Feeds

IBM boasts of Power-AIX win at E-Trade Korea

Ellison loses another Sparc/Solaris shop

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

Big Blue is bragging once again about its ability to unseat its Unix-racket competitors from customer accounts after a big win at online stock trading company E-Trade Korea.

E-Trade Korea is a big Sparc/Solaris shop, and was established a dozen years ago as a joint venture between the US-based online brokerage of the same name; Japanese telco, finance, and media conglomerate SoftBank; and South Korean LG Investment & Securities. In 2008, the online brokerage was acquired by a private-equity group that includes LS Networks, another South Korean conglomerate.

The online brokerage, which is located in Seoul, has 200,000 customers, who use the Sparc/Solaris systems to look at account information, get stock quotes, access bulletin boards, and do other things that online traders like to do. Online trading is big in Korea, with about 40 per cent of the trades done on the Korea Stock Exchange (KSE, established in 1953) and the Korean Securities Dealers Automated Quotations (KOSDAQ, established in 1996) being done by shareholders online.

IBM was not at liberty to disclose how much and what kind of Sun iron was running at E-Trade Korea, but the platforms supporting its trading systems were last upgraded in 2005 and were based on Sun Enterprise machines of various makes and models running the Solaris Unix variant.

Whatever Sun iron was installed at E-Trade Korea, it must have been a lot of machinery, based on what IBM is replacing it with. Sources at IBM tell El Reg that the new E-Trade Korea trading system, which will be installed by July, is comprised of two Power 740s (two-socket machines) two Power 770s (eight-socket machines), and six Power 780s (which come with eight or sixteen sockets, depending on the model).

The new trading platform will run AIX and will be able to settle 970,000 financial transactions per hour – 16 per cent more than the current Sparc/Solaris cluster. Presumably, E-Trade Korea has plenty of unactivated cores in the various Power Systems iron and will be able to boost capacity and performance as need be and on the fly in future years.

E-Trade Korea also has plans to expand into private banking aimed at the middle class in South Korea, and will run applications for this business on the new systems.

IBM did not supply a value for the E-Trade Korea contract, but assuming heavy configurations of the servers outlined above and that the machines are lightly configured with disk and heavy on the memory and processor cores, you're talking about something on the order of $5m to $7m at list price just for the servers.

It is not clear if E-Trade Korea was an Oracle database customer – which seems likely – and it is similarly not known if there was a database switch. Considering the grief moving from Oracle to DB2 would entail, it would seem reasonable that moving hardware platforms and operating systems would be enough. For all we know, E-Trade Korea is already using DB2 or Sybase databases, both of which are available on the Sparc/Solaris platform.

The wonder, of course, is why E-Trade Korea did not jump to a Linux cluster as so many stock exchanges themselves have been doing for their trading systems. In fact, you would think that E-Trade Korea would be a poster child for Exadata database clusters and Exalogic application servers. Or one of those Sparc SuperClusters based on the Sparc T4 processor. Whatever the reason, IBM is surely grateful – several million dollars grateful.

IBM has been on a roll in the Unix server racket, even as that business itself is contracting under the pressure from Linux and Windows systems based on x86 iron. In going over Big Blue's fourth quarter results for 2011, CFO Mark Loughridge bragged that IBM did over 350 competitive replacements, generating about $350m in revenues, with its Power-based systems. For all of 2011, IBM did over 1,000 displacements of its Unix competitors – about 60 per cent from Hewlett-Packard, and most of the remainder from Oracle – and generated over $1bn in revenues from these takeouts.

Given those averages, the deal at E-Trade Korea is relatively large. ®

Reducing security risks from open source software

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
The triumph of VVOL: Everyone's jumping into bed with VMware
'Bandwagon'? Yes, we're on it and so what, say big dogs
Carbon tax repeal won't see data centre operators cut prices
Rackspace says electricity isn't a major cost, Equinix promises 'no levy'
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.