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IBM Forges HA/DR Strategic Partnerships

IBM Partnership


Today’s business climate is increasingly a 24x365 environment, which makes eliminating downtime of any kind a business imperative.  Businesses must be prepared for unexpected outages and they must deploy an infrastructure designed for high availability (HA) – eliminating any downtime from software and hardware maintenance or from unexpected events and outages.  

To help clients prepare their infrastructure and address these requirements, IBM has been teaming with new partners to enhance and expand our portfolio of HA and disaster recovery (DR) offerings.  These enhanced capabilities enable clients to maintain leading HA service levels, and to automate recovery across data centers, or to a cloud, in the case of a major data center outage.  This broad range of solutions addresses the needs of customers to ensure every aspect of their IT infrastructure is enabled for HA. 

Aricent and IBM Join Forces on PowerHA 

PowerHA for AIX has seen significant enhancements over the last two releases. If you haven’t evaluated it lately, I encourage you to take a new look. Here’s what’s new:

  • We added significant new automation of cluster capabilities including, verification checks and resource optimization including new Capacity Backup systems to reduce infrastructure costs. 

  • We delivered a new user interface with PowerHA V7.2.1 for AIX. Designed interactively with clients, the UI shows the health and status of physical HA components in one place and in real time. This video provides a two-minute PowerHA UI demo.

  • Also, we’ve formed a strategic partnership with Aricent to rapidly expand the capabilities of IBM’s PowerHA for AIX. 

IBM is excited about working with Aricent, a global design and engineering company with 12,000 engineers and 25 years of experience helping customers solve their most important business and technology challenges.  Frank Kern, Aricent’s CEO, captures the partnership well, “Aricent is proud to be working with IBM, leveraging our deep engineering investments and software frameworks.  We can increase the value and performance of the PowerHA product by bringing Aricent’s design and engineering expertise to IBM’s industry-leading platform and technology.  This partnership results in an improved and simplified roadmap for PowerHA, and increases the value for the users of the Power Systems.”  The new, enhanced roadmap includes accelerating automation tasks and management simplification as well as expanding into new use cases and extensions into the cloud. 

Automated VM Remote Restart with PowerVC

IBM PowerVC v1.3.2, which became available in December 2016, adds policy-based automation that detects a system failure and then automatically starts the VMs on servers that are still alive and well. This automation removes human errors from the decision process and reduces the time to restart VMs from hours to minutes. Together these features provide a fast restart of workloads in case of failures and optimal decisions to keep your workloads running at their best. 

DR Protection with GDR

Increasingly, companies are required to perform biannual compliance testing to prove their capability to get their operations up and running either in full production or in test mode at a remote location.  This can be a labor-intensive headache that is prone to human error. 

Geographically Dispersed Resiliency (GDR), a new solution, automates DR operations with a single point of control for ease of management. The GDR environment requires minimal human involvement and is easy to deploy. An additional bonus is the remote production server requires no permanent license entitlements. This solution is a great DR option for PowerHA Standard Edition customers as well as Linux on POWER customers who are often relying on manual processes to carry out DR operations. 

IBM and Rocket Software Create Cloud Storage Solutions for IBM i

The IBM i Power Systems team has formed a strategic partnership with Rocket Software to create technology that will enable our clients to interact with public and private cloud providers for backup and archiving operations. 

In this first release of Cloud Storage Solutions for i, we created an API that interacts with the Softlayer cloud and also integrates with a new highly automated version of IBM Backup, Recovery and Media Services (BRMS), which leverages this API to perform automated backup operations to Softlayer. Support for more public cloud interfaces will be initiated and new ways to optimize bandwidth utilization and encryption technologies are being evaluated. 

More to Come

IBM continues to make strategic Power Systems investments and provide innovation for HA and DR with new offerings like GDR, Cloud Storage Solutions for i and new features for HA like PowerVC Automated Remote Restart of VMs to provide a robust platform for clients. Stay tuned for even more improvements to come.  

Steve Sibley VP, Offering Management, IBM Power Systems

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