IBM has introduced a standards-based virtualization platform designed to allow customers to pool, manage, and optimize their IT resources across a variety of servers, networking, and storage devices in order to help improve the economics and operations of under-utilized IT assets. The IBM Virtualization Engine 2.0 platform uses open interfaces, virtualization building blocks, and Web services to connect server and storage systems. Some products and features that will be available in Virtualization Engine 2.0 include: Resource Dependency Services, which can help companies gain a view into their IT resources. RDS can help define and discover relationships between users, resources, applications, and networks--an ingredient for collaborative processing; Integrated Virtual Management, which can simplify the process of creating and configuring virtual systems; IBM Enterprise Workload Manager, which provides the capability to modify system resources while meeting business goals to respond to workload demands. More support for heterogeneous infrastructures is also a part of this new release; IBM Director 5.1, which includes a suite of software tools designed to provide a single point of management and automation extended to the portfolio of IBM eServer and IBM Systems.
IBM Virtualization Engine 2.0 technology can span the enterprise with features, including: Server Virtualization--IBM eServer systems such as pSeries, iSeries, zSeries and the new IBM System z9 contain various Virtualization Engine building blocks--such as dynamic partitioning, workload management capabilities, virtual networks, and virtual I/O--that can be linked to create a "virtualization fabric" across an enterprise. These building block technologies can help speed implementation and further integration into an enterprise-wide virtualized environment. IBM eServer xSeries and BladeCenter systems can tap the virtualization capabilities provided by VMware software to link to the larger fabric; Storage Virtualization--IBM and Network Appliance are building upon their initial relationship by announcing that the two companies will extend their relationship to encompass the growing technologies of virtualization. The focus is on combining IBM's storage virtualization technologies and the full line of NetApp V-Series and FAS storage systems into integrated solutions. In addition, IBM intends to extend the capability of its storage virtualization offering, the IBM TotalStorage SAN Volume Controller (SVC), by supporting interoperability between SVC and IBM zSeries systems running Linux; and Network Virtualization--partner solutions such as Cisco's Infiniband and I/O virtualization technology can provide the Virtualization Engine with enhancements that can improve the integration between network and server virtualization across the data center.
IBM has also introduced the IBM System z9 mainframe with security and virtualization capabilities. It is designed to: process one billion transactions per day, more than double the performance of its predecessor, the "T-Rex" zSeries z990 mainframe, at its launch; enable businesses to transport encrypted data to partners, suppliers, and remote or archive sites--helping to protect data in the event of media loss or inadvertent compromise. This function is planned to be available by the end of 2005; run five operating systems including Linux and the mainframe's new flagship z/OS version 1.7, which can enable transport of data in a security-rich environment between multiple computing platforms and virtualization of hundreds of applications, including Java-based applications; process up to 6,000 secure online handshakes per second, which may help businesses better serve ecommerce customers and process more sales quicker; and resist known security threats.