As the week draws to a close on the east coast of the US at least, I wanted to put to pen to paper (or hit some keys at least) on what for me has been one of the most exciting professional journeys of my career thus far. Not much more than 3-months ago a number of concepts started to crystallize in my head and those of a small group of people in the z Systems brand team. Those ideas focused around the need to not only promote and amplify our messaging around Linux on z Systems, but go further and create a rich and vibrant ecosystem of Open Source partners and pull together a collaboration hub and ultimately allow the mainframe to rightly take its place as the platform of choice for Linux workloads at scale, with security, performance and availability.
In my opinion and I am bound to say this, but I will say it anyway, I believe that LinuxONE and the Open Mainframe Project deliver on these grand ideals.
Let me expand…
LinuxONE is not only a completely new and fresh identity for Linux on the mainframe, but it is the culmination of all that is good with Linux and all that is good with the mainframe. LinuxONE brings together open source support from the cool kid organizations such as Docker, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, MariaDB and NodeJS the likes of which we have never had before. KVM as an open source hypervisor, which enables clients to choose how they manage all layers of the stack, rather than depend solely on IBM’s z/VM technology. Ubuntu coming to the platform is another great example of the Open Source and Linux community recognizing the value of the mainframe and its place in the industry. LinuxONE brings these new exciting capabilities to market for the first time, and based on this alone it represents significant increases in capability that just did not exist before Monday.
LinuxONE also brings new ecosystem capabilities for developers, ISV’s and end users to gain access to the technology for the first time. This will provide the underlying access to drive innovation and adoption of Linux on the mainframe platform.
However for me the most exciting LinuxONE announcement is one that was not even made by IBM, but rather by the Linux Foundation. Namely the Open Mainframe Project. The Linux Foundation under its Collaborative Projects structure on Monday announced that 13 organizations have joined and paid to members of this Project. The monies raised will be governed by a board where IBM is only one voice, and spent on activities not only to drive the mainframe Linux ecosystem but also go more broadly to benefit the enterprise grade capabilities of Linux as a whole.
So lets talk about the reaction to LinuxONE and the Open Mainframe Project, if you Google LinuxONE you will find 232 press and news articles covering the announcement, and over 50 covering the Open Mainframe Project. On Monday of this week the announcements reached over 50m people from nearly 10,000 tweets. The press, analyst and more importantly client reaction has been outstanding. My calendar is booked solid the next few weeks with client briefings so we can lay out LinuxONE and the Open Mainframe Project.