Using IBM System z As the Foundation for Your Information Management Architecture
An IBM Redguide publication
Published 24 August 2010, updated 08 April 2011
IBM Form #: REDP-4606-00
Authors: Alex Louwe Kooijmans, Willie Favero, Fabricio Pimentel
Many companies have built data warehouses (DWs) and have embraced business intelligence (BI) and analytics solutions. Even as companies have accumulated huge amounts of data, however, it remains difficult to provide trusted information at the right time and in the right place. The amount of data collected and available throughout the enterprise continues to grow even as the complexity and urgency of receiving meaningful information continues to increase.
Producing meaningful and trusted information when it is needed can only be achieved by having a proper information architecture in place and a powerful underlying infrastructure. The amounts of data to mine, cleanse, and integrate are becoming so large that increasingly the infrastructure is becoming the bottleneck. This results in low refresh rates of the data in the data warehouse and in not having the information available in time where it is needed.
And even before information can become available in a BI dashboard or a report, many preceding steps must take place: the collection of raw data; integration of data from multiple data stores, business units or geographies; transformation of data from one format to another; cubing data into data cubes; and finally, loading changes to data in the data warehouse. Combining the complexity of the information requirements, the growing amounts of data, and multiple layers of the information architecture requires an extremely powerful infrastructure.
This IBM® Redguide™ publication explains how you can use IBM System z® as the foundation for your information management architecture. The System z value proposition for information management is fueled by the traditional strengths of the IBM mainframe, the specific strengths of DB2® for z/OS®, and the broad functionality of the IBM information management software portfolio. For decades, System z has proven its ability to manage vast amounts of mission-critical data for many companies throughout the world; your data is safe on System z.
The available information management functionality on System z has grown from database management systems to a full stack of solutions including solutions for content management, master data management, information integration, data warehousing, and business intelligence and analytics. The availability of Linux® on System z provides an excellent opportunity to place certain components in an easy-to-manage and scalable virtualized Linux server, while benefitting from the System z hardware strengths. DB2 on z/OS can remain the operational data store and the underlying database for the data warehouse.
The next generation of System z is growing into a heterogeneous architecture with which you can take advantage of System z-managed “accelerators” running on IBM System x® or IBM Power Blades. The first of these accelerators is the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS V1.1, an “all-in-one” solution in which System z, z/OS, DB2 on z/OS, an IBM BladeCenter®, and IBM storage work together to accelerate certain queries by one to two orders of magnitude.
With the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer, slices of data are periodically offloaded from DB2 on z/OS to the BladeCenter. After a query is launched against that data, it will automatically run against the data kept on the BladeCenter. The BladeCenter will process the query an order of magnitude faster than DB2 on z/OS, because all data is cached in internal memory on the BladeCenter and special compression techniques are used to keep the data footprint small and efficient.
As a solid information management architecture ready for the future, System z has it all.
Table of contents
Information management challenges
Strengths of System z for information management
IBM InfoSphere on System z
Exploring the IBM Smart Analytics Optimizer for DB2 for z/OS V1.1
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