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Showing posts from October, 2016

Microservice architectures and the IBM Mainframe - Recollections of similarity

As I learn about Docker, containerization, and micro-services, I can't help but think we've been down (part of) this road before.  Without a doubt, there's a lot of innovation in Docker, so don't misunderstand me.  However, I want to acknowledge the good parts of what I experienced long ago in my limited experience on IBM mainframes and perhaps there are some lessons to be learned here as well.

My experience on mainframes was using the IBM VM/ESA operating system from 1992-1994 at IBM's Boca Raton facility ("Home of the PC").  VM/ESA (now known as z/VM) is a (some would say "the") virtual machine operating system.  It has a history which is nearly as old as UNIX.

One thing you have to know about VM/ESA is that it divides a mainframe up into thousands of virtual machines, each of which runs a single user, single tasking operating system called CMS (conversational monitor system).  CMS is much like MSDOS (in my opinion).   As a result, it is a pr…