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IBM Extends zEnterprise Capabilities

zBC12 provides a new entry point for enterprise computing

8/7/2013 1:01:01 AM | IBM is expanding the zEnterprise System family with its newest addition for enterprise computing: the IBM zEnterprise BC12 (zBC12). It's designed to be the entry point into enterprise computing for mid-sized organizations that are seeing growth in a variety of workloads. It provides availability, performance and security in data analytics, consolidation, virtualization, cloud solutions and mobile applications.

Aiming to improve system performance, flexibility and scalability from its predecessor, the zEnterprise 114 (z114), the zBC12 runs on up to 18 microprocessors at 4.2 GHz, and provides up to 36 percent performance boost per core, 58 percent more traditional workload capacity and 62 percent more Linux workload capacity when compared with the z114.

The zBC12 furthermore offers more than twice the available memory of the z114, boasting up to 496 GB, designed to have enough space to enhance data serving performance. To accomplish all of this, the zBC12 uses the same microprocessor technology used in the zEnterprise EC12, but is specifically tuned for the processing requirements of the entry-level mainframe.

The two models, the H06 and H13, derive their names from the number of cores available for configuration. The H06 is designed as a single central-processing drawer model, while the H13 divides resources into two drawers, each containing 10 slots for dual inline memory modules, two Single Chip Modules and one storage control module. The cores can be configured as either general purpose processors or specialty engines, such as the IFL, System z Application Assist Processor (zAAP), System z Integrated Information Processor (zIIP), Internal Coupling Facility (ICF) or additional System Assist Processors. Each of these cores also has microprocessor chips dedicated to data compression and cryptographic processing to improve system performance.

The zBC12 further offers the flexibility to deploy applications across a variety of operating environments, enabling users to integrate, virtualize and manage multiple server architectures, including z/OS, z/VM, z/VSE and Linux, as well as AIX and Microsoft Windows using the zEnterprise BladeExtension and System z Unified Resource Manager. These hybrid capabilities enable the zBC12 to fundamentally change the way data centers are managed by addressing the inefficiency of multi-architecture data centers by extending the mainframe’s capabilities to these systems.

In this way, the zBC12’s capability of integrating heterogeneous platforms enhances the cloud computing capabilities through its centrally managed IT resources. This ease of use complements cloud computing’s promise of savings, which results from eliminating the limitations of fixed-hardware, such as CPU, memory, network and storage. Again, zBC12 can be scaled to meet a company’s cloud-related needs.

Of course, no system upgrades would be complete without addressing its mobile capabilities. With the number of mobile devices continuing to skyrocket—according to the IBM zBC12 data sheet, currently around 34 million devices kept within arm’s reach by their users 91 percent of the time—businesses are transforming, thus evolving new models to ease user transactions. The System z platform is geared for increased growth in mobile applications, and when combined with IBM Worklight, users can quickly develop secure apps to fit the needs of their companies.

For more information on zBC12 and the capabilities of System z, check out the IBM zBC12 data sheet.

Chris Bowman is an MSP TechMedia intern.

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