By Louis Hanna
Cloud object storage may not be new to some, but it is finding new ground with an old friend, the mainframe. Recent hardware and software evolution has enabled direct access to cloud object storage environments for z/OS workloads. Cloud object storage offers high expandability with a low management overhead and is specifically suited to one of the fastest growing segments of mainframe storage, cold data.
Cold data has a very low likelihood of ever being read again, but due to regulatory or availability requirements must be retained. As cold data continues to grow, the application of traditional management techniques is stretching and could eventually break. As a target for cold data, cloud object storage offers high scalability with low management overhead to constrained mainframe environments.
Cloud object storage also brings storage as a service to the mainframe allowing consumers to shift budget from Capex to Opex as a new tool for combating rising storage costs within flat or shrinking budgets. Storage as a service offers the security and availability mainframe consumers require without high capital expenditure or having to maintain the hardware on their premises with their personnel.
As an infrastructure, cloud object storage also represents a common platform for both mainframe and open system data. This allows the enterprise to maximize the value of their IT spend by deploying capacity with the flexibility to accommodate all of their computing platforms. Cloud object storage alters the playing field radically redefining the norm when it comes to storage, either as an appliance or as a service, expanding the addressability of usable mainframe storage into Exabyte territory.
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Louis Hanna is a Consulting Technical Seller for IBM Systems Unit. He has worked in IT for more than 30 years, holding positions in Operations, Systems Support, Migration Services Specialist and now Technical Sales supporting IBM mainframe storage management portfolio.