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POWER9 in 2020: What’s Coming Ahead

power9-in-2020-cover
POWER9 , IBM’s latest family of scale-up servers, has been around since August 2018. Since it’s debut, they received several new members, along with other hardware upgrades. In this post, we offer a quick recap of the new IBM releases in 2019, along with the outlook for 2020.  Before we dive into the updates, here’s a quick refresher on POWER9: New chips come with a 14 nm process (from 22 nm in POWER8 ), 8 billion transistors and peak bandwidth of 192 GB/s. The pipeline got a trim: 5 stages were eliminated from fetch to compute; 8 cycles were removed for floating-point operations. New hardware acceleration that includes enhanced on-chip acceleration, PowerAXON, Nvidia NVLink 2.0 and CAPI 2.0 Support for Power ISA v3.0. DDR4 DIMMs memory and higher memory capacity per socket.  Check our head to head comparison of POWER8 vs POWER9 for more insights. Key POWER9 Upgrades and Releases in 2019 As usual, IBM made a set of new feature announcements and hardware releases during spring/autumn 2019. Below is a brief recap of those: In August, the company released a new generation of mainstream SAS 2.5- inch flash drives POWER8 and POWER9 systems that come in 931 GB, 1.86 TB, 3.72 TB, and 7.45 TB capacities*. At the same time, they shipped an upgraded processor for the POWER E980 model, consisting of a six-core Cumulus process with a base speed of 3.58 GHz and a turbo speed of 3.9 GHz. Later in October, a new generation of SSD drives for POWER8 and POWER9 models was released in 387 GB, 775 GB, and 1550 GB capacities. As well, they upgraded the POWER S924 model to support 11-core or 22-core typical 3.45 - 3.9 GHz configurations in a 19-inch rack-mount. ( Read more about IBM Solid State Drives Here) In addition, IBM published fresh performance benchmarks showcasing how POWER9 servers stack against earlier POWER8 releases. In short, newer servers can deliver up to 60% in a performance boost. Last, but not least, comes the IBM i 7.4's first Technology Refresh update since its original release. As per official notes: IBM i now...
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IBM Power Solid State Drives SSD

How to increase I BM POWER System  application performance running on IBM i, AIX and Linux DB2 Database Every IBM POWER System application performs significantly faster running on SSD (microsecond and nanosecond response times, compared to millisecond and seconds).  Application performance on IBM POWER Systems experiencing slow query responses times, have intensive I/O requirements or are experiencing latency as a result of accessing data on hard disk drives, can improve performance using various database and query approaches. However, the most effective and usually quickest approach is to replace traditional HHDs with IBM Solid State Drives (SSD) using either Enterprise or Mainstream SSDs, depending on read and write requirements. Solid state drives have been available for IBM POWER Systems since IBM released the first POWER5 models, although the initial SSDs were cost prohibitive for most companies. Since their initial release, time and the refurbished market has made IBM SSDs cost effective for any company needing a quick and simple performance upgrade.   In comparison to hard disk drives, SSDs run at the speed of memory capable of delivering tens of thousands more I/O operations per second for any IBM POWER System, providing queries, I/O intensive applications and aging IBM i, Linux and AIX Power servers  a massive performance boost. As a result, IBM POWER Systems can typically be configured to replace HDDs with a lot less SSDs and still achieve huge I/O performance boost and reduce related hardware costs of expansion units and IBM hardware maintenance. IBM Enterprise SSD s with eMLC (for write intensive database applications) and Mainstream SSDs (for read intensive with no more than 1 write per day) do not have the seek time performance bottlenecks of hard disk drives. IBM i POWER systems have a built in storage manager for the DB2 database that simplify and automate how data is used between ASPs, Libraries, DB2 database and physical storage types available utilizing preferences and calculations for maximum response times and performance costs that impact CPU and I/O.   IBM SSDs provide users with almost instantaneous access to DB2 data, removing latency and I/O performance bottlenecks HDD spinning platters...
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IBM Power Systems: End of Summer Sale

   The IBM Power Systems End of Summer Sale is here! All prices for refurbished IBM i, AIX and Linux Power9, Power8, Power7 and Power6 Systems, Processor upgrades, Enterprise SSD, Hard Disk Drives, Memory and Parts have been slashed from now until September 23rd. All purchases made after using our website “send pricing” feature will have the invoice number entered into a raffle drawing for an Amazon Echo Show 5. All IBM Power System hardware includes warranty, is gauranteed IBM manufactured and eligible for existing IBM maintence and support agreements. Below are some examples of IBM Power Systems, Disk Drives, Memory, Tape Drives, Storage and other features on sale starting today. IBM Power8 Systems & Processor Upgrades 8286-41A - EPX6 , EPX0 , EPXK 8286-42A  - EPXH , EPXF , EPXE 8247-21L  - ELPD , ELP3 IBM Power7 Systems & Processor Upgrades 8202-E4B  - 8352 , 8351 , 8350 8202-E4C  -  EPC7 ,  EPC6 ,  EPC5 8202-E4D  -  EPCM ,  EPCL ,  EPCK 8205-E6B  - 8347 , 8353 , 8354 , 8355 8205-E6C  - EPC9 , EPC8 , EPCA , EPCB 8205-E6D  - EPCP, EPCQ, EPCR IBM Power6 Systems & Processor Upgrades 8203-E4A  - 5633 , 5634 , 5635 , 5577 , 5587 IBM Enterprise SSD (EMLC4 - Fourth Generation) 387 GB 4K SFF-3 -  5B19 00LY324 00LY577 387 GB 4K SFF-3 -  5B13 00LY333   00LY603 775 GB 4K SFF-3 -  5B14 00LY334   00LY604 IBM Enterprise SSD (EMLC3 - Third Generation) 387 GB 5XX SFF-1 -  59BE 00E8692 387 GB 5XX SFF-2 -  58B9 74Y9526 00E8673 387 GB 5XX SFF-3 -  59E6 00E8670 400 GB 5XX SFF-2 -  58B9 00LY195   74Y9526 775 GB 5XX SFF-1 -  59C0 00E8702 775 GB 5XX SFF-2 -  59C2 00E8709   00LY199 IBM Enterprise SSD (EMLC2 - Second Generation) 387 GB 5XX SFF-1 - 58B8 74Y9524   00E8673 00LY195 IBM Mainstream SSD (Read Intensive) 1.9 TB 4K SFF-3 -  5B20 00LY374 15K Hard Disk Drives 600 GB SFF-3 -  59E4 00E9914   00E9908 283 GB SFF-3 -  59E0 00E9906   00E9912 300 GB SFF-3 -  59E0 00E9906 00E9912 571 GB SFF-3 -  59E4...
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Managed SIEM Provider: Evaluation and Prices

managed-siemaas-msiem-socaas-mssp Managed SIEM SIEMaaS SOCaaS MSIEM MSSP
A Managed SIEM (SIEMaaS, MSIEM, SOCaaS, MSSP ) can provide companies with various levels of security services, including: monitoring (threat hunting), vulnerability scanning, reporting, alerting, root cause analysis, data encrichment and intelligence providing context about security incidents, recommendations for containment and remediation steps, perform actual remediation on behalf customer, SIEM tuning and other related security services needed to augment deficiencies in expertise and staffing. Managed SIEM prices vary based on the volume of events per second (EPS) and the required level of services from the SIEM as a Service provider. To compare apples to apples, be sure to request a detailed SOW and clear SLA. Outsourcing SIEM management and other security services can significantly improve a company’s security posture, minimize risks and lower ongoing operating costs.  Security companies typically have much better training and resources for security engineers and analysts than most companies can afford to pay for the level of monitoring required to maintain a secure environment.   Contact us for Managed SIEM as a Service pricing for QRadar, AlienVault, Splunk or Exabeam, and view demo of how an advanced SOC implementation can minimize the risks and threats in your environment.   Is your SIEM always crying wolf? Are large number of false positives causing alert fatigue and overwhelming operators with unimportant alarms? Alert fatigue causes poor response times and prevents security engineers from responding to real security threats quickly. SIEMs with an over whelming number of alerts actually cause critical alerts to get missed. If SIEM alerts are not consistently triggering on actionable security threats, it means something is awry with the SIEM rules, event logs or both. Most SIEMs are still configured with default settings for Device Support Modules (DSMs), using regular expressions to extract and parse only a portion of the available data from the raw data, meaning they are not converting some of the most critical data from needed to identify and analyze threats. Furthermore, most SIEM DSMs will not parse the additional layers of the event logs using defaults, which is needed to create meaningful alerts minimize false positives. Most SIEMs are also missing critical...
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IBM HMC Model Specifications and Comparisons

The IBM Hardware Management Console (HMC) is a virtual hardware appliance used to manage and monitor IBM i , AIX and Linux workloads running on Power9, Power8, Power7, Power6 and Power5 Systems. The IBM HMC uses built in terminal emulation software to connect and control Power system resources, services, virtualization features and order Capacity Upgrade on Demand. The IBM HMC can consolidate the monitoring and management of all Power systems in a company’s infrastructure that is supported by the HCM code. Every HCM model supports different Power system models based on the version of HMC code. For instance, the latest HCM models 7063-CR1 , 7042-CR9 , CR8, CR7, OE1 and OE2 all support Power9 , Power8 and Power7 systems when running V9R1 HMC code, but not do not support IBM Power6 system models. If same the HMC has V8.8.7 code installed (which does not support Power9 system models), the HCM can also connect and manage Power6 systems. Similar to the HMC virtual hardware appliance, customers may choose to use HMC functions on a PowerVM-based environment running on a PowerLinux LPAR and using PowerVM NovaLink software. The IBM HMC hardware appliance and the PowerVM NovaLink features function the same as the HMC appliance. The PowerVM NovaLink uses a cloud architecture, that provides a direct OpenStack connection to a PowerVM server running on a PowerLinux partition. IBM provides upgrades for HMC code for each model, which can be downloaded from IBM Fix Central. The latest IBM HMC appliance model specifications and comparisons are provided in the below chart, and should be considered before upgrading your IBM Power system or purchasing a HMC. IBM HMC Model Specifications and Comparisons (in Newest to Oldest order) HMC Model HMC Code Power Generation Processor Memory Disk Space Ethernet USB  PCI-X PCIe PCI 7063-CR1 V9R1 M9xx Power9, 8 & 7 2.095 GHz 32 GB 4 TB 5 4 7063-CR1 V8.8.7 Power8, 7 & 6 7042-OE2 V9R1 M9xx Power9, 8 & 7 7042-OE2 V8.8.7 Power8, 7 & 6 7042-OE1 V9R1 M9xx Power9, 8 & 7 7042-OE1 V8.8.7 Power8, 7 & 6 7042-CR9 V8.8.7 Power9, 8 & 7 2.4 GHz...
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Fully Managed SIEM: SIEMaaS, SECaaS, SOCaaS

managed-siem-secaas-socaa_20190807-211809_1 Managed SIEM SOCaaS SECaaS
Is your SIEM the magic bullet? Many companies are finding their SIEM implementations have provided little return on investment and have not strengthened their security posture to any great degree. Purchasing the best SIEM, Managed SIEM or security tools on the market will not magically identify vulnerabilities, make an infrastructure more secure. Every SIEM requires proper implementation and ongoing tuning services to keep up with the constant changing landscape of threats, vulnerabilities and a customer’s own environment. Like any security product, every SIEM requires an experienced technician to configure it correctly, and enough staff must be trained to keep up with the volume of threats and alerts. The number of false positives and lack of discernable actionable alerts (false positives) a SIEM produces, is a direct result of the implementation, alert maintenance and tuning.   Security threats are escalating in sophistication, volume and severity at a rate most companies cannot keep up with. Millions of new threats are discovered each day and requires a dedicated security team to monitor and manage. An experienced SOC team knows to keep a log of all these security events from threat intelligence feeds, so rules can trigger accurate alerts based on current and past content. Threat intelligence feeds provide the security intelligence, data enrichment and logic needed to maintain a healthy SOC. A SIEM that does not utilize fresh threat intelligence feeds for security AI, may as well not exist.   Contact us for Managed SIEM pricing on QRadar AlienVault, Splunk or Exabeam, and view demo of how an advanced SOC implementation can minimize the risks and threats in your environmen t.   Like therapy, the first step is to be honest with yourself. Is your SIEM delivering the results you were promised, and with the efficiency seen during your sales demonstration? Are SIEM operators keeping up with all the alerts? If you answered “no”, your company should consider hiring qualified security experts to go over your SIEM setup and deployed rules. It is probably wise advice not to consider using the same individuals that originally implemented your SIEM or those responsible for the ongoing...
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IBM i Encryption for Data Protection and Privacy Compliance

ibm-i-data-protection IBM i Encryption Data Protection
It has only been a year, and the new data protection and privacy regulations have already hit a few companies with multi-million dollar fines. Every company with sensitive data on an IBM i (iSeries AS400) and has data protection and privacy requirements, should have implemented DB2 encryption already. Some of the companies seen in the news recently not only failed to secure personal data properly, could not accurately assess how much data was compromised, had a lax incident response plan and were slow to notify authorities. These factors all led to heavier fines, causing the total financial penalties to exceed 100s of millions dollars.   The latest data security and privacy regulations like GDPR , PCI and NYCRR 500 extend globally, and have some pretty sharp teeth. GDPR’s data protection and privacy safeguards have garnered such high praise, most federal, state and local governments like California are modeling their new laws after it. These new data protection and privacy laws have put a lot of overdue responsibility on companies to take better care of our personal data. There are several aspects of the new data security and privacy laws that will affect how much a company will be fined, and will vary on the compliance regulation. So far, GDPR appears to be the strictest and has the costliest consequences with a maximum fine equal to 4% of a company’s revenue. The number of records exposed will be a significant factor when determining a fine, but even more importantly will be the extent and measure of data protections the company implemented to protect personal data. Put simply, companies better due their due diligence to secure personal data.   The company fines that incurred the heaviest fines thus far, were incidents that involved unencrypted records. On the IBM i, DB2 database encryption is the most important data protection mechanism for data security and privacy compliance. Here is why. Regardless of how the data is accessed, used or where the data ends up, DB2 database encryption for IBM i provides data security and privacy protection from both internal and external threats. No other security...
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Why Nutanix HCI is the ideal VM platform for Splunk SIEM

Most SIEM environments rely on a plethora of different servers, storage arrays, hypervisors and network interconnects to support their rapidly growing SOC environments. Likewise, most SIEMs also all have the same issues and concerns about performance, costs and time required to provision and manage storage growth. The primary problem is, the entire infrastructure the SIEM relies on is not integrated or even truly virtualized under a single unified architecture. As a result, administrators are stuck in a never ending battle of upgrading and adding more traditional technology for the same problems, and security analysts are constantly waiting for searches to complete until more resources are made available. The definition of “crazy” comes to mind.   The solution? A hyperconverged infrastructure! You should consider and investigate all players in the HCI market place, but this article will be focusing on the proven leader, Nutanix . The Nutanix HCI for Enterprise Cloud can provide SIEM security analysts many times faster search results and administrators with a more scalable and economical infrastructure to grow a SIEM with minimal capex expenses. All SIEM deployments have three key bottlenecks to constantly monitor that affect event log ingestion, searching and retention. This article will explain the advantages of using Nutanix HCI Enterprise Cloud for Splunk , and addresses the common performance and cost issues that affect all SIEMs.   Nutanix virtualizes all aspects of the hardware, delivering the most efficient use of all system resources that other VM solutions cannot provide for Splunk SIEM environments. The Nutanix HCI solution has a distributed architecture that shares all infrastructure resources and prevents any workload from depleting another node’s resources. It does not need or rely on expensive SAN, NAS storage, RAID groups or network switches. Nutanix Distributed Storage Fabric enables SIEM indexers and collectors to process data locally, monitors data access paths and places data in the optimal location and automatically moves hot, warm, cold and frozen data to the appropriate internal and external storage resources. The most frequently used data is access from the local node of VM memory and flash, providing maximum performance. Unlike other storage systems...
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IBM i 7.4 Hardware Enhancements for POWER9 and POWER8 Systems

IBM i 7.4 Hardware Enhancements for POWER9 and POWER8 Systems
Details of each POWER9 and POWER8 hardware enhancement provided by the release of IBM 7.4 (V7R4) are below the initial summary, organized by IBM Power generation and topic. The new IBM POWER9 and POWER8 hardware features provided for OS400 V7R4 are now all available for ordering as of June 21, 2019. Read about IBM i 7.4 (V7R4) announcement details here. IBM V7R4 announcement provides the following I/O enhancements for Power9 scale-out and scale-up system models: 1.6 TB, 3.2 TB, and 6.4 TB PCIe3 Enterprise SSD NVMe adapters for Power9 E980, E950, L922, S922, S914, S924, H922, and H924 servers 1.6 TB and 3.2 TB Mainstream SSD NVMe U.2 modules for Power9 E980 server PCIe3 6-Slot Fan-out Module, PCIe x16 to CXP Optical or CU converter Adapter, and Active Optical Cables for PCIe3 Expansion Drawer for Power9 E980, E950, L922, S922, S914, S924, H922, and H924 servers Storage Backplane with HI Performance plus 2x24-Port for Power9 E950 server IBM V7R4 provides the following I/O enhancements for both Power9 and Power8 scale-out and scale-up system models: 931 GB, 1.86 TB, 3.72 TB, and 7.45 TB 2.5-inch Mainstream Solid-State Drives (SSD) for the following IBM Power9 and Power8 System models: E980, E950, L922, S914, S922, S924, H922, H924, S812L, S822L, S824L, S814, S812, S822, S824, E870, E870C, E880, E880C, E850, and E850C servers 387 GB, 775 GB, and 1.55 TB 2.5-inch Enterprise Solid-State Drives (SSD) for the following IBM Power9 and Power8 System models: E980, E950, L922, S914, S922, S924, H922, H924, S812L, S822L, S824L, S814, S812, S822, S824, E870, E870C, E880, E880C, E850, and E850C servers Deactivation of LPM for Dedicated Servers for Power E980, E950, S922, S914, and S924 servers IBM i V7R4 Indicator for the following IBM Power9 and Power8 System models: E980, S914, S922, S924, H922, H924, S814, S812, S822, S824, E870, E870C, E880, and E880C servers     Hardware Enhancements for POWER9 provided with V7R4 IBM EC5B and EC5G PCIe3 1.6 TB SSD NVMe Adapter The IBM EC5B and EC5G PCIe3 1.6 TB SSD NVMe Adapters provide a low write latency and use nonvolatile flash memory (NVMe), which is...
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QRadar Prices for All-in-One Hardware SIEM Appliances

QRadar Prices for All-in-One Hardware SIEM Appliances
QRadar Prices for All-in-One SIEM Appliances  start at $38,500.00 to $102,000.00. Pricing is calculated based on the volume of events and network flows ingested by the SIEM. QRadar prices for All-in-One appliance includes the following licenses for out of the box deployment: Maximum Events per Second defined by model (expandable increments: 100, 500, 1000, 2500, 20000, 40000, 80000) Maximum Flows per Minute defined by model (expandable increments: 10000, 25000, 50000, 100000, 1200000, 2400000, 3600000) QRadar Security Intelligence Console for SOC including advanced threat protection, predefined dashboards, partner provided and editable IBM Security AI Sense Analytics for assets on premise, mobile, remote sites and cloud services Asset and device auto discovery User Behavior Analytics and Anomaly Detection Network Scanning, Behavior Analytics and Anomaly Detection Vulnerability Manager for 256 devices with IP address with unlimited scans (expandable). Use of customer provided 3 rd party scanner is free. Predictive threat modeling, simulation and impact analysis Risk Manager for 256 devices (expandable increments: 100, 250, 500, 1000, 2500, 5000) xForce IP Reputation Feed Access to over 100 apps on IBM xForce Exchange with real-time cybersecurity threat and vulnerability updates   All QRadar Security Intelligence offerings, can flexibly grow and scale by simply adding an additional appliance for workload specific requirements, or use a hybrid of software licenses running on customer provided virtual machines and the cloud. QRadar pricing for the different product lines is significantly different. For instance, IBM’s SIEM SaaS QRadar on Cloud offering has zero upfront costs, providing a simple pay as you go solution. Customers may alternatively deploy QRadar in a private or public Cloud service from Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure or like provider. Fully managed SIEM Security Services MSIEM is provided by the IBM SOC team. QRadar prices for All-in-One Appliances are pre-configured with OS and all required software entitlements needed and are performance tested on Lenovo X-Series Appliance with full support by IBM. Simply power it on. Volume based pricing is determined by the number of events being ingested by QRadar SIEM for additional workloads. First year 24x7 software and 9x5 hardware Maintenance Support is included with initial appliance sale....
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IBM i 7.4 (V7R4) Details: Everything you need to know

IBM i 7.4 (V7R4) Details: Everything you need to know
IBM i V7R4 (7.4) OS400 enhancements and additions improve Power9 and Power8 system and DB2 database performance, security and availability. Details of OS400 V7R4 features and specifications for IBM i Power Systems are explained below in detail, and arranged by the following topics: Security, System Management, Networking, Availability, Application development, Miscellaneous features. IBM i V7R4 (7.1) release date is June 21, 2019.  OS400 V7R4 is supported on IBM Power9 and Power8 processor systems, and is not supported on earlier IBM Power system processor generations. All IBM i customers should read the IBM 7.4 memo  before upgrading to ensure compatibility and verify if discontinued support of any software, hardware products or features affects your system. IBM V7R4 hardware enhancement details can be read about here. IBM i Security IBM i Authority Collection A significant advancement for IBM i security is the new Authority Collection service feature, capable of analyzing object authorities of users and applications to ensure only the minimum required authorities are granted to run applications. By securing objects in an application with minimum authority required, security administrators can now safely remove unnecessary user authorities to objects used by an application. Most IBM i applications have excessive authorities granted to objects within the application. For instance, when an application gives *PUBLIC *CHANGE or *ALL authority for objects within an application, and accessing a DB2 file, when it only requires *USE authority to the data. Applications with unnecessary authorities creates security vulnerabilities by allowing users and other applications to make changes to data outside the application.    Authority Collection service captures data associated with the runtime authority checking built into IBM i security of OS400. The authority data collected is stored in a repository for displaying and analyzing the data and determine the minimum authority required to the objects the application need to run successfully. Minimum authority should be granted to objects as a best security practices require to protect against unauthorized access from outside the application.    IBM i 7.4 Authority Collection service also allows the collection of authority information for specific objects when accessed by any user, instead of for all...
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QRadar vs Splunk SIEM What You Need To Know BEFORE switching in 2019

QRadar vs Splunk SIEM What You Need To Know BEFORE switching in 2019
This QRadar vs Splunk comparison will help anyone planning on switching in 2019 from Splunk to QRadar SIEM. It will also help anyone just curious to see the additional functionality QRadar has in comparison to Splunk. First Get the FREE Splunk to QRadar SIEM App! You should check out the free Splunk to QRadar SIEM App that enables forwarding of Spl...
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Nutanix Hardware for Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI)

nutanix-hardware-lenovo-hc_20190427-171927_1 Nutanix Hardware for HCI Lenovo
A hyper converged infrastructure (HCI) uses software to virtualize all server and storage resources for streamlining, automating and maximizing IT resources and operations for a variety of complex, compute-intensive Databases, VDI, Microsoft, Business Applications, Cloud, Big Data, SIEM, SYSLOG and other x86 environments.  HCI virtualization solutions significantly reduce operating and licensing costs, provide predictable performance, provide up to 2.8 times storage gains and enables long-term flexibility and scalability. The HCI software defined infrastructure model addresses almost every IT challenge facing companies today, including: Improving IT staff productivity Improving operational efficiency Reducing capital expenses Reducing operating expenses Improving backup/recovery Improving resource utilization Data center consolidation The value of hyper converged infrastructure solutions lies in moving away from a legacy hardware architecture consisting of multiple generations of servers, operating systems, hypervisors and storage devices from multiple vendors, to a more available, modernized solution that is software defined, cloud-like and an all-encompassing ecosystem.   Some hyper converged infrastructure solutions have partnered with hardware vendors to provide an out of the box, ready to deploy hyper converged infrastructure that can enable deployment up to 85% faster. The industry’s leading HCI vendor Nutanix, partnered with the enterprise server leader Lenovo as its key hardware vendor, which offers the Lenovo ThinkAgile HX Series , a best in breed, all-in-one HCI solution with preloaded software defined storage licenses, hypervisors, consolidated maintenance and support. ThinkAgile Software for HX pairs Nutanix HCI solutions, Prism and Acropolis, with Lenovo server management solutions XClarity and ThinkAgile Network Administrator, to deliver single click provisioning, upgrades, management, software and firmware updates, and centralized monitoring of entire infrastructure from a single pane of glass. Most importantly, Nutanix virtualizes all cluster resources to work as a single, optimized and efficient system, eliminating the challenges of managing multiple interfaces.   Every HCI system depends on reliable, performance capable, scalable servers to ensure critical business processes run smoothly and without interruption, which makes the Nutanix Lenovo marriage perfect. Lenovo Intel based x86 servers have been rated #1 for reliability for the last five years in a row, has the highest customer satisfaction rating and holds the world record...
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QRadar IBM i iSeries AS400 Log Forwarding

qradar-ibm-i-iseries-leef-gid-offense-risk-score QRadar IBM i Offense
Configuring the IBM i to forward security and system event logs to QRadar SIEM can be done a few different ways, but in order to do it correctly; in LEEF format, in real-time, with GID and enriched event log information, you need an IBM i event log forwarding tool designed for the QRadar SIEM. There are IBM i security event log forwarding tools that can be used for QRadar that will send event logs in real-time and in CEF SYSLOG format, and even a couple that support LEEF, but only one includes QRadar QID for mapping, log enrichment and is on DSM support list. These features are important for QRadar's automatic log source discovery, parsing IBM i event logs properly for offenses, alerts and reports, and so that SOC operators can make sense of the logs. Similarly, all the IBM z Mainframe event log sources also require a forwarding tool that is able to format all the unique event log types and designed specifically for IBM QRadar. The IBM i has many different event log sources, of which most SYSLOG and SIEM forwarding tools can only format and send System Audit (QAUDJRN) and Message Queues like QHST. However, most companies will also need to forward other event log types for compliance and audit requirements, like sensitive database access logs for File Integrity Monitoring (FIM), Network, SQL Statements, Open Source protocols, Privileged Access Management (PAM) events, Port usage, and Commands issued from a workstation. Other logs sources that companies also sometimes forward are web application logs, third party application and performance data, but these log sources are not typically required. Before choosing your method or tool to forward your IBM i event logs to QRadar, first identity which event types need to be sent based on your compliance or audit requirements. Then, identify the solutions capable of formatting and forwarding those IBM i log sources correctly. Another important specification for IBM i QRadar integration, is the solutions ability to send all event details, not just certain fields and data the vendor or freeware deemed important. Sending security events to a SOC or...
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IBM i Privileged Access Management (PAM) Specifications

IBM i Privileged Access Management (PAM) Specifications
IBM i Privileged Access Management (PAM) solutions have various levels of flexibility for implementation and integration with existing applications and ticketing systems that need to be considered before purchasing. Assessing your  IBM i Security requirements for implementation will be key to ensuring the IBM i PAM solution you choose meets your all your use cases, as well as environmental and compliance requirements. First note, Privileged Access Management (PAM) terminology used by most technology sectors and compliance regulations refer to processes more commonly known on the IBM i (iSeries AS400) platform as Profile Swapping and Adopted Authority procedures. Terminology aside, the goal of PAM is to limit the number of powerful profiles (user IDs with excessive special authorities, powerful user classes and users with no or partial capability limits) on the IBM i to a bare minimum, and only temporarily grant elevated authorities (privileges) to user profiles with a specific need (use case) to complete a task or provide access to sensitive data which is outside their normal duties in a controlled, permissions based manner. Other companies start using PAM simply because they want to stop wasting time giving out passwords for powerful profiles on a regular basis. There are a number of ways to grant privileged access authority for IBM i users which are much more granular than Open platforms, and each PAM solution has different capabilities that will determine the success of your implementation. In general, all IBM i PAM solutions should be able to control which menus and commands users can access, as well as which actions they can take for specific objects or files. When a user is performing a profile swap or adopted authority, an extensive audit trail should be captured in the system journal, as well as possibly screen captures in some instances. Ideally, Privileged Access Management functions should be automated, seamlessly integrate with both internal and external applications, and without disrupting to existing processes. You should always do a trial or POC of the PAM solution before you purchase to ensure it will deliver the functionality you need for successful implementation and features work as...
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IBM i Power9 System Pricing by Model Specification

IBM i Power9 System Pricing by Model Specification
IBM i customers upgrading to a new IBM Power9 scale-out system from an older Power system have three models to compare specifications; the 9009-41A S914 , 9009-42A S924 or 9009-22A S922 . Before jumping to any conclusions about which Power9 system is right for you, consider the specifications and resources of your current IBM i and performance during peak times. The new Power9 systems are so powerful, many companies are finding they can drop a software tier without any question. Dropping an IBM P-Group in itself is a significant cost savings, and the total cost of ownership price tag adds up after factoring in third-party, IBM software licenses, maintenance and support fees. First step to a Power9 upgrade and comparison, is knowing your current Power system’s capabilities and identifying the amount of system resources (CPW, Memory , HDD / SSD and I/O ' RAID Controller ' requirements) needed for peak workloads. Contact us if you need any assistance getting the performance information off your IBM i. Once you have a baseline for current performance requirements and a grasp on your growth rates, we can then determine your Power9 System Upgrade options. All Power9 systems include a 3 year 9X5 warranty, with an option to upgrade to 24X7. The base Power9 warranty will contribute to the cost savings by comparing the estimated life expectancy of the Power9 to your current maintenance and support costs. Companies will vary in the number of years for this life cycle calculation, but most companies anticipate 3-5 years for a new Power system. All Power9 system models support PCIe Gen 4 and earlier PCIe generation feature cards. If I/O performance, response times and throughput are contributing factors for upgrading your IBM i, you should purchase new RAID Controllers and other SAS adapters, as the newer generation PCIe adapters provide significant performance gains. The Power9 systems all support 220V power, and the 9009-41A S914 can run on 110V. The Power9 models have three backplane options, a 12 SFF-3 Bays, a 18 SFF-3 bays with write cache or a 12 SFF-3 bays with dual IOA and write cache. IBM...
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Top IBM Power Systems myths: x86 is the industry standard and Power is becoming obsolete

Top IBM Power Systems myths: x86 is the industry standard and Power is becoming obsolete
Share this post: There are many misconceptions about IBM Power Systems in the marketplace today, and this blog series will help to dispel some of the top myths. In my previous post , I put aside the myth that migrating from x86 to IBM Power Systems is costly, painful and risky. In this post, we’ll look at another myth suggesting that x86 architecture is the de-facto industry standard for all applications and that Power Systems will soon become obsolete. Myth versus reality To begin breaking down this myth, let’s consider how IBM Power Systems stands apart from x86. Designed for enterprise workloads. x86 is designed to accommodate multiple markets and design points, from smartphones to laptops, PCs and servers. Power Systems, on the other hand, is designed for high-performance, enterprise workloads like data analytics, artificial intelligence and cloud-native apps and microservices — workloads that are driving innovation and digital transformation in organizations today. Targeting new market segments. Over the years, x86 vendors shipped a lot of systems into commodity markets, but there have always been market segments it couldn’t get because of the limitations of its general-purpose architecture. Today, a growing number of market segments where just a few years ago x86 was the only solution available, are facing strong competition from Power Systems. Consider the number of clients who bought x86-based solutions for SAP HANA, Nutanix and open source databases like MongoDB, EDB PostgreSQL and Redis, to name a few. They didn’t buy x86 solutions because they were the best choice; they bought them because they were the only choice. SAP HANA is an excellent example. 2,500-plus clients now run this application on Power Systems instead of x86. Graphic represents the author’s perspective based on market intel These applications, plus the rising demand for data analytics, HPC infrastructure and cognitive solutions like AI, machine learning and deep learning, may be the most cogent examples of market segments x86 is struggling to keep. On the forefront of high-performance computing. In addition, two of the world’s most powerful supercomputers are running IBM POWER9 : the US Department of Energy’s Summit and Sierra...
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IBM i Performance Optimization: Improving Application Response Times

IBM i Performance Optimization: Improving Application Response Times
Keeping your IBM i optimized for optimal response times requires regular monitoring of system resources and identifying various elements that affect application performance. Poor response times of only two or three seconds delay can quickly get compounded over time when poorly written applications are involved or database maintenance has been neglected. Like most performance degradation issues on the IBM i , response time issues only get worse as the number of transactions multiply. Ignoring system performance issues affects productivity and frustrate customers, which in turn increases costs and affects revenue. Below are some ideas to consider if a major IBM i upgrade is not a viable budgetary option.   Consider the cost benefits of optimizing your IBM i system resources The number one factor that affects response times is available processing power (CPU), and the most expensive resource in your IBM Power system. Even new Power9 systems can experience performance degradation. If your system is experiencing poor response times, keep an eye on capacity utilization throughout the day, and check how close CPU utilization gets to 100%, especially during peak periods of the day. If you spot a pattern, perhaps there are some jobs you can plan on running a different time of day when CPU is regularly underutilized. Any system administration and batch jobs that can be scheduled at lighter periods are good examples. Take note of the applications and types of jobs consuming the most CPU resources. If these jobs involve SQL, pay attention to the number of file opens they are performing. If this number is high for the system, the fix can be as simple as changing how the programs run queries to keep files open between calls. You also may consider using IBM i Workload Groups to control the amount of CPU, memory pools and sub-systems to ensure critical applications get the resources they need to run optimally, while restricting less important jobs from stealing their needed resources.   Most IBM i systems contain between 15-40% of obsolete and unnecessary data consuming disk space, which is often due to poor database and spool file maintenance. Bloated...
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QRadar Price List by License (Revised for 2020)

QRadar Price List by License (Revised for 2020)
*Also see QRadar Pricing on all IBM SIEM Security Intelligence Product Prices    (including QRadar Hardware Appliances) QRadar SIEM Free Trial Compared to what you are doing today, QRadar will unify your existing IT infrastructure and security products into a user friendly and intelligent SOC. QRadar provides advanced, automated threat detection above and beyond what you would expect.  But the only way to appreciate the simplicity and robustness of QRadar SIEM platform is to evaluate security solution for yourselves.  QRadar FREE Trials & Demos   2019 QRadar Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price Chart by License * MSRP QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Event Processor Virtual 1690 - Failover Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSSLL) $6,420.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Flow Processor Virtual 1790 - Failover Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSYLL) $6,420.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Console Virtual 3190 - Failover Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSLLL) $8,330.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Console Virtual 3190 - Failover Feature for System z Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D1BXILL) $8,330.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - All-In-One Virtual 3190 - Failover Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSFLL) $9,230.00 Get 2020 Pricing and Details   QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - All-in-One Virtual 3190 - Failover for System z Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D1BXELL) $9,230.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - All-in-One 21XX LT - Failover Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D10UDLL) $11,900.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - All-in-One 21XX LT - Failover for System z Install License + SW Subscription and Support 12 Months (D1BWKLL) $11,900.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Event Processor Virtual 1690 - Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSPLL) $12,900.00 QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Flow Processor Virtual 1790 - Install License + SW Subscription & Support 12 Months (D0WSVLL) $12,900.00 Get 2020 Pricing and Details   QRadar SIEM by IBM Security - Console Virtual 3190 - Install...
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IBM Power System's Fastest RAID Controller

IBM EJ14 PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID Plus SAS Adapter is the highest performing raid controller (SAS adapter) for IBM Power9 and Power8 systems that will significantly improve raid performance. The IBM EJ14 PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID PLUS SAS Adapter has four 6 Gb connectors enabling the highest performance HDD or SSD  SAS controller capabilities for IBM Power systems using PCIe Gen3 technology and IBM’s latest SAS RAID adapter technology. The EJ14 PCIe3 SAS adapter builds on the success of the EJ0L PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID SAS Adapters, but delivers up to 100% more write IOPs than the older EJ0L SAS Adapter, and can support almost 2X more drives (72 SSDs and 96 HDDs). A pair of EJ14 PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID PLUS SAS Adapters can deliver up to 1.6M read IOPS, or up to 360K write IOPS, or up to 878K IOPS using a 70/30 combination of write/reads.   In comparison, the older EJ0L PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID SAS Adapter can only support 48 SSDs and 96 HDDs. A pair of EJ0L PCIe3 adapters running RAID 0 SSDs can only provide up to 750,000 read IOPS in a PCIe Gen1 slot, 800,000 read IOPS in a PCIe Gen2 slot, and about one million read IOPS in a PCIe Gen2 slot using RAID 0. For a very low cost, significant performance gains can be achieved by replacing the older EJ0L RAID SAS Adapter with the latest EJ14. In addition, you may even be able to shrink your hardware footprint and ongoing maintenance costs.   If your IBM Power system has any of these PCIe SAS adapters ( EJ0J , EJ0M , EL3B, EJ0L , ESA1 , ESA2, ESA3 , and 5913 ), and you are noticing latency or performance degradation, consider replacing your existing RAID SAS Adapter with the EJ14 PCIe3 12 GB Cache RAID Plus SAS Adapter. Read detailed performance comparisons for IBM Power9 and Power8 Raid Controllers and SAS Adapters here.   Raid performance of the EJ14 PCIe3 12 GB RAID PLUS SAS Adapter using RAID5 and RAID6 parity is absolutely amazing. A pair of...
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