IBM i Jeopardy…The Category is AnyNet i 7.1 Support: The Answer is No and Yes

As shops prepare to upgrade from i5/OS V5R4 to i 7.1, some people may have questions about AnyNet capability on the i 7.1 operating system. Specifically, is AnyNet still supported in i 7.1 and can you access it in i 7.1?

The answers are no and yes. Here’s what’s happening.

AnyNet is a method IBM uses to run SNA communications traffic over a TCP/IP network. AnyNet has been a staple of IBM communications for a long time but IBM is phasing it out starting with the i 7.1 operating system. IBM had made a statement of direction a few years ago saying that:

“AnyNet support is also available in V5R3 through V6R1, however, IBM plans to withdraw support of AnyNet in the release following V6R1; customers currently using AnyNet should start to move to Enterprise Extender in preparation for this.”

Enterprise Extender is the replacement product IBM is offering to handle displaced AnyNet applications. Reading that statement, you would assume IBM is withdrawing AnyNet functionality in version 7.1 and beyond.

That would be a wrong assumption.

All of the previous AnyNet functionality is still available in i 7.1, and chances are good that it will even work if you try to use AnyNet in 7.1. But being available and being usuable isn’t the same thing as being supported. While you can still access and use AnyNet in 7.1, IBM no longer supports AnyNet usage in 7.1.

See the distinction? AnyNet can be used in i 7.1, but it isn’t supported. If you call IBM for help on AnyNet in i 7.1 or run into a situation that needs a patch, Big Blue won’t be able to help you and they will tell you to move to Enterprise Extender.

Dawn May, the the technical lead for the IBM i Systems Software Development organization and an IBM i Business Architect, had a nice column on AnyNet 7.1 support a few years ago. Her column also provides a few nice links for information on Enterprise Extender.

So hopefully that answers that question. Be aware that AnyNet is there but beware if you use it.


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About Joe Hertvik

Joe is the owner of Hertvik Business Services, a service company providing written white papers, case studies, and other marketing content to computer industry companies. He is also a contributing editor for IT Jungle and has written the Admin Alert column for the past ten years. Follow Joe Hertvik on Twitter @JoeHertvik. Email Joe for a free quote on white papers, case studies, brochures, or other marketing materials.
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