Director managed environment, which might include servers, blades, storage devices, etc.) For Systems Director REST APIs, the representational format used to exchange data is JavaScript Simple Object Notation (JSON). JSON is a simple data-interchange format that allows for easy reading and information separation. More information about JSON can be found online ( Systems Director SDK Systems Director enables the discovery and management of many devices and third-party management platforms REST and JSON Technologies Before learning about the Systems Director REST APIs, it’s important to understand REST software architecture. Roy Fielding defined Gathering Information The Systems Director REST APIs provide access to many RESTful resources. A discovery resource can be created to initiate a discovery of one or more network systems. An inventory profile resource can be queried to 44 22 N OV E M B E R / D ECE M B E R 2 011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe Edition - November/December 2011

IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe Edition - November/December 2011
On the Web
Editor’s Desk: Cool Again
Insider: With the Right Strategy and Tools, Businesses Can Capitalize on Big Data
IT Today: New IMS 12 Offers Flexibility and Support for Business Growth
Focus on Storage: IBM Health Checker Adds Features to Maintain Best Practices
Trends: Emerging Enterprises Know System z Can Help Them Compete Globally
Cover Story:The Mainframe is Entering New Markets and Encouraging New Uses
Feature: System z Delivers a Solid Platform for Mission-Critical Business Applications
Feature: Speed and Scalability Give the z196 the Extra Kick to Excel at Any Workload
Developer: While Critical to Success, Project Scoping Is Often Overlooked
Tech Corner: Systems Director SDK Leverages Language-Independent REST
Resources: Advertisers’ Index
Stop Run: Miguel Gallego’s Love of Building Things Led Him to a Career as an IMS Enterprise Architect
Reference Point

IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe Edition - November/December 2011