Frequently asked questions

Understand the Db2 for IBM Cloud Pak for Data deployment option

Why is IBM® Db2® Database now available on IBM Cloud Pak® for Data as the Db2 cartridge?

This new deployment option combines the Db2 Database with IBM Cloud Pak for Data, providing a proven, enterprise-ready data management system with an integrated data and AI platform built on the Red Hat® OpenShift® containerized foundation. This powerful combination is key to driving future data insights using AI capabilities and machine learning embedded into query processing. Your enterprise can cut costs with the multimodal capability that eliminates the need for data replication/migration and enhance agility by running Db2 on any cloud vendor.

What is IBM Cloud Pak for Data?

IBM Cloud Pak for Data is a fully integrated data and AI platform that enables organizations to accelerate AI-powered transformation by unleashing productivity and reducing complexity. Collect, organize and analyze data; then infuse AI throughout your business within a collaborative platform experience. Cloud-native by design, IBM Cloud Pak for Data is built on, and uses, the underlying resource and infrastructure optimization and management in the Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform.

What are the benefits of containerization with Db2 for IBM Cloud Pak for Data?

Modern workloads benefit from the performance and scalability of Db2 for IBM Cloud Pak for Data. Several benefits include:

  • Operational efficiency through operators that to help manage Db2 for IBM Cloud Pak for Data for repeatability of installation, seamless upgrades and health checks.
  • Click-to-containerize tool to rapidly deploy from ground to cloud, spin up new development and test environments, and move databases across zones for disaster recovery.
  • Fully automated high availability disaster recovery (HADR) with no DBA actions necessary.  
  • Better integration with applications through REST APIs
  • Unified application management through a certified Red Hat operator

Why was Red Hat OpenShift chosen for the IBM Cloud Pak for Data platform?

Red Hat OpenShift is a market-leading enterprise open source container orchestration platform. It is offered across all deployment form factors (on premises, on cloud or as a managed service) and is open. It is the logical choice for containerized IBM software because it eliminates vendor lock-in while including enterprise-grade security and DevOps features that organizations require.

Is RedHat OpenShift the only supported Kubernetes platform for Db2?

IBM does not prevent your organization from deploying Db2 on other Kubernetes distributions nor does it prevent you from building your own containers using Db2. However, any errors will need to be reproduced on an officially supported platform (bare metal/virtual machine/RedHat OpenShift) to receive IBM support. This is no different than supporting a select few versions/distributions from the plethora of Linux distributions available in the market today.

What are the advantages of using Db2 with IBM Cloud Pak for Data?

Using the Db2 cartridge on IBM Cloud Pak for Data gives you the ability to shift to the cloud, deploy AI faster and streamline governance. You also gain the use of containerized software with a shared entitlement, so deployment can be on any cloud or on premises. This allows your organization to modernize at your own pace. Db2 for IBM Cloud Pak for Data works seamlessly with other services to address the most important modernization use cases.

If I move to the Db2 cartridge on IBM Cloud Pak for Data, can I still run Db2 standalone?

Yes, your organization is not being forced to move to IBM Cloud Pak for Data. Db2 can still be used as a standalone deployment running on bare metal/virtual machines. The Db2 cartridge gives you both options, either standalone or on a containerized environment and a path to modernization at your own pace. IBM continues to offer choice and flexibility to deploy Db2 on bare metal, virtual machines or now through containerization on RedHat OpenShift through IBM Cloud Pak for Data.

What are containers?

Containers are an executable unit of software in which application code is packaged, along with its libraries and dependencies, in common ways so that it can be run anywhere, whether it be on desktop, traditional IT or the cloud. Containers take advantage of a form of operating system (OS) virtualization in which features of the OS (in the case of the Linux kernel, namely the namespaces and cgroups primitives) are leveraged to both isolate processes and control the amount of CPU, memory and disk to which those processes have access.

Why use containers?

Containers can help your organization where there is a need to modernize your data management estate to leverage artificial intelligence, integrate deployments and better handle the growing volume and diversity of data. Containerization allows applications to be “written once and run anywhere.”  You gain cloud simplicity and standardization regardless of where the data resides through containerization. The benefits for containerization extend beyond the deployment process to include scaling, easily pushing version updates, and virtually painless recovery (automated intra container and in-place recovery).

How can my organization containerize our existing Db2 estate?

Containerizing your existing Db2 environment is made easy through the free IBM Db2 click-to-containerize tool. The automated tool evaluates your existing Db2 database to ensure compatibility with containers, extracts the database from an on-premises bare metal installation and inserts it into a Db2 container running on RedHat OpenShift. As a final step, the database is automatically upgraded to the latest Db2 version and release.

What are the benefits of moving to IBM Cloud Pak for Data with the click-to-containerize tool?

When containerizing Db2 with the click-to-containerize tool, there is:

  • No reverse engineering
  • No backup and restore; data stays encrypted and secure


Unlike a typical database migration, the whole database is containerized. This includes logs, mirror logs, storage paths, external UDF, database configuration, KeyStore and security settings.

Get started with Db2 on IBM Cloud Pak for Data

Explore the click-to-containerize tool or talk to a Db2 expert for free.