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zBC12, the new family member

Yesterday after more than a year's delay my zBC12 mainframe finally booted up. This is a machine that was donated to me in hopes to advance the hobbyist community, which I am eternally grateful for.

Image 1: Athena, the zBC12 that just now got online

Then what is the main selling point of the zBC12 versus the z114? You might recall my article System z on contemporary zLinux where I explained that running modern Linux on a z114 is hard. This is the main selling point for me to upgrade - being able to run things like more modern Linuxes than z114. While the latest OSes in zLinux, z/VM, and z/OS require z13 or newer - a zBC12 still allows me to run a few releases newer software.


Image 2: The operator himself in the picture with Athena

Perhaps one of the bigger deals that is very welcome is the support for OSA-Express5S. This means that while previously you needed both PCIe and I/O bays in order to have both effective higher speed connectivity like 8G FC or 10 GB Ethernet as well as a way to access 3270 consoles, you can now move the consoles to OSA-Express5S cards that are in the PCIe bays eliminating the need for having the I/O bay all together.



Image 3: Athena's front side in the 2828-H13 configuration

Finally, the zBC12 is a welcome incremental upgrade to the fleet. Hopefully it can lead to some cool things, potentially even maybe some kind of clustering between the z114 and zBC12. We will see what me and my friends cook up.

Thanks to all my friends that made this happen and a huge thanks to the anonymous donor that gave me this machine! I could not have done this alone.

Comments

  1. Interesting read, and extra nice with the images.

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    Replies
    1. You should be able to partition the z12 and have an internal coupling facility.....

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