• September 28, 2020

Modern, Open, and Smart Data Management for Db2 Leaders

This was originally presented as a keynote session at the IDUG Virtual Db2 Tech Conference in July 2020. 

Since my years in grad school, I’ve been interested in DB capabilities. As part of my thesis and graduate assistant work, I evaluated, operated, and used multiple DBs, including several open sources ones. As part of my thesis, I looked at the future of database technology and the functionality that was missing.

Luckily, since those days, DBs have improved significantly with the capability to integrate and leverage new technology to improve the experience. AI functionality can assist the DBA, open source can help to deliver mission-critical software, and the wealth of resources available can help raise business expectations while contending with shrinking budgets. 

Today, let’s take a journey across break-through technologies available to users that can help improve the Db2 experience.

Hybrid Cloud

There’s a reason why we—and many Fortune 500 companies—rely on the IBM Z. It’s the only infrastructure that can offer low latency, high performance, and reduced complexity and resiliency, all within a security-rich environment.

With hybrid cloud in an IBM Z environment, admins can unlock valuable, mission-critical data sitting on the Z to any public cloud. They can also enrich apps and new business models, and train machine learning algorithms using important data, all without having to perform cumbersome ETL tasks to move the data. Since cloud applications and application servers can access data in Db2 directly, data movement or replication becomes unnecessary. 

What issues come about from hybrid cloud architecture? Unpredictable workloads are just one of them. As you introduce the additional workload of cloud applications on Db2 for z/OS, it can create new performance concerns. This is where AI and actionable insights can provide great value. Rocket envisions a system where AI is leveraged to learn patterns of this new workload, and provide insights for capacity planning, necessary maintenance actions, and performance tuning recommendations that help you keep Db2 running optimally in this new hybrid cloud world.  

Many large retail and financial institutions have had incredible success with just such an architecture, where z/OS and Db2 are at the center of their hybrid cloud.

Tangible AI

At Rocket Software, our philosophy is to infuse AI into products that are easy to use and deploy, secure, and that bring clear, relevant value back to IT departments and businesses. 

Infused AI performance monitoring gives businesses the ability to identify efficiently which Db2 queries need attention. It can help provide root cause information to resolve issues quickly. Rocket solutions can learn what is “normal” query performance, down to the computer, elapsed time and IO metrics. The solution can then alert users as to when query performance deviates from normal. The solution allows users to react quickly and effectively to Db2 problems related to supply and demand.

Tangible AI is about automating the mundane, allowing IT workers to shift to higher value tasks. It’s also about delivering tangible benefits to businesses: avoiding bottlenecks, downtime, and other disruptions to business by delivering AI to IT Operations.

Open Source

Open source is the most important component, as it has the potential to unlock huge innovation. It is becoming the primary driver for the development of mission-critical software.

Together with IBM, Rocket is porting over popular open source packages to make IBM Z another platform for DevOps infrastructure. We are also building software for Zowe, an open source platform that provides teams with a unified console, smart automation, and tangible AI, as well as the capability to integrate with DevOps and performance tuning administration. We are building a commercial software layer, which will leverage Zowe for its presentation layer and open source for other functionality.

Bringing this all together, we are leveraging Zowe, open source, AI, and the hybrid cloud to reimagine, integrate, and modernize our Db2 for z/OS system software solution. It will be a unified solution where all your database administration tasks can be performed, as well as where data is collected, analyzed, and leveraged to help businesses succeed in accelerating innovation and keeping Db2 running securely and optimally.  

These innovations will help attract developers to your organization and will demonstrate how critical IBM Z is to digital transformation.

Next Steps

In order to prepare for this future, we encourage you to familiarize yourself with the Open Mainframe Project, its ranks, and the solutions available. We also encourage IBM platform users to embrace innovation, as the expertise, knowledge, and leadership you provide can extend the legacy of the platform. Finally, we encourage those who are unfamiliar with IBM to apply the development tools and agile best practices that you are familiar with to IBM Z.

As workloads grow and demands increase, DBAs are put under increasingly demanding situations to keep Db2s running all the time. The experiences and smart, open-sourced innovations we are building for the Db2 will help DBAs meet those demands.

To learn more about open-source software or the Open Mainframe Project, join us at the inaugural Open Mainframe Summit, from September 16 to 17, 2020.

Milan Shetti

Milan Shetti 2 Posts

Milan Shetti joined Rocket in 2020 as President, Z Systems Business Unit. Prior to joining Rocket, Milan held various senior executive leadership positions at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, both as a business leader and technologist. He was most recently the SVP and General Manager of the Storage and Big Data Business Unit, and was previously CTO for HPE’s Datacenter Infrastructure group covering Compute, Storage and Networking products. Milan is a PhD candidate in Computer Science at University of Minnesota, and holds a Master of Science in Computer Engineering from Syracuse University. He has served on various program teams evaluating research papers, and enjoys mentoring as well as reading scientific journals—especially publications from the IEEE and ACM.

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