ZMF 8.1 – Minimum z/OS Version for ISPF Connection

When preparing for our ZMF 8.1 upgrade we have obviously all checked the Serena Support site – OEM Software Compatibility information here (you need to be logged into the Support website to access this link).  And from this we understand that z/OS 1.12 is the minimum supported operating system. 
However, we all know that we can always fire up ZMF on an earlier z/OS level and it will just about always work, right?  Well, no, that is not the case with ZMF 8.1.  
As a part of the ISPF CUA standardization effort implemented in ZMF 8.1, extensive use of ISPF )INEXIT functionality has been made.  This ISPF processing is only available in z/OS 1.11 and later versions.  Attempting to access the ZMF 8.1 panels from a pre-z/OS 1.11 system will result in ISPF errors, such as (but almost certainly not limited to) the following:
Short message: Panel 'CMN@PRIM' error.
Long message: A panel section is out of order or has already been defined.
So, the upshot of this situation is that currently only z/OS 1.12 and later versions are actually fully supported for use with ZMF 8.1.  However, and even just to take a sneak peak at ZMF 8.1 in action, an absolute minimum of z/OS 1.11 is required or you will never be able to access ZMF through this interface.



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