Cognos Ships BI Software For IBM's System Z Mainframe

business intelligence software

Cognos, which IBM acquired in January for $4.9 billion, is now shipping a version of its IBM Cognos 8 BI software for Linux running on IBM's System z10 mainframes. With the product users will be able to access and analyze information stored on System z mainframes, instead of downloading it to a data store on another server.

Cognos and IBM were already developing the mainframe version of Cognos prior to the acquisition, with a target availability date of later this year, but the buyout accelerated those development efforts, said Jennifer Hanniman, senior product marketing manager for the Cognos 8 platform.

While pundits have declared the mainframe to be dead many times over, from the advent of client-server computing to the rise of the Internet, such reports have proven premature. "There's a resurgence of the mainframe," Hanniman said, noting the trend among businesses to consolidate servers. "Customers see it as a strategic platform."

Porting Cognos 8 BI to the mainframe is also a sign of how mission-critical business intelligence has become. Once used by a relatively small number of analysts, reporting and analysis is now used by a broad range of employees who expect BI systems to be available 24 hours a day. Also, about 60 percent of all structured data resides on mainframes, Hanniman said.

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IBM Cognos will sell the software directly and through the channel. It will be priced at $200 per user, subject to volume discounts.