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IBM Virtualization Pays Dividends for SAP Customers


BearingPoint Consulting Study Probes Costs and Benefits of IBM’s Solutions for SAP(R) Applications.

STUTTGART, GERMANY.- In a study entitled I2V Intelligent IT Virtualization for SAP® System Landscapes, BearingPoint technology consultants have established that the IT virtualization of an IBM POWER5 architecture soon pays dividends. Compared with non-virtualized hardware, more than 30 percent of IT costs could be cut over a three-year period. In addition to the financial benefits, companies also gain an extremely flexible IT infrastructure that can be adapted as required -- in other words, on demand -- to current requirements as shown by IBM (NYSE: IBM) customer Stadtwerke Düsseldorf AG.

“We have taken a closer look at IBM’s hardware virtualization for SAP applications and analyzed it in terms of cost and performance,” said Harald Beiner, Senior Manager, BearingPoint GmbH. “Our findings show that by using IBM’s solutions companies could cut their IT costs by more than 30 percent a year.”

The BearingPoint consultants used non-virtualized hardware as a benchmark in their I2V Intelligent IT Virtualization for SAP System Landscapes study. In analyzing the IBM POWER5 architecture, BearingPoint considered the costs of infrastructure, maintenance and operation. Virtualization was found to achieve the highest savings in operating and depreciation, followed by cost savings on maintenance, where simplification and automation particularly eased the burden on administrators, thereby creating energy saving potential. Without this virtualization and using only new hardware technologies, the BearingPoint study found that only about 15 percent of these cost benefits could be achieved.

IBM POWER5 servers are characterized by extensive virtualization functions such as micropartitioning, shared processor pools, virtual Ethernet and virtual I/O. They enable many small computers to be consolidated in an IBM POWER5 architecture, thereby making administration simpler and flexible on demand system utilization possible. In line with demand, hardware resources can be allocated to applications dynamically and automatically. Not only the processor is virtualized; so are the network and I/O controllers and access to storage subsystems.

“In the SAP applications environment we have comprehensive methods by which to consolidate an IT architecture using the specific technologies of IBM Advance POWER Virtualization,” said Irene Hopf, Senior IT Architect, IBM SAP International Competence Center. “These methods are the cornerstones of the IBM IT Optimization framework that enable us to approach our customers’ individual targets systematically in order to create an IT landscape that is as efficient as possible.”

IBM POWER5 architecture virtualization has already been implemented successfully at Stadtwerke Düsseldorf. The innovative energy service provider has set up a system landscape of its own that it operates independently. The aim of the IT project was for Stadtwerke Düsseldorf to acquire scalable hardware that could be adapted swiftly, flexibly and automatically to changes in IT requirements.

“In recent years we have developed from a classic laterally integrated enterprise into a dynamic infrastructure service provider,” said Dr. Matthias Mehrtens, CIO of Stadtwerke Düsseldorf. “IBM’s virtualization concept supports our strategic alignment and provides a flexible system landscape we can adjust at any time to deliver secure, inexpensive and ecofriendly energy to our customers on a long-term basis.”


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