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IBM i newbie

  • 1.  IBM i newbie

    IBM Champion
    Posted Sat April 09, 2022 01:48 PM
    I'm in a position now where I need to learn some IBM i basics (how things work, hardware solutions, some basic commands, etc.).  

    What's the best way to start?

    Kevin R. Geekevin/at/kevingee/dot/org | +1 469-777-8275

  • 2.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Sat April 09, 2022 02:02 PM
    Kevin, welcome to the club.
    Tthat's actually a tough question, though you wouldn't think so.
    But there it is: a legacy system presided over by a small, often insular community of longtime geeks.
    You know what I'm talking about because apparently you come from AIX ... which, though insular, is at least Unix.

    • There are (mostly old) books.
    • There are mountains of online documentation that's a somewhat difficult to search.
    • There are courses (paid).
    • There are discussion groups.
    • There are mailing lists.
    Here's a question for you: How urgently do you want to learn?

    If this is business critical, I'd suggest you get your org to join the COMMON user group and you attend COMMON POWERUp 2022 in New Orleans LA May 23-26, 2022, for a dive into IBM i off the deep end.

    Total immersion. Nothing like it. See you there.

    Jack Woehr
    IBM Champion 2021 -2022

  • 3.  RE: IBM i newbie

    IBM Champion
    Posted Sat April 09, 2022 03:19 PM
    Thx - as you said, I'm AIX and Linux and virtualization and HA/DR and lots of storage software and other things.

    Background - a new IBM BP has cannonballed into the pool (no dipping toes).  Working on strategy first, understanding what we should config and sell right now, then 2-3 years from now, then some basic hands-on, although my role is architect, not operator/sysadmin.  I have a long history with other BPs and clients, but not on the IBM i side.  


  • 4.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Sun April 10, 2022 11:29 AM
    @Kevin Gee -- Gotcha.

    Again, COMMON membership a good thing, among other benefits, access to excellent training videos. Sounds like it's biz-critical and time-critical to you, so that, plus lots of search engine hours and reading may be in order!

    Some links:

    And if you need to farm out some support to the experts, there are organizations, among them the one I consult to, Absolute Performance, Inc, with man-decades of experience on the platform and a stellar roster of successes.​

    Jack Woehr
    IBM Champion 2021 -2022

  • 5.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Mon April 11, 2022 04:42 AM
    Edited by Satid Singkorapoom Mon April 11, 2022 04:46 AM
    Mr. Kevin

    Seeing that you worked with IBM BPs selling Power Systems before and is now taking additional or a new responsibility in covering selling Power Systems with IBM i, I see that the first group of crucial information to rely on is IBM Sales Manual for all Power Systems you want to sell.  If you already know about how to access this, then it's already a good start.  If you read some part of a Sales Manual for a Power model that has to do with IBM i and could not understand it or need a confirmation, please ask a question in this group.  I have been AS/400 technical sales with IBM since 1991 and just retired this January and will try to help with any future questions you may have.  

    Next group of crucial information is IBM i specific public URLs that describe many IBM i sales rules and offering. You need this as IBM i has many more licensed program products, sales rules and offerings than AIX or Linux on Power Systems.  If your future questions on IBM i would benefit from this, I will supply you or ask you to you try Googling for it.  

    As for good introductory sources of IBM i, I would say some books from MC Press Bookstore can be informative for you :

    If you can subscribe to newsletter from web site, you will get familiarized with many industry aspects of IBM i as well. This site also have a good archive of past newsletters.

    Welcome to the group.

    Satid Singkorapoom

  • 6.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Tue April 12, 2022 04:13 AM
    Here is a link to all the IBM i license topics (IBM i license transfer, virtual serial number, backup licensing etc.):


    Sabine Jordan
    Technical Sales Power Systems
    IBM Deutschland GmbH

  • 7.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Mon April 11, 2022 07:48 AM
    I have to agree with Jack.  Any BP worth their salt will be at
    And it's a tremendous learning experience.

    Robert Berendt

  • 8.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Wed April 13, 2022 09:23 AM
    Hi Kevin,
    In addition to what others have supplied, for a newbie an awareness of the existence of the System Planning Tool (SPT) might help. Never particular popular with the AIX community but it will enable you to get your head around designing an i solution particularly when LPAR is being used and you have different versions of the OS involved. Might be considered a bit long winded.
    The System Storage Interoperation Center (SSIC) can also be helpful, but I tend to always double check with the IBM Documentation (previously known as Information Center & Knowledge Center) as sometimes I've found little errors. You just have to wait a couple of secs after making a selection for the other selections to re-populate. 
    Also talk to your Distributor to see what i skills they have, as they might be able to help.  

    Jerry Watson

  • 9.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Mon April 11, 2022 06:51 AM
    Hello Kevin,

    This is the entry point to IBM official documentation for the IBM i System (lastest version 7.4)

    Good luck

    Fernando Plaza
    IBM i System Administrator

  • 10.  RE: IBM i newbie

    IBM Champion
    Posted Tue April 12, 2022 02:52 AM
    Hi Kevin

    Welcome to the IBM i family.  You've already had some great suggestions.  I would also take a look at YouTube, there are many of us who have tried to create some content on there to walk people though various aspect of the system.   

    As an example, I've create half a dozen of videos that are designed to be introductions to various topics which you will find on the YouTube's RowtonIT channel but there are loads more, on many topics.    Just search YouTube for IBM i and hopefully you will be pleasantly surprised. 

    If there is a topic that you can't find but are interested in learning about, drop a note on here and I'll see if I can point you at something more specific.

    I would also suggest you find your nearest local IBM i User Group, these are a fantastic resource and good fun to attend. 

    Hope to see you an IBM i event one day.


    Steve Bradshaw Friendly Techie Bloke

  • 11.  RE: IBM i newbie

    IBM Champion
    Posted Wed April 13, 2022 02:48 AM
    Hi Kevin, welcome to our community! 
    You are surrounded by people who wants to help other to understand this brilliant platform better. You've already got some great advice but I would like to give two more tips. This link is a great place to start looking for content. It is regularly updated (which is not always the case). 
    Another tip is my own daily newsletter about IBM i. Maybe you will not learn the basics but you will learn about what is happening in the community, you will see which communities are active and so on. One person wrote to me subscribing to this newsletter was one of the best decisions he made in his new IBM i career. 
    You can learn more about the newsletter here:

    Good luck!! And make sure to join a local user group a.s.a.p. That is pure gold for sure.. 

    Torbjörn Appehl

  • 12.  RE: IBM i newbie

    Posted Wed April 13, 2022 08:13 AM

    Several people have already mentioned COMMON, but I did not see reference to their Boot Camp Training series.  It's free to watch as of this year if you are a member (or your organization has a corporate membership). There are three tracks: System Admin, Programming, and Security. I got thrown into the deep end on IBM i, so I've found it very helpful to go back and get a more formal introduction.  

    Lori Austin

  • 13.  RE: IBM i newbie

    IBM Champion
    Posted Thu April 14, 2022 03:58 AM
    Hi Kevin,

    The people at iTech Solutions do a great job in education and have a huge set of on-demand, and live videos available on their website. The newsletter is very useful too.

    Welcome to the community, and very best of luck to you.


    Ash Giddings