Craig S. Mullins 

Return to Home Page

November 2001


COPYTOCOPY: A New DB2 Utility for Version 7

By Craig S. Mullins

DB2 Version 7 introduces several new utilities and utility functions, one of which is a new utility called COPYTOCOPY. The purpose of the COPYTOCOPY utility is to make additional image copies of currently existing image copy data sets.

The primary benefit of COPYTOCOPY is to reduce the amount of time required to run the COPY utility. Remember that the COPY utility can be used to take up to four image copies with a single execution of the utility. But with COPYTOCOPY available, instead of using COPY to make four image copy backups, the DBA can use COPY to make a single image copy, and then run COPYTOCOPY to make additional image copies. The COPY utility will take less time to create a single image copy backup than it will to take multiple image copy backups. And the combination of COPY plus COPYTOCOPY can be used to increase availability.

When COPYTOCOPY is running the database object (table space or index space) being copied is placed in utility restricted read/write state (UTRW). This prevents other users from dropping the table space or index while COPYTOCOPY is running.

Individual data and index partitions are treated as distinct target objects by the COPYTOCOPY utility. Any other utilities operating on different partitions of the same table space or index space can be run concurrently with COPYTOCOPY.

The following utilities can not be run concurrently on the same database object as the COPYTOCOPY utility:

  • COPY

  • LOAD






Furthermore, COPYTOCOPY is flexible enough to run against any DB2 image copy data set. This includes inline copies made during the execution of the REORG and LOAD utilities. COPYTOCOPY must start with a primary image copy backup – either the local primary or recovery site primary copy. From that image copy, the COPYTOCOPY utility can make up to three copies of one or more of the following types:

  • local primary

  • local backup

  • recovery site primary

  • recovery site backup

Copies created by COPYTOCOPY can be used by the RECOVER utility just like regular image copies created using the COPY utility. Both table space and index space copies can be made using the COPYTOCOPY utility. Any DB2 utility process that uses image copy data sets can use the image copy data sets created by COPYTOCOPY. This includes MERGECOPY, UNLOAD, and subsequent runs of COPYTOCOPY. However, keep in mind that image copies created with the CONCURRENT option of the COPY utility are not supported by the COPYTOCOPY utility.

Just like the COPY utility, the COPYTOCOPY utility records information about the image copies that it creates in the SYSIBM.SYSCOPY system catalog table. The COPYTOCOPY utility will insert the values in the DSNAME, GROUP_MEMBER, JOBNAME, AUTHID, DSVOLSER and DEVTYPE columns as appropriate depending on the copies that are being created.

You cannot run COPYTOCOPY to create additional image copies for certain DB2 Catalog (SYSCOPY in DSNDB06) and DB2 Directory (DSNDB01 and SYSUTILX both in DSNDB01) objects. 

The COPYTOCOPY utility operates in these distinct phases:

  • UTILINIT – Initialization and setup

  • CPY2CPY – Copying the image copy

  • UTILTERM – Cleanup

Required Authorizations

To execute COPYTOCOPY, the process or user running the utility must have been granted one of the following privileges:



  • DBADM, DBCTRL, or DBMAINT for the database in which the index or table space resides

  • IMAGCOPY for the database in which the index or table space resides

The only exception to the above is for the DB2 Directory (DSNDB01) and the DB2 Catalog (DSNDB06). Any process or user having INSTALL SYSOPR authority can run COPYTOCOPY for table spaces in the directory or catalog.

TERM and Restart Issues

The use of the TERM command to terminate a COPYTOCOPY step that has abended is not recommended. A current restart should be done instead to allow COPYTOCOPY to pickup where it left off. Terminating COPYTOCOPY in such a situation might cause inconsistencies between the ICF catalog and DB2 catalog when GDGs are used.

You cannot use RESTART(PHASE) for a COPYTOCOPY job. It is fine to use RESTART(CURRENT) as long as you avoid using the -TERM UTILITY command to terminate a COPYTOCOPY step. When you use RESTART(CURRENT), COPYTOCOPY will restart from the last commit point with the same image copy data set, so be sure to code a data set disposition of DISP=(MOD,CATLG,CATLG) on your JCL DD statements.

Inline Copy Exception

When using COPYTOCOPY to copy an inline image copy that was made by the REORG utility with the part range option you will need to specify individual DSNUM for the partitions to be copied. The COPYTOCOPY utility does not support part range. COPYTOCOPY will copy only the specified partition data from the input inline image copy data set into the output image copy data set.


To run the COPYTOCOPY utility it is not necessary to provide the explicit data set name of the image copy being copied. Instead, the input to the COPYTOCOPY utility is the name of the table space, index space, or index for which the original copy was made, and an indication of which image copy in the catalog should be copied. To specify this information COPYTOCOPY provides three options:

  •       FROMLASTCOPY – indicates that the most recent image copy taken for the table space or index space is to be used as input to the COPYTOCOPY utility. The input could be either a full image copy or incremental copy. The utility will retrieve the information from the SYSIBM.SYSCOPY system catalog table.

  •       FROMLASTFULLCOPY – indicates that the most recent full image copy taken for the object is to be used as the input to COPYTOCOPY job. Once again, this information is obtained by querying the DB2 Catalog.

  •       FROMLASTINCRCOPY – indicates that the most recent incremental image copy taken for the object is to be used as the input to COPYTOCOPY job. FROMLASTINCRCOPY is not valid for index spaces or indexes. If FROMLASTINCRCOPY is specified for an index space or index, COPYTOCOPY will use the last full image copy that was taken for the index, if one is available. And once again, this information is obtained by querying the DB2 Catalog.

Of course, you may choose instead to specify the data set name for the image copy that is to be copied by the COPYTOCOPY utility. This can be accomplished by using the FROMCOPY clause. But keep in mind that when you are using COPYTOCOPY with a list of objects defined using the LISTDEF statement, the FROMCOPY clause is not valid.

If the FROMCOPY keyword is not used the COPYTOCOPY utility must determine which specific image copy is to be copied. Before COPYTOCOPY can execute it may have to choose between the local site primary copy, local site backup copy, recovery site primary copy, and recovery site backup copy data sets. COPYTOCOPY will search image copies in the following order to determine the input data set to be used:

  •       If you are running COPYTOCOPY at your local site, the search order will be (1) local site primary copy, (2) local site backup copy, (3) recovery site primary copy, (4) recovery site backup copy.

  •       If you are running the utility at your recovery site, the search order will be (1) recovery site primary copy, (2) recovery site backup copy, (3) local site primary copy, then finally (4) local site backup copy.

If the input data set cannot be allocated or opened, the COPYTOCOPY utility will try to use the next image copy data with the same START_RBA value in SYSIBM.SYSCOPY column, in the search order as indicated previously. When the FROMCOPY keyword is used though, only the explicitly specified data set can be used as the input to COPYTOCOPY.

An Example of the COPYTOCOPY Utility

Let’s take a quick look at a sample JCL job step to run the COPYTOCOPY utility. The following code can be run to make a backup local image copy of the table space DSN8S71E in the sample DB2 database DSN8D71A. This will be either a full or incremental image copy, whichever was last run for this object:

//         UTPROC='',
//         SYSTEM='V71A',DB2LEV=DB2A
//SYSIN    DD *
//         SPACE=(CYL,(15,1)),DISP=(NEW,CATLG,CATLG)
//SYSIN    DD *



Bottom Line

The COPYTOCOPY utility provides a useful new feature to the toolkit of DB2 DBAs. Using COPYTOCOPY to create additional image copies from existing image copies can enhance availability and assist DBAs in creating an optimal backup and recovery plan for their DB2 applications and databases.



From DB2 Update (Xephon) November 2001.

© 2001 Craig S. Mullins, All rights reserved.