9 Advantages to Mainframe for Cloud Computing

July 11, 2013
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2 min read

Years after the introduction of cloud computing, it is interesting that security continues to be the top inhibitor to broad scale cloud adoption: 64{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178} still consider security a cloud security inhibitor – up 6{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178} from 2014. And security leads the list of cloud inhibitors by a remarkable 22{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178} over the next largest cloud inhibitor in the same survey, cloud solutions’ compatibility with enterprise and industry standards, coming in at 42{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178}.

So it stands to reason, that if you want to reap the benefits of cloud computing, while addressing the top concerns or security and minimizing risk, that you would select a platform with a reputation for secure architecture, hardware security, operating system integrity, strong security controls, data protection controls, application security, and virtualization isolation.  It makes sense to develop your cloud computing platform on an industrial strength, scalable, secure foundation – the system z modern mainframe.

Nine Advantages to Using Mainframe for Cloud Computing

The mainframe offers many advantages for cloud computing. Below are nine advantages that you should consider:

  1. Flexible infrastructure:  System z supports a variety of highly secure virtualized environments for cloud implementation including the z/VM operating system running virtual servers, hypervisors, blade servers, and logical partitions (LPARs) which are evaluated at common criteria EAL 5+.
  2. Scalability: Mainframes provide the ideal platform for big data analytics, data warehouses, production processing, and web applications while supporting millions of users with superior performance.
  3. Centralized data hub:  Estimates that up to 70{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178} of corporate production data still resides or originates on the mainframe. This means that private clouds residing on System z have secure access to essential information that can be shared if necessary with adequate access controls, encryption, data security, data masking and integrity.
  4. Compliance:  Support for industry standards, compliance regulations and best practices that require data encryption, separation of duties, privileged  user monitoring, secure communication protocols, audit reporting, and more.
  5. Resiliency:  The modern mainframe offer a highly resilient platform with the maximum level of availability, reliability, recoverability, security, integrity and performance.
  6. Security: Mainframe private cloud implementation allows better control with a high level of security transparency providing a view across the enterprise.  Mainframe clouds can also decrease the security threats inherent on public clouds with open networks.
  7. Migration: Easy migration of distributed workloads over to the mainframe virtualized environment reduces the number of distributed systems that need to be managed.
  8. Consolidated Workloads: Once the virtual environment is optimized, it is easy to consolidate various workloads on the mainframe while providing any necessary isolation between virtual systems.  This also helps reduce licensing fees that would be incurred with distributed systems.
  9. Reduced Total Cost of Ownership (TCO):  An ease of security  management study found that the overall total cost of ownership (TCO) over 3 years for a private cloud based on IBM zEnterprise systems was 76{30bfbf8d9f2833f0337133e196b4dc87825dfb7d33a3602d05ee876ecd6f1178} less than a third-party service provider‘s public cloud.
Anne Lescher
Mainframe Security Marketing Manager, IBM Security

Anne Lescher is a Senior Marketing Manager currently championing mainframe security. Anne's involvement with mainframe security started with Resource Access ...
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