IBM Ships Its First Enterprise Cloud System to Vissensa

IBM announced it delivered the first shipment of its Enterprise Cloud system to a U.K.-based managed service provider.

IBM logo

IBM has made the first delivery of its mainframe-based Enterprise Cloud System to Vissensa, a U.K.-based managed service provider (MSP).

The system will help Vissensa offer new cloud services to its customers. With the Enterprise Cloud System, the company can deliver a preconfigured, pretested Linux platform that can outperform its existing x86-based cloud infrastructure.

This offering is significant because many Vissensa customers are adopting multi-hypervisor operating systems and technologies, and incorporating new technologies such as OpenStack as part of their solutions to help reduce costs and increase performance, the company said.

"The zEnterprise platform offers better scalability with the most powerful processors of any server, the highest levels of availability you can get, and with better price/performance than legacy x86 hardware," Steve Groom, CEO Vissensa, said in a statement. "It means we can offer a new level of service, with even better security and lower the total cost of ownership for our clients."

The IBM Enterprise Cloud System provides an open-standards-based integrated platform for enterprises and service providers looking to rapidly build out a trusted cloud environment capable of supporting mission-critical workloads.

The offering can support up to 6,000 virtual machines in a single system and provide a secure multi-tenant environment and dynamically share resources across workloads. As such, the mainframe meets the enterprise cloud infrastructure needs of cloud service providers and dynamic private cloud deployments. Moreover, the total cost of some Linux on System z cloud deployments can be up to 55 percent less than comparable x86-based cloud infrastructure, IBM said.

The IBM Enterprise Cloud System is factory-built and configured with automated cloud orchestration and monitoring to allow clients to rapidly deploy enterprise-grade cloud services. The Enterprise Cloud System combines System z hardware, IBM storage and cloud management software into a single infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) offering, which will help IT organizations and cloud service providers deliver a differentiated level of service, IBM said.

IBM announced the Enterprise Cloud System in April at an event celebrating 50 years of the mainframe.

IBM contends that as the cloud market evolves to service an ever-larger share and type of IT workloads, clients are increasingly turning to the mainframe to provide the basis for their cloud deployments. For example, Business Connexion (BCX), one of the largest enterprise cloud service providers in Africa, is developing a "cloud-in-a-box" solution to help telcos provide Internet services to previously unreached areas. These "pop-up" data centers will use about the same amount of energy as a clothes dryer, and help BCX bring Internet cloud services to the 85 percent of Africans who are without connectivity, IBM said.

"The mainframe allows us to put a single solution down that [offers] low energy consumption and also allows us to use that system to deliver all of our cloud offerings," Jacques Loubser, general manager of Business Connexion, said in a statement. "This means we don't have to build exhaustive size of data centers; we can build smaller data centers; we can even use mobile data centers and rapidly provide services to customers."

IBM offers MSP Utility Pricing for System z, which is delivered through IBM Global Financing and provides consumption-based pricing designed to make cloud technologies more widely accessible to MSPs. This consumption-based approach allows MSPs to focus on building their businesses rather than on the cost of their infrastructure, IBM said.