In a joint demonstration at CeBIT, IBM and SAP previewed a technology that enables the live migration of SAP applications across remote IBM POWER6 systems via cloud computing.
RESERVOIR is an IBM-led joint research initiative of 13 European partners to develop technologies that help automate the fluctuating demand for IT resources in a cloud computing environment. The 17M Euro EU-funded initiative, called RESERVOIR – Resources and Services Virtualization without Barriers – explores the deployment and management of IT services across different administrative domains, IT platforms and geographies. This cloud computing project aims to develop technologies to support a service-based online economy, where resources and services are transparently provisioned and managed.
Cloud computing is an emerging approach to shared infrastructure in which large pools of systems are linked together to provide IT services. This approach to delivering and consuming IT provides answers to the challenges many businesses face today: the immense complexity of sprawling data centers, the growing cost of energy, and the need to dynamically adapt the allocation of IT resources to constantly changing workloads and business priorities.
IBM and SAP show how users can run enterprise applications in the cloud, in particular demonstrating the migration of workloads across physical servers and across data centers. This demonstration is another instance of IBM working with partners across the IT industry to gain insights about creating and configuring workloads, and help companies move to the clouds as smoothly as possible.
“The new technology is allowing us to realize the vision of true cloud computing by moving applications across disparate interconnected networks to optimize load balancing across remote servers. When changes in workload occur, the new technology autonomically balances resource utilization and power consumption across remote servers. This is done, for example, by evacuating and turning off under-utilized servers (and possibly entire data centers) when demand drops, and powering on idle servers when load increases,” said Dr. Yaron Wolfsthal, senior manager for system technologies at IBM’s Research Lab in Haifa, Israel, where the technology was developed.
In this demonstration, the migration of SAP workloads across the cloud is supported by IBM’s POWER6 systems, which enable users to run separate applications on different virtual machines, called logical partitions, on the same physical server. The IBM POWER6 system’s Live Partition Mobility capability further allows for the movement of a partition from one POWER6-based server to another POWER6-based server in the data center with no application downtime, resulting in better system utilization, improved application availability, and energy savings.
The collaborative research relationship between SAP and IBM began in 1999 and has since developed a rich portfolio of research activities. On a quarterly basis, research management and key researchers from both organizations meet to identify topics of mutual interest and to leverage the open collaborative research model, including the EU-sponsored FP7 program, in order to define new project areas that will lead to exciting new research results. Besides cloud computing, key areas of interest are business process management, services science and engineering, model-driven software development, and security and compliance.