Eduardo Simoes Franco is a Consulting IT Specialist. His focus is on supporting and promoting IT Solutions
on the IBM System z platform. He has fifteen years of experience with IT Solutions and Linux,
starting in IBM as Linux on system z Specialist. He has CLA and LPI Certification.
Many people today ask whether the Mainframe -- now called IBM System z -- is ready for new technologies such as Cloud and Big Data. Only a little analysis is needed to see that Linux on System z is a perfect match for both Cloud and Big Data. Now 50 years young, this incredible machine -- or it's better to say "technology" -- gives us surprises day after day. Even the most skeptical IT managers can see the value of Linux on System z.
But what makes the System z so fantastic, what makes such a big difference? Here's a short list:
- RACF security
- Built-in hardware redundancy providing 99.999% availability
- Ultra fast specialized processors
- The fastest I/O in the industry -the CPUs and fast I/O being able to process many terabytes of data per second
- Hipersocket infinity network band that uses memory to communicate with virtual servers
- A proactive management environment
- Flexibility brought by the zBX hybrid solution
The list goes on and on, but those are some of my favorites. In addition to these characteristics, System z has something truly innovative : the ability to
In the early 2000's, the mainframe was joined with the most promising operating system on the market - Linux. Together, they have evolved and learned to work as a team and today make an awesome pair! System z processors have improved to a clock speed of 4.2 GHZ for zBC12 and 5.5 GHz for zEC12, making Linux even more comfortable. The Penguin, meanwhile, has brought hundreds of open source applications to System z, making the mainframe even more versatile. With the stability, performance, safety and scalability of System z, and with the efficiency, effectiveness and resilience of Linux, we have an ideal platform to meet the demands of the ever-changing IT world. Whether you're a young IT professional or have years of experience, whether you're interested in Cloud or Big Data or both, Linux on System z will meet your needs.
IBM invests extensively in z/VM, the rare jewel created in the 70's as a virtualization environment. Linux feels right at home on z/VM, as if it was born to work on System z hardware . z/VM is highly optimized and stable due to the fact that its hypervisor is running on microcode, without overlapping layers of software. But if z/VM is so old, it probably has an old fashioned interface, right? Wrong! IBM Wave for z/VM, the newest member of the System z family of products, complements z/VM with a graphical and intuitive interface which facilitates the daily management of the IT environment. With IBM Wave, it's easy to create new servers and maintain the health of existing ones.
Here's the big question: Can I save money running Linux on System z from a Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)1 perspective?
If we examine the background of the System z platform, with z/VM and Linux, we see that the number of software licenses required is reduced because System z has an incredible specialized processor to run Linux, known as an Integrated Facility for Linux (IFL), that is equivalent to multiple x86 cores in a single core.
Due to the large number of software products today that are licensed according to the number cores that are used, you will notice the difference when, for example, the number of software licenses can be reduced from 10 cores for your x86 systems to a single license on System z (IFL 1 = 1 core = 1 license).
1 For a more accurate TCO study, contact an IBM representative .