ISM and zEnterprise
Judith, it is a pleasure to have you as a guest blogger for Integrated Service Management (ISM) on System z. You have written extensively on ISM, including my personal favorite, a short booklet titled “Service Management for Dummies” and the recent white paper “Bringing Automation to the Data Center”. Currently, Hurwitz and Associates is in the forefront of the analyst community that is assessing the potential impact of IBM’s new system zEnterprise.
I’d like to spend a few minutes with you to understand the importance of the revolutionary hybrid technology introduced with zEnterprise and the impact on Integrated Service Management.
But, first, in general, how can ISM help extend the value of mainframes to the rest of the data center?
A - At the core of what organizations now want from their data centers is predictability; predictable costs, predictable staffing levels and predictable performance levels for IT users and customers. Mainframe computing is predictable. It is the most reliable and the most scalable of technologies. And, with today’s specialty engines and virtualization capabilities, the cost is both predictable and manageable. The overall workload for the data center is increasing because new applications are added and new connections are demanded by partners, suppliers and customers. Many of these new requirements render the new technology in place obsolete and unable to keep up with demand.
Smart IT leaders are making it a priority to control the chaos that ensues when a vast array of distributed resources are managed in a disconnected and siloed manner. These executives are looking for a new way to unify the management of complex multi-platform environments to ensure the delivery of services to customers at the right time and for the right price. Implementing a cohesive service management strategy is one of the most effective techniques to begin managing highly distributed resources as though they were a single unit. It is imperative to have a single point of control for all computing resources including the centralized data center, departmental systems, networks, applications, middleware, virtualized environments, and cloud computing environments. Applying an Integrated Service Management vision and methodology to a data center configuration with the mainframe as the centralized hub for management creates an environment with the potential for the highest quality of predictable service.
Q - Will customers adopting zEnterprise be able to leverage service management to extend the value of the mainframe to the rest of their datacenter?
A - The IBM zEnterprise System is a computing platform designed to help enterprises simplify and consolidate large-scale data centers to improve the management of complex and diverse workloads. These workloads may reside in data centers, in virtualized environments, or in private and public clouds.
To have overall end-to-end service management, organizations need a uniform and consistent control mechanism that links all critical processes together across disparate platforms. Without the ability to have this consistent control mechanism, hidden cracks between processes that exist on different systems can and often do lead to business disruption. Even with the expansive capabilities of the zEnterprise, organizations need a higher level of service management designed to incorporate environments that are outside of the scope of the zEnterprise. While the zEnterprise provides tight integration to most efficiently manage workloads for the platform, organizations also require overall management for the heterogeneous systems level. This is where Tivoli’s Integrated Service Management provides key capabilities.
Q - What are the characteristics of management software that will exploit the cost savings and simplification zEnterprise offers?
A- As we pointed out in the paper you referenced, a holistic approach to data center management is imperative for the success of today’s large enterprises. A number of factors clearly demonstrate the need for a more holistic approach to management:
Compliance and security requirements from multiple sources
The need to improve the efficiency of power consumption and resource utilization
The need to implement and manage virtualization technologies in order to improve resource productivity
Automation of business process across highly distributed environments
The need to improve the way these processes are managed.
If each service component works well in isolation there is no guarantee that the customer experience is satisfactory. All of the components have to be managed from a quality of service perspective. For example, services delivered in a department, in the data center and in the cloud all have to work in unison to meet customer expectations.
Q – The new zEnterprise introduces a level of management for workloads executed within the new environment. Can you please discuss the relationship of ISM and the new Unified Resource Manager?
A - Back to basics. Ultimately the goal is to manage any kind of workload and to do so we can identify 6 software components involved: Governance, IT process automation, workload automation, change management, configuration control and dynamic provisioning. Governance and IT process automation rely heavily on organizing operational staff to make them as effective as possible. Workload automation and change management apply specifically to business application software. And, configuration control and dynamic provisioning deal primarily with hardware and how software is deployed on the available hardware. It is also valid to view these six components in two groups of 3. Governance, IT process automation and workload automation involve organizing the workloads that run in the data center. Change management, configuration control and dynamic provisioning involve managing the environment to keep the hardware, operational software and the application software working together coherently and efficiently.
The zEnterprise is designed to support customer requirements to improve the management of complex and diverse workloads. Workload management firmware, called the zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager, has been created to simplify the integration and automation of these environments. The Unified Resource Manager can manage the hardware and virtualization layers that are built in to the zEnterprise platform in a consistent, secure, and efficient way.
Even with the expansive capabilities of the zEnterprise, organizations need a higher level of service management designed to incorporate environments that are outside of the scope of the zEnterprise Unified Resource Manager. For example, there is a need to manage the environment that is closest to the customer. This includes the actual operating systems (in the case of zEnterprise this includes both zOS and Linux), the middleware, and the applications and solutions.
It is imperative to connect the operations of the physical and virtual systems to the company’s applications to ensure business services are sustained at the level of quality demanded by all constituents. An organization needs to think about overall manageability from the perspective of the impact on the business and how the level of service relates to overall business practices.
All of the components have to be managed from a quality of service perspective. For example, services delivered in a department, in the data center and in the cloud all have to work in unison to meet customer expectations. Workloads have to be optimized, overall performance has to be monitored, and security has to be assured. Integrated service management that is based on automation of business policy and rules is the only way to minimize mistakes that impact the quality of service for customers, suppliers, and partners. It simply doesn’t matter if each individual component is best of breed if the overall environment does not meet or exceed customer expectations. In this type of complex enterprise environment there needs to be a single point of control for the entire heterogeneous computing environment
IBM is a client of Hurwitz & Associates and has provided compensation to Hurwitz and Associates for participation in this interview.
Service Management on System z Blog
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Those attending the Automated Operations Technical Council (AOTC) 2010 conference in Philadelphia this spring would like to share their experiences. Hope to see you too next year!
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Pulse 2010 and System z
If you missed Pulse 2010, you missed quite a lot -
Pulse 2010 hosted over 5,000 attendees from around the world and most were customers and business partners. Over 300 customers were featured speakers. Presentations, panels, discussions, workshops, hands on learning and demonstrations vied for time and attention with launches, announcements, industry roundtables, certifications and opportunities to meet the executives.
Analysts summed up several key points:
"Very valuable; great interactions with IBM executives, partners and customers. Messages were well articulated." -IDC, Jean Bozman
"Agree that an integrated architecture view is critical for complex systems. Cloud will change that picture." -Forrester, Mike Gualtieri
"Customer panel was the highlight of Pulse. Great stories from State Street, UPMC, Region of Denmark, and Unilever in particular." -Forrester, Robert Whiteley
This year, System z was everywhere. 22 breakout sessions specifically highlighted System z, with such topics as end to end transaction tracking, the cloud and system z, managing complexity and reducing costs with Tivoli. System z was prominent throughout the conference as integrated Service Management was a key conference theme. Panel sessions were very well received and encouraged discussion. System z Birds of a Feather Sessions, Expo Theater presentations, live demonstrations, “Meet the Experts” sessions began with Sunday’s Business Partner Summit which also featured a z track
View a short Pulse summary with Al Zollar:
And please plan to attend Pulse Comes to You in a city near you soon.
IBM Tivoli is hosting a seminar focused on state of the art storage management in the mainframe environment. This briefing will review the latest announcements in mainframe storage and the financial advantages of using IBM Tivoli software to manage stored data. Current storage trends, along with IBM software solutions for z/OS storage and catalog management, will be discussed. Come and join this session to see how Tivoli Enterprise Portal empowers storage administrators to monitor their storage subsystems using a browser based interface.
This technical seminar is targeted for management, technical specialists, and I/T Architects who are responsible for managing a consistent, predictable and effective storage environment on mainframe systems. No prerequisite knowledge is required, although the attendee should have an understanding of their System z storage environment.
This session is complimentary. I hope to see you there!
Register for Minneapolis on April 6th @ https://www-950.ibm.com/events/wwe/grp/grp004.nsf/v16_agenda?openform&seminar=ZZZA3YES&locale=en_US
Register for Chicago on April 7th @ https://www-950.ibm.com/events/wwe/grp/grp004.nsf/v16_agenda?openform&seminar=4Q2ABUES&locale=en_US
Register for Hazelwood on April 8th @ https://www-950.ibm.com/events/wwe/grp/grp004.nsf/v16_agenda?openform&seminar=CEBG3VES&locale=en_US
8:30 AM – 9:00 AM Registration
9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Mainframe Storage Hardware Trends and Directions
10:45 AM – 12:00 PM IBM Tivoli Solutions for Storage and Catalog Mgmt
12:00 PM – 12:30 PM Lunch (complimentary)
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM Common z/OS Storage and Catalog Scenarios, Problem Diagnosis & Product Demonstrations
Minneapolis – IBM Offices, 650 3rd Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55402
Chicago – Hyatt Building, IBM Offices – Sixth Floor, 71 S Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606
Hazelwood – IBM Offices, 325 James S McDonnell Blvd, Building 300, Hazelwood, MO 63042
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Perils, pitfalls and problems need solutions. So, I asked Jasmine Noel to continue her discussion and to focus on what an enterprise might do to address the issues. Jasmine -
Tools to Tame Heterogeneous Virtualization Management
As I mentioned in my initial blog, virtualization is elevating the daily stress for over-extended datacenter administrators to alarming levels. Higher business agility and lower capital costs through virtualization can’t be achieved without sophisticated, complete, and always-on management of heterogenous virtual computing resources. In other words, agile management of heterogeneous virtualization is critical for business agility and profitability. Hence, the reason administrator stress levels are going through the roof is that they don’t have agile management of heterogeneous virtualization.
It is vital, and not optional then, that IT organizations become adept at matching increasingly dynamic needs (be they automated workload schedules or on-demand service requests) with the resource flexibility afforded by virtualization’s rapid provisioning strengths. As such, system administrators are quickly realizing that they need to look for a different type of management solution. So what are the characteristics of this new solution type?
A policy-based approach is a key characteristic of this new solution type. Virtualization enables application images to move to different virtual machines very quickly (in some cases before admins get a chance to check their emailed service tickets). Policies enable IT to introduce some necessary controls around those moves and changes. Policies can also simplify the workload to resource matching process. For example, policies can ensure that multiple workloads all run on the same virtual machine in a particular datacenter location, or incorporate time of day requirements so that a workload spans ten virtual machines during the day but thirty virtual machines at night.
Centralized management of dense computing infrastructures (be they Blades, packaged Cloud systems, or mainframes) appears to be a natural extension of this phenomena because for the first time, administrators truly need a centralized management platform to manage virtual systems. Many IT organizations are learning the hard way about the sprawl created when virtual images are deployed at will with minimal oversight or visibility into how the environment is changing. System administrators need management solutions that make oversight and resource visibility as quick and seamless as deploying the virtual images. Solutions which afford centralized control over all virtualization options and extend across a diverse infrastructure enable optimal use of administrators’ time.
Besides centralization, the solution should also have a workflow-based approach to automation embedded in its design. Automating the many other tasks (patching, security checks, compliance checks, etc.) that surround virtual image deployment drive down the business risk of high-speed image deployment. When these tasks are orchestrated as complete workflows, IT productivity skyrockets, which gives administrators the time to focus on policy design and decision-related resource analysis.
There is no escaping these solution requirements. The system management status quo can’t deliver the agile management of heterogeneous virtualization that is essential for business agility and profitability. What administrators can do is demand that management vendors prove how they deliver on these requirements.
IBM is a client of Ptak Noel and has provided compensation to Ptak Noel for participation in this interview.
Raymond Sun 060000ASTK firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  service-management mainframe linux tivz ibmtivoli virtualization 1 Comment 2,055 Visits
Did you know that System z was a great platform for a private cloud? Software Group did a benchmark comparing a popular Intel based hypervisor to z/VM and observed the impact to CPU utilization, throughput (transactions per second), and response time of a sample application as they varied the number of virtual servers. Their results are documented in a paper: http://www.ibm.com/common/ssi/fcgi-bin/ssialias?infotype=SA&subtype=WH&appname=STGE_ZS_ZS_USEN&htmlfid=ZSW03125USEN&attachment=ZSW03125USEN.PDF
There is a companion paper that discusses the TCO implications of private cloud versus public cloud: http://www.ibm.com/common/ssi/fcgi-bin/ssialias?infotype=SA&subtype=WH&appname=STGE_ZS_ZS_USEN&htmlfid=ZSW03126USEN&attachment=ZSW03126USEN.PDF
Have you noticed that when the press talks about cloud, they're typically not talking about System z? I wonder why. I have some theories, but would be interested in your perspective.
Re: zPartners: Need-to-know info about the Business Partner Summit at Pulse in 2010 - see you there!
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Raymond Sun 060000ASTK firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  ztiv service-management tivz ibmtivoli mainframe linux 2 Comments 1,820 Visits
As you consider moving workloads to Linux on System z, you will want to evaluate which workloads are the best fit. Ideally, data intensive or mixed workloads are best suited for System z whereas CPU intensive workloads may be better run on other platforms. On a recent webcast where I was co-presenting with Bill Reeder (IBM Linux Enterprise Servers), we discussed best workloads for Linux on System z which leverages the strengths of System z like WebSphere MQ, Domino, SAP. We also talked about good workloads for Linux on System z which run well on Linux on System z but can also run on other platforms. So, there are other factors (e.g. organizational politics) which must be evaluated in deciding the ideal platform for workloads.