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Polaris Industries Reduces Job Runtimes, Saves CPU Usage and Specs Out New Systems


Keith Livingood IBM i senior administrator Polaris Industries — Photo by Robb Long

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Customer: Polaris Industries
Headquarters: Medina, Minnesota
Business: Manufacturer of snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, related accessories and garments, and more
Challenge: Discovering why a job was running longer than anticipated
Solution: Using Midrange Performance Group’s Performance Navigator to pinpoint the job lag, decrease storage use and spec out new systems
Hardware: Three IBM Power Systems 740s and three IBM Storwize V7000 storage devices
Software: Midrange Performance Group’s Performance Navigator, Infor XA and Vision Solutions’ iTERA Availability

Systems administrators can have head-scratching moments when trying to discover why some jobs are running longer than they should. Issues such as processor performance, the amount of available memory and disk latency are often pointed out as the culprits.

And in some cases, this is correct. All or some of these can indeed have an impact on job runtimes, with, for example, a job started at 10 p.m. running well into the next day because processors aren’t up to the task of pushing it through in a timely manner. This, of course, has several ramifications, including lagging computing performance during the workday and, perhaps more notably, key information not getting to decision makers when they expect and need it.

Processor upgrades and increased memory and storage allocations may address some of these issues. Unfortunately, throwing additional performance-enhancing solutions at these problems may be only stopgap measures—and expensive ones at that. Other, more mundane issues may in fact be causing job lags.

Keith Livingood, IBM i senior administrator with Polaris Industries, discovered this when a key job began running longer than it should have. Using tools from Midrange Performance Group (MPG), he was able to quickly and accurately determine the exact cause of the problems without adding processors, memory or storage to manage the issue—and saved a great deal of money while doing so.

Pretty Well Covered

Once most widely known for its snowmobiles, Polaris now offers a broad range of products. It manufactures all manner of all-terrain vehicles, such as the RANGER and RZR side-by-side off-roaders, motorcycles (including the Victory, Slingshot and Indian brands), and even on-road electric/hybrid vehicles. It also has a line of nonmotorized products that encompass any number of related parts, garments and accessories as part of its PG&A business.

Jim Utsler, IBM Systems Magazine senior writer, has been covering the technology field for more than a decade. Jim can be reached at jjutsler@provide.net.


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