Reminding Management of the Advantages of System Z

Within the recent IBM Z Summit road show, there were several presentations detailing the mainframe platform advantages over UNIX and Windows platforms such as the lowest total cost of ownership, the best availability and unparalleled scalability. These presentations cut through the rumors with detailed facts and figures of the different platform configurations. Download these presentations and distribute them to your management for a little reminder why the mainframe continues to be the best platform for your enterprise applications.

The Windows and UNIX platforms proponents always discount and minimize the total cost of ownership, availability and scalability topics. It is our duty to periodically remind management of the extra costs of these UNIX and Windows systems with their huge power consumption costs, software license fees, and software maintenance costs of working with several hundred or thousands of disparate systems. The mainframe quietly continues to process the majority of the transactions at the Fortune 500 companies and everyone, especially younger management types that think that the world can run on an iPhone, needs to understand that the System Z infrastructure is the best backbone for any company.

The System Z mainframe is also evolving since it now has all of its specialized processors such as the IFL, zIIP and zAAP specialty processors for reducing overall operational and licensing costs. These specialty processors along with a new System Z smaller configuration offer a single small platform to consolidate any number of UNIX workloads into a single footprint with a smaller greener energy footprint and better licensing configuration.

The presentations detailed benchmarks, licensing fees and labor costs of various mainframe versus UNIX platforms configurations. The figures showed it takes sometimes double the number of processor cores on a UNIX configuration to start to scale out a configuration. Then even more UNIX processors to achieve transaction rates that are still only performing one-fourth of what the mainframe System Z executes. These UNIX systems are also dedicated to the production transaction environment with no thought of supporting testing, QA or failover facilities that have yet to be priced or considered and come standard within the System Z environment.

System Z also continues to grow because of its faster chips. Ask any PC or UNIX platform personnel “what platform has the fastest clock speed processors” and you will quickly find out who keeps up with the industry information. The chip clock speeds of the System Z and other IBM platforms have seen their chip speeds improve like the rest of the PC industry. In fact, the System Z z10 chip operates at 4.4 GHz and comes in a 64-way quad core configuration that can speed up any application performance problem. This is almost twice as fast as the HP Superdome processors and a third faster than the Intel Nehalem chips.

So the mainframe continues to lead the industry. Does your management know the cost savings and performance figures of System Z? Tell them and show them the presentations before someone tries to “replace the mainframe” again with a more troublesome, power hunger, bad performing clustered iPhone configuration.

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