Source - http://www.gartner.com/it/page.jsp?id=1654914
You have to love the phrase 'negative growth' call me old fashioned but is that not the same as decline???
In the 80's and 90's it was the vogue to move away from the mainframe, for a plethora of well documented reasons, departmental servers became the platform of the future. This led to the rise of UNIX and it's OPEN systems approach.
Wind the clock forward to 2012 and we have 3 UNIX vendors pushing increasingly 'closed' systems. Whilst I acknowledge the skillset gap to switch between each flavour of UNIX is not huge, each system is not anymore 'open' than any other OS. Let me elaborate... Increasingly the 'open' systems vendors are pushing vertically integrated application focused stacks, take Exadata from Oracle/SUN as a case in point. Larry wants nothing more than for this approach to yield the profits that the stack vendors of the 1960's and 70's saw when the were able to push everything from the application to the underlying bespoke hardware into their clients. If you are into racing yachts you need to find ways to pay for your habit...
However if you take a look at this from a client perspective, the choices available are decreasing, so lets take a look at the ones that survive:
- Install an appliance based architecture for every major application i.e. Exadata, Exalogic
- Build it yourself - based on building blocks from vendors like SAP and HP
- Consume a service from a public cloud vendor - salesforce.com etc...
- Build a private cloud, again based on building blocks
- Deploy a Hybrid computing platform
1) Scalability - i.e. the ability to not only handle large scale applications but also have payment models that scale alongside this growth.
2) Availability - if you build an infrastructure, then you want this to be available, 5x9's should be the baseline not the ambition.
3) Commodity cost point - the ability to leverage commodity trends such as blades and x86 chip roadmaps
4) Radical simplicity when it comes to networking
5) Ability to manage multiple o/s' in a holistic way to adapt to workload, rather than system pinch points
6) Security - a simplistic model that doesn't require 'air gaps' or multiple firewalls within the system
If this sounds like nirvana, then welcome to the world of zEnterprise. The mainframe of today (rather than 30-years ago) is able to run 4 o/s (Windows, Linux, UNIX and z O/S) is the perfect platform for private cloud deployments and is able to provide an 'open' system that doesn't care about your various o/s bias... Never thought you would hear the mainframe described as 'open' now did you....