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IBM PowerLinux Systems Are Designed to Reduce Costs

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Company details features of two new PowerLinux servers, three new workload-specific solutions.

IBM introduced new IBM PowerLinux Systems and Solutions today to help customers exploit the cost efficiency of Linux and virtualization for business-critical workloads. IBM PowerLinux Solutions offer deep integration of new Linux-specific POWER7 processor-based hardware with industry-standard Linux software from Red Hat and SUSE for analyzing Big Data, managing industry-specific applications and delivering open source infrastructure services.

The new IBM PowerLinux Solutions are more affordable for businesses of all sizes with the introduction of two new Linux-specific servers: a system for the recently announced IBM PureFlex System, part of the new IBM PureSystems family of systems with integrated expertise; as well as a standalone high-performance, energy-efficient IBM PowerLinux System that is value-priced for the mid market and above.

The new PowerLinux Solutions and supporting systems are designed to provide customers with lower deployment time and costs, and greater performance, dependability and workload density than competitive x86 platforms at similar price points. This extends the ability for IBM to address customers’ Linux application needs more effectively, just as it does for UNIX (AIX) and IBM i application requirements with Power Systems.

IBM is offering the new integrated and workload-optimized PowerLinux Solutions in conjunction with its ISV and OEM partners, starting with three specific Linux-centric workloads. IBM PowerLinux Solutions are designed to match each workload’s specific performance requirements, offering customers a simpler Linux-based IT environment that can help reduce infrastructure costs and aide in freeing IT staff to focus on bringing innovative products and services to market faster.

“Our tests have shown excellent performance results for Zucchetti human resources and ERP industry application software running on the new PowerLinux Systems – an improvement of at least 40 percent compared to Linux machines based on Intel x86,” said Alberto Cazzulani , HR Business Unit Technologies & Services Manager for Zucchetti Group, a leading provider of software and technology solutions with more than 450,000 installations and 85,000 clients.

By basing the new solutions on lower cost Linux-specific Power Systems and PowerVM for Linux virtualization technology, IBM can help provide more value to customers at a lower cost than others offering Linux on other commodity x86 servers. In addition, replacing aging x86-based Windows servers with PowerLinux Systems and utilizing open source applications, clients may further reduce costs by reducing or eliminating high proprietary software license fees and upgrade charges.

“With PowerLinux, IBM has made a real conscious effort to lower the acquisition price for customers who have wanted to take advantage of POWER to run their Linux environments,” said Andy Lin, Solutions Consultant, Mark III Systems. “So now clients who perhaps would not have looked at IBM systems in the past are saying, ‘This is actually a really good idea – this is very compelling for us.’ That not only represents an opportunity for the greater IBM, but as an IBM Premier Business Partner, it’s a tremendous opportunity for Mark III Systems as well.”

University of Hamburg Improves System Performance At Lower Cost

IBM is working with customers across a number of industries and geographies to help improve the performance of their Linux-based applications and services, including the University of Hamburg. As a participant in PHYsnet.org, the worldwide scientific data exchange, the University of Hamburg wanted to improve the performance levels of its existing PHYSnet servers without investing in large numbers of physical servers for its Physics research lab.

By implementing a virtual distributed configuration for its OpenAFS file system using two IBM PowerLinux 7R2 systems running 10 virtual Linux servers using the new IBM PowerVM for PowerLinux, the university was able to improve file serving performance by 50 percent at 30 percent less cost than the competing Intel x86-based systems option.

“IBM PowerLinux is the best option for running OpenAFS as it can handle the high I/O requirements of the system and delivers the throughput needed to quickly access files,” said Bodo Krause-Kyora, Head of Systems and Deputy Director, PHYSnet, for University of Hamburg. “We would have needed to purchase significantly more Intel-based systems to achieve the same levels of file serving performance that we do with just two IBM PowerLinux servers.”

Three Workload-Optimized PowerLinux Solution Editions

As customers find their business needs are increasingly addressable with open source software, they still face the challenge of maintaining the quality of service and reliability previously achieved with proprietary software solutions. By leveraging the self-healing and self-managing capabilities of POWER7 systems, customers can confidently run one or many highly scalable, reliable and flexible industry-standard Linux environments. The three new PowerLinux Solutions include:

  • IBM PowerLinux Big Data Analytics Solution
    Smarter companies are thinking differently about how to deal with Big Data that is growing exponentially within their organizations. To meet this challenge, many are deploying Linux-based IT infrastructures designed to capably handle both structured and unstructured data, making it easier to capture, manage and analyze information to drive better-informed business decisions.

    The highly threaded, parallel processing capabilities of IBM PowerLinux Systems provide optimal compute and I/O performance for Big Data analytics projects using Apache Hadoop, a software framework that enables distributed processing of large data sets across clusters of computers. IBM OEM partner Fixstars is planning to deliver a Hadoop-based appliance for Big Data based on IBM PowerLinux Systems for the SMB market in 2012.

    PowerLinux Systems also help businesses cost-effectively gain new insights from Big Data with IBM solutions, such as IBM InfoSphere BigInsights software that enables organizations to analyze a variety of Big Data information sources. InfoSphere BigInsights, will be generally available for PowerLinux Systems on June 15. IBM InfoSphere Streams software for PowerLinux, which analyzes data-in-motion, is available immediately.

    The deep integration and optimization of analytics workload performance on IBM PowerLinux Systems enables businesses to run thousands of tasks in parallel to deliver analytics services faster, such as analyzing historical credit card data to help improve real-time fraud detection or examining social media in real time to better understand brand sentiment among customers.
  • IBM PowerLinux Industry Application Solution
    More companies are relying on Linux for business applications that are designed for their industry and tuned for specific business needs. IBM PowerLinux Systems provide a highly secure, resilient and fully integrated platform stack for industry applications, providing smoother implementation enabling faster time-to-delivery for new, differentiating services with less downtime.

    With offerings like the IBM PowerLinux Solution Edition for SAP Applications, midsize IT shops can deliver these services at a lower cost per workload with high quality compared to x86 commodity servers running Windows or Linux. Additional ISVs like Zucchetti Group are planning to provide pre-integrated, tested and validated solutions tailored for their local regions across a variety of industries.
  • IBM PowerLinux Open Source Infrastructure Services Solution
    PowerLinux Systems offer cost-effective control over server and virtual image sprawl with the addition of the new PowerVM for PowerLinux virtualization technology. With fewer servers to manage, businesses can deliver services such as web, email and social business collaboration more cost effectively by using PowerLinux Systems as the foundation for flexible open source-based software delivery. Integrated, tuned and tested so everything works together, PowerLinux Systems offer highly secure and scalable virtualization of business infrastructure services.

“As CIOs seek to transform their IT department from a cost center to a strategic asset, many have a misconception that deploying Linux on x86 servers equipped with VMware software is their only option for taking advantage of open source applications,” said Colin Parris, General Manager, IBM Power Systems. “Serving the Linux market with Power Systems is an important initiative for IBM. With IBM PowerLinux solutions and systems, customers now have powerful, cost-effective alternatives, as well as a broad ecosystem of support from our global partners to get the right solution—hardware, software and services—for virtually any business requirement.”

Built on New Linux-Specific Servers

The new IBM PowerLinux Solutions are more affordable for businesses of all sizes with the introduction of two new Linux-specific servers:

  • IBM Flex System p24L Compute Node – Linux-specific two-socket server for the recently announced IBM PureFlex System which contains 12 or 16 POWER7 microprocessor cores, option of Red Hat Enterprise Linux or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server operating systems, and built-in PowerVM for PowerLinux. The new PowerLinux-specific server is supported in the PureFlex System Express, Standard and Enterprise configurations.
  • IBM PowerLinux 7R2 System – A two-socket, high-performance, energy-efficient rack server that supports 16 POWER7 microprocessor cores and a choice of industry standard Linux operating systems – Red Hat Enterprise Linux or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. Scalable and efficient with a built-in PowerVM for PowerLinux hypervisor, the PowerLinux 7R2 System can run multiple Linux workloads, offering a potentially lower solution stack cost for virtualized infrastructure.


IBM Global Financing provides flexible financing options for clients to acquire the new PowerLinux systems and lower their total cost of ownership. For example, credit-qualified clients(1) can acquire the 128GB/3.6TB PowerLinux 7R2 System for $400 per month with nothing down with a 36-month lease. IBM Global Financing enables clients to manage budgets more easily with predictable payments and to reduce the risk of IT technology obsolescence with options to upgrade at mid or end of lease. Thousands of clients globally already experience the advantages of financing their Power Systems solutions.

Since 2000, Linux had held a strategically significant position within the IBM systems portfolio and IBM has invested more than a billion dollars into the Linux movement to date. IBM is traditionally among the top commercial contributors of Linux code with more than 600 IBMers involved in more than 100 open source projects. Built on industry-standard Linux, open source and IBM software, IBM PowerLinux Solutions are designed to help customers make better business decisions and assist them to operate more efficiently.

For more information on IBM PowerLinux Solutions, visit www.ibm.com/power/powerlinux.


(1) IBM Global Financing offerings are provided through IBM Credit LLC in the United States and other IBM subsidiaries and divisions worldwide to qualified commercial and government customers. Minimum transaction size $5,000, rates are based on a customer's credit rating, financing terms, offering type, equipment type and options, and may vary by country. Other restrictions may apply. Rates and offerings are subject to change, extension or withdrawal without notice. Example based on a 36 month lease for a PowerLinux 7R2 rack server configured with 128GB memory and 3.6TB total hard drive storage, RHEL (includes open source workload packages), and IBM PowerVM for IBM PowerLinux.

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider, helping clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM's hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently, and securely. IBM's breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM's legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity, and service.

For more information, visit: www.ibm.com.



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