IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe - January/February 2017 - SE26
z Systems handles workloads with stellar performance
pril 2014 marked the 50th anniversary of the IBM mainframe.
The January 2015 launch of z13*, the newest IBM z Systems*
platform, continued the mainframe saga. Always considered a
workhorse, the mainframe remains a stellar performer, whether
running traditional workloads or new ones such as cloud, mobile
and big data.
IBM built major performance features into the z13 platform.
Simultaneous multithreading boosts overall computing throughput
while going easy on power consumption. The platform can support
up to two software threads running simultaneously, so it can switch
between threads with one thread running concurrently when the
other is stalled. This enables throughput gains, resulting in better
performance. (See "New IBM z13 Chip Improves Throughput
and Analytics Performance," ibmsystemsmag.com/mainframe/
Multithreading also provides up to a 30 percent increase in
computing throughput for workloads running on the Integrated
Facility for Linux* and the IBM z Systems Integrated Information
Processor. Another key feature is single instruction, multiple
instruction (SIMD) set architecture that enables z13 to deftly process
data, enhancing analytics workloads. The
SIMD instruction set can be used with a
number of compilers, including Java*,
COBOL, XL C/C++ and PL/I. Because
code can be generated more efficiently, users will see a big
performance gain with these applications.
Virtualization has been part of z Systems for quite some time
and remains one of the performance differentiators. Native
z/OS* workloads run in sync with virtualize workloads, providing
customers with seamless integration. IBM's virtualization gives
customers advantages that aren't available elsewhere.
"A huge advantage we have is how we virtualize our I/O
subsystem," says Jeff Frey, CTO, IBM z Systems. (See "How
Mainframe Innovations Have Helped Shape and Reshape the
IT World," ibmsystemsmag.com/mainframe/Business-Strategy/
Business-Applications/shape_reshape/.) "We're going beyond just
CPU and memory to also include I/O adaptors, whether they're for
storage or networking," he adds. This means z Systems provides
economics of scale that attain almost 100 percent system utilization.
z Systems also excels when it comes to system availability.
IBM's Parallel Sysplex* technology, which was created in the early
1990s, continues to provide for dynamic workload routing from the
primary system to the backup system. Further, storage systems
can be synchronized, giving customers the ability to replicate data
at two locations simultaneously.
Great performance and reliability-
two of the mainstays of z Systems-keep
businesses up and running.
BY SHIRLEY S. SAVAGE
26 // 2017 ibmsystemsmag.com/buyersguide
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