An APAR (authorized program analysis report) is a term used in IBM for a description of a problem with an IBM program that is formally tracked until a solution is provided. An APAR is created or "opened" after a customer (or sometimes IBM itself) discovers a problem that IBM determines is due to a bug in its code. The APAR is given a unique number for tracking and a target date for solution. When the support group that maintains the code solves the problem, it develops a program temporary fix (PTF) that, when applied, possibly with a SuperZap, will temporarily solve the problem for the customers that may be affected. The PTF will "close" the APAR. PTFs can be applied individually but are usually made available as part of a fix package that includes a number of PTFs. Meanwhile, the PTFs are provided to the development group that is working on the next product release. The developers may or may not use the PTFs (since these are temporary fixes), but will determine and design the correct problem solution to incorporate in the next product release.
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