Morag's Quirks #1: MQ Error Message numbers

By Morag Hughson posted Tue March 27, 2018 12:00 AM

This is part of an occasional series of small blog posts where I (Morag) will write about some of the quirks in IBM MQ, in the hope of invoking the response, "Well, I didn't know that!" Read other posts in this series.

In IBM MQ V9.0.3, severity characters were added to IBM MQ message numbers as an optionally enabled feature, then in V9.0.4, the feature was on by default for everyone. Elliot Gregory wrote a blog post describing this feature at the time it became available.

In short, this feature appends a severity character to the end of the message number bringing the severity field in the message description right to the fore. The character is one of the following:-

Severity Character Severity Level Severity numeric value
I Information 0
W Warning 10
E Error 20
S Severe Error 30
T System error or termination 40 and 50

Morags_Quirks_1.jpgSomeone said to me:

"so they're now just like the z/OS messages?"

Actually not exactly.

Error messages on IBM MQ for z/OS also have a single letter code as the last character in the message number, that much is true, but the codes are not the same. These represent the type of response the message requires. The table below is replicated from Knowledge Center.

Type code Response type Response required
I Information only No operator action is required. However, certain messages may be significant - please review Console message monitoring for further information.
E Eventual action System operator action will be required; however, the associated task continues independently of system operator action.
D Immediate decision System operator decision or action is required immediately. The operator is requested to select from specific options, such as retry or cancel. The associated task does not continue until the requested decision has been made or action has been taken.
A Immediate action System operator action is required immediately. The associated task does not continue until the requested action has been taken.

As you can see, both tables include an "I" and an "E" and I think this is why people think that the letters have the same meaning, but as you can see they are somewhat different in meaning.

Morag Hughson is an MQ expert. She spent 18 years in the MQ Devt organisation before taking on her current job writing MQ Technical education courses with MQGem. She also blogs for MQGem. You can connect with her here on IMWUC or on Twitter and LinkedIn.