Lighten Up! Lower Cost Mainframe Monitoring


Lighten Up the Cost of Your Mainframe MonitorWhat do a mainframe and light bulb have in common? A lot.

Think about the light that’s in your office. What kind of light is it? Is it a florescent, LED, or high-efficient light bulb? Why does it matter? Cost. Someone years ago realized that the cost of running a regular incandescent bulb vs. a high-efficient bulb is significantly different.

Why the big cost difference? Office lights are always on, continuously consuming energy. (Hmm, just as mainframe monitors are always on, always using resources.)

Until recently light bulbs were thought of as a commodity. In the past when you replaced a light bulb, you would go down to your local hardware store, which had three or four shelves of different bulbs to select from. You could choose any light bulb because all bulbs were generally the same.

Today when you make that trip to the same local hardware store, there is a dedicated aisle and so many bulbs to choose from! And, you know that making the wrong choice can cost you money. There is much more awareness about the huge differences in light bulb efficiency, and the cost associated with them varies greatly. As a matter of fact, over the weekend, I had to buy a replacement bulb and it took me over 45 minutes of reading to figure out which bulb was going to be most efficient for my needs.

During my research, here are some of the questions I asked:

  • What are the initial costs of the light bulb? How much does it cost me today?
  • How efficient is this light bulb? How much will it cost me per year to run my light bulb?
  • How long with this light bulb last?

Does this sound familiar?

Now, transpose this scenario to your mainframe monitoring situation. Should you be asking these same questions when selecting a mainframe performance monitor? After all, mainframe monitors are just like light bulbs—always on and always consuming resources. Those resources cost you lots of money. As light bulbs differ, so do mainframe monitors. There are some distinct differences in monitors with smarter, more efficient models available.

Here’s what a smarter mainframe monitor offers:

  1. A highly advanced architecture that incorporates a shared data collector to eliminate paying the taxes twice for the same bit of information you already collected;
  2. The ability to offload up to 80 percent of resources to specialty engines, such as zIIPS, in order to free up room on your General Purpose (GP) processors;
  3. Single System Image (SSI) display, a single dashboard designed to remove the noise and show you what’s important;
  4. Intuitive usability so both technical and business teams are able to understand what is going on to ensure their SLAs are met.
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These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC's position, strategies, or opinion.

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Alice Ma

Alice Ma

Alice Ma has over 20 years of experience in the IT industry, working with customers and IBM's Business Partners to architect solutions, develop, test, provide advanced support, and more. Her areas of expertise include problem determination, performance/tuning, recovery, data governance, auditing, encryption, and so on for DB2. Alice has contributed her technical knowledge to the development of IBM Watson and DB2 10.5 Certification. She has authored a Performance and Tuning Redbooks publication, guides, tech notes, and white papers.