It is commonly understood in the mainframe community that many tech folks today do not understand the difference between a mainframe and a cluster of distributed servers.  This is highly ironic given the high volume of their personal data that is processed on a mainframe each and every day through ATM transactions, credit/debit card transactions, investment trades, etc.  Given some of the recent shifts of workloads to the mainframe, we may soon have to add social media to this list.  That’s right, dear Millennial Mainframers, some of your beloved tweets, pokes, pluses and such may soon be running on the mythical mainframe! ***insert gasp***

After visiting Lotusphere 2012, I’m here to tell you that the mainframe is becoming key to corporate social media strategies, particularly those centered around IBM’s social media suite running on z/OS, Linux on Z, and z/VM.  If you an unfamiliar with these products, I encourage you to visit IBM Software for the System Z Mainframe and scan the mainframe software offerings.  Most Social Business applications are either current available on the mainframe or finishing up development in the near future.

Given the recent grown in mainframe workloads into new areas such as social media, mainframes offer a huge opportunity for Millennials currently finishing school and entering the job market.  Companies once moving away from the mainframe in the mid to late 90’s are now moving back due to cost savings and efficiency. Check out this site for more Mainframe Facts.

Many of the folks that first administered the mainframe are beginning to retire and a need for mainframe trained employees exists today! Companies around the world utilize mainframes and even more are transitioning to the mainframe! 

Although mainframes historically catered to high transactional businesses such as banks, investment firms, and airlines, the modern mainframe has expanded to mid-size businesses to run virtual Linux servers and execute Java code.  Not only are these same businesses using the mainframe for their mission critical workloads but now they are running social business applications like  Lotus Domino/ Notes (Email)IBM Sametime (Enterprise Instant Messaging)IBM Connections (Enterprise Collaboration Suite).  In short, many of these corporations can not function without the power of the mainframe.

The mainframe has again become the workhorse of many businesses today!  These very businesses will require the skills of up and coming millennials to administer their mainframe environments into the future.  For more information on mainframe careers check out System Z Jobs.

2 thoughts on “System Z: Not Your Dad’s Mainframe

  1. Very well written. The mainframe is just a server that is reliable, available, serviceable and extremely secure. Which is why the z server is used for critical applications that can not afford interruptions of any kind nor can they afford security breaches.

  2. Agreed, it seems more and more noncritical applications are also being added to the mainframe workload. It’s encouraging to see the support the z server is receiving from the corporate world. After listening to many IT folks speak It has become clear that IT departments are recognizing Z as a one of kind, irreplacacble system.


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