IBM Z and Cloud Modernization Center

Digital center featuring application, data & process modernization capabilities for IBM Z & your Hybrid Cloud

Pinned items


Gain over 2.5X the value of public cloud alone with IBM Z in Hybrid Cloud

Maximize Value with IBM Z


Believe the mainframe has long-term viability as a strategic platform for their organizations. 2


Plan to modernize most applications in place 3

Achieving full potential requires making IBM Z and the mainframe an essential part of a hybrid cloud strategy.

  • Significantly reduce the talent gap by embracing common tools and operating models between the mainframe and the other platforms
  • Bring consistent DevOps experience and cloud native development techniques
  • Easily access mainframe data without moving off-platform
  • Optimize costs with a hybrid cloud platform that extends to the mainframe
  • Maintain the option of repatriating cloud platform that extends of the mainframe

What can be achieved


More application code releases4


Ratio of benefits to cost5


More efficient management6

IBM’s approach to modernization leverages existing investments with targeted modernization vs migration to public cloud only.

IT projects involving movement of workloads from one platform to another are complex, and those involving workload movement from a mainframe are no exception. Offload projects are often grossly underestimated resulting in unforeseen challenges, risk and cost.

In 34 cases reviewed, mainframe clients acknowledged that their offload project would be unsuccessful due to budget overrun, excessive time to completion and increased scope to meet unforeseen requirements. In the case of one study, the client acknowledged some sizing inaccuracies that had been calculated by its x86 vendor but was confident the project would still require only one year to complete. Three years later the migration effort concluded with significantly higher costs than initially quoted by the x86 vendor.


  • IBM’s approach leverages existing investments and targets only required modernization
  • A continuous modernization process provides faster business outcomes with smaller project increments
  • 3.2x lower annual TCO with IBM Z App modernization vs. App migration to cloud only1


  • Avoid cost of dual operating environments
  • Targeted, business aligned approach to app mod lowers cost and risk
  • Optimize transformation and operating costs with a range of app mod patterns and accelerators.


  • Leverage existing security & compliance investment and built-in IBM Z security strengths.


  • AWS & MS approach involves app migration, emulation, and rewrite with native cloud services
  • Full Migration/Rewrite approach takes time and often comes with risk of compromising resiliency and security
  • Migration/Rewrite often underestimates full costs when factoring in all required environments


  • Opportunity costs, new platform operating costs
  • Co-existence costs, migration costs, rewrite costs
  • Current operating costs to drop marginally over time


  • Need to factor in cost of custom-built security and compliance on top of AWS & MS base platform

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  • 1 Based on an IBM commissioned study measured across five key value areas: business acceleration, developer productivity, infrastructure costs, regulatory and compliance, deployment flexibility:
  • 2 Deloitte: Mainframe modernization with APIs
  • 3 Successful Enterprise Application Modernization Requires Hybrid Cloud Infrastructure – A Forrester Consulting Thought Leadership paper commissioned by IBM, June 2021
  • 4, 5, 6 IDC Business Value White Paper, co-sponsored by IBM and Broadcom, The Business Value of the Transformative Mainframe, August 2019
  • 7 This is an IBM internal study designed to replicate banking OLTP workload usage in the marketplace on an IBM LinuxOne III T02 using eight IFLs across two LPARs. Seven IFLs and a total of 640 GB memory were allocated to one LPAR for three OpenShift masters and four worker nodes. One IFL and a total of 128 GB memory were allocated to the second LPAR for the OpenShift load balancer. IBM Storage DS8886 was used to create eight 250 GB DASD minidisks for each of the eight z/VM guests running in the LPARs. The OpenShift cluster version 4.2.20, using Red Hat Enterprise Linux CoreOS (RHCOS) for IBM Z, was running across seven z/VM guests and the remaining eighth z/VM guest was running the OpenShift load balancer. SMT was enabled across all IFLs. The x86 configuration was comprised of six servers running KVM with 15 guests (three masters and twelve workers) for the OpenShift cluster version 4.3.5 with RHCOS and a seventh server was used for the load balancer on RHEL 7.6. For x86 storage each guest operating system was configured with a 100 GB of virtual disk. Each guest had access to all vCPUs of the KVM server on which it was running. Compared x86 models for the cluster were all 2-socket servers containing a mix of 6-core, 8- core, 12-core and 16-core Haswell, Skylake and Ivy Bridge x86 processors using a total of 136 cores with a total of 2,304 GB memory. The load balancer was a 2-socket 8-core server with a total of 384 GB memory. Both environments used jMeter to drive maximum throughput against two OLTP workload instances and were sized to deliver comparable results (15,487 responses per second (RPS) with IBM Z and 14,325 RPS with x86). The results were obtained under laboratory conditions, not in an actual customer environment. IBM’s internal workload studies are not benchmark applications. Prices, where applicable, are based on U.S. prices as of 02/12/2020 from our website and x86 hardware pricing is based on IBM analysis of U.S. prices as of 03/01/2020 from IDC. Price comparison is based on a three year total cost of ownership including HW, SW, networking, floor space, people, energy/cooling costs and three years of service & support.
  • 8Internal performance tests by Stefan Wirag and team – “Run an OLTP workload on OpenShift Container Platform 4.4 with up to 4.7x lower latency co-located to the used database on z15 T01 using a Hipersocket connection versus on compared x86 platform using a 10 Gb TCP/IP connection to the same database”. DISCLAIMER: This is an IBM internal study designed to replicate banking OLTP workload usage in the marketplace deployed on OpenShift Container Platform (OCP) 4.4.12 on z15 T01 using z/VM versus on compared x86 platform using KVM accessing the same PostgreSQL 12 database running in a z15 T01 LPAR. 3 OLTP workload instances were run in parallel driven remotely from JMeter 5.2.1 with 16 parallel threads. Results may vary. z15 T01 configuration: The PostgreSQL database ran in a LPAR with 12 dedicated IFLs, 256 GB memory, 1TB FlashSystem 900 storage, RHEL 7.7 (SMT mode). The OCP Master and Worker nodes ran on z/VM 7.1 in a LPAR with 30 dedicated IFLs, 448 GB memory, DASD storage, and Hipersocket connection to the PostgreSQL LPAR. x86 configuration: The OCP Master and Worker nodes ran on KVM on RHEL 8.2 on 30 Skylake Intel® Xeon® Gold CPU @ 2.30GHz with Hyperthreading turned on, 448 GB memory, RAID5 local SSD storage, and 10Gbit Ethernet connection to the PostgreSQL LPAR.
  • 9 IBM Hybrid Data Management Whitepaper – Data fabric architecture delivers 3 instant benefits, May 2021
  • 10 Performance results shown was obtained in a controlled, isolated environments using IBM internal test suite. Performance of other workloads may vary
  • 11 Tailored Fit Pricing for IBM Z Offers Cost Effective Workload Growth Compared to Three Public Cloud Examples, IBM IT Economic Consulting and Research, May 2021