IOD '09: Day Three: Tom Rosamilia on IOD, clouds, and System z's role

Tom Rosamilia, general manager for IBM® System z®, explains why he sees cloud computing resting on System z instead of the dynamic infrastructure sitting on the cloud — from Day Three at the IOD 2009 conference.


Scott Laningham (, developerWorks Podcast Editor, IBM developerWorks

Scott LaninghamScott Laningham, host of developerWorks podcasts, was previously editor of developerWorks newsletters. Prior to IBM, he was an award-winning reporter and director for news programming featured on Public Radio International, a freelance writer for the American Communications Foundation and CBS Radio, and a songwriter/musician.

01 November 2009

Also available in Portuguese

Rosamilia: Seventy to eighty percent of the world's mission-critical data still lives on System z and the data continues to proliferate. And so, it's our challenge to manage that and to make something useful out of all that information that continues to explode.

Tom Rosamilia sees System z as the foundation of clouds


And the role of System z can be very core to the warehousing strategy that many of our companies have. Increasingly, people are actually importing the data onto System z because it provides a secure, a controlled, highly available environment.

And then, through things like cloud computing, are actually making it available to people to get access to the central repository of data. To get access to live data, not old data. And to do it in a very secure way.

So all the analytics capabilities that we're pouring into System z, like running Cognos on zLinux (as an example), really gives us a great data warehouse on System z.

developerWorks: And there's so much data ... we're hearing about that ... the numbers are just beyond comprehension. And then, then that means tremendous security needs around cloud computing, but cloud computing has so much promise. Is there more that you can say about z's place in that story?

Guest: Tom Rosamilia

Tom Rosamilia started with IBM in 1983 as a software developer for the MVS operating system and then became Vice President for S/390 software development, responsible for overall software development for the System z platform, including z/OS, VM, VSE, and Linux for System z. He did a double major — computer science and economics — at Cornell University.

Rosamilia: Well, I think that what's most telling to me is when customers talk about cloud computing or [when] clients do it, they talk about some of the challenges. So what do they face?

  • They face security (that we just mentioned).
  • They face availability.
  • They face the challenge of multi-tenancy: Being able to host multiple workloads, multiple customers' workloads on the same server.
  • They face the challenge of workload isolations: Of keeping [workloads] apart.
  • They face the challenge of workload balancings: So that one workload can't overwhelm the cloud so that other people ... sort of like denial-of-services attack (if you will) because somebody's closed out while somebody else is getting, taking advantage of all the capacity.
  • Billing for this — the charge-back mechanisms.

And if you think about security, workload management, workload isolation, balancing, making sure you can provision quickly, be responsive to the needs that are out there, charge-back mechanisms — all of those things are the fundamentals of System z.

So I see z playing a great role in the private clouds that our clients are building. We see many examples of customers building private clouds to be able to serve their clients within their four walls, within their firewalls.

And so we've just come out with some solution additions to take advantage of System z being the underlying technology underneath a cloud. Underneath an analytics cloud or underneath a general cloud.

I think z and cloud are a great pair.



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ArticleTitle=IOD '09: Day Three: Tom Rosamilia on IOD, clouds, and System z's role