Tag Archives: MLC
Even without Automated Capacity Management (ACM), ThruPut Manager’s automation engine – Service Level Manager – can really speed up your batch workload and, in most cases, reduce your batch window. But it can also save you CPU cycles; and, anything you can do to put off an upgrade or reduce your MSU numbers means you’ve saved your company money.
Following a hockey puck can be challenging. It moves really fast and it’s not always obvious what the next player is going to do. Wayne Gretzky famously said: “Skate to where the puck is going; not where it’s been”. The same analogy can be applied in most sports: football quarterbacks throw to where the receiver is going to be; not where they are. Your monthly 4-Hour Rolling Average (and resulting MLC) is also a moving target.
By now, many shops are using soft caps and/or taking advantage of special pricing offerings from IBM such as Mobile and zNALC. These are excellent ideas — but, as all performance and capacity professionals know, reducing one 4HRA bottleneck only creates another.
Many datacenters are enjoying the software savings provided by ThruPut Manager’s Automated Capacity Management (ACM) component, a safe and selective method to reduce MSU consumption and resulting MLC costs. Now, ACM introduces a significant enhancement – LPAR Sets.Monthly License Charges are implemented on a CPC basis, but each LPAR may contribute to the total in different ways with different software stacks, varying business requirements, or various MSU costs for each LPAR. We are now introducing LPAR Sets to give you more granular control over your batch workload.
Were you burned over the years by recommended capacity controls, such as hard capping or memory fencing? If you’re a long-time mainframe capacity planner, you quite possibly experienced the cost of implementing such ‘recommendations’—getting paged as key workloads were throttled and performance suffered. As IBM gets practical feedback from the field, it continues to offer better and better iterations of the tuning concept. Once an idea has been well field-tested and enhanced, it’s a good idea to take another look at it. Such is the case with soft-capping.
Many people view outsourcing with fear and dread, believing it to be a term synonymous with ‘job loss’ (or, more specifically, ‘losing your job to someone in another country who will do it just as well for one fifth of the price’). But what if I told you outsourcing could actually be a good thing—and potentially allow you to secure your job?
There are plenty of ways employees can make outsourcing actually work in their favor. One U.S. software developer, for example, decided to hire a Chinese developer to do his job, freeing up his time to enjoy his days shopping on eBay, surfing Reddit and watching cat videos. This entrepreneurial soul found the process so easy and rewarding that he repeated it with several other jobs, cashing in on all of them—until he got caught.
Is that ten-minute burst of CPU activity at market open driving up your software bill? What about that extremely busy hour yesterday afternoon? Well, it’s possible—but these instances also might not make an impact at all. As we’ve mentioned in various posts, software license fees under IBM’s sub-capacity pricing model are determined according to the Rolling 4-Hour Average (R4HA). Since the R4HA is literally an average over four hours, it takes a long time to rise and a long time to fall. Further, it may not recur at the same day or time every month.
As system utilization grows, applications feel the effects gradually, sometimes starting to slow down as early as 70% CPU utilization and increasing gradually until saturation and timeouts are reached. When your Rolling 4-Hour Average (R4HA) exceeds a system’s cap utilization, however, the effects are instantaneous—and come without warning. Your cap utilization can move from 80% to 90% or even 99.9% of a predetermined cap level—a level that may be far below your machine’s full capacity—without any performance interruptions, but once you exceed that threshold, watch out. Some organizations are exploring creative means to better exploit soft capping and avoid the potential impacts described above.