October 13, 2021 By Adam Jollans 3 min read

How can you accelerate the development and deployment of applications, and then manage them at scale?

This is the challenge businesses are facing around the world in the era of hybrid cloud – including organizations who depend on IBM Z or LinuxONE for their IT infrastructure and are looking to modernize their applications in place.

Back in August, we discussed Red Hat OpenShift’s great momentum on IBM Z and LinuxONE. And the recent announcement of Red Hat OpenShift 4.9 is an excellent opportunity to reflect on what’s been happening in the Red Hat OpenShift ecosystem for IBM Z and LinuxONE over the past few months. An ecosystem that includes not only Red Hat and IBM software, but a wide range of open-source projects and ISV applications.

Next steps

Red Hat OpenShift continues to expand and gain new features. One of the most interesting developments in OpenShift is its transformation from just x86 to multi-architecture diversity. This includes IBM Z and LinuxONE, but also Arm and IBM Power which are increasingly important for the emerging edge computing market as well as the cloud and datacenter.

Red Hat OpenShift 4.9 for IBM Z and LinuxONE includes support for multiple network interface cards (Multi-NIC) which can improve performance internally and externally, provide separation of networks, and enhance the fail-over capability.

One of the strengths of IBM Z and LinuxONE is advanced security features, with the IBM Crypto Express card providing fast hardware cryptography, as well as protecting keys in a Hardware Security Module. Red Hat OpenShift support for the Crypto Express card is planned to be provided through a Red Hat certified container, available later this year. The unique combination of Red Hat OpenShift plus the IBM Z cryptographic hardware creates a highly differentiated, security-rich solution.

Data and AI

The latest version of IBM Cloud Pak for Data on IBM Z and LinuxONE, available from October, includes IBM Watson Studio. This enables machine learning models to be built and deployed on IBM Z and LinuxONE. Introducing artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities to OpenShift applications on Z and LinuxONE is a major step forward and can help organizations to reduce fraud and unlock the value of their data.

Red Hat OpenShift Data Foundation for IBM Z and LinuxONE 4.8, available from September, provides persistent storage and other data services such as object storage, dynamic provisioning, disconnected install, and DASD support for cloud-native mission-critical workloads on IBM Z and LinuxONE.

Integration

IBM Cloud Pak for Integration has been updated to the latest version (2021.3.1) and includes updated support for IBM Z and LinuxONE.  Building on Red Hat OpenShift, this enables applications to connect asynchronously using technologies such as IBM MQ and MQ Advanced, Platform Navigator, App Connect, Aspera High Speed Transfer Server, and the Kafka-based Event Streams.

Management

As OpenShift workloads on Z and LinuxONE scale, the need increases for management tools which can also scale.

Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes has been able to manage clusters and containers on IBM Z in “manage-to” mode since version 2.2 – meaning that the management console would run on an x86 system. Now with Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management 2.4 (aligned with Red Hat OpenShift 4.9) the management console can run on IBM Z as well, adding “manage-from” mode. This helps enable seamless hybrid cloud management, with Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management on IBM Z managing OpenShift clusters running on x86, IBM Power, and public cloud infrastructures, as well as on IBM Z.

Complementing this, IBM Cloud Pak for Multi Cloud Management provides a consistent management experience across multiple clouds for managing virtual machines and enabling cloud automation on IBM Z and LinuxONE in “manage-to” mode.

Instana, IBM’s recent acquisition for discoverability and management of applications, now supports IBM Z and provides Observability from Mobile to Enterprise. Instana can monitor OpenShift applications running on IBM Z or LinuxONE, also in “manage-to” mode.

Finally, IBM Cloud Infrastructure Center, which manages the IBM Z and LinuxONE infrastructure for both traditional and cloud workloads, can now use IBM Spectrum Scale for block storage provisioning, as well as introducing fabric zoning support for IBM z/VM virtual machines.

Ecosystem

The ecosystem of Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) and application providers supporting Red Hat OpenShift running on IBM Z and LinuxONE continues to expand.

This includes Temenos, who announced the availability earlier this year of their next-generation core banking solution, Temenos Transact, on OpenShift on IBM Z and LinuxONE. By combining Red Hat OpenShift on IBM Z and LinuxONE, banks can deliver new services to their customers while leveraging existing infrastructure. If you are a SHARE member, please join us for a SHARE webcast soon to learn more.

Several other solution partners applications are also enabled on Red Hat OpenShift for IBM Z and LinuxONE, including:

  • Core banking applications such as Technisys and Infosys Finacle
  • Digital banking engagement applications including Backbase
  • Relationship-based pricing and product applications such as Zafin and SunTec Xelerate
  • Payments applications including Vestigo and Fiorano
  • Database management applications such as Fujitsu Enterprise Postgres

Learn More

The Red Hat OpenShift ecosystem on IBM Z and LinuxONE continues to grow, driven by the desire to combine the accelerated development of cloud-native applications with the enterprise strengths of IBM Z and LinuxONE.

Find out more in the new IDC sponsored white paper Building the Open Hybrid Cloud: Red Hat OpenShift, Enterprise Linux, and Ansible on IBM Z, LinuxONE, and Storage.

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