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The top 3 advantages of IBM mainframes -- delivered by zEnterprise and System z software
Pratin Ashtekar 2700046SAG firstname.lastname@example.org | | Tags:  system platform zec12 software ec12 z ibm zenterprise | 11,619 Visits
By Doug Balog
- General Manager, IBM System z .
Welcome to the IBM Mainframe Insights blog. As the inaugural post, I thought I'd initiate a conversation with some thoughts about the evolutionary relevance of the System z platform.
That's because my technology roots are deep within the IBM mainframe. For that reason, I'm never at a loss for words when someone asks me why it maintains such a significant presence in the data center. Of course, there's the overall value of centralized computing; and there are the financial, business, operational and quality-of-service gains that are among its extraordinary rewards. But over time, the IBM mainframe and its software have evolved to deliver even greater value.
The August 28 introduction of the IBM zEnterprise EC12 (zEC12), the newest member of the System z family, and the October 3 announcement of more than 30 new and enhanced System z software products together showcase the overall advantages of the IBM mainframe. These closely related launches address top-of-mind business concerns in private cloud deployments, turning data into insight and tightly securing the modern enterprise.
Today, I'd like to share with you what I consider to be the top three System z advantages for the modern data center:
1. It's optimized.
System z is a large-scale consolidation system that thrives under heavy workloads. We have clients that deploy hundreds of thousands of MIPS, often running thousands of programs, hundreds of applications, massive amounts of data and huge numbers of users with long periods of uninterrupted operation. System z is unmatched with 99.999% reliability. We've added technology innovations to further extend that availability, including the new Flash Express feature that helps improve handling of paging workload spikes and IBM zAware to increase availability as a self-learning integrated analytics solution.
Software that is optimized by the zEC12 saves costs and simplifies the environment. For example, with the IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator V3 appliance tied directly to System z, clients can derive insights from millions of transactions to make smarter fact-based business and customer decisions. The enhanced Analytics Accelerator includes a high-performance storage saver feature that can reduce the need to store data on disk drives in the mainframe by 95 percent, dramatically lowering storage costs.
2. It adapts.
Over time, IBM has adapted the mainframe to support a wide range of workloads. System z runs not only classic CICS, IMS and DB2 workloads, but has also become very adaptive to WebSphere, C, Java and Linux workloads. It’s fully virtualized, with the highest level of utilization in the industry as demonstrated by numerous industry benchmarks.
System z was built to handle all kinds of operational scenarios -- from transaction processing to software development to data analysis. This is the path toward hybridization that began with Linux, specialty engines and, more recently, the zEnterprise BladeCenter Extension solutions that allow both Intel and Power blades to tie into System z.
The ability to run mixed, multi-tenant workloads makes it an ideal environment for cloud computing. zEnterprise is the industry’s only heterogeneous cloud solution delivered through a single point of control. And we have an extensive set of solutions and tools that support the implementation of cloud on System z, such as CICS 5.1 to deliver new application, platform and policy capabilities to help build private clouds from new and existing CICS applications.
3. It's green.
Unlike any other system, zEnterprise can run all the way up to and sustain 100% utilization due to its ease of changing workloads in performance and load. It’s a great peak load engine that can translate into direct cost savings. That utilization is extended with the capability of the zEC12 to run tens of thousands of virtual servers -- on ONE system. We've helped clients save millions in data center management, floor space and energy consumption -- and we've done it in our own environments.
The zEC12 also features green technologies, such as a new radiator-based air cooled system design for more efficient cooling and improved concurrent maintenance, as well as water-cooled and HV DC power options for additional data center energy savings. In addition, a new non-raised floor option offers flexible possibilities for existing environments.
There's so much more to today's IBM mainframe; and we're working with clients around the world to help them exploit all of its capabilities. The zEC12 delivers a stronger return on investment than ever before. Its evolution and adaptation to serve our clients’ need for cloud-enabled technology helps them harness the untapped potential in volumes of unstructured data, while addressing increasingly complex security demands. For these reasons, the IBM mainframe has stayed relevant and will continue to going forward. System z is still the most efficient place to run critical workloads.
Thanks for joining me here for our first post. Stay tuned for the latest thoughts, trends and discussion on the ever-evolving IBM System z platform. I look forward to an ongoing exchange of thoughts and ideas from insiders, outsiders, advocates and skeptics.
Now, let's get the conversation started ... how important are the rich security attributes of System z for Cloud and Analytics deployments?