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System z and the state of cloud, security and mobile: Hot news from Pulse 2013
Pratin Ashtekar 2700046SAG firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  green smartcloud omegamon systems qradar vikram_gulati tep management tivoli itm siem system_z_software zenterprise z screen | 3,234 Visits
Pulse 2013 was a fantastic event for System z customers and there was a lot to take in. Amongst many new ideas and updates, I was struck by the speed of mobility’s move into the enterprise and its impact on driving cloud adoption. I also heard a lot about security, including customers such as Equifax talking about the need to be able to anticipate and react quickly to threats. I came away convinced that security intelligence is essential to keeping enterprises secure.
Forrester analyst John Rymer led a session in which he shared the results of a survey Forrester had conducted with customers on their requirements from a private cloud. Several of these customers reported that they are now moving their mission-critical enterprise workloads to the cloud and they are looking for an infrastructure that can provide high levels of reliability, availability, security and scalability. All of these, by the way, are salient features of a System z mainframe!
System z sessions were well attended and there was standing room only in many of them. The highlight of the session on “Cloud Ready on System z” was a demo on quickly and easily deploying images and managing the administration of that process, including approvals via the various capabilities in the Cloud Ready offering. The solution provides capabilities for provisioning, backup and recovery, monitoring, service lifecycle management, and automation. It’s also very quick to get up and running via the services of an IBM business partner. Customers seemed glad to hear about the support for multi-tenancy and multi-disk and that other platforms could also be managed by Cloud Ready.
The Tivoli for zEnterprise session focused on the factors that make System z a great platform for a highly resilient, scalable and affordable private cloud, such as capacity on demand, which is critical if zero downtime is a requirement for an enterprise cloud. The session included scenarios showing how data centers could realize up to 80% in savings by moving certain workloads to a cloud on the mainframe. The speaker also discussed the benefits of automation capabilities from Tivoli, such as SmartCloud Provisioning, to deploy patterns onto the mainframe. These were shown to save up to 75% in labor hours for a typical banking workload.
Last, but not least, was the System z “Meet the Experts” panel with some of IBM’s most knowledgeable experts answering questions from the audience. Security came up again and the panelists noted that it was important to leverage the tools that come with the mainframe to secure the platform based on each business’s unique usage. Being proactive in securing the “pipe” to the mainframe was also called “critical.” Some customers said that they needed to able to assess security across all platforms from a single pane of glass. SIEM (security information and event management) tools, such as QRadar, were suggested as helping to show the state of affairs across all platforms.
Overall, I came away full of new ideas and new ways of looking at some ongoing challenges. The performances by Carrie Underwood, the talk by Peyton Manning on leadership and decision-making, and the System z reception were icing on the cake. My time at Pulse 2013 was enjoyable and very well spent.
For more information on Cloud on System z, visit ibm.com/SystemzCloud
You can also check out other updates on PULSE 2013 and view photos from the event on our official System z Facbook page: facebook.com/IBMSystemz