Since its inception in 1999, Linux on System z has significantly matured and clients across all industries have adopted it worldwide. In its early days, Linux on System z was mostly implemented for SAMBA File/Print, DNS, VPN, and Apache. Today, major mission-critical applications run on Linux on System z at many of the world’s largest corporations, all the way down to small businesses that have never owned an IBM mainframe. The System z server holds the leadership position over all other server-virtualization technologies from a business, technical and financial perspective because it allows Linux to exploit the powerful z/VM environment.
IBM recently announced z/VM v6.1, which intends to provide capabilities that permit multiple z/VM systems to collaborate in order to provide a single system image and to further strengthen single system image support through live guest relocation. More details on these Statements of Direction can be found online (http://www.vm.ibm.com/zvm610/zvm61sum.html).
Learn From Customer Success
However, most C-Level Executives want to hear about other customers and why they choose Linux on System z over of other alternatives. Instead they should be asking how they can establish a Linux and virtualization strategy across their entire inventory of servers, network, storage devices and applications. Such a strategy will enable any IT organization to have the agility and flexibility to address any hardware or software solution that has yet to be invented, as well as their existing issues with infrastructure simplification and TCO. However, there are many success stories worth sharing:
One Wall Street client had overloaded the electrical power line from their data center of x86 and RISC servers. After months of trying to address the situation with virtualization and more energy-efficient servers, the firm decided to pilot Linux on System z under z/VM. Not only did they successfully resolve their power and cooling issues, they also prevented an impending $30 million data-center upgrade they were planning.
The Bank of Russia reduced payment-processing costs by 95 percent, saving $400 million per year. Server and data-center consolidation created further savings on hardware and software licensing, maintenance and electricity, and increased security. The bank’s technical-staff workload was reduced by 85 percent.
Marist College educates the next generation of mainframe administrators about IBM System z servers, IBM z/VM, and IBM System Storage. z/VM gives Marist the capability to run more than 600 Linux virtual machines for general student use, all on a single System z platform. The consolidated architecture provides a great deal of flexibility and control over systems administration. z/VM also enables Marist to dynamically provide system recovery from failures or outages, and the capability to quickly set up new Linux server environments or test environments for application programmers.
There are many more interesting Linux on System z success stories with good details posted online, at http://www-03.ibm.com/systems/z/os/linux/success/. Also, IBM hosts the System z Linux Executive Customer Council on a quarterly basis—where hundreds of existing customers as well as those exploring or new to Linux on System z come to listen how others have implemented Linux on System z under z/VM.
Benefits of Linux on z/VM
Whether you are fortunate to already own a mainframe, don’t own a mainframe at all, or are in the process of deciding to keep or get off the mainframe, it’s imperative to consider Linux on z/VM. Linux on IBM System z will transform any IT infrastructure into a dynamic infrastructure and provide improvements to qualities of service, system management and performance, and when integrated with existing data and applications on z/OS, z/VSE or z/VM, can naturally complement these environments and make them more open and accessible. For more details, visit http://www-03.ibm.com/systems/z/os/linux/about/.
As you begin your journey towards Linux on System z under z/VM, be sure to select the applications best suited for the design points of System z architecture. This entails leveraging the classic strengths of System z solutions such as high availability, high I/O bandwidth, the capability to run diverse concurrent workloads, security and superior disaster recovery. The application-selection process should also take into consideration shortening the end-to-end path length for applications whenever possible by collocating applications next to the business data already resident on System z servers by exploiting the unique Hipersocket technology to significantly reduce network equipment and traffic. There’s a thorough best-practices methodology that can be provided to ensure you complete the journey successfully.
Linux on System z on z/VM removes complexity from IT infrastructure by reducing server proliferation, reducing software licenses and minimizing the need for human intervention in managing and maintaining infrastructure. While Linux brings advantages to all the platforms on which it runs, choosing the IBM System z mainframe with z/VM for Linux applications adds the mainframe core strengths that distinguish the mainframe from all of the other platforms.