Regardless of what side of the fence you stand on when it comes to the x86 vs. IBM Power Systems debate this is an interesting video. Every once in a while you have to peek over the fence and see what the other side is up to. Due to my borderline obsession with IBM Power it does focus on Power Systems as the superior system infrastructure but that’s because it is.
Kat Lind: I’m Kat Lind, Chief Systems Engineer for Solitaire Interglobal. We’re a predictive performance modeling host. Our customers look to us for independent unbiased information that’s backed on fact, not opinion. The entire x86 architecture was a sort of logical swing of the pendulum when it comes to processing architectures. Each box costs less, risk, because it’s small therefore it should be a small risk, and it’s easy to do.
In the present day the issues with x86 have fallen another logical pathway. We have a more limited resiliency in the platform itself. It has less elasticity for handling unexpected workload. So the answer is to build out more boxes. The scale out radically increases the complexity of an x86 environment. In fact, Joe DeBella the CIO of AriZona Beverages has been very vocal publically about his challenges.
Joe DeBella: We had situations where we were in [? 01:09], and really had a difficult time keeping the environment sustainable. So our skills were strained. We ended up working many hours of overtime just to in fact be sure that the systems were going to be up on a Monday morning. We had compatibility management between the vendors, between SAP, VMware. We had workload issues, just piles of things.
Kat Lind: So you take that and you add on the recent trend of more businesses using business analytics, and you have a recipe that is fraught for increasing frustration, and rapidly escalating costs. That totally ignores the whole issue of security threats, which is becoming the number one pain point in IT. One of the things that we’ve noticed is our customers running on Power are experiencing lower costs by 50 to 75 percent. In fact, Joe DeBella mentioned that his savings was closer to 70 percent. Lower staff time by half to 60 percent. That they have better performance because resources are targeted toward where they’re needed at the time they’re needed. That performance increase is anywhere from 300 to 1,000 percent. This is not just a one time hit, it continues over the entire operation.
If we turn to examine virtualization technology in an x86 environment I have to buy more servers to handle the workload, because I can’t move the resources back and forth. For a Power environment, I can simply redirect the resources, and not have to buy more boxes. Security is the largest cost and pain point that our customers have. The main difference between x86 and Power is that Power has an integrated security solution that does not have little hooks that can be grabbed by an attack. X86 is full of little hooks designed to bolt on more and more layers. Our reported security costs from our customers is in excess of half a billion dollars. Of that $1,214 is from Power.
So all of those things contribute to far more reasonable operations, and a better business case for Power. We have a really strong responsibility to all the customers that we have worldwide. We believe that Power needs to be a prime consideration for them. We have less reported problems, we have better availability, we have better performance consistency. We have better security on the customers that use Power than any other platform in the UNIX and x86 environment. They win if they pick Power.