Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Fun with DB2...

Today I spent most of my day accomplishing very little. Our test environment for Identity and Access Management largely consists of a pretty beefy Dell server with loads of memory. We're running VMWare GSX Server so all of our test servers are VMs. I figured building a Linux server and downloading all the necessary software should be a simple enough task and largly it was except for a few issues getting software.

I am always remided why the world will be slow to adopt Linux on the desktop. After having the Linux server all set I needed to download all the Tivoli Identity Manager software from the IBM Passport site. It sure would be easier if IBM would make this stuff available via FTP. I generally build my Linux servers to boot to run level 3 since most of it's real use does not require a GUI. But when you download all the components needed for ITIM it's about 2.7GB of software and at least 6 or 7 components so using the Download Director is preferred. Problem is that requires the Java plugin for the web browser which in my case is Firefox. Of course with Linux installing this plugin is completely manual. BTW, I'm using SLES 9. OK so finally got beyond that point and downloaded all the software to the server.

Next, try and figure out what software is what when the downloaded files are cryptic names like C485PLZ.tar.gz. The ITIM documentation requires that you install DB2 8, WAS, TDS, and the TIM components. DB2 and WAS needs to go first since TIM will need to see that they exist. I'm planning to install everything on a single server for this first test to try and keep things as simple as possible although that's almost funny given this software. My first attempt at installing DB2 essentially failed due to the poor documentation. The DB2 accounts were created and I chose to use the db2 Install script instead of the wizard only because I didn't feel like running X Windows. I figure what the heck the text mode installer should work fine. Problem is the ITIM documentation didn't specify how to do this so I referred to my handy IBM Press book Understanding DB2. Nice book, but the section on installing DB2 shows you how to install DB2 using the install script, but after your done nothing works. It does not create an instance for you. When you try to run the db2fs to verify the installation I just got an error unable to find command: db2javit. WTF? Maybe I have to specify the PATH properly? Who knows. Moving forward I decided to see if I could create an instance. That worked, but DB2 would not start and still the db2fs did not work. The silly IBM Press book does not clearly show you how to do everything required to install and make db2 work with using the Install Wizard. So after burning several hours on this, I will resort to trying again tomorrow using the GUI.

BTW, I actually do have experience installing DB2, but by installing TDS and of course there was a wizard that sort of walked you through everything. Oh well maybe more success tomorrow.

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