IBM serves up the AS/400e for Domino
IBM's new AS/400e Dedicated Server for Domino, announced May 22, makes the path a little smoother for Domino administrators who want to add a new hardware platform to their skills roster and Domino developers seeking a spot on e-commerce or enterprise-wide integration projects.
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The dedicated server is yet another sign of the marketing oomph IBM is putting behind the AS/400, signaling a potential expansion of the Domino job market, notes Steven Gerhardt, a principal CLP developer at VeriCenter, an application service provider (ASP) in Houston.
"I don't see a big increase in NT shops suddenly moving to the AS/400, but I see a lot of AS/400 shops saying, `Oh, what can we do with this [dedicated server]?'" Gerhardt explains.
With the AS/400e, processor capacity is focused on Domino workloads and multiple Domino servers can run in a single AS/400e footprint, according to IBM. That brings down the total cost of ownership (TCO) since new Domino applications can be added without adding new hardware. A report by International Data Corp., the Framingham, Mass., market research firm, states that the TCO for an AS/400e over three years in a 1,000-user configuration is 43 percent less than that of a PC server.
Couple that with the efforts IBM has made to hook Notes into DB2 - a mainstay in most AS/400 shops - and you could see a lot of AS/400 shops adopting or increasing their use of Domino for larger e-commerce and enterprise-wide applications, Gerhardt says.
Gerhardt made the transition from Windows NT to the AS/400 environment about two years ago, with no formal training. Installing and running Domino in the AS/400 environment is "relatively straightforward," he says, although there are some different concepts to learn as far as how Domino works on AS/400 and the subsystem it runs under. IBM's manuals and redbooks are your best ally, he says.
"You have to get familiar with the AS/400's green-screen console commands -- the AS/400 is based on a monochrome screen interface, similar to DOS -- but the Domino documentation gives you straightforward steps for doing it," he explains. "So really just following the directions and using the manual will get you up to speed."
For more information on the AS/400e Dedicated Server for Domino and running Domino in the AS/400 environment, see these IBM Web sites:
Q&A with IBM
Transcript of a cybercast following the May 22 AS/400e announcement
Leslie Goff is a contributing editor based in New York.