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IBM Supersession Access


Provides enhanced logon processing which allows concurrent access to multiple application systems for people using the McMaster IBM mainframe computer. With the use of "hot keys" you can go from application to application without having to logoff and logon again.

In order to access the IBM mainframe, your PC or terminal must first be connected either directly or via a network. When connected, the McMaster University Service Selection screen is displayed. Available facilities and their associated function keys are:

  • Restricted Access - Press PF1
  • Public Services - Press PF9
  • Help - Press PF10
  • News (about the IBM environment) - Press PF11
  • Press a PF key to select the service you require.
  • If you pressed PF1 at the Service Selection panel, the Supersession Validation panel is displayed. Key in your userid and password.
  • To change your password, enter "Y" in the "Change password" field. Then press "Enter"
  • If you entered "Y" in the change password field or your password has expired, a screen is displayed that permits the entry of a new password.
  • If you pressed PF9 at the Service Selection Panel, the Superssion Application menu is displayed. Select your application from this menu.
  • When changing passwords, the new password must NOT begin with either a blank or a zero.

Using Supersession

  • After pressing "Enter" on the entry validation screen, previous session information is displayed. If this information does not agree with your knowledge, contact the Technology Service Desk. Press the enter/return key to continue.
  • The Supersession Selection menu is then displayed.
  • To access any application:
    • Type S "session id" on command line or
    • Type S beside desired session id or
    • Tab to desired line and press enter
  • To access multiple applications return to this menu from your selected application by pressing the appropriate "hot key" sequence and select your next application. Refer to the section on "hot keys".
  • You can "hot key" between sessions but you cannot view 2 sessions at once. Although split screen mode is supported within an application such as SPF it is not supported at the Supersession level.
  • If you have more than one screen of applications, you can page forward and backward with PF8 & PF7 keys.


A hot key is a series of unique keystroke combinations that invoke Supersession commands and is available to a Supersession user only. The following keys have been defined:

  • ~G or ==G followed by session name will transfer you to another Supersession session. You simply need to know the session you wish to go to. The session name is available on the session selection screen.
  • ~I or ==I provides a screen image print to a JSX attached printer.
  • ~L or ==L will automatically lock your terminal. Your correct password is required to unlock the screen.
  • ~M or ==M will return you to the Supersession main menu at any time.
  • ~N or ==N will automatically switch you to the next Supersession application which has been previously activated.
  • ~P or ==P will automatically switch you to the previous Supersession application which has been previously activated.

Note: All hot key commands must be followed by pressing the enter key.

The tilde (~) key is located on the top left of some PC's and 3278 keyboards. On other PC's it may be located near the "enter" key.

Terminating an Application

  • You may terminate any session in the normal way by logging off from within the application.
  • At the Supersession menu you may terminate a session by entering "T" by the session's name. (A session must be flagged "active" or "current" to be terminated in this manner. The session will be placed in "takedown" mode but may be reactivated later.)
  • All sessions may be terminated by logging off Supersession.

WARNING: If you have used the SPF "out list" facility be sure that you have exited SPF or your output will be lost.

To eliminate the potential for problems, users are encouraged to log off from each session using the normal procedure for that session.

Exiting Supersession

To exit Supersession, proceed as follows:

  1. First return to the Supersession session selection screen with a hot key command of ~m or ==m.
  2. Press PF12 or PF24. The exit verification panel is displayed.
    • To exit without terminating all active sessions:
      - Press either PF3 or PF15
    • To exit and terminate all active sessions:
      - Press either PF12 or PF24
    • To return to Supersession:
      - Press the enter/return key
    • To exit if there were no active sessions:
      - Press PF3 or PF15
  3. If you decide to exit, you will be returned to the McMaster University Service Selection screen.

Moving from Terminal to Terminal

If you are logged on one terminal and for some reason you move to another area and wish to log on to a terminal in that area, you simply log on to Supersession and it will move your session to your new terminal.

Service Bulletins

  • MAC ID Password Expiry

    Beginning in May 2016, MAC ID passwords at McMaster expire annually. Learn more at

Service Desk

Client Self Service:
Hours: Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Phone: 905-525-9140 x24357 (2HELP)
Location: Main Campus BSB Rm. 245
Service Catalogue:

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