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IBM is pitching new software and server gear for use in public, private and public-private hybrid cloud computing environments. The tech titan has announced PureSystem updates plus stuff about Power, System x and technical computing.

Big Blue thinks mutant clouds will pick up in popularity; it quotes Gartner as saying that "hybrid cloud computing is at the same place today that private cloud was three years ago; actual deployments are low, aspirations are high, and nearly half of large enterprises will have hybrid cloud deployments by the end of 2017."

PureSystems

IBM's PureSystems are converged offerings using the Flex System chassis, Flex Power and x86 server nodes plus switches and integrated storage, all stacked in racks, to make PureFlex infrastructure clouds, PureApplications software servers, and PureData analytics appliances. Big Blue says it has shipped more than 6,000 PureSystems.

We're told of several new offerings, some with verylongbrandnames:

  • PureFlex Solution for IBM i: for current IBM small and medium business (SMB) customers to consolidate i and Windows applications.
  • PureFlex System - Express: a single chassis entry-level system with an affordable, IBM says, price point. It's for SMB and enterprise departments.
  • PureFlex System - Enterprise: multi-chassis rigs with high-availability for scalable cloud deployments.

The Express and Enterprise systems come with either Power or x86 compute nodes. Meanwhile:

  • PureFlex cloud support now includes an upgrade path to IBM's SmartCloud plus a SmartCloud Entry offering that supports OpenStack.
  • PureFlex Solution for SmartCloud Desktop Infrastructure, which is a VDI product, basically.
  • PureData System for Analytics has a Netezza-powered less-expensive entry system.
  • PureData System for Hadoop supports, er, Hadoop, to enable "big data exploration in areas like social and text analytics".

There is also an additional, and smaller, PureApplication System with 32 or 64-core POWER7+ configurations and these offer "enhanced performance, density and resiliency", we're told.

Power Systems

  • A new IBM PowerVC (Virtualisation Center) product juggles virtual workloads
  • A Power Systems Solution Edition for Service Providers is a pre-built, pre-installed cloud system with OpenStack support for SmartCloud Entry and PowerVC products.
  • PowerVP is a virtualisation performance tool with a graphical display providing real-time systems information. The aim is to identify performance bottlenecks and get them fixed to optimise the host system.
  • A Power Integrated Facility for Linux (Power IFL) can enable clients to "activate capacity for Linux applications without interruption."
  • Each Power IFL "is comprised of four processor activations, memory activations and PowerVM license entitlements … With PowerVM … clients can accelerate response to changing priorities without incurring extra virtualisation software licensing fees".

A IBM BLU Acceleration Solution - Power Systems Edition uses POWER7+ processor technology for claimed "8x to 25x faster reporting and analytics and 10x storage space savings". It combines DB2 software and BLU Acceleration with dynamic, in-memory, columnar technology and Power Systems and can grow to a 20TB data warehouse.

Big Blue suggests its Power Systems have a "lower cost with superior choice and flexibility compared to commodity servers based on decades old, PC era design". (What? Like System x servers? Don't go there.)

System x

There is a new System x3250 M5 system for small-biz apps like email, file/print and web serving and, of course IBM says, "suitable for hybrid cloud environments". It is a single-socket rack server with twice the storage capacity and data throughput, 18 per cent more energy efficiency and 10 per cent memory power savings over the previous generation in the same size chassis.

IBM says customers can use a feature-on-demand function "to easily and remotely upgrade key features on the x3250 M5, without costly server downtime".

Big Blue's NeXtScale System will go on general availability this month. This mini-monster "incorporates up to 84 x86-based systems and 2,016 processing cores in a standard EIA 19-inch rack".

Technical Computing

IBM has a set of Application Ready systems. These have had support added for ANSYS, Dassault Systemes, MSC Software, mpiBLAST, and Schlumberger. There is also an InfoSphere BigInsights Big Data system for telcos, financial services, and others get near real-time big-data analytics.

An enhanced IBM Platform HPC product provides faster-time-to-cluster readiness. A new version of IBM's Platform LSF Family improves utilisation and energy efficiency with better policy controls, workflow management, and reporting. The updated IBM Platform Symphony product delivers faster MapReduce results on a lower-cost shared infrastructure, including native support for co-processor harvesting.

IBM global financing

Lastly IBM's Global Financing biz will help you buy any of the systems above. Customers "can obtain 0 per cent financing when they acquire IBM PureFlex Systems, Power Systems, Storage Systems, and System x technology or migrate their IBM i solutions to the latest technology platform".

The company says its IBM Business Partners can, using a new mobile financing application, get the financing in minutes and so close business faster. You can imagine a prospective customer saying: "There could be a financing problem", and the reseller answering: "Not any more there isn't." ®

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