August 31, 2017

MongoDB, Infosys Promote App Migration

George Leopold

Targeting the market for migrating critical enterprise applications from legacy systems to modern platforms, partners MongoDB and outsourcing giant Infosys said they are expanding their application modernization effort for offloading applications from mainframes.

The app modernization approach runs counter to efforts by mainframe vendors such as IBM who are attempting to convince enterprises to boost data analytics on valuable transaction workloads still running on mainframes.

Along with increasing productivity by shifting applications to platforms that can scale, MongoDB and Infosys said this week their initiative would free up mainframes for tasks they were originally designed to handle. That, they asserted, would reduce costs in the long run.

Mainframe computers widely used by enterprises in the past to store proprietary data and handle key workloads “are increasingly unable to optimally handle the scale and complexity of modern applications, especially in a cost effective way,” Dev Ittycheria, MongoDB’s president and CEO, noted in a statement announcing the expanded partnership with Infosys (NYSE: INFY).

Those applications could be moved to MongoDB’s database that is increasingly used to tease real-time insights from the platform running their applications. It also would serve as a framework for new application development, the partners said Thursday (Aug. 31).

Collaboration on mainframe offloading builds on a previous partnership the companies announced late last year focused on application modernization strategies using next-generation databases. The partnership also gives New York-based MongoDB a stronger foothold in the Indian market via a joint laboratory based in Bangalore.

As database vendors such as MongoDB promote the migration of applications from mainframes, mainframe makers such as IBM (NYSE: IBM) are promoting big iron as an alternative real-time analytics platform. Earlier this year, IBM began promoting Watson-based machine learning software for z/OS running on its mainframe atop an Apache Spark execution engine.

Along with application performance benefits, Infosys and MongoDB counter that migrating applications from mainframes reduces cost of ownership. “Mainframes are notorious for eating up IT budgets,” the partners asserted.

Perhaps, but the transfer of sensitive data and applications is non-trivial for banks and health care providers mindful of the risks associated with the movement of personal financial data and highly regulated personal health information. Those considerations would likely limit the potential market for application offloading schemes like the MongoDB-Infosys initiative.

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