Big Iron 'not dead': BMC

Mainframes the Greenest platform available for data centres, the company claims

Despite growth in alternatives to mainframes, big iron will not vanish from data centres any time soon, BMC has claimed.

Speaking to CIO Australia, BMC’s director of mainframe for Australia and New Zealand, James Russell, said despite their costs, mainframes were still providing a return on investment thanks to their energy efficiency and Green appeal.

“The mainframe is probably the Greenest platform that exists now,” he said. “If you think about a data centre, one of the challenges that exist is the floor space you need and the power you need to cool and manage a non-mainframe system.”

“They are a Greener alternative and require less real estate which has downstream benefits towards Green [IT]. They are a highly-efficient platform.”

Russell’s claims were backed up by University of Melbourne professor Rod Tucker who earlier this year said in some cases, using a modern mid-range computer for computing tasks used less energy than relying on existing cloud storage and computing services.

Not only did mainframes help CIOs address their Green initiatives and priorities, they also made sense from a business continuity level, Russell said.

“The [mainframe means that the] CIO knows they have a reliable back end component for all of the critical data and delivery,” he said. “So the front end, which…are web-based user-orientated applications, are able to perform at the highest level of capability.”

Russell’s comments follow the release of BMC's annual mainframe survey results, based on findings from some 1700 global mainframe users.

Russell said those surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region tipped private cloud and SaaS as the top two emerging data centre trends, with 23 per cent and 17 per cent, respectively, citing these as priorities in their responses.

“The survey indicated that the major pressure on IT was to reduce costs and improve alignment with business and business outcomes,” he said.

“For the CIO, what that’s doing is saying we need to make sure the technology we run is the most cost effective solution for running our business solutions and the most highly available and customised environment for business applications.”

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