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IBM Helps Clients Modernize Applications on the Mainframe


ARMONK, NY .-IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced new software to help companies around the world modernize their IT environments. As an extension of IBM’s $100 million Mainframe Simplification investment announced in 2006, the new software portfolio helps System z clients shorten deployment cycles and helps developers with diverse technical backgrounds to jointly create higher-value technology solutions.

IBM is helping clients quickly deliver solutions that take advantage of existing business-critical applications on their mainframe investments. For some clients with specialized needs, these applications have evolved over the years and sometimes resemble a tangled web of spaghetti code. Today’s announcement helps to simplify these applications through modern tools and leveraging current skill sets. Clients will benefit from more automated business processes and flexible applications that adapt to changing business conditions.

One key component of the IBM portfolio includes IBM Rational Developer for System z v7.1. Available today, this software simplifies Web, SOA and cross-platform development of mainframe CICS, IMS, and WebSphere applications. It hides the technical complexity of runtimes and middleware and ensures easy interoperability with existing processing and data.

“IBM Rational Developer for System z V7.1 continues to make mainframe developers happy,” said Günther Schoellhammer, Project Manager, RACON Software GmbH. “The IBM software combines the strength of a powerful graphical user-interface with the advantages of the consistently managed mainframe and uses existing and proven technology.”

Additional IBM offerings for building a more modern computing environment include:

* IBM Rational Business Developer Extension v7.0 -- available today, this can be used by developers of any background to increase productivity without the need to learn COBOL, PL/I, Java or other lower-level mainframe programming languages. Rational Business Developer Extension leverages Enterprise Generation Language (EGL), a strategic business development language used to create applications that can run on practically all platforms, from rich web applications to CICS transactions.
* IBM Rational Transformation Workbench v3.1 -- available in December 2007, this new software helps to bridge the knowledge gap that sometimes exists between business processes and the IBM System z applications that automate them. Rational Transformation Workbench collects and abstracts business and technical knowledge from highly complex systems. Combining this insight with automated code modernization technologies accelerates the execution of the identified modernization activities.
* IBM Enterprise COBOL for z/OS v4.1 and IBM Enterprise PL/I for z/OS v3.7 -- these compilers integrate System z applications with Web-oriented business processes and simplify the componentization of COBOL and PL/I applications.
* Software Configuration and Library Manager (SCLM) Advanced Edition for z/OS V1.2 --, available today, provides a cost-effective and functional, centralized, z/OS software configuration management solution.

Additional offerings in IBM’s portfolio include a Rational Unified Process for System z v1.0 plug-in for IBM Rational Method Composer v7.2 to create unified process guidance and best practices, IBM Rational ClearCase v7 z/OS extensions for central management asset changes across distributed and host-based platforms, IBM Rational ClearQuest v7 z/OS for governing software activities across distributed and host-based development teams and IBM Rational Build Forge to automate build and release management activities for distributed and host-based platforms.

“Two of the top needs we hear from our clients are simplifying their I/T infrastructure and gaining more business value from their I/T investments. The modern mainframe helps with both,” said Jim Stallings, general manager of System z, IBM. “These modern enhancements have been designed to shorten what used to take multiple months down to approximately a couple of weeks. Our clients will greatly benefit from faster application deployment and freeing valuable IT resources for more strategic projects.”


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