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Everything You Need To Know About the IBM Operatin


AS400 iSeries software forms the foundation of some of the most powerful servers and OS in the market. Over 100,000 companies worldwide use the AS400 iSeries as the technology powers their most critical applications. What it means is, these organizations are running their business on AS400 iSeries software, not because other technologies are not up to the mark, but because only “IBMi” suits their needs. This blog will help in clearing the confusion about this technology and tell you what it can offer you. Click here to know more about IBM AS400/iSeries.

If you are a techie, you must have heard this name, i.e., AS400/iSeries earlier. The AS400 is a mid-range server developed by IBM. The server was launched into the market in 1988, and it was expected to be used by large firms having big database records.

IBM iSeries AS400: History through Numbers

Have a look at the critical stats since 1988 that led the way for today’s IBM AS/400 iSeries:

We bet you didn’t know this about your IBM iSeries

  • IBM AS400 iSeries and its predecessors have had three different OS names, seven different OS versions, and more than twenty revisions.
  • The OS/400-i5 operating system has run on 6 different hardware, and all were manufactured under the IBM name.
  • At least seventeen different CPUs have run the IBM as400 system and its predecessors.
  • Since 1988, IBM has sold more than 50 hardware models to run the product line of IBM AS400 iSeries
  • All the IBM as400 software customers can run the software and AS400 databases were created in 1988.

According to IBM – “The AS400 systems incorporates a trusted combination of an interactive database, security, networking, web services, and storage management abilities”.

 Furthermore, it also provides a comprehensive and highly stable database and middleware foundation. Commonly AS400 services are used for data warehousing, web and e-commerce serving, and Java application development. Also, if you are already familiar with AS400 experience but confused with multiple terms associated with it- you should look at this.

The AS400 applications are known by various names- System i, iSeries, and IBMi. IBM uses all these names as a brand initiative over the years. It was renamed as iSeries in 2000 and was renamed System i in 2006, as a part of a brand initiative. However, they all refer to the same AS400 and can be used interchangeably.

IBM shared the news of its integration with the System p platform in the year 2008. And the unified product line is called IBM power systems and features support for the IBMi.

The operating system has undergone several name changes by the IBM server line. It was first called OS400 and later became i5/OS after introducing eServer i5 that features POWER5 processors. And finally, it became IBMi.

IBMi, the latest evolution of IBM AS400, is a descending of OS400, and together they run on “Power Systems‘ hardware and have its own set of unique features such as:

  • The subsystems provide backward compatibility with earlier versions of IBM AS/400, so migration to the newer IBMi platform requires no application re-installation.
  • The new IBM AS400 is designed as a “turnkey” OS, and it requires little or no attention from IT staff during normal business operations.
  • The maintenance of hardware and software tasks is integrated.
  • “Wizard-driven” system administration
  • The self-care policy on IBM AS400 iSeries is fully automated. It schedules the system maintenance automatically, detects issues in the system, and even orders spare parts if required.
  • Software data like DB2 SQL that are the much necessary software to run the IBM AS400 are already integrated into the base OS, eliminating the need of purchasing and installing the software separately.

With the rise of cloud computing technology, some IT experts have labeled IBM Power Systems as “OFF” and written that many new companies won’t consider it due to the high cost. But, when one hour of technology downtime can cost a company up to $1 million, companies (especially in the manufacturing and retail sector) still prefer to stick with IBM AS400 architecture. Also, the cost and complexity of migrating to another platform are hard to justify.

Furthermore, the traditional IBM AS/400 system is leveraged with RPG, newer IBM AS400 host RPG applications, and some unique applications like Java. Also, it is integrated with server technology like “DB2” universal database and “Lotus Domino” software. The “i” in IBM iSeries stands for integration, and this is the feature that differentiates it from others.

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