Open platform for choice with flexibility


Today, organizations have an unprecedented ability to discover new revenue opportunities, respond to competitive threats and dynamically shift priorities to outperform their peers. From database and business analytics to cognitive computing, insights are being infused into every process, decision and customer interaction. To unlock and deliver those insights, organizations need a flexible infrastructure that provides them with the choice and flexibility to respond to today’s needs while laying a foundation for future innovation.

It is no surprise that clients around the world are turning to open source technologies, such as Linux, to gain greater choice and flexibility, while reducing costs. Linux, once considered an operating system for experimentation, is now used by organizations of all sizes for important business workloads. According to this year’s Linux Foundation Annual Linux Adoption Survey, 73% of the survey respondents reported using Linux for mission-critical workloads with reliance on Linux for cloud and big data as strong contributing factors.

Providing choice and flexibility is at the heart of IBM Power System’s design. Built as an open platform for choice, clients have the freedom to choose from industry standard Linux, AIX and IBM i operating environments to respond to their unique business and IT needs whether delivered on premise or through the cloud through a variety of systems, software and network configurations.

In fact, clients running Linux on Power Systems, such as Tennis Australia, WellPoint and GHY International have experienced tremendous competitive advantages from our open source technologies. For example, during two intense weeks every year at the Australian Open, TennisAustralia delivers an integrated online and mobile fan experience to millions of tennis enthusiasts around the world with real-time play by play action, live scores and match statistics.

Behind this interactive fan experience is a scalable and flexible private cloud running on Linux on IBM Power Systems. With this solution, TennisAustralia can dynamically scale to meet data demands, reduce energy expenditure and predict IT costs. The Linux on Power solution enabled the provision of a new web server in less than three minutes and the ability to move a live application workload from one Power System to another in less than four minutes. Since 2008, page views to the private cloud have grown by 42%, while the cost of each page view has dropped by 35%.

IBM is committed to open source technology

Since 1999 IBM has been a strong supporter of the open source Linux operating system, IBM has invested considerable financial, technical, and marketing resources to foster the growth, development, and use of open source and Linux technologies.

This year alone, IBM has extended its commitment to open and collaborative technologies with the announcement of three Power System Linux Centers in China and the United States to make it simpler for software developers to build and deploy new applications for big data, cloud, mobile and social business computing on open technology building blocks using Linux and the Power Systems Platform.

As part of IBM’s commitment to open source technology we introduced the PowerLinux servers, Linux-only versions of our Power Systems, in 2012 for clients who wanted an open platform at a affordable cost with superior security, performance, and reliability.

Our commitment continues with a new high-performance Linux-based system, the PowerLinux 7R4, geared for big data analytics and cloud computing. IBM is also expanding its portfolio of software for Power Systems with the availability of IBM Cognos Business Intelligence and EnterpriseDB database software, each optimized for Linux on Power.

The new PowerLinux 7R4 is a 4-socket, 32-node server ideal for clients seeking a Linux-only open platform that can handle compute-intensive workloads including analytics, cognitive computing, database, and web infrastructure. Harnessing the performance, scalability and performance of the Power Systems platform with open source Linux on Power, the PowerLinux 7R4 will deliver even more of the business value experienced by such clients as Tennis Australia, WellPoint and GHY International. With today’s announcement, now businesses and organizations of all sizes have greater flexibility and choice. In addition to the new PowerLinux 7R4 is IBM Cognos Business Intelligence now available on Linux, which provides access to the right facts at the right time, while enabling data-driven insights all while benefitting from the superior performance, availability and reliability of the Power Systems platform.

With today’s announcement, local governments and businesses in a variety of industries such as healthcare, telecommunications, retail and banking can leverage the PowerLinux 7R4 and the new software and middleware to gain competitive advantage with faster, data-driven insight.

I encourage you to take a moment to learn more about how IBM is powering open technologies to drive competitive innovations for our clients. Click here to also learn about today’s exciting announcements. 

Douglas (Doug) Balog, general manager, Power Systems, is responsible for IBM’s worldwide Power server business and the IBM Power System franchise. Doug is also a member of IBM’s Performance Team (PT) and Strategy Team (ST), which focus respectively on tactical execution and the strategic direction for the IBM enterprise. Doug has been part of IBM’s Systems and Technology group for 30 years with product development leadership and brand leadership roles across System z, System x, BladeCenter, System Storage and now Power Systems. During that time, he has led major portfolio transformations across all of these brands to better align with clients’ needs and the market shifts.

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2 Responses to Open platform for choice with flexibility

  1. Rick S. says:

    I’m surprised to see you take this direction. Power is our infrutructure backbone. It does the heavy lifting with AIX. To push Linux on power is to introduce the trend to no long inovate AIX.
    Solidarity on this platform is what is needed, if you are looking at tier solutions then please introduce another product line, eh, maybe PureFlex power nodes.
    We have shown time after time that Linux flavors on power are expensive, and take more hours to keep up to date. With nearly 3000 modules to track and patch versus 300 on AIX it is more outages, more testing, and more vunerabilities.

    • Doug Balog says:

      Thank you for raising an important concern that has come up in some of my recent conversations. Our Linux on Power investment does not signal an end to innovation or value from AIX; in fact, our commitment to AIX innovation remains as strong as ever. We can’t deny, however, that the market has chosen a new direction for a class of emerging workloads, and that is open environment with Linux, KVM and Openstack as examples. Solidarity to a single OS while the market is making such a shift would limit the value Power Systems can deliver across that ever-broadening range of workloads. With Linux, we benefit from the industry innovation and their investment in maintenance and testing. For our Power System clients, we see a world where these OSs can not only co-exist, but thrive. I look forward to you joining me and the Power team in this approach for solving client workload challenges while growing our Power business.

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