Mainframe Computers

Cloud Computing: In an era of relentless data breaches, IBM focuses new mainframe on ‘pervasive’ encryption

Grazed from SiliconAngle. Author: Robert Hof.

IBM will debut the newest in its decades-long series of mainframe computers for mainstream transaction processing Monday, this time focusing in particular on better protection of more data wherever it resides. The IBM Z features what the company calls “pervasive encryption,” providing the ability to encrypt all data in an application, database or cloud service.

Computer hardware in general and large mainframe-style computers have taken a big hit in the dawning era of cloud computing. But most large transaction systems such as credit-card processing, airline flight purchases and automatic teller machine systems still run on them. IBM said the Z represents the “most significant system overhaul” in more than 15 years...

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Can IBM's LinuxONE mainframe compete with cloud computing?

Grazed from ExtremeTech. Author: Todd Ogasawara.

IBM has announced two mainframe computers under the LinuxONE branding that will eventually be able to run Canonical’s popular Ubuntu Linux operating system. This latest move is part of a near-30-year history of IBM running UNIX and, later, Linux-based operating systems on its hardware products. IBM’s first UNIX-like product for its mainframes AIX/370 appeared way back in 1988. While the ability to run Ubuntu on a mainframe may have been the news that attracted attention, the announcement really has several parts.

First, there are two LinuxOne mainframe models. The LinuxONE Emperor is designed for large enterprises. IBM claims it can run up to 8,000 virtual servers, tens of thousands of containers. and 30 billion RESTful web interactions per day supporting millions of active users. The Emperor can have up to 141 processors, 10 terabytes of shared memory, and 640 dedicated I/O (input/output) processors. And IBM claims it can provide all this with a cost that’s half that of a public cloud infrastructure solution...

Cloud computing reboots the relevance of the mainframe

Grazed from SiliconAngle. Author: Alina Popescu.

IBM’s 13th generation of System z has just been launched and its integration with the cloud brings the “mainframe back on the table as a relevant piece of infrastructure,” says Dave Vellante in his opening analysis with John Furrier that kicked off theCUBE’s IBM zNext coverage on Wednesday. In itself, this billion dollar investment only generates 3 percent of the company’s revenue, but the added elements of software and mainframe boost it to over 20 percent.

Vellante pointed to a previous VMware statement about “building a software mainframe” which would have security built in, virtualization, and openness. “The industry has always wanted to build a mainframe. IBM has got one.” said Vellante. “The cloud and mobile drive this trend,” Furrier added. He also raised the question of how existing businesses will integrate this new system...

Cloud Computing: IBM mainframe, tech's 'dinosaur', turns 50

Grazed from MarketWatch. Author: PR Announcement.

The IBM mainframe, the drab-looking refrigerator-size machine that was once the symbol of computer technology, turned 50 this week. It’s been portrayed as a technology dinosaur, out of place in an era where computing is about being small, fast and mobile. But in half a century, the mainframe has remained one of IBM’s IBM -0.25% most successful flagship products.

In fact, a decade ago when the mainframe celebrated its 40th year, Big Blue even embraced the ‘dinosaur’ label, unveiling the latest version with a catchy, defiant code name: ‘T-Rex.’ But that was when IBM was viewed as the tech giant on a comeback trail, bouncing back from setbacks in its competition with newer, more nimble rivals, as it recast itself as an IT services and software powerhouse...

What you missed in Cloud: Old meets new in the enterprise

Grazed from SiliconAngle. Author: Maria Deutscher.

Major changes are afoot in the enterprise as decision makers come to recognize the inevitability of cloud computing, but it’s still a long and bumpy road to modernization, with existing technology investments to sustain and new projects to embark on. It’s a multi-billion dollar challenge and an equally large opportunity, so big in fact that it has spurred legacy vendors like ASG to abandon traditional business models and try to make the journey smoother.

The Naples, Florida-based mainframe software firm last week introduced CloudFactory, a hosted service that allows customers to operate big iron without learning the ins and out of their systems. At its core, the offering is a collection of scripts that automates routine management tasks and provides increased status transparency, making it possible for non-technical users to perform tasks that would otherwise require specialized skills and take much longer to fulfill. It also packs a workflow execution engine called CloudRobot and an easy to use natural language frontend that provides self-service access to apps and data...

The mainframe evolves into a new beast in the cloud era

Grazed from TechRepublic. Author: Nick Hardiman.

The cloud world inherited some concepts from the mainframe world that came before it. The consumption-based pricing model, Linux virtual machines, and multi-tenancy came from that previous mainframe generation. NASA got rid of its mainframes, but these massive machines can still be found in many large organizations. In the age of cloud IT, aren't mainframes irrelevant? Why won't the mainframe die?

David Hodgson, SVP at CA Technologies, Inc., described the role of mainframes today. CA started 38 years ago as a mainframe software supplier and still does mainframe work. In my interview with Hodgson, he said, "The mainframe business to CA is still just over 50% of our revenue." CA Technologies is not a small company--it's in the Fortune 500, has billions of dollars in revenue, and employs many thousands of people...

A better way to design cloud storage: Learn from mainframes

Grazed from ComputerWorld. Author: John Martin.

What can the experience of managing IBM mainframes teach us about designing storage for public or private cloud computing? Plenty, it turns out... In my previous post, Designing Cloud Storage? Ditch the LUN!, I pointed out the challenges of using LUNs for virtual and cloud storage environments that need to scale.

That post, and my thinking around storage management in general, were both influenced by a nine-year-old blog post by John Tyrrel: The Next Step In Virtualization. When Tyrell wrote that, the next step in virtualization was to ditch the LUN, virtualization was still pretty cutting edge. Yet, here we are, almost a decade later, and we're still using LUNs as the storage container for most server virtualization infrastructures...

IBM's New Mainframe Takes On The Cloud

Grazed from NetworkComputing. Author: Tony Kontzer.

IBM unleashed its latest mainframe for the masses, the zBC12, last month. The new mainframe builds on IBM's strategy of providing the technologies companies need to build their own clouds. A sleek beast that IBM says offers a faster 4.2 GHz processor and double the available memory of its two-year-old predecessor, the z114, the zBC12 starts at the same price as the z114: $75,000. For some perspective, IBM's z990, aka the "T-Rex," started at $1 million when it came out in 2003.

Despite that price difference, mainframes figure to be an IBM staple for the foreseeable future. "There's really too much at stake for IBM to let the mainframe die," said John Abbott, distinguished analyst at 451 Research, in an email interview. "It's still at the core of IBM's most profitable business, and still runs the most challenging enterprise workloads at the world's largest companies."...

Cloud Computing: The future of mainframe computing - Legacy or legendary?

Grazed from ITProPortal.  Author: Derek Britton.

The demise of mainframe computers has been predicted for decades, but they still thrives as the reliable core processing workhorse for many industries. In fact, IBM was able to report over 50 per cent increase in mainframe revenues in 2013.  But as the technology world evolves, games are changing, and the relevance and apparent suitability of the mainframe world is struggling to keep pace with the expanding demands of today's information-hungry customers, including trends such as cloud computing.

This is compounded by recent high-profile mainframe outages that have dented not only customer service but also the reputation (and share price) of some major organisations. Can mainframe overcome the core challenges it faces? These include its assumed high cost, the IT skills crisis, and a perceived irrelevance to modern computing...

IBM Mainframes Nipped, Tucked For Cloud Age

Grazed from InformationWeek.  Author: Doug Henschen.

Statements about the death of the mainframe have been made for at least a couple of decades. But IBM keeps proving that with new technology and timely facelifts aimed at the latest market demands, mainframes can stay relevant.  The latest wrinkle remover for the System Z mainframe, spotlighted with this week's release of the IBM zEnterprise BC12 (Business Class) entry-level mainframe, is extended support for growing use cases including big data analytics and cloud computing. The BC12 will start shipping in September, about one year after the release of vendor's latest Enterprise Class machine, the zEnterprise EC12.

New capabilities inherited from the EC12 include an IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator that IBM says provides significantly faster performance for workloads such as Cognos and SPSS analytics. That's compared to BC12's predecessor, the z114, and to alternative platforms, like highly distributed x86 server deployments. The BC12 also attaches to Netezza and newer PureData for Analytics appliances used for high-scale data warehousing...