That Linux has come a long way in the past 15 years is undeniable. It began as a system for small web servers but now spans multiple hardware platforms to run enterprise and technical workloads, and to support a wide range of new workloads in social media, web serving, and cloud computing.
Indeed, Linux is running on millions of server units worldwide and generating more than $4 billion (£2.65 billion) in factory revenue in annual server sales. The opportunity exists to consolidate workloads onto more powerful systems, to reduce operational costs, and to improve scalability, availability, and reliability.
Several qualitative changes are happening as well:
- Enterprise Linux is running demanding enterprise applications, along with IT and Web infrastructure and application development workloads.
- Linux is finding its way onto the most scalable and reliable systems — starting with scale-out configurations in clusters and reaching into midrange and high-end server systems.
- Linux is a platform for workload consolidation, supporting workloads on central-site computers that are migrating from other hardware platforms distributed throughout the corporate network.
- Linux shares many of the programming profiles and characteristics of Unix running on scalable SMP servers, allowing IT skill sets to be shared across multiple hardware server deployments.
This paper describes the Linux environment on the IBM System z mainframe — and the Integrated Facility for Linux (IFL) specialty engines that support Linux — which is deployed in more than 30 per cent of newly shipping System z servers.
This combination of Linux running on System z includes the hardware and software aspects of the platform and its support for virtualisation, IT optimisation, cloud computing, and big data. Taken together, these components of the Linux environment on System z address a wide array of customer requirements. From a business perspective, they provide a new way to do workload consolidation that addresses operational costs associated with supporting large numbers of Linux systems that have been deployed across the corporate network.
To view the full white paper, download it here