IBM announced new self-managing
autonomic software that changes the way organizations manage Grid
computing environments. The announcement was made at GridWorld Japan
The software, called IBM Batch-on-Grid, automatically
accommodates spikes and lulls in computing workload -- the amount of
work a system is handling at any given time -- by allocating servers on
the fly, helping ensure IT systems run around the clock. This allows
organizations to continue operating during system failures, natural
disasters or while complex applications are being updated across the
Batch-on-Grid blends self-managing autonomic
computing with technology borrowed from a mainstay programming
technique called "batch computing," which originated in the 1950s and
is still used by thousands of finance, government and industrial
customers. In batch computing, various computing jobs are submitted to
queues and then scheduled for processing. The new IBM software creates
batch workloads within Grid computing environments, and then uses
autonomic technology to automatically schedule and balance those
workloads, which delivers capacity when needed and lowers costs.
can automatically shift Grid workloads so that the most important jobs
-- those affecting customers and supply chain partners -- are taken
care of first. For example, an organization can limit a server to 95
percent capacity, and when a server approaches that threshold, the
software will instantly shift the workload on demand to another server.
This ensures customers and partners are provided with continuous
The software also allows IT departments to accurately
forecast workloads for high-priority projects, such as getting new
employees up and running after an acquisition, and ensures that enough
capacity is available. In this way, companies can plan for computing
resources to deal with high priority jobs and be able to budget and
account for costs associated with those resources.
a multi-national bank preparing to roll out a new online banking
application across a Grid computing environment can predict the IT
resources and capacity needed to support a customer service application.
manually, this is a complex process performed at multiple data centers
that can take days, weeks or even months in the worst cases. By
automating this process, the IBM solution cuts it down to a matter of
minutes, while existing customer-facing applications continue
uninterrupted. Once the application is deployed, the IBM solution
ensures it will remain up and running by allocating the needed server
resources according to changing workload requirements. It also provides
the bank with a single point of control from which to manage the
application across the Grid environment.
"As Grid computing
grows in popularity, IBM is helping organizations simplify the
management of grids and better respond to changes in their business and
in the market," said Bob Madey, vice president of strategy for IBM
Tivoli software. "By incorporating self-managing autonomic software
into workload management, we're able to help ensure our clients'
systems remain up and running at all times, so they can do a better job
of providing a high quality of service to their customers."
software can operate within a service-oriented architecture (SOA), so
it can balance computing workloads in the most complex, heterogeneous
IT environments -- for virtually any type of application or computing
This prevents companies from having to spend time and
resources developing multiple workload management processes for every
different kind of application. As IT organizations are increasingly
building SOAs to more easily integrate new and existing software on
multiple platforms, the software allows them to manage their IT
workloads regardless of the type of application or underlying
technology is involved.
IBM Batch-on-Grid adds workload and
capacity management components to IBM's IT Service Management
offerings, IBM's set of software and services to help customers
automate and standardize the way they design and integrate IT processes.
solution manages batch workloads across Grid, mainframe, and
distributed computing environments and consists of new versions of IBM
Tivoli Workload Scheduler 8.3, which provides a single point of control
for managing batch workloads in mainframe and distributed environments;
IBM Tivoli Workload Scheduler Load Leveler, a job management system
that allows customers to optimize workload performance on AIX and Linux
systems; and IBM Tivoli Intelligent Orchestrator, which delivers
computing capacity when needed by predicting impending workload
requirements and provisioning the appropriate IT resources, such as