Joint Big 10 DCE Project:
Administrative Information Services Imperative:
AIS Enterprise Systems Roadmap
Authored by: Mike Belinc, AIS Enterprise Systems Architect
Several people contributed to investigative effort that ultimately led to the recommendations brought forth in this imperative. Covering all the bases in an exploration of this magnitude is a monumental task and can be daunting. Nevertheless, without their invaluable input, the results could not have been achieved.
Secondary participants (Virtual Team):
Carl Seybold Applications Development
Ed Hayes Applications Development
Peter DeVries Workflow
Pete Dawson Mid-tier solutions and services
Lowell Smith Distributed Systems
Scott Neidigh Distributed Systems
Scott Weaver Computer Operations
Steve Strickler Production job scheduling
Todd Litzinger Security
Denny Morrison IBIS
Dawn Boyer ISIS
Table of Contents:
9Project StrategyDelivering a Roadmap
11Appendix A: Research Results
14Appendix B: Additional Observations
15Appendix C: Issues
15Production Batch Jobs
15Historical Business Processes
16Performance and Scaling Factors
16Enterprise Application Integration (EAI)
17ADABAS Data Access
17Risk Assessment Based on Existing Investment in Mainframe Technology
17Reliability and Stability
17Cultural Changes and Logistics
19Appendix D: Databases Cross-Referenced to Hardware (Part 1)
20Appendix E: Databases Cross-Referenced to Hardware (Part 2)
21Appendix F: Databases Cross-Referenced to Operating Systems (Part 1)
22Appendix G: Databases Cross-Referenced to Operating Systems (Part 2)
23Appendix H: Hardware Cross-Referenced to Databases
24Appendix I: Hardware Cross-Referenced to Operating Systems
25Appendix J: Operating Systems Cross-Referenced to Databases (Part 1)
26Appendix K: Operating Systems Cross-Referenced to Databases (Part 2)
27Appendix L: Operating Systems Cross-Referenced to Hardware
AIS Administrative Information Services
AIX Advanced Interactive eXecutive
ASET Academic Services and Emerging Technologies
BTOS Burroughs Technologies Operating System
COLD Computer Output to Laser Disk
CORBA Common Object Request Broker Architecture
EAI Enterprise Application Integration (Imperative)
IBM International Business Machines
ITS Information Technology Services
J2EE Java 2 platform, Enterprise Edition
MCP Master Control Program
OS Operating System
SAG Software AG
SGI Silicon Graphics Incorporated
SOAP Simple Object Access Protocol
SQL Structured Query Language
VM Virtual Machine
VMS Virtual Memory System
VOS Virtual Operating System
VSE Virtual Storage Extended
WWW World Wide Web
XML eXtensible Markup Language
When one takes an investigative look at hardware and software infrastructure it immediately becomes evident that it is a difficult task at best to undertake a full analysis of all of the possible combinations of hardware, operating systems and databases available in the computing industry today. However, an effort to corroborate the validity of an existing infrastructure may in fact require a minimal exploration of some of these combinations.
Our research quickly uncovered several key criteria that warrant more extensive investigation than the time line for this imperative would permit. Nonetheless, several decisive conclusions have been made with respect to narrowing the playing field of plausible directions to pursue. This report highlights a recommended approach to further the research required to determine a long-range strategy for migration to any new hardware platform, operating system and/or database infrastructure. Specific requirements will have to be defined, mapped to possible combinations of architectures and then weighted in terms of their level of importance and implementation viability.
We have documented some of the more plausible combinations of architectures encountered during this endeavor. Strategies that have been recommended in earlier imperatives are given due consideration. Still, it would require a giant leap of faith to make a determination based on the limited criteria used to gather information thus far. Our commitment to adopt J2EE programming standards for future application development along with our effort to control our mid-tier server growth rate are important decisions that will require the allocation of significant personnel resourcesthroughout all administrative computing departmentsover the next few years. A steep learning curve will drive the need for a long training period for application developers, operations and systems personnel.
If we are ever to undergo a complete change in hardware and/or operating system software, our dependence on mainframe production batch procedures required to satisfy numerous business requirements presents a daunting challenge. While we did not spend time researching alternatives to these processes, it quickly becomes evident that a move to new platform and/or architecture could require some rather significant changes in existing business processes. This is a very important business decision that will need to be made before we consider migrating to a new administrative computing infrastructure.
Our conclusions indicate that our infrastructure direction over the next 3-5 years will be to stay the course, namely continue our efforts to develop new applications in Java, consolidate as many Intel servers as possible onto either zSeries with z/VM and zLinux or bigger Intel servers with VMWare and continue to upgrade our zSeries hardware and its z/OS operating system as well as our mainframe database environment. In addition to these already engaged efforts, we should start to look into consolidating down to a more manageable number of database systems in our distributed systems environment. If we follow the strategy recommended in the conclusions, we should narrow our exploration to a very select few hardware platforms, operating systems and/or databases and exercise a much more in depth analysis of the business requirements that might drive a final selection.
Based on our conclusions, the recommended next steps are as follows:
Continue to move toward Java as our primary application programming language.
Continue to move forward with our consolidation strategy for mid-tier servers, ensuring that we can in fact exploit this new operating environment to our advantage.
Move forward with the purchase of new zSeries hardware.
Determine business requirements to be included as evaluation criteria for defining an infrastructure component replacement strategy.
Investigate the need to alter business requirements based on potential replacement of batch job procedures.
Develop and implement a training strategy for moving forward.
Investigate the consolidation of distributed system databases.
Explore the viability of ADABAS and DB2 as our universal database architecture.
Explore the viability of Unix as our universal operating system platform. Project Background
In late 2001, Administrative Information Services began working on several strategic initiatives aimed at trying to assess the viability of some of its longest-standing technology platforms including: IBM mainframes and their MVS and OS390 operating systems; Software AG's ADABAS database, COM-PLETE transaction monitor and NATURAL programming language; and storage media. While a decision embracing IBM's Enterprise Storage Server technology as a long-term centralized storage solution was made during this process, time constraints limited decisions in the former areas to committing to a 5-year extension of contracts with IBM and SAG for their associated technologies. Now midway through the 5-year renewal cycle, we must revisit the confirmation of these two long-standing vendors' product sets and try to determine more succinctly whether or not they are still viable as long-term architectural strategies for the next 5-year cycleand perhaps beyond.
Several factors play significant roles in rejoining this effort. Most significantly, both vendors have recently introduced new technology capabilities within their product lines. Meanwhile, AIS has made a strategic decision to embrace the Java programming language via IBM's WebSphere as its future development platform for Enterprise Application Integration. AIS has also committed to migrating production mid-tier server applications to I