August 16, 2021
Often, companies perceive hosted mainframe as a threat. These companies are under the misconception that mainframe hosting works similarly to traditional mainframe managed services in which another company provides the personnel to run mainframe operations, including those for software and applications. In this scenario, the end user owns the equipment but brings in people to manage it.
However, mainframe hosting does not need to mean replacing jobs or outsourcing a position. Mainframe hosting simply provides the mainframe infrastructure, including the server, storage, and disaster recovery resources. Members of your operations staff don’t need to be worried about needing to switch positions or being terminated. Instead, mainframe hosting provides the tools needed to run a mainframe, along with a means of support, while leaving management up to your in-house team.
Mainframe hosting provides infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and support and frequently improves resiliency for the client’s mainframe environment.
The Truth About Hosted Mainframe
With hosted mainframe, the provider delivers your mainframe infrastructure and leaves the management to you. Hosting resembles a cloud service in which the equipment is housed on the provider’s site, and you use the network to access it. Essentially, mainframe hosting is IaaS that delivers servers, network, and storage, eliminating the need to spend the time and resources needed to manage a data center.
Hosted mainframe provides the servers needed to run the mainframe and ensures the company has equipment maintenance, backup, virtual tape, and replication to a disaster recovery site. The mainframe hosting provider can supply support if necessary but leaves day-to-day operations to your company’s team, giving you control over your mainframe resources.
Hosting is delivered through a convenient consumption model. Customers pay a monthly or quarterly fee that can include software and support if preferred.
Benefits of Hosted Mainframe
When companies use the host’s equipment, they get economy of scale with storage, networks, backups, disaster recovery, and data center space. The host moves servers, storage, and network from your premises to its site. Capacity can be scaled up as demand increases.
The host isn’t looking to take anyone’s job away. Instead, the provider takes away the burden of routine hardware management and maintaining hardware, while leaving important management decisions up to you.
Users can share network resources for disaster recovery. As part of the network, the host provides network and communications between the primary and backup site. The right hosting provider will also deliver replication for data protection.
Hosted Mainframe Success Story
Like many organizations, a city government office had no disaster recovery strategy in place to protect the mainframe on which it was running critical revenue-generating tax database applications. With an end-of-service direct access storage device (DASD) and an unsupported operating system, the government office was taking a lot of chances. The government office needed to eliminate risk in the event of a system outage and from unsupported hardware and software.
PSR proposed mainframe production hosting and disaster recovery. Migration to PSR’s site involved establishing virtual tape system (VTS) replication to PSR, quickly eliminating the client’s single-site location risk, while also allowing PSR to build a duplicate system for testing prior to the production migration. The client’s resiliency immediately improved.
Over time, PSR refreshed the VTS, increased DASD capacity as the database grew, and implemented Global Mirror to further improve recovery point object (RPO) and recovery time objective (RTO). PSR also provided systems programming services and assisted the client in upgrading to supported software versions.
Finding the Right Option for Mainframe Hosting
In the mainframe world, options for hosting are limited. However, for companies with small mainframe environments, there is an alternative to the big outsourcers.
Many companies don’t have disaster recovery for mainframe and aren’t performing storage replication. These capabilities can often be difficult to achieve in small mainframe environments but can be included easily when they partner with PSR for mainframe hosting. We will work with your team, support you, and take mainframe infrastructure off your plate.