Karl’s note: The following is a guest post by Jim Porell, Distinguished Engineer and System z Evangelist.
System zEnterprise – the new server on the block, but in doing so, taking the best of many servers and putting them together as a “System of Systems.” Its goal is to make a business smarter. Let’s look at how.
Moore’s law has demonstrated that annually each server platform should get faster and cheaper on a regular basis and to that end, most servers, IBM and otherwise, have done just that. From a customer point of view, many have built silos of operations. For example, transaction processing on a mainframe, data warehouse on UNIX servers and web portals on PC servers. Across a business, data is copied regularly, there are multiple operational domains and there could be many, many servers, eating up valuable floor space, energy and administrative personnel.
IBM saw this complexity and wanted to help customers simplify and make things smarter. Through the efforts of over 5000 developers and engineers, across 18 laboratories, three years of effort and over $1.5B in R&D spending, the zEnterprise was developed. With cross platform virtualization at it’s core, over 100,000 virtual images, spread across System z and select Power7 and System x blades, can be managed from a single console. The Remote Support Facility – a call home capability for system diagnostics introduced on the mainframe in the late 1980’s and several years before a like minded service known as OnStar was introduced to vehicles, has also been extended to those blades. As such, early warnings and simplified diagnostics are possible for a cross-platform workflow.
Customers are already benefiting from this collaboration of systems. Where previously, data was copied between server domains, it can now be shared. Customers have seen improvements of 5 to 10 times better response in analytic queries. Queries times have dropped from hours to mere seconds to provide true business insight instead of the hindsight available with copied data. Other customers have seen that co-locating applications and data can provide a 100% improvement in throughput with a 50% reduction in database processing using DB2 for z/OS.
How much electricity does the zEnterprise z196 use? It can be about the same as a domestic electric clothes dryer. In fact, each processor, of its up to 80 mainframe cores, uses less than a 40 watt light bulb. And if you like Linux servers, you can host them for as little as a $1 a day.
The results: fewer servers, less floor space, cooling and electricity and less complexity. Instead of having workloads fit for the politics of different administrative domains, a business can leverage the best of the IBM servers while improving the overall reliability, security, governance, risk and compliance activities. zEnterprise can help any business deploy smarter solutions.