The Power of the Google Cloud Platform

The Google Cloud Platform provides the technology and services that make running mainframe applications in the cloud a safe, secure, reliable way to achieve high performance results and fuel future innovation for the organization.  

There are specific elements of the Google Cloud Platform that are relevant to a mainframe migration project. Here are some of them:

  • The Google Cloud Platform provides a broad set of infrastructure services, such as computing power, storage options, networking and databases that are delivered as a utility: on-demand, available in seconds, with pay-as-you-go pricing. From data warehousing to deployment tools, directories to content delivery, several Google Cloud Platform services are available.
  • New services can be provisioned quickly, without upfront capital expense. This allows enterprises, start-ups, small and medium-sized businesses, and customers in the public sector to access the building blocks they need to respond quickly to changing business requirements.
  • The Google Cloud Platform serves millions of active customers in more than 190 countries. Google is steadily expanding global infrastructure to help our customers achieve shorter latency times and higher throughput, to ensure that their data resides only in the region they specify. As customers grow their businesses, Google Cloud Platform will continue to provide infrastructure that meets their global requirements.

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Three Strong Promises

Functional Equivalence

The migrated application’s behavior is identical to that of the original one.

Performance Equivalence

The migrated application will perform at least as well as the original one.

Maintenance Equivalence

The maintenance of the migrated application will be comparable in effort to the original application.

The Google Cloud Platform Environment

The Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) lets you provision a logically isolated section of the Google Cloud Platform where you launch and manage Google  Cloud resources in a virtual network that you define. It’s your private area within the Google  Cloud Platform.  

You can think of this as the fence around all the systems you have in the Google Cloud. You have complete control over your virtual networking environment, including selection of your own IP address range, creation of subnets, and configuration of route tables and network gateways.  You can use both IPv4 and IPv6 in your VPC for secure and easy access to resources and applications.

Computing Resources

The Google Cloud Platform provides secure, resizable compute capacity in the Google Cloud. It serves as the foundation upon which your application sits.  It is the container that holds the operating systems, mainframe emulators, application executables, and other supporting software that make up your application.  

Depending on your specific circumstances, you may separate some pieces into their own individual instances, or you may run everything in one instance. For example, maybe you will have a section dedicated to Batch COBOL and another dedicated to Online COBOL. You may even segregate sections by applications.  

Storage

Google Cloud mass storage can be thought of as a hard drive for storing data. Lots of data. The Google Cloud serves as the primary storage “device” for all instances running migrated applications.

The Google Cloud also offers a low-cost, reliable service for backup and archiving of all types of data. These services are combined to meet the storage requirements of your mainframe applications and databases.

Databases

Google’s Cloud SQL Relational Database Service is where all your legacy relational data will reside.  This includes any flat file data that has been converted to relational. For example, all your mainframe flat files & Indexed Sequential data structures, and non-relational databases that have been converted to relational and migrated to Google’s Cloud SQL Relational Database Service.  

This service is optimized for database performance. It is cost-efficient, has resizable capacity, and is designed to reduce time-consuming database administration tasks.

The Google Cloud Platform support is available in several familiar database engines, including Microsoft SQL Server, PostgreSQL and MySQL.  You can also set up a DB2 LUW server instance. Oracle is only available on Google Bare Metal.

An analysis of your existing legacy databases and applications will reveal all the changes required to migrate your data to Google’s Cloud SQL Relational Database Service, or any other RDBMS running on the Google Cloud Platform.

Load Balancing

Applications with a high volume of transactions require something to balance the workload. The Google Cloud Platform does just that. It automatically distributes incoming application traffic across multiple instances to achieve scalability, high-performance, and fault tolerance in your migrated applications. It provides the load balancing capability needed to route traffic evenly among your applications and keep them performing efficiently.

Security

In the Google Cloud environment, you will be using Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) for accessing and maintaining distributed directory information services. While there are other possibilities, this is most likely where you will map your legacy application user IDs, passwords, permissions, etc.

Hosting LDAP services on a smaller separate instance often makes it easier to maintain independently of applications.  However, a full analysis of your legacy security environment is required to determine how to best architect and configure security in the migrated system.

Monitoring

Every IT system needs to be monitored.  The Google Cloud Platform uses a monitoring service for cloud resources now running the legacy applications you deployed to the Google Cloud.

This tool is used to collect and track metrics, monitor log files, set alarms, and automatically react to changes in your Google Cloud resources.  This data is used to resolve problems quickly and keep your migrated applications running smoothly – much like you do on the mainframe today. Other cloud-ready monitoring tools are available from 3rd parties as well.

Source Control

Just as you have products and processes to control your application sources and manage application releases on your mainframe today, you need to have a similar set of tools in the Google Cloud.

Google Cloud uses a fully managed source control service providing secure and private GIT repositories. It eliminates the need to operate your own source control system, or worry about scaling its infrastructure.

This facility is where you will store your migrated application source code and binaries, new source and binaries, and anything else you want to archive.

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