IBM Systems Magazine, Power Systems - January 2018 - 28
If a client is installing new
Power Systems infrastructure to run
Linux, it's much easier to make the
leap into a new environment. "The
opportunity is to show customers
how easy it is to transition into our
newer systems-POWER9* and
POWER8*-along with highlighting
the benefits of a move," he notes.
Figure 5: If you plan to migrate any IBM Power Systems
applications to Linux on POWER, when do you plan to do so?
Linux on POWER
From an IT manager's point of
view, the challenges are spelled
out in the survey: the management tools, the ability to do
upgrades and the training.
For instance, difficulty with disk
administration may account for
the reluctance of users to place
more workloads on Linux, the
survey indicates. Seventy percent
of respondents said it was more
difficult to administer Linux than
IBM i or AIX*; just 30 percent said
Linux was easier. One European
user who recently added Linux on
POWER prefers the ease and speed
of using AIX.
A move to Linux is an optimal
time for clients to upgrade their
systems, and thus gain the most
benefit from running the OS.
Many users are running POWER8
and POWER7*, but a sizable contingent continue to run POWER6*
or older models. Convincing
these clients to evolve to a more
modern system can be difficult.
"Customers are comfortable with
the performance of their current
environments," Myers says.
Some respondents do plan to
migrate their IBM Power Systems
applications to Linux on POWER.
The time frames vary from within
two years (59 percent) to three
or four years (20 percent) to five
years or more (21 percent) (see
Figure 5, above).
By upgrading to Linux on
POWER or newer Power Systems
hardware, clients will get better
price performance. However,
they also may need to rethink
their software environment, and
that can be a huge hurdle, Myers
points out. IT departments are
very hesitant to tackle new environments that require rewrites or
updates to existing applications.
"That's especially true if they are
running mission-critical business
applications or very intensive
financial applications," he says.
Demand for IT workers with Linux
skills is rising, according to 83
percent of respondents. Just 11
percent didn't report an increase.
Forty percent of companies
seeking to hire skilled Linux IT
workers said it wasn't difficult to
hire employees with those skills.
But 30 percent said they were
having trouble finding candidates
with Linux knowledge (See Figure
6, Page 30).
"For companies that have big data sets and are
looking to do big data analytics and a significant
amount of data throughput leading up to and
through artificial intelligence and machine learning,
the POWER8 and POWER9 servers have significant
benefits above the other competing platforms
in the market."
-Terry Myers, HPC/HPDA Diamond Team lead, Global Portfolio Marketing, IBM Power Systems
28 // JANUARY 2018 ibmsystemsmag.com