After the recent mud-slinging between HP and IBM, the latter is again trying to rope in Sun and HP customers by offering its System z mainframe. IBM says its solutions can help companies lower costs and reduce inefficiency by migrating from Sun and HP servers to IBM’s System z, particularly on the Linux platform. 

IBM has also announced a program — z Rewards — that offers financial incentives to help customers take advantage of the migration services.

In November last year, taking a direct dig at its biggest rival IBM, which is the leading player in the mainframe computer market, HP had said over 250 companies worldwide have migrated to HP Integrity systems from mainframes over the past two years, saving up to 70% in operational costs. IBM dismissed the competitor’s claims as blatant lies. (Read: Deadly Duel: HP Integrity vs. IBM Mainframe)

Now, IBM says nearly 2,800 of the 5,000 unique applications available on the System z platform are Linux-based. Linux accounted for about half of the roughly 1,000 new or updated applications produced for the IBM mainframe in 2008. More than 40% of new System z customers last year installed Linux, IBM claims.

By replacing slow, manual methods with an automated solution, IBM says its new “Server Consolidation and Migration Services” can reduce server consolidation and application migration efforts from months to weeks.

IBM quotes research firm IDC to reveal that “competitive wins like these helped IBM System z revenue share for servers costing $250,000 or more nearly doubled from 17% to 32 this decade.” According to IBM, over that same period, HP has remained flat while Sun has lost share.

In a related development, last month, Oracle Corporation and Sun Microsystems decided to enter into a definitive agreement under which Oracle will acquire Sun common stock for $9.50 per share in cash. (Read: Oracle to Pay $7.4 billion to Shine with Sun)

In the last year, IBM says, it has migrated more than 150 customers across a variety of industries worldwide from competitive systems to IBM mainframes.

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About Rakesh Raman

Have extensive editorial, content management, and integrated communications experience and have worked as a senior tech journalist, analyst, and columnist with different newspapers, magazines, and Web/online properties in India.

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