Microservices Matters

May 16 2011   4:03PM GMT

Expert opinion from the mainframe to the cloud

Jack Vaughan Jack Vaughan Profile: Jack Vaughan

On SearchSOA.com, recent topics ranged from the venerable mainframe to the upstart cloud architecture. Experts in the field shared their views. Let’s take a quick look at some of those opinions.

Forrester analyst Phil Murphy pointed out that one size does not fit all when it comes to mainframe legacy modernization. Some mainframe code is not so old that it does not have some flavor of object-oriented software. Some code is in good shape, and thus, given your overall strategy and compute horse power, it may be an economical candidate for re-hosting. The question to consider is whether you have a well-structured application, noted Murphy. Read ”Modernize? Consider the MIPS” on our site.

Why does the corporation look so favorably on cloud computing? It seems to smell like cost reduction. But ROI studies do not always confirm the cloud savings. Are IT departments doing thorough ROI studies on cloud? Fewer than you might expect, according to Chris Harding of The Open Group. ROI should be measured, and the variability of your processing load is a matter to consider as you do those measurements, said Harding. Read about ”Cloud computing myths and the developer’s role” on SearchSOA.com.

“If you have a fairly steady processing load, cloud doesn’t make much sense, but if you have a variable load it can be appealing,” he says. However, Harding theorizes that respondents from larger organizations may see enough variability within business units and departments, for example, that the overall load balances out – making an ideal environment for private cloud. “That will probably be cheaper than going to an external cloud supplier,” he adds.

We spoke as well with analyst Judith Hurwitz. The topic again was cloud computing. She urged users to consider that some of this is new, and some is not.  As teams move their middleware work to the cloud, they find the fundamental rules apply – that building out application servers remains part of the job. It is, in fact, sometimes a most tedious part. “Even though it is on a cloud, the issues of enterprise development are still there,” said Hurwitz, pointing to configuration and metadata handling as examples of such issues. Read ”Middleware in transit” on the site.

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