×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Managing Linux and Virtual Machines?

Cliff posted more than 11 years ago | from the seeking-wisdom-from-the-pioneers dept.

Linux Business 239

deijmaster asks: "For a couple of months we have been hearing (as a major consulting firm) IBM people pushing the possibility of installing a Z/Linux VM setup at one of our biggest clients (financial). To a Linux user such as myself this sounds great, at first. Now, I am a bit reluctant when it comes to managing this kind of infrastructure, with little or no local expertise at IBM. Has anyone gone through a Z/Linux VM corporate installation and lived through the management of such a solution?"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864564)

GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO
By Tim Copperfield
New York, NY - GNAA (Gay Nigger Association of America) today announced acquisition of The SCO Group [yahoo.com] for $26.9 million in stock and $40 million in gay niggers.

GNAA today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the intellectual property and technology assets of The SCO Group, a leading provider of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt, based in Lindon, Utah. GNAA's acquisition of SCO technology will help GNAA sign up more members worldwide. In addition to developing new solutions, GNAA will use SCO engineering expertise and technology to enhance the GNAA member services.

"I'd love to see these GNAA types slowly consumed by millions of swarming microbes and converted into harmless and useful biochemicals." said an anonymous slashdot poster, blinded by the GNAA success in achieving first post on a popular geek news website, slashdot.org [slashdot.org] .

"This GNAA shit is getting out of hand. Slashdot needs troll filters. Or better yet a crap flood mod that I can exclude from my browsing. Seriously, a good troll is art, what you dumb fucks are doing is just plain stupid." said spacecowboy420.

macewan, on linuxquestions [linuxquestions.org] said "Thanks for that link to the SCO quotes page. My guess is that they want to be bought out. Hrm, think they want GNAA to buy them??"

After careful consideration and debate, GNAA board of directors agreed to purchase 6,426,600 preferred shares and 113,102 common shares (the equivalent of 150,803 ADSs) of SCO, for an aggregate consideration of approximately US$26.9 million and approximately $40 million for gay niggers that were working in Lindon, Utah offices of The SCO Group.

If all goes well, the final decision is to be expected shortly, followed by transfer of most SCO niggers from their Lindon, UT offices to the GNAA Headquarters in New York.

About GNAA
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which
gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [klerck.org] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to any of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America. You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

First, you have to obtain a copy of GAY NIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it.

Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA "first post" on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website

Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on EFNet, and apply for membership.
Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today!

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is EFNet, and you can connect to irc.secsup.org or irc.isprime.com as one of the EFNet servers.
If you do not have an IRC client handy, you are free to use the GNAA Java IRC client by clicking here [nero-online.org] .

About SCO
The SCO Group [SCOX [yahoo.com] ] helps millions of gay niggers in more than 82 countries around the world grow their penises everyday. Headquartered in Lindon, Utah, SCO has a network of more than 11,000 nigger resellers and 8,000 developers. SCO Global Services provides reliable nigger support and services to prospective members and customers.
SCO and the associated SCO logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of The SCO Group, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. UNIX and UnixWare are registered trademarks of The Open Group in the United States and other countries. All other brand or product names are or may be trademarks of their respective owners.

This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management's current expectations and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may vary materially from the expectations contained herein. The forward-looking statements contained herein include statements about the consummation of the transaction with SCO and benefits of the pending transaction with SCO. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described herein include the inability to obtain regulatory approvals and the inability to successfully integrate the SCO business. GNAA is under no obligation to (and expressly disclaims any such obligation to) update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.


If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

________________________________________________
| ______________________________________._a,____ |
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ |
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ |
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ |
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ |
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ |
| _________#1__________?________________________ |
| _________j1___________________________________ |
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ |
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ |
| ______-"!^____________________________________ |
` _______________________________________________'

Re:GNAA Announces acquisition of SCO (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864835)

How can I join please? Oh, I am not a negroid! Can I just lie and join anyway? I like you people! You're my peeps!

Don't forget... (-1, Troll)

SCO$699FeeTroll (695565) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864565)

...to pay your $699 licensing fee you cock-smoking teabaggers.

Re:Don't forget... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864942)

You, sir, need a life.

Re:Don't forget... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865034)

You, sir/it, need a large black cock [nero-online.org] rammed up your ass.

Re:Don't forget... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865042)

What makes you think I don't already have one?

Re:Don't forget... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865066)

you have one rammed up your ass as you posted your message?

No. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864575)

"Has anyone gone through a Z/Linux VM corporate installation and lived through the management of such a solution?"

No.

Re:No. (5, Interesting)

sglines (543315) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864615)

I once saw Amdhals version of Unix running on a mainframe at New England Telephone. The ps command yielded about 20,000 running processes and the guy I knew told me that it was just one of 6 VM systems running on the same hardware.

I was impressed.

SG

Re:No. (2, Interesting)

salty_oz (457779) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864629)

Amdhals Unix was called UTS from memory. We ran it here many hears ago too.

Re:No. (3, Informative)

rbh00a (9055) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865055)

Amdahl's version of Unix was and is UTS. It was spun off in May 2000 as UTS Global LLC. Check out our webpage at http://www.utsglobal.com.

TurboLinux, yes (2, Insightful)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864721)

I helped a admin friend (pure Novell guy that was somehow tasked with this job) implement TurboLinux on a IBM Z series mainframe [turbolinux.com] . It is kind of easy to work, but you lose some performance, and updates and fixes can be hard to track down sometimes. Clustered Linux solutions could end being cheaper at first, but their TCO may rise higher as time goes on (especially if your company/institution lacks a very competent Linux cluster admin/programmer).

Use Windows (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864585)

Try using Windows

Low standards (-1, Redundant)

paranode (671698) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864589)

Who did you sleep with to get this posted to Slashdot??

Please tell me!

I can tell you this, (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864602)

OMFG have you seen the Halo 2 trailer it's like slow and it's telling you all the stuff you did in the first one then the music kicks in and and the chief comes out and gets a gun the earf is on fire and chief is like fuck this im jumping and HE JUMPS PUT OF TEH SPACESHIP with angels singing and he lands on the bad guys and that annoying ai lady is like GO GET EM TIGER! WILDCAT IS ON TEH SPOKE!!!~`1 and theres less polys but rawkin bumb mappings you can view this on a special MICROSOFT xbox disk that comes with EB games store.

haha, IBM. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864617)

ibm specializes in impossible to configure or use software for the purpose of selling overpriced yet underpaid global services consultants. be prepared to have some big blue suits help you out.

Doesn't seem like such a big deal (-1, Informative)

SHEENmaster (581283) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864622)

You use a modern Linux machine to emulate a decrepit UNIX machine.

The emulation steals the speed increase and abstracts the Penguin Power from the user's environment.

IANAIBMSA(I A Not An International Business Machines System Administrator), but it seems like the only advantage to this is that you can get one hell of a UT/Q3 framerate while the virtual machine is shut down because "somebody was calculating pi on the server" or "Somebody ran vmunix through a spelling checker."

BOFH excuses 16 and 452, respectively.

Re:Doesn't seem like such a big deal (4, Informative)

Fnord (1756) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864655)

That's really not what he means. This is using a completely non unix oriented system (a mainframe) running a VM (which is not an emulator, virtualization is built into mainframes) to run many instances of linux (which isn't emulated either, linux runs natively on mainframes).

Don't bother.... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864668)

The guy is completely clueless. Your cluestick should be directed at that idiot moderator who upped him with +informative. There's one I look forward to in M2.

Re:Doesn't seem like such a big deal (3, Insightful)

dalslad (648100) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864996)

Exactly. I find it interesting when people comment out of the space of speculation. The original question was for someone with "experience". That doesn't mean that he wanted uninformed opinions based on some notion of logic. If someone hasn't sailed the boat, don't tell me how to do it.

Re:Doesn't seem like such a big deal (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864671)

You are a real dork, you have no clue what you are talking about do you? And that is a real fucking stupid nick.

Re:Doesn't seem like such a big deal (3, Funny)

karmavore (618727) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864851)

You do realize that emulating any decrepit UNIX machine must be a rusult of running ancient code that has now been copied into SCO Unixware. You would then be using SCO IP (Idiotic Property). You will have to pay them 100 trillion dollars plus $699 for the Linux.

Linux/390 resources (5, Informative)

Dammital (220641) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864666)

Check out Mark Post's Linux for S/390 [linuxvm.org] site. He collects SHARE papers, distribution info, and pointers to other resources. Lots of good stuff.

Oh, and the Marist linux-390 listserver [marist.edu] is well worth subscribing to.

Re:Linux/390 resources (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864693)

Here [bizreport.com] is a good article on the subject.

Re:Linux/390 resources (0, Offtopic)

EugeneK (50783) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865328)

Don't go bringing Jabba the Hut into this...

Re:Linux/390 resources (-1, Troll)

CrayzyJ (222675) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865023)

Wow, I never thought I'd see a Marist Ref on a site like /. If you go 20 miles outside of Poughkeepsie, people say "What's a Marist?"

There is hope for my alma mater yet... :-)

You WILL need help (4, Insightful)

salty_oz (457779) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864674)

If you have never touched VM, then you will be well and truely out of your depth. It's a whole different world to Unix/Linux.

So you will have to get a VM person in. Probably only on part time contract, and IBM will can provide that person for an additional fee.

In time you may learn enough to support your very limited VM environment.

Don't forget..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864742)

...that IBM guy will probably be somewhere in the ballpark of $85 an hour. It costs a good sized company about $2,500 a month for part-time offsite HP-UX consultation on an Oracle database. It costs about $5,000 a week to lease a McAfee expert to implement their expanded solutions. Imagine how much a VR guy will cost from IBM.....

Re:You WILL need help (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864854)

Actually VM itself is fairly straight forward to administer

The biggest hurdle will be:

  • termonology -- For example DASD instead of disk drives
  • sysprog or Systems Programmer - System administrator
  • A userid is just another name for a virtual machine. In otherwords say you have 10 linux systems, they would each be represented by 10 userids (LINUX1, LINUX2, etc.)
  • Within VM itself the concept of deamons (services) are abit different. Each deamon is installed in it's own virtual machine ( Service Virtual Machines or SVMs). For example the TCP/IP stack is it's own virtual machine, the FTP service is another virtual machine, etc. VM provides a very efficient inter-virtual-machine communication system.

    This is also where security comes in. Each SVM is really isolated from each other.

  • There is no concept of a root user within VM, instead individual virtual machines have privilages that are restrict what that virtual machine can do. In addition authorizations for services are handled by the service itself (for example being able to control the TCP/IP stack requires that the user doing the control be authorized by the TCP/IP stack itself.

One thing to remember too is that VM was (and still is) used by many Universities and colleges -- not as much as it was back in the 70's and 80's, but it still has a presence.

Anyway... just some comments from an old timer VM sysprog

Re:You WILL need help (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864959)


So you will have to get a VM person in


Yes, this is true, but if you are going to run Linux , you only need one VM person. The rest of your Admins should be Linux Admins.

Don't imagine that the VM person will understand (or even like) Linux and don't expect your Linux admins to understand (or even like) the Mainframe.

Re:You WILL need help (1)

perlchild (582235) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865033)

which is probably why the financial institution is looking into this project. Way more linux admins than mainframe-qualified systems admins err sysprogs

I would advise against it (3, Informative)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864692)

I don't have a lot of experience with these things, but I am positive that there are plenty or "pure Linux" solutions that will be far more flexible - even when using IBM middleware.

1. What exactly demands this solution?
2. Can a pure Linux box, with mild tweaking, still not be more useful and create less overhead than this?

Someone in this thread mentioned IBM implementing wildly complex systems in order to push consultation, and on some levels it's true. PeopleSoft does it also. In some cases, Oracle will have a go at this tactic. My advice is to do some searching first, without the input of IBM, and see if you can't find a better solution to whatever problem you're trying to remedy.

Re:I would advise against it (3, Informative)

Swayne Shabazz (678612) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864810)

What other solutions that are "pure Linux"? An IBM mainframe has virtualization built in nativeley, hence, it shouldn't take a performance loss. This means that I doubt highly that an all-Linux solution could approach it's power (considering that you can run like 200 instances of Linux on one without any hassle).

Clusters (1)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864827)

Yes, IBM Z-series mainframes running Linux are some glorious beasts, but the same level of performance can be reached with a finely tuned cluster - and for far cheaper with considerable less overhead (overhead that costs a lot of money, as well).

Again, we need to know more about his institution's needs before we can confidently declare which solution (Z\Linux or a cluster) is the best fit for his needs.

Re:Clusters (1)

Swayne Shabazz (678612) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864846)

Well, you have a point. I also think you are on to something in a way: there are other solutions capable of running Linux on IBM mainframes then IBM Z/Linux. TurboLinux comes to mind.

Re:Clusters (1)

Covener (32114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864993)

Like running linux on the bare iron / on lpars? That negates a lot of the benefits of z/linux.

Z/Linux isn't a distribution, if that's what you meant. For IBM it's essentially the architecture.

Well, you have a point. I also think you are on to something in a way: there are other solutions capable of running Linux on IBM mainframes then IBM Z/Linux. TurboLinux comes to mind.

Re:Clusters (3, Insightful)

DA-MAN (17442) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864958)

Have you ever dealt with a cluster? Large clusters are fucking expensive to run 24x7x365. They require a lot of Air Conditioning (we spend over $1,000 a month on just AC, that's an expense that is never going away), electrical and a shitload of space.

I know this is Slashdot, but a beowulf is not always the best choice!!!

Re:Clusters (1)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864987)

"Have you ever dealt with a cluster?"

Only really small ones (5 dual CPU systems). I saw really large one in a bank one time....but it was in a refridgerated room. So yes, I see your point. ;)

Re:Mainframes (3, Funny)

Glasswire (302197) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865068)

To paraphrase YOU...

Have you ever dealt with a MAINFRAME? Large MAINFRAMES are fucking expensive to run 24x7x365. They require a lot of Air Conditioning (many people spend over $1,000 a month on just AC, that's an expense that is never going away), electrical and a shitload of space.

And he diffrence is what? For most applications, clusters, for all their faults are faster and cheaper than mainframes.

Re:I would advise against it (1)

Covener (32114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864905)

mainframes aren't "power" oriented. Pretty much every other solution would slaughter it CPU wise.

Re:I would advise against it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865021)

In a general way, the power to run 200 instances of Linux that themselves run no faster than Redhat on a 2ghz Pentium individually, but slower individually than a single Pentium 2.4ghz system running Redhat, is still more power (for the mainframe).

200 slow Linux boxen are still far more powerful than 10 really fast ones.

Re:I would advise against it (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864824)

I'd like to see the hardware that this supposed "pure linux" solution would run on. Something piddly and crappy like a dual xeon setup?

Wintel hardware is crap and not at all scalable. It's like comparing a ferrari (z hardware) to a pinto (wintel) and saying "well, they're both cars". Sure the ferrari costs more, but it's a hell of a lot more likely to be able to win in a race.

Re:I would advise against it (5, Insightful)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865036)

Wintel hardware is crap and not at all scalable. It's like comparing a ferrari (z hardware) to a pinto (wintel) and saying "well, they're both cars". Sure the ferrari costs more, but it's a hell of a lot more likely to be able to win in a race.

Reasoning by analogy is always fraught with pitfalls.
The Ferrari can't carry more than two people. The IBM machine is designed for fast I/O. The Ferrari breaks down a lot. The IBM is designed to be highly reliable.

Perhaps a better, but still rather imperfect analogy would be to a tractor trailer--lots of horsepower, but not a speed daemon. Lots of cargo space. A decent diesel engine that can stand up to abuse.

IBM thinks that if you replace 20-30 Intel CPUs , all running at 5% utilization, with a single zSeries CPU running at 85-90% utilization, you'll save money and aggravation. On the other hand, if those 20-30 Intel CPUs are rendering CGI for a film, or modeling a jet engine (and thus running near 100% load), a zSeries CPU would only be able to take on the work of 4-5 Intel CPUs, if that.

Re:I would advise against it (1)

AchilleTalon (540925) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865072)

I think you have absolutely no idea of what kind of cluster you can build with such a solution. Just think about the channel transfer rate on a mainframe and imagine you can virtualize the network and benefit from this transfer rate.

And that's just part of the story...

Re:I would advise against it (1)

stephens_domain (679473) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865120)

I don't have a lot of experience with these things....

But I'm going to tell you what to do anyway.

Re:I would advise against it (1)

balzak (704142) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865360)

Actually, PeopleSoft doesn't do this. We tend to keep it as simple as possible while still doing what the client wants, however, our implimentation "partners" sometimes do (for the reasons you mention)... sorry if things went bad for you. -= Balzak =-

No fear... (4, Interesting)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864708)

Just consider it VMWare for big boys. I'm doing a wee bit of development for Linux on zOS, and most things just work once you get it installed. Lots of options, depending on how you carve up the system. Anyhow, for the most part it is all about fast i/o, rather than monster processing power.

Picked up Linux on the Mainframe [barnesandnoble.com] over the weekend, but plan to read it on a (very long) plane ride next week - looked like it focused on care and feeding, however.

Re:No fear... (0, Offtopic)

mnmlst (599134) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864753)

I use VMWare all the time. Getting pretty good with it. It gets a bit squirrely with hardware like my keychain drive yesterday that locked it cold. BTW, your sig reads like Yoda's. Was that intentional?

Re:No fear... (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864948)

Gah - no. I turned off sigs, so I never saw it... looks like my kid brother was having some fun with my account.

not cost efffective (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864739)

Well I used to work at similar financial company where IBM was pushing something similar as well. What it boiled down to was the following issues.

1. for the equivalent # of VM's it was more cost effective to buy new Intel hardware. The annual maintaince cost for the IBM more than paid for all new hardware.
2. Software availability. The only thing you could run it would be home grown apps or existing opensource apps. No commercial software was available. This company was an all Oracle shop, no DB2. They're primary opensystems backup solution was Netbackup. Which at the time had no client for linux on Z. (a year ago).
3. In house expertise. They had no linux expertise and very little Unix (solaris & HP) (jr admins at best) expertise. Let alone running linux on a Z.

So to sum it up. It's a very expensive, somewhat propritary and inflexiable environment. If you have a specialized use for it and can justify the cost go for it. Otherwise stick with commodity Intel/AMD hardware. It'll be cheaper and easier in the long run.

Re:not cost efffective (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864840)

Z/Linux sounds like it's more aimed existing mainframe shops -- If you've already got the mainframe, it's cheap to run Linux on a side partition and connect your mainframe apps with somewhat normal software like Apache.

You'd have to be nuts to buy a proprietary dinosaur for the sole purpose of running Linux.

Re:not cost efffective (4, Informative)

bunyip (17018) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864912)

Yes, you're right on the "not cost effective".

BTW - I've ported a number of programs to Linux/390 (an IBM G6 mainframe) and compared them to Linux on my 1 GHz Athlon cobbled together from left over parts and a motherboard from Fry's. The net result is that the Athlon is about twice as fast as the G6 mainframe.

The latest and greatest mainframes are about twice as fast as a G6, but PCs have come a long way since 1 GHz. Currently, 1 CPU on a mainframe running Linux costs about $100K, you can buy a pretty impressive Intel server for that price.

So, Linux on S/390 is only effective when you have a bunch of machines with utilization close to zero - let's call it "epsilon", which is what we mathematicians say when we really want to say zero but still need to divide by it. You buy the box for VM, which can run hundreds or even thousands of instances, securely and stably, so long as most of them are doing nothing.

Linux/390 is great for experimental servers, test systems, etc. OTOH - if you have any significant workload, buy a rack-mount PC.

Alan.

Re:not cost efffective (4, Insightful)

Covener (32114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864970)

Disk IO, reliability, workload management and power consumption are also probably relevant in that equation (and on the side of z/linux)


Linux/390 is great for experimental servers, test systems, etc. OTOH - if you have any significant workload, buy a rack-mount PC.

Re:not cost efffective (2, Insightful)

AchilleTalon (540925) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865163)

Exactly!

Management costs for dedicated servers which are almost idle, but still required as dedicated servers for many reasons are high. Also, reliability is an issue when you suddenly multiply low cost servers, which in turn reflects on the management costs, hardware cost and downtime cost.

Re:not cost efffective (2, Insightful)

Detritus (11846) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865010)

The net result is that the Athlon is about twice as fast as the G6 mainframe.

That depends on your definition of speed.

Mainframes aren't bought for raw MIPS.

Re:not cost efffective (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864915)

We were told recently by CA that each IFL (Integrated Facility for Linux) would allow us to run as many instances of Linux on it as we wanted for the same price.
It is just that adding IFLs or MIPS will increase the licensing cost.
Oh, and Oracle does provide their DB for Linux on z/OS:
http://www.oracle.com/start/ibm/linux390/in tro.htm l?src=915044&Act=4

Re:not cost efffective (4, Informative)

LinuxHam (52232) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864920)

Mod AC down. He's working with **very** old data, and is generalizing about the industry from one customer experience. And yes, one year is a heluva long time in Linux on Z. Just every IBM app for Linux on Intel has been ported to Linux on Z by now. It is by no means limited to open source apps anymore (yes, a year ago, it was).

Re:not cost efffective (1)

MoThugz (560556) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864951)

I'm not doubting anything in your post, but do you have published paperwork regarding this cost and benefit analysis? It will help me give a better overall picture of this issue because I anticipate that IBM will "recommend" something similar for some of my existing clients.

Re:not cost efffective (1)

dalslad (648100) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864971)

I don't believe you. That's completely opposite of my experience.

Re:not cost efffective (2, Informative)

hackus (159037) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865159)

I would have to agree.

It is always a better choice to use clusters of hardware, than a single box.

You have a variety of tools available on the open source market now to monitor, and automagically maintain your cluster, depending on what you choose...the most popular is PVM, and it comes with a ton of very nice management utils you can get off the net, too manage hundreds of machines in a blink of an eye. This is a very configurable cluster architecture.

There is also MOSIX, or open Mosix. A very nice computing facility as well, allowing you to use a single image machine from a large collection of machines tied together through a network.

Do a google on PVM or MOSIX.

-Hack

Dunno about Z/Linux but... (5, Interesting)

rimu guy (665008) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864745)

I haven't worked with a Z/Linux VM before. However, I have used User Mode Linux [sf.net] to create a dozen or so virtual servers per host server. And I'd imagine that the benefits offered by UML would also apply to Z/Linux VMs.

For example, with UML you're able to get much better resource utilisation. e.g. most of the time the machine is idle. When one of the UML servers need the host server's resources, they're there (CPU, network, disk IO, etc). That means you can have multiple UML servers bursting up to the performance potential of the host server. Certainly a better resource utilisation than having several host servers running mostly idle.

Another benefit of virtual machines are their logical separation from the host server. Each virtual server has their own users (including root), applications, file systems, IP address, etc. That means that if security is compromised on one, the others are unaffected. Ditto resources can be allocated to each virtual server according to need. And any mis-configuration on one doesn't affect the other. This compares to running multiple applications on the same server for different purposes (e.g. running HR and Account systems on one server, if email goes down them both systems are affected. In a virtual server setup, only one of the other would be affected.

So... Thumbs up to server virtualization software in general. Particular kudos to UML. And good luck finding out about Z/Linux!

- P
RimuHosting.com - Linux VPS Hosting [rimuhosting.com]

Re:Dunno about Z/Linux but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864861)

My understanding is that UML is not 100% isolated and secure -- it is possible to break into the host from the UML process. Correct me if I'm wrong.

random google ref [sourceforge.net]

Re:Dunno about Z/Linux but... (1)

rimu guy (665008) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864943)

UML runs on the host server in userspace.

That means that the UML server will only have access to the host to the extent of that program's access.

You can do things like running the UML instance chrooted. Running it as an unpriviledged user. Disabling the 'hostfs' UML kernel option (which gives the UML access to files on the host).

You can also disable module loading in the UML kernel. That will prevent the user 'injecting' code into the UML process.

So... provided you set it up right, the UML instances should be pretty much isolated and secure. At least as any Linux process is capable of being isolated and secure ;)

- P
RimuHosting - Linux VPS Hosting [rimuhosting.com]

Re:Dunno about Z/Linux but... (1)

patrick_leb (675948) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864989)

For those of you interested in running many Linux hosts on one physical machine, check out the VServer Project [solucorp.qc.ca] . With it you can run many Linux environments using the same kernel. It provides process, filesystem, network and resources isolation levels.

A little one-sided. Here's the downside of VMs (5, Insightful)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865065)

Another benefit of virtual machines are their logical separation from the host server. Each virtual server has their own users (including root), applications, file systems, IP address, etc. That means that if security is compromised on one, the others are unaffected. Ditto resources can be allocated to each virtual server according to need. And any mis-configuration on one doesn't affect the other. This compares to running multiple applications on the same server for different purposes (e.g. running HR and Account systems on one server, if email goes down them both systems are affected. In a virtual server setup, only one of the other would be affected.

Ahh yes, grasshopper, but when that one uber-box dies(hard disk, fan, power supply, whatever), gets powered off by accident, network cable unplugged, yadda yadda- it affects ALL the virtual machines.

Granted in the Big Iron, you've got lovely hot-swap capabilities and such(processors, memory, etc)...but nothing is foolproof or 100% reliable. It's the old joke with pilots about twin-engine airplanes; the door swings both ways and there's no such thing as a free lunch. On one hand, you've got a spare engine if one dies, but you're 2x as likely to have a failure, you've got a lot of added complexity, and sometimes it still won't save your bacon(twin engine planes have an abysmal survival rate for engine failure in part because of the really shitty way they fly with one engine down). This is VERY applicable- because managing this big IBM server is much more complex(the whole point of this article) than seperate hardware.

Best example I can think of in how hot-swap can still not save the bacon is with the Cisco PIX 5-something(The 1U pizza-box one). It has FULL failover- if you've got two, and one shits the bed COMPLETELY, the other one takes over absolutely everything, including active connections; they share ALL state information for what's called stateful failover. Aside from a momentary blip where things stop for a sec...nobody's the wiser that a piece of very expensive hardware just let the Magic Smoke out. The problem is that the PIX OS version we had was buggy and would crash randomly- and because they were sharing connection tables and everything, they'd BOTH die, which was REALLY bad since the boxes didn't have hardware watchdogs(!). We turned off fully-stateful failover, and the problem went away; we'd notice they'd ping-ponged(there's an 'ACTIVE' led to show you which is live) and we'd power-cycle the other.

So ask the tough questions; instead of asking what's N+1, ask what's NOT N+1, and do a very careful breakdown of what exactly it will cost to run this big huge box, and figure out what the 'per [virtual] machine' costs are...

Re:A little one-sided. Here's the downside of VMs (5, Interesting)

afidel (530433) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865187)

IBM mainframe complexes basically never go down. There are installations that have been running 24x7x365 for decades. That's the whole point of owning one.

CMS not Linux (-1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864759)

If you are running zVM, check out CMS (Conversational Monitoring System). CMS is an operating system that comes with zVM at no extra charge; like Linux you IPL (boot) CMS in a virtual machine. CMS is far superior to Linux, Windows or OS X. No troll, try it, you'll like it. There is a lot of free software available too.

Real-time encryption (0)

Jenolen (636487) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864763)

I met a guy just last week who was running linux with a few kernel mods to give him realtime encryption on the whole OS, then was running XP over the top of it in an emulator. There were a few things he couldn't do, but for someome who wants to be sure their data is secure, and doesn't know linux, I thought it was a great solution. It was setup by a firm who does encrypted systems. I do not have the name of the firm.

Re:Real-time encryption (-1, Offtopic)

Jenolen (636487) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864808)

Darn typo... *someone*

Aye was sure the I run a spill chuck on that least post.

Re:Real-time encryption (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865224)

YOU FAIL ET!

First thing you need to do... (-1, Troll)

mod_parent_down (692943) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864769)

Is talk to a lawyer. There's no way you should even consider installing Z/Linux based on the IANAL advice of the ./ community.

Oh wait, nevermind. This is Ask Slashdot, right? Weird.

Here is how I manage Linux (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864773)


I undo my belt, then the button, and finally the zipper. Then I pull down my underwear and my pants and I take a big, healthy shit on the Linux boxen. Then I wipe my ass with a page or two from an O'Reily book.

Re:Here is how I manage Linux (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864926)

You wear your underwear on the outside?

Z/Linux at a big financial firm (5, Informative)

edwardd (127355) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864776)

I work for a big financial firm in NYC that is using Z/Linux pretty heavily. I have to say that while we are very happy with the results, it is VERY important to have VM people on staff who are also Linux savvy. IBM has been great in getting us set up, but they don't live with the systems. We do. You'll need to be very careful about what you're using the Linux instances for, and take alook at how they'll use hardware resources, like the OSA cards.

With careful planning, and the expectation that it will be a bumpy start, you'' find that it's a very rewarding experience, both personally and professionally.

Re:Z/Linux at a big financial firm (4, Interesting)

Alizarin Erythrosin (457981) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865256)

"IBM has been great in getting us set up, but they don't live with the systems."

This is a very, very, very important point to consider. If you let IBM run the whole shootin match from a distance, and something goes wrong, expect downtime.

This isn't related to Z/Linux but it is related to IBM and their systems management. At the business of my employment we outsourced all our network/systems administration to IBM. In the past 2 months (July and August) we have had not 1, not 2, but 4 very very major worm/virus infections that shut the entire network (as well as business) down. IBM didn't keep any systems up to date on patches (and the corporate security department didn't help either... they approved Win2k SP4 in an awful hurry after they found out it contained the Blaster worm fix) and told us to leave our unprotected computers on 24/7 and they would update them "in the next few days." I leave the determination of what happened after that as an excercise to the reader.

But hopefully IBM won't do that to your Z/Linux VM... Hopefully you'll have someone on site who knows their stuff, even if it has to be you (hey, then you can ask for a raise!)

i like numbers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864818)

I like numbers, 12345678910
I like letters better though: abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz
numbers and letters. yeah, i like them.

No fears, IBM will take care of you (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864821)

I wouldn't get hung up on the whole "local" thing. You just have to understand how IBM works. There's no concept of "local" at IBM. At any one point in time, 50% of IBM employees aren't in a traditional work place.

If you have problems, contact IBM and they will get their best people on it. IBM is all about customer service. You never get fired for buying IBM. From an engineers perspective, it's a pita. The best people in a department end up spending most of their time working on customer problems.

Hell, IBM still supports OS/2. If a Z-Series seems to solve your problem, go for it. IBM will take care of you.

Linuxcare? (5, Informative)

chrisd (1457) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864838)

I understand that Linuxcare has a program specifically for managing linux vms on z series mainframes...I'd call em and see what they've got.

http://www.linuxcare.com/ [linuxcare.com]

Chrisd

Re:Linuxcare? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864917)

Funny, I thought linuxcare had gone bust, well doesn't look like it.

I have! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864843)

>>Has anyone gone through a Z/Linux VM corporate installation and lived through the management of such a solution?"

I have! And let me tell you, it has worked wonderfully!

Ahhh, IBM... (1, Flamebait)

bob670 (645306) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864875)

finding ways to fish money out of your pocket with every solution. I would love to see how many hours of consultation this migration (and ongoing support) will be out? IBM, single handedly making sure Linux isn't "free, as in beer".

It works well (5, Interesting)

dalslad (648100) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864887)

I sold and installed the very first Linux application on the S/390 --a Multiprise running VM and it worked great. We used the TurboLinux port and then finally wound up with SuSE.

We compiled the source code and it ran just like it did on a big Intel box. IBM helped with hardware issues which related to load balancing amongst the VM instances. One of their business partners supported the customer, Winnebago Industries with regard to Linux and OS 390.

IBM wasn't much of a factor as far as needing support. They supported the mainframe, the OS and VM just fine. SuSE installed without a single issue.

Some other issues arose in getting the user to learn IBM mainframe lingo, such as IPL instead of boot, and DASD. But, that didn't require much effort. The IBM Redbook on running Linux on the S/390 was all we needed to transfer knowledge. We downloaded it for free in pdf format.

The main benefit I discovered was the ability to consolidate servers. We replaced a bunch of M$ Exchange servers and ran a suite of Open Source apps such as Cyrus IMAP, Open LDAP, Exim, Apache, etc. We were able to get rid of a bunch of distributed servers and put them on one instance.

I suggest that IBM can help, but I don't think you'll be dependent on them. They're very expensive. With Linux on the zSeries or S/390 you can do everything yourself. -- That might not be what IBM wanted, but then they championed Linux, didn't they!

Sell Linux to RIAA (-1, Offtopic)

RIAAwakka_nakka_bakk (704088) | more than 11 years ago | (#6864902)

And make them more profitable!

zLinux admins need VM skills (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864939)

I'm posting this as an AC because I'm an IBMer.

Familiarity with Linux will not help you setting up the zLinux environment. It works like this: You dedicate a few processors of your mainframe to Linux. These processors will run VM, which has:

  • a command-line environment
  • the ability to run scripts written in REXX
  • the ability to virtualize resources and give them to virtual machines defined as "users".

The users are defined in a "user directory". There, you can specify how much memory, disk and CPU share you want to give to each user. These users, remember, are in fact virtual machines that will boot an image of Linux compiled for the zSeries processor architecture.

If you want to create and take down Linux images frequenlty, you'll have to install and customize some VM scripts that will do the job for you. When the scripts are installed, you can setup a new Linux image (complete with its own disks, IP address, etc.) with a single operator command.

Most sysadmins of a zLinux machine spend a lot of time in VM. So learning VM is essential if you are going to do this job. VM was created 30 years ago and is somewhat primitive in places, but the resource virtualization mechanism is incredibly powerful and makes up for it.

Finally, make sure that people understand that there might be dozens of virtual CPUs defined under VM but only a few real CPUs. If you have 4 CPUs, a Linux user with an absolute CPU share of 25% will have the equivalent of one CPU. If the Linux image is used for recompiling its kernel, it might be a tad slow. The mainframe has great I/O performance but only run-of-the-mill raw CPU speed.

Good luck.

Re:zLinux admins need VM skills (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865006)

you people are criminals. if you would stop pushing that mvs/zos shit & worked half as hard on cms as you are on this linux crap, vm/cms would be everywhere today. FOAD sir, FOAD. i mean it.

Re:zLinux admins need VM skills (1)

dalslad (648100) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865070)

Sorry. You obviously don't have a clue. You're using some "old" concepts from the early 1990's and attempting to get someone to buy it. Or, you may have used hercules and loaded a Linux distro on an Intel box. Since you mentioned REXX, I doubt the latter.

You can use an IFL and run Linux bare to the metal without using VM at all. The architecture of the zSeries segregates CPs into various roles. It doesn't work like a PC at all.

The zSeries has a processor for I/O and the CP runs without having to manage a lot of the hardware.

People ramble on about things they do know. Why? I hate it when that happens.

I have some experience with Linux on the Z... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864974)

I work for a baby bell, IBM has been pushing Linux on the mainframe hard with us for a couple of years, I participated in the trials, and I had nothing but problems. Mainly because IBM over-promised the capacity of the mainframe. Execs up in the clouds saw it as a way to stop buying stand alone AIX machines for each application, and save serious cash. The only problem is that I don't care how "great" IBM claims a mainframe is, you can't replace 50 Unix machines with one 2-CPU frame, so when we load tested for peak loads, it bombed. Then, as a final insult, IBM attacked our source code and tried to pin the problems on that. Nothing like being the only developer defending yourself against 25 IBM eggheads on a conference call all blaming your code...which was vindicated in the end... I will say however that the manageability is very good, easy to create new images, bring them up and down, sharing binaries between images, etc..

You completely inhale the pastes in crust (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6864999)

It has come to my attention that you completely inhale the pastes in crust. Read on for more about this fascinating topic.

The world went into shock a few weeks ago when goatse.info [goatse.info] reported the results of a study which concluded that inhaling paste is a very dangerous pastime, one that no one is advised to take up. Eventually, everyone adapted to the new state of affairs and began inhaling other things. Almost everyone, that is. But not you! According to my records, you still inhale paste!

Why?! What the fuck is wrong with you?!

You moron, you idiot, you imbecile, you gay nigger [nero-online.org] ! Arg! You make me so fucking sick! FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU FUCK YOU.

Avoid misunderstandings... (5, Interesting)

LinuxHam (52232) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865053)

I'm an IBM'er currently on assignment at the world's largest insurance company. I was brought in because they wanted to consolidate servers to a mostly-Linux solution. After piloting Samba 2 beta on zLinux last summer, they balked at the heavy reliance on Z.

The key is for people to realize that the type of workload is critical when deciding to try zLinux, and any barking about Athlon vs. G6 is useless. Also, vendors need to realize that once you compile an app on Linux on any one platform, you're usually a recompile away from running it under Linux on any other platform. Hence my reasoning that any complaints about software availability from a year ago is also useless. More apps are being ported to zLinux everyday.

Linux on Z has a role, it just needs to be explored by more brave souls. Besides, I've always said that if I leave the company, I'd like to create an "ISP in a box" using a z800 and some ESS disk to host a few thousand virtual web servers. I implore people to please visit Linux@IBM [ibm.com] for more information.

Re:Avoid misunderstandings... (1)

Covener (32114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865295)

ewww, using a z-series for samba!

DFS on z/OS speaks SMB and lets you share your RFS filesystems! talk about sweet :)

lead balloon filled with hot air (5, Interesting)

smoon (16873) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865071)

We've got a production linux instance running under VM alongside our production VSE system. Since the box is fairly underpowered we get a minimal slice of the CPU. This makes the system respond like a 286 with the 'turbo' button turned off.

When the VSE instance bombs out for some reason, and we get effectively 100% of the CPU it responds like a pentium... maybe. Think P166.

Unfortunately in our circumstance we can't 'turn on' more MIPS because then our VSE instance is running on a 'bigger' machine and we end up doubling our licesing costs. Other alternative is to turn on the ILF (integrated linux facility) which dedicates 120Mips to linux only, without affecting other licesning, but that costs $150k. You can buy a lot of 2-way or 4-way pentium boxes with decent RAID arrays and get much better performance for that kind of money.

So if your shop is run by some sort of morons and you've got 100's of spare MIPS to burn, then Linux on the mainframe probably makes some sense. Otherwise, just get some intel boxes. Any savings the mainframe provides in terms of power, cooling, and ligher administration is going to be offset by massive complexity, poor performance, and a lack of easy support for a bizarre platform that few developers have access to.

Given IBM's history (2)

Sabalon (1684) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865073)

I've not played with Linux on VM. However, from what I understand it is a sweet thing.

I have played with other OS's running under VM. IBM knows what they are doing in that field.

Combine the two, and I think you have something that should work well. However, I'd weigh the costs. I would think it would a good thing to do if you already have a z-box laying around that has some space cycles. However, I would think that a stack of Dell's or something would be cheaper than buying the IBM equipment.

oh my god, I finally have important information (3, Interesting)

knodi (93913) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865111)

At my workplace, we run about about two hundred corporate websites. The majority of those are on three boxes from Penguin computing, and the bare minimum required by our contract with IBM are on the z-series. At first we thought it would be a great deal, and looked forward to moving all of our sites over to the high-performance IBM machine. But it failed EVERY SINGLE test we could think to throw at it, except trying to brute-force an RSA key.

They're great number crunchers, but they don't hold up under any kind of pressure as a web server. We had the z-series with no sites on it run benchmarks and compare to our development box with 20 sites hosted, and the development box (Penguin Computing) kicked its ASS.

Every time one of our developers has to ssh into the IBM machine, they yell "Cover me, I'm going in". Our running gag is, if they're not done editing the apache config or whatever in ten minutes, we'll have to send in a rescue team.

My rational, scientific, carefully measured opinion is that the IBM z-series SUCKS. HARD.

Gee, I sure wish I wouldn't get in trouble for sharing our benchmark data with you. Oh well, you'll have to take my word for it and hope the majority agrees.

Re:oh my god, I finally have important information (2, Insightful)

Covener (32114) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865306)

They're great number crunchers, but they don't hold up under any kind of pressure as a web server. We had the z-series with no sites on it run benchmarks and compare to our development box with 20 sites hosted, and the development box (Penguin Computing) kicked its ASS.

You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. Great number crunchers? I can't even imagine what your testing was.

Unless you want real mainframe class hardware. (2, Insightful)

TheLink (130905) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865210)

Unless you're in for the mainframe class hardware (and possibly support).

Coz for x86 servers, you can always use vmware e.g. vmware esx.

Not sure if vmware has anything lined up for opteron, but if that goes fine then it'll be cool.

Sticker Shock (4, Interesting)

delcielo (217760) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865255)

We're fortunate to have a good solid VM guy, so implementation was no big deal on our dev box. But we've noticed a few things along the way...

VM is expensive. Engines on the mainframe are expensive, and are the weak point in Z/Linux. Mainframes normally run batch types of workloads, and have great big fat I/O. They're not necessarily great processing powerhouses.

You can download Linux and install it on the mainframe; but you get zero support. If you want support, open up that big old budget again. When we looked at it, Suse wanted about $20k per year, and RedHat wanted $24k. We flew solo instead. So far it's been fine; but be prepared to pay if you want support (which, by the way, is something the PHB's and mainframe systems programmers are used to having.)

As for operational considerations, I haven't really had any problems with it at all. There aren't many rpms out there for z/os; but you can compile almost anything and use it.

Installation is kind of cheesy; but not horrible. You basically set up your vm guest, log in to it and ftp the linux kernel, ramdisk and parmfile to the guest dasd, giving it a fixed record length of 80 bytes. You then feed these into a virtual card punch (that's right, a virtual Hollerith Punch Card Reader - 80 columns = 80 bytes), then into a virtual card reader, and ipl the reader.

This gives you a running instance of linux that you can use to do a net install of the full distribution.

In the implementation class I took, I was partnered with a mainframe guy who was complaining about how archaic vi was. It made me laugh.

"Dude. We just chopped my kernel into 80 byte blocks and fed it into a card reader. Don't talk to me about archaic."

I did such an install, however... (1)

TheTranceFan (444476) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865264)

...I did not live through it. So now I'm forced to post from the Other Side, where we have a certifiably shitty Internet connection.

This is being done right now with VMWare also (4, Interesting)

nomad_monster (703212) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865287)

One of my clients, a large insurance firm in the New England area, is in the process of consolidating their NT environment onto VMWare ESX server, which is linux based. This is an IBM X440, running about 30 consolidated NT VMs. Since it's VMWare it can also run linux VMs. They are saving about 500k annually on this setup in associated costs for hardware/support/environmentals. This was a pilot, and they are going to be moving forward with more consolidation based on this.

This really isnt a new concept, most of us know of the IBM P-series, Sun E-10ks and 15ks, and the HP Superdome. All use virtualization in one form or another to provide this kind of setup. Z/series is kind of novel, because....hey...its a Mainframe.

It's a completely different world (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6865309)

Others have said it, but it can't be stressed enough. A mainframe is a completely different beast from the hardware most of us are used to. It's not like the PC and the Mac, or a Mac and an Alpha. It's a different system, with different paradigms and a culture that shares almost nothing with the Intel world.

Get a mainframe guy. You will need him. You won't find what you need in handy-dandy HOWTOs on the Internet, nor will you learn it quickly enough to support a system in production (as you are going the IBM big-iron way, I suppose you are talking about a serious operation, unlike some people here who think their AMD web servers are "mission critical"). If the mainframe guy has been truly a mainframe-only guy for most or all of his career, you'll find it hard to even talk to him, much less do what he will do to get the system running smoothly.

And no, I'm not a mainframe guy. I'm the Linux guy who was happy he had a mainframe guy handy. I've been responsible for getting Linux running on a reasonably-sized operation (5 big mainframes), and there is no way I could have mantained the systems all by myself. 10+ years of big-iron experience is not something you can get in a few weekends.

an idea... (3, Interesting)

alienhazard (660628) | more than 11 years ago | (#6865314)

would it be possible to use UML on top of OpenMosix. Theoretically this should allow you to have several cheap intel/amd boxes acting as one (so shared resources) and then running multiple linuxes in UML would allow for an efficient use of those resources. In the end, would this not be close to the Z series, just cheaper? I imagine it might be a bit trickier to admin, but it would be interesting.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?