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Data Center Management

Mainframes continue to represent the strong core of Data Center technology, while Virtualization and Cloud are also emerging as important technologies to support efficiency, scalability, and cost containment. Topics critical to Data Center Operations and Computing including hardware and software for Storage, Consolidation, High Availability, Backup & Recovery, and IT Optimization, as well as automated tools that help compensate for the growing Mainframe Skills Shortage.



Data Center Management Articles

Dell Inc. announced it has signed a definitive merger agreement under which it will be acquired by Michael Dell, Dell's founder, chairman and CEO, in partnership with global technology investment firm Silver Lake. The transaction will be financed through a combination of cash and equity contributed by Michael Dell, cash funded by investment funds affiliated with Silver Lake, cash invested by MSD Capital, L.P., a $2 billion loan from Microsoft, as well as financing from other sources. The transaction is expected to close before the end of the second quarter of Dell's FY2014.

Posted February 05, 2013

Attachmate announced MobileNow, the company's new mobile strategy that is intended to optimize the company's line of enterprise software products so that mainframe and legacy applications can be extended to mobile devices. Attachmate MobileNow delivers corporate data while providing tools for encrypting data, controlling access and monitoring for fraudulent use. The MobileNow approach does not require critical mainframe and legacy applications to be re-factored for mobile, resulting in quicker time-to-market and lower costs, according to Tom Bice, vice president of marketing and product management at Attachmate.

Posted February 04, 2013

IBM reports a surge in mainframe sales in the most recent quarter, surpassing all previous quarters. This announcement was part of the company's release of quarterly and annual results. Overall, total quarterly revenue was down 1% from last year, and down 2% for the year.

Posted February 04, 2013

William Data Systems (WDS) will showcase the latest release of ZEN TRACE & SOLVE (ZTS) for z/OS mainframe networks at SHARE in San Francisco this week. ZTS, formerly known as EXIGENCE, provides new features to help z/OS sites deliver more, in a shorter time, using fewer resources and with less cost. According to the company, the main advantage of ZTS's latest release is its advanced web-browser interface with flexible data presentation for easier use and more intuitive ways of working. In addition to helping more experienced technicians to solve network problems even faster, ZTS also short-cuts the network tracing learning curve for less experienced technicians. The biggest challenge for less experienced technicians is knowing what part of a network to trace and then interpreting the results of the trace so a problem can be averted or network bandwidth restored, Graham Storey, vice president of marketing, at William Data Systems, tells 5 Minute Briefing.

Posted February 04, 2013

GT Software, a provider of enterprise modernization solutions, announced the general availability of its NEO Suite family of products. The release features updates that improve user experience and includes splash screens, user interfaces and documentation enhancements. With the release of NEObatch v3.2, NEOkicks v3.2, and NEOdata v2.1, the NEO suite of products is now compatible with Microsoft Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, SQL Server 2012, and the .NET 4.0 and 4.5 frameworks. The new product versions are also compatible with the recently released Fujitsu NetCOBOL for .NET v5.0 compiler and runtime, which allows customers to also take advantage of Microsoft Visual Studio 2012.

Posted February 04, 2013

Compuware Corporation, a technology performance tools company, has made enhancements to the Compuware Workbench, a standardized point-and-click mainframe application development interface. The Workbench is now configured to deliver faster and more efficient file and data management capabilities, the vendor says. This includes the ability to edit complex IMS databases, as well as debugging functionality, all designed to significantly boost developer productivit

Posted February 04, 2013

Heirloom Computing Inc. has formed a new partnership with Java Platform as a Service (PaaS) provider CloudBees to speed the transition of mainframe workloads to the CloudBees PaaS. With the partnership, Heirloom will deploy COBOL-based mainframe workloads to the cloud, using Heirloom Elastic COBOL and the CloudBees Platform.

Posted February 04, 2013

SilverSky, a provider of information security solutions, is combining the assets of Perimeter E-Security and USA.NET into a unified brand focused on delivering an advanced security-as-a-service platform. SilverSky manages, secures and monitors corporate information assets with a portfolio of software and managed services, delivered through its unified policy-aware platform.

Posted February 04, 2013

TransLattice has joined the Cisco Developer Network as a registered developer within the Physical Infrastructure technology category. In addition, two products, TransLattice Application Platform v.2.5 and TransLattice Elastic Database v.2.5, have successfully completed interoperability testing with Blades (B-series). The TransLattice Application Platform (TAP) creates a high-performance computing fabric from a cluster of affordable commodity servers that work cooperatively to ensure applications and associated data are always available.

Posted February 04, 2013

A new survey of 200 IT managers by OneLogin finds enterprises are rife with unsafe password management. At least 43% of respondents admit that employees manage passwords in spreadsheets or on sticky notes, and 34% share passwords with their co-workers for applications like FedEx, Twitter, Staples, and LinkedIn. Another 20% experienced an employee still being able to login after leaving the company. Password management has been a difficult challenge long before mainframes were connected to the internet. Now, with cloud and software as a service, the stakes are even greater

Posted February 04, 2013

SHARE in San Francisco kicked off yesterday and will continue through Friday. If you were not able to travel to the event, you can still be a part of the audience with SHARE Live!, the virtual event option.

Posted February 04, 2013

IBM has announced that IBM SmartCloud for SAP Applications, an enterprise service unique to IBM, is available globally. The new service, IBM SmartCloud for SAP Applications, aims to automate and standardize provisioning of IT environments, and can accelerate service delivery with expert certified staff. According to the companies, SmartCloud services for SAP applications delivers 99.7% availability based on a global delivery model to support cloud-based systems around the clock. This service is available for SAP Business Suite software and the SAP BusinessObjects solution portfolio as an enterprise-class, fully managed Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offering for running SAP solutions in a production environment.

Posted January 30, 2013

SAP announced a new option for SAP Business Suite customers — SAP Business Suite powered by SAP HANA — providing an integrated family of business applications that captures and analyzes transactional data in real time on a single in-memory platform. With Business Suite on HANA, "SAP has reinvented the software that reinvented businesses," stated Rob Enslin, member of the Global Executive Board and SAP head of sales, as part of his presentation during the company's recent launch event.

Posted January 30, 2013

Software AG has agreed to sell its SAP-service operations in Canada and the USA to itelligence, a full-service provider of IT solutions for the SAP market with approximately 2,700 employees in 21 countries. Its headquarters are in Bielefeld, Germany. The transaction closing is scheduled for January 16 and according to the companies the purchase price will not be disclosed. The transaction includes all of Software AG's SAP product-specific services in Canada and the U.S., which are coordinated from Toronto and Reston, Virginia respectively. In addition, itelligence plans to acquire the majority of around 80 employees as of January 16.

Posted January 30, 2013

Oracle VM Release 3.2, a key component in Oracle's desktop to data center virtualization portfolio, is now available. There are two main themes to the new release, Adam Hawley, senior director of desktop and server virtualization product management at Oracle, tells 5 Minute Briefing. One main area of emphasis is to provide a richer, more diverse set of deployment options for customers. The second major collection of enhancements is around allowing users to more easily and efficiently manage larger environments.

Posted January 29, 2013

The explosion of big data has presented many challenges for today's database administrators (DBAs), who are responsible for managing far more data than ever before. And with more programs being developed and tested, more tools are needed to help optimize data and efficiency efforts. Using techniques such as DB2's Multi-Row Fetch (MRF), DBAs are able to cut down on CPU time - and improve application efficiency. MRF was introduced in DB2 version 8 in 2004. Stated simply, it is the ability for DB2 to send multiple rows back to a requesting program at once, rather than one row at a time.

Posted January 29, 2013

In a new blog, Kelly Beavers, vice president and business line executive, IBM Systems Software, writes about IBM SmartCloud Entry, which now supports the open source KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine) hypervisor. The result, she explains, is that with just one product, customers can support virtual machines that are running on KVM, VMware, and/or PowerVM: Cloud computing is one of those technologies for which people have differing definitions, but SmartCloud Entry does the most basic things that just about everyone expects from a cloud solution: web-based provisioning for a cloud, and a pay-as-you go model. SmartCloud Entry supports those two critical capabilities with a couple of key attributes that decrease risk to organizations. First, it makes it really simple for a company that is new to the cloud to get started with a private cloud safely and behind their own firewall, and second, it does so with pricing that is completely affordable for the mid-market.

Posted January 24, 2013

Server virtualization will remain a top priority for many IT organizations and vendor go-to-market strategies 2013, writes senior analyst Mark Bowker in a blog on the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) website. However, organizations will not be relying on a single hypervisor, says Bowker, who points to an ESG research brief, Multiple Hypervisor Usage Trends, in which nearly-two thirds (65%) of respondent organizations report using more than one hypervisor,

Posted January 24, 2013

Canonical has announced a smart phone interface for its operating system, Ubuntu. The Linux-based software will allow users to run desktop apps on their handsets, so that they double for PCs when docked to monitors, writes Leo Kelion in an article for BBC News. According to Kelion, the code will initially be released as a file which can be installed on Samsung's Galaxy Nexus phone, replacing Android. Kelion also reports that Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu and vice president, products, at Canonical, says he is talking with manufacturers about devices to be sold with the system pre-installed within the year.

Posted January 24, 2013

Red Hat announced the next minor release of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.9. The release, which marks the beginning of Production Phase 2 of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, maintains Red Hat's commitment to a 10-year lifecycle through the introduction of several new features, including hardware enablement, security, standards and certifications, developer tools, and virtualization.

Posted January 24, 2013

Posted January 24, 2013

With 2012 now in the rear-view mirror, it's time to look ahead at what 2013 may bring, writes Katherine Noyes in an article for PCWorld. From the excitement about the Raspberry Pi 2013 and the array of "tiny, inexpensive, Linux-powered PCs," to whether 2013 will be the "Year of Linux on the Desktop," Noyes gazes at her crystal ball in "Five Linux predictions for 2013."

Posted January 24, 2013

Oracle has introduced StorageTek LTO 6 Tape Drives with Fibre Channel connectivity for its StorageTek SL8500 and SL3000 Tape Libraries. The new drives offer increased capacity for better with 2.5 TB native storage capacity on a single tape cartridge, enabling customers to process more data in less time, while driving down the cost of tape operations.

Posted January 23, 2013

For the 20th year in a row, IBM topped an annual list of U.S. patent recipients. The company received 6,478 patents in 2012 for inventions that will enable advancements in areas including analytics, big data, cyber security, cloud, mobile, social networking and software defined environments, as well as industry solutions for retail, banking, healthcare, and transportation. IBM's motivation extends beyond simply achieving high numbers of patent filings, Graham Mackintosh, program executive for social analytics at IBM, tells 5 Minute Briefing. "We care about the innovation. The patent activity is a byproduct."

Posted January 22, 2013

OpenText, a provider of reporting software, says it is shipping a new interface that extends its enterprise information management reporting capabilities to mainframe-generated content by making it available to users of OpenText Content Server, OpenText eDOCS, and Microsoft SharePoint. "The Report & Output Management interface now allows mainframe output and content to be included as a source within the enterprise," Jason Likins, vice president of report and output at OpenText, tells 5 Minute Briefing. This includes business-centric information captured from mainframes, he says.

Posted January 22, 2013

Kroll Ontrack, a provider of information management tools, has announced a software tool that enables overwrite erasure of data on hard drives within VMware environments to ensure security and that drives can be repurposed. Version 4.0 of Ontrack Eraser provides expanded drive wiping capacity, VMware eraser capabilities, and new reporting and security management functionality. "The industry is struggling with being able to confirm that VMDKs (virtual machine disks) are wiped securely," Abhik Mitra, data recovery product manager at Kroll Ontrack, tells 5 Minute Briefing. "It is a very manual, mundane process today."

Posted January 22, 2013

Verizon Terremark announced it is enhancing its Enterprise Cloud service in terms of increased availability, security and flexibility. Enterprise Cloud computing platforms are being expanded in two of the company's data center facilities located in Dallas and London, Tony Savoy, senior director, Product Management, Verizon Terremark, tells 5 Minute Briefing. Verizon Terremark operates about 50 data centers worldwide, and of those a portion are what the company calls cloud-enabled to support its delivery of cloud family products to clients. The expansion in Dallas extends Verizon Terremark's presence in the central U.S., where it already has a Denver, Colorado, facility. The facility in London is Verizon Terremark's second in the EMEA region.

Posted January 22, 2013

Rocket Software announced the general availability of the latest version of its application modernization suite for user experience development, SOA integration, and enterprise mobile application development. LegaSuite 7.1 features LegaSuite Mobile, a new enterprise mobility product that enables organizations in any industry to facilitate mobile application development and integration with enterprise applications.

Posted January 22, 2013

CA Technologies, a provider of enterprise management tools, announced a new release of its cross-enterprise workload automation solution that includes an enhanced user interface and expanded application and platform support. CA Workload Automation is designed to support the delivery of integrated user experiences across distributed, mainframe and cloud platforms.

Posted January 22, 2013

NovaStor, a backup management software provider, announced it has redesigned its backup and restore software for data center administrators. NovaBACKUP DataCenter 5.0 features a new graphic user interface that provides greater access to all backup features.

Posted January 22, 2013

Does the cloud make a good backup environment for an on-premises data center? Or does an on-premises data center need to stand by as backup for cloud applications? In a recent post, Lars Evensen, an IBM certified IT architect, talks about the risks and rewards of using cloud as a backup. "If you manage your requirements and business needs correctly, backing up your data to a cloud-based solution can provide you with a flexible solution that performs as expected," he says. "However if you do not manage these requirements properly and simply assume that a cloud-based solution is the same as a traditional solution, you are heading into a possible hornet's nest." Evensen recommends a review of data policies, the cloud provider's service level agreement, and consideration of business needs. Also, current recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO) requirements - which may be met by a current backup system or provider - may be more difficult to attain in the cloud.

Posted January 22, 2013

Fusion-io is extending the availability of its Fusion ioScale product line. Previously offered exclusively to Fusion-io customers outfitting thousands of servers, ioScale is now available for hyperscale and cloud companies in minimum order quantities of only one hundred units. According to Fusion-io, each ioScale provides up to 3.2 terabytes of Fusion ioMemory capacity that is performance tuned for the needs of webscale environments, and offered at pricing that will make it practical to architect an all-flash data center at scale. "The new ioScale product line is based on the same ioMemory architecture that our traditional ioDrive product line has been based on, but it has been specifically performance- and cost-optimized to target what we are calling the ‘hyperscale' segment of the market," Ajay Nilaver, senior director, Product Management, at Fusion-io, tells 5 Minute Briefing.

Posted January 22, 2013

Coverage of Windows 8 has understandably focused on the revolutionary Metro interface. Many believe that this new interface, while fine for tablets and phones, is a step backwards for desktop productivity. By forcing users to switch between two modes of operation - desktop and Metro, Windows 8 diminishes productivity and imposes steep learning curve on new users. The Metro interface itself supports only very limited multi-tasking, so, serious work often must be done in the traditional Windows desktop. Microsoft implicitly acknowledges these limitations by providing the latest version of Microsoft Office, not in Metro format, but as traditional "desktop" applications.

Posted January 15, 2013

Kroll Ontrack, a provider of data recovery, e-discovery and information management, has introduced the latest version of Ontrack Eraser, a software tool that enables overwrite erasure of data on hard drives to ensure security and so that drives can be re-purposed. The new 4.0 release provides VMware eraser capabilities, expanded drive wiping capacity, and new reporting and security management functionality. "The one thing that the industry is struggling with today is being able to confirm that VMDKs (virtual machine disks), are wiped securely. It is a very manual mundane process today that we have made easier because we have essentially created a software product to help automate that process as well as easier for the customer to select specifically which virtual disks they want to wipe," Abhik Mitra, data recovery product manager at Kroll Ontrack, tells 5 Minute Briefing.

Posted January 10, 2013

One of the first compute jobs on record was for the U.S. Census, but now it seems computers are ready to handle other "senses" as well - all five of them. IBM researchers foresee the day when computers will provide touch sensations (smartphones already have touch capabilities), which will enhance online retailers; pick up on visual cues, which will enable remote medical diagnosis; enable speech recognition and real-time language translation; and even smell and taste. This is a far cry from the days when computers were just number-crunchers.

Posted January 07, 2013

Imation Corp., a provider of storage and data security offerings, announced that it has acquired privately held Nexsan Corporation, a Thousand Oaks, Calif.-based provider of disk-based storage systems, for about $120 million. As the company continues to execute its strategy, Imation is leveraging its deep data storage core, building a platform for long-term growth and improving operating margins in high-growth data storage and security solutions markets.

Posted January 07, 2013

Syncsort, a provider of data integration solutions, has self-certified Syncsort MFX high-performance mainframe sorting software with the EMC Disk Library for mainframe, a virtual tape library solution for mainframe environments. The combination of solutions is aimed at helping customers reduce mainframe CPU and elapsed time, resulting in improved system throughput and lower consumption of resources. The self-certification was completed through the EMC ISV Backup Recovery Systems Partner Program. There is great pressure on mainframe IT departments to reduce the amount of MIPS they are using and a result, mainframe customers continue to invest to try to reduce costs with new technologies, Harvey Tessler, co-founder and head of Mainframe Engineering, Syncsort, tells 5 Minute Briefing.

Posted January 07, 2013

CA Technologies announced that 25 of its software offerings are now certified by VCE to run on Vblock Systems, furthering CA's support of converged infrastructure platforms. VCE, formed by Cisco and EMC with investments from VMware and Intel, provides converged cloud infrastructure systems. The company's Vblock Systems are designed to accelerate the adoption of converged infrastructure and cloud-based computing models.

Posted January 07, 2013

Micro Focus International plc announced that one of its subsidiaries has reached a definitive agreement with Progress Software Corporation for the acquisition of Progress's Orbix, Orbacus and Artix software product lines, for a total of $15 million. The acquisition is expected to be completed by January 21.

Posted January 07, 2013

Oracle announced Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud X3-2, the second hardware generation of the company's flagship engineered system for running business applications. Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud is hardware and software engineered together to provide extreme performance, reliability and scalability for Java, Oracle Fusion Middleware, Oracle Applications, Re-hosted CICS/IMS TP and other business applications, while delivering lower TCO, reduced risk, higher user productivity and one-stop support.

Posted January 03, 2013

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