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Very good! Can't wait to dust off our cards and cranking up our first mf.medium instance! Kudos to the AWS team!


I'm looking forward to those Esperanto error messages. I haven't spoken that language in years.

Peter Woodbury

I work with 3 Z196 mainframes, 2 are considered production. Their CPU (4 core, multiple books) speed is 5.2 Ghz, yet fastest from Intel is 3.6 Ghz. Tired of living in a slow world? Waiting for response from server ? The distributed network I am forced to deal with has a theoretical maximum data rate of 3 Gigabits per second, frequently reduced to 100 Megabits per second. But those two Z196 mainframes communicate between themselves at 6 GigaBYTES per sec (yes I said bytes). The design for massively parallel I/O can reach speeds of up to 128 gigaBYTES per second. We can run LINUX in virtual partitions (thousands ). With the ZBladeCenter Extension and Uniform Resource Manager we can run Windows, AIX, and LINUX (again) hosted on a i86 server if we choose to stoop so slow ( um...I meant low ). We have an extremely small footprint, being very thrifty with energy usage, and still pack a mean punch. I you insist, we can handle your webservice call but we try to avoid them because they are so darn slow !! Our OpenSystemAdapters (OSA) resemble your NICs. Come on in....the water is fine !!

John McKown

I adore being a PITA , so I'll mention: BALR stands for Branch and Link Register, not Branch And Load Register.


Good aprils fools day :-)

Mike Schwab

Why bother with a 0.3 MIPS S/370 when you can get 50 MIPS on your own PC? It has even been extended to partition up to 2GB of memory using a custom addressing scheme, instead of being limited to 16MB.


This would be funnier if the specs for the 370 weren't so outrageously high. Try 1MB of real core, at $1/byte. Now that's a real machine, and a lot more plausible--who could afford 8MB?!

Note that it wasn't a 1MHz processor, either -- it was 1 MIPS. That's one million instructions per second; these are very CISC instructions, so that's probably somewhere north of 1MHz in squatty box terms. But I suppose 1MHz is the closest one can plausibly come -- all the folks who knew the actual cycle rate are probably dead.

And yes, you can run considerably faster under mainframe emulation on Intel. Or, as Peter Woodbury suggests, get a real zEC12 at 5.5GHz, with 3TB of RAIM (not a typo, that's Redundant Array of Independent Memory -- RAID for RAM). And fit it in the floorspace of a couple of racks, using a lot less cooling...hmm, mainframe Cloud suddenly seems a lot less implausible, eh?

Cute article, anyway.

Rob Seastrom

@John McKown - I like being a pain too, so I'll show off a bit of my gray hair and point out that 9-track magtapes have a write *enable* ring, not a write *protect* ring. Gotta install the ring to write the tape. :-)

Jim Hayter

If you emulate a 360, then my green card (predates the yellow card) is still useful. Now if I could only remember where I last saw it. It was sometime around 1972.

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