back to article Novell stacks Linux and Mono for mainframes

When IBM announced its Linux-only Enterprise Linux Server variants of the System z mainframe two weeks ago, what the company did not say is that software partner Novell had cooked up software bundles specifically for these boxes. IBM has 100 per cent share of the IBM-compatible mainframe market at this point, and Linux is one of …

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i/o

We wad a z10 teest box running on this, the i/0 to san was pretty terrible. The IBM guys we had running it in house couldn't explain is but offered to try again in the new year, not really inspiring stuff

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Unhappy

Re: i/o

"We wad a z10 teest box running on this, the i/0 to san was pretty terrible. The IBM guys we had running it in house couldn't explain is but offered to try again in the new year, not really inspiring stuff"

I'd grill the IBM guys because we have awesome san perf with our z10. If the IBM guys don't fix it, pose a question to the linux-390 mailing list. When you get it working without IBM's help, use it as leverage to get a discount.

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Excuse me?

"IBM has 100 per cent share of the IBM-compatible mainframe market at this point"

Tell that to Hercules; last I heard, somewhere between 20% and 25% of mainframes were Hercules emulators.

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Linux

Performance Comparison

How do these mainframes compare performance wise to the x64 boxes they are potentially competing with?

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Anonymous Coward

Depends

on what you compare. Traditionally you wouldn't want to do compute intensive activities on the big box, rather you'd want to do bandwidth intensive activities on the big box. As usual, it depends on what your workload is and what you want to do with it. There should be enough white papers knocking around that would give you a better idea, although you may have to work hard to find them.

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.net on a mainframe.

Is it just me or does this sound like a *really* bad idea.

OTOH with a good hypervisor to shut down misbahaving apps and the mainframes traditional virtues of high bandwidth it could be a surprising winner.

However it sounds like an uphill struggle to get PC server and *nix box houses to go for the big one.

Which begs the question how *good* this mono clone of .net is.

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@ John Smith 19 and other things

1) we're an AIX, Windows, and Linux shop with about 3500 non-host servers and a few z8s, z9s and z10s kicking around. We started messing around with z/Liunux on IFLs almost 2 years ago. We have over 400 linux guests on IFLs now. Corporate directive is now "if it runs on Z it goes on Z, no questions asked." We are bought into it wholesale!

It's not about the IFL and Suse licensing savings (we don't pay anywhere near $25K per IFL btw, that must be retail not street pricing). The REAL savings in in IBM and other licensing. See, most softwarei is licensed by what IBM calls a "processor value unit" or PVU. P6+ processor are equal to 120 PVUs each (A Xeon core is 100), and on a 8 or 16 core machine with VIO we might be able to run 4 -16 distinct WebSphere installations, costing nearly 2,000 PVUs in licensing. A typical webshere cluster (cell) costs tens of thosands in license alone to deploy. On some of our PVUs we have as many as 30 instances of Webshere running.

4 PVUs in our z10 cost us (give or take the sale of the day, IBM never publishes these numbers), about $50-60K each. Linux is another $10-15K depending on the winds. WebSphere is 120PVUs per IFL. 4 IFLs fully licensed with Suse and WebSphere run under $300K when we package a deal (we usually buuy 8-10 at a time). The equivalent license for websphere alone on P6+ or Intel hardware would exceed that total hardware support and license price. Then, we've got the z10 for MIPS use as well... and it;s rediculously highly availabe, and IBM doesn't screw around supporting it like they do rack hardware...

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Dead Vulture

I swear

Novell loses Linux users every time they mention their agreement with the Devil. Signing an agreement with Microsoft was bad enough, but bragging about it publicly? Not good business.

Alas poor Ray Norda. I knew him Horatio.

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Devil's System

"Novell loses Linux users every time they mention their agreement with the Devil. "

Apparently the minions in hell are pretty good in making software that is ergonomic and of high quality.

The gods of SUN are only excellent preachers, but can only deliver second-rate, buggy stuff. Which is understandable, considering the fact that they make zero dollars with Java, OpenOffice and OpenSolaris.

Thumbs up for Novell do deliver something that is reliable and well-designed, on Linux.

Face it, business is not about sympathy, but about delivering best products and services at a competitve price. That is what Microsoft does.

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