Mainframe here to stay, survey says

IT's planned use for the mainframe as a computing platform continues to grow, BMC survey finds.

The future looks bright for the mainframe as a majority of IT managers report they will continue to use the systems for legacy applications and start moving new workloads that could benefit from the mainframe's availability and scalability onto the platform.

In its annual survey of 1,100 mainframe users, management software maker BMC discovered that IT's planned use for the mainframe as a computing platform continues to grow. For instance, 65 percent of respondents said the mainframe platform will continue to grow and attract new workloads in their environment, compared with 52 percent of respondents who said the same in the 2007 survey. Thirty percent said that the mainframe will continue as a viable long-term platform, but restricted to legacy workloads. And 4 percent indicated mainframe users should consider an exit strategy in the next five years.

Fewer organizations surveyed this year also plan to eliminate their mainframe environment in the short term. According to BMC's findings, 59 percent of respondents said they would be ridding themselves of the mainframe in less than three years, compared with 74 percent in 2007. Thirty-six percent said they would work toward removing mainframes in three to six years and 6 percent expected to keep mainframes in house for more than six years.

Nearly three-fourths of those surveyed said the availability advantages that the mainframe offers keep the systems running in their IT shops. For 65 percent, the mainframe offers a superior centralized data serving environment. Sixty-two percent believe that transaction throughput requirements are best suited to the platform, and the same number value the mainframe's security strengths.

"In terms of stability, the mainframe is probably the best machine for transaction crunching. We service 2,000 end users at any given time, so having that kind of flexibility provides us with the ability to continue to support the health care environment while the mainframe processes applications and passes them down to other systems," says Paul Baquet Jr., a senior systems analyst at Duke Health Technology Solutions who oversees enterprise infrastructure and mainframe services and uses BMC software to monitor the environment.

Other reasons survey respondents choose to keep mainframes in-house include the ability to integrate the legacy platform with newer systems. For instance, 44 percent said that access to the platform is increasing through Web services and service-oriented architecture integration projects. And 42 percent reported they are leveraging legacy applications to create new business applications. Nearly one-third said specialty MIPS are supporting new applications and reducing overall mainframe total cost of ownership. And 16 percent said they are consolidating existing distributed workloads back to the mainframe.

"The mainframe is getting smaller and smaller, and the scalability just keeps getting better," Banquet says. "There is a place for the mainframe and there is a place for distributed systems. People in the industry are finding ways to make these work better together, but the mainframe is a very reliable machine and the distributed system just a junior still trying to grow up and be the mainframe."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Denise Dubie

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?