IBM System/360 Mainframe: Countdown to 50th Anniversary

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2013-06-14

IBM’s System/360 mainframe—the company’s first mainframe system with a compatible, upgradable architecture—turns 50 next year. Applications written for the S/360 can still run today, while prior systems were custom built, created for special purposes such as census taking. Big Blue's signature big iron has been a core part of IT industry lore and remains at the heart of major transactional systems today. IBM has continued to evolve the mainframe, which is now used for cloud, big data, mobile and social computing workloads. Last August, IBM announced a major new version of its mainframe system, the zEnterprise EC12 mainframe server. IBM called the latest mainframe the most powerful and technologically advanced version of an IBM system that has been the linchpin of enterprise computing for 49 years. Mainframes support significant portions of the data environment at most large enterprises, which today are looking for new ways to secure and gain insights from such critical information as financial, customer and enterprise resource data that will enable them to provide their clients with new services. The zEC12—a result of a more than $1 billion R&D investment—offers enhanced security and support for operational analytics that can help clients sift through large volumes of raw data and transform it to gain knowledge that can be used for competitive advantage. This eWEEK slide show, produced with IBM, takes a look at where the IBM mainframe has come from and where it is headed.


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel