The speed at which the concept of e-business is evolving is perhaps most dramatically reflected in the accelerating acceptance of the Linux operating system in commercial business environments. Companies, particularly large ones, must simultaneously deal with increasing IT user populations, exploding amounts of electronic business information, and integration of new (eg, Linux) and existing (eg, OS/390) applications. With the delivery of DB2 Universal Database for Linux on S/390 and zSeries servers in December 2000, IBM enables companies to take best advantage of their enterprise information assets in this time of rapid change.
For large customers, the attraction to DB2 UDB for Linux on S/390 and zSeries has several components. First on many IT professionals' minds are reliability and high availability. IBM brings together three systems with sterling reputations in this area: S/390 and the new zSeries servers (the hardware), Linux itself (the operating system), and DB2 Universal Database (the database management software). Uniting these strengths is possible now for the first time.
A second attraction is cost-effectiveness, particularly for customers with a prior investment in S/390. S/390 and zSeries systems can be partitioned into a large number of small Linux systems each running DB2. Application workloads across many smaller servers can be consolidated onto a single operating platform. Any existing capacity on a S/390 server can be used, so additional hardware expenditures are not required necessarily. The open source nature of Linux and its cost-effective distributions from partners like SuSE and TurboLinux add to the equation. DB2 UDB for Linux is priced on S/390 and zSeries just as it is on Intel-based servers, providing more savings.
For some, the attraction is both reliability and cost-effectiveness. "By porting to DB2 Universal Database on Linux for S/390, we have achieved the level of reliability and stability necessary for running highly available applications in an environment that demonstrates close to 100 percent up-time. And because many of our staff are already familiar with the Linux platform, we have decreased training costs and time considerably," said Art Weeks, Production Services Manager of County of San Mateo, California.
A third attraction is the ease with which existing and new applications and information can be woven together to provide new e-business capabilities. Existing applications on DB2 for OS/390 that are required to run a business can simply and quickly share information with new applications emerging on Linux, all on the same S/390 or zSeries server, thanks to DB2 Connect software available with DB2 UDB on Linux. Customers of IBM's IMS database system can also share information with Linux applications via the new IMS Connect feature.
"We can consolidate most our Web applications and eliminate the need for costly Windows NT servers. And...our connectivity speeds between the applications and the data have increased significantly," said a spokesperson from Grede Foundries, Inc.
The convergence of increasing demand for information, of growing acceptance for Linux, of availability of IBM's DB2 Universal Database for Linux on S/390 and zSeries servers, and of support from business partners and independent software vendors provides an unprecedented occasion for enterprises to grow rapidly and excel.
About the Author
Jeff Jones is senior program manager in IBM Data Management Solutions, the home of DB2 Universal Database. He serves as a spokesperson for IBM's data management software portfolio in addition to serving on the editorial Board of Directors for DB2 Magazine. He has twenty-one years technical, staff and managerial experience with IBM. Prior to his current position, Jeff was a brand manager for IBM's data replication and database systems management middleware. He has also served in the DB2 for OS/390 product group, in IBM's Research Division on experimental engineering graphics and analysis projects, and on engineering and logistics application projects for IBM Storage Systems. Jeff is located at IBM's Silicon Valley Laboratory in San Jose, California.
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