Storage analytics is integral to analyze mainframe performance, but conveying its value to higher-ups can be difficult due to its complexity. Mainframe managers tend to want a “big picture” view of storage — they want to know that everything is working fine, gain a global understanding of their assets, understand what storage is used for, how much it’s costing them, and if there has been a critical failure. They also need to anticipate future needs by understanding their storage growth over time to be able to anticipate investment needs.
The tedium of day-to-day analysis — reviewing millions of raw logs and manually finding connections between storage components — is left to storage experts. But, even the most seasoned experts can get lost in the volume and complexity of logs. Storage experts analyze tons of data all day to detect issues, prevent outages, and build reports based on what they analyzed. It’s time consuming and complicated, but they do it because it is crucial to the performance of the mainframe.
Whether you’re a storage expert who feels overwhelmed by high volume and complexity, or a mainframe manager looking to gain a competitive edge, storage data offers new ways to understand a mainframe system. Performance bottlenecks, optimization opportunities, system configuration issues, and chargeback information — all of this information and more can be uncovered through storage analytics:
- Performance: z/OS performance is the product of a complex matrix of devices and services. The performance of a given system can’t be attributed to a single entity, but as soon as one link in the chain of command is disturbed, your system performance will plummet. Channel throughput (MB/s), physical times, IOS per second, and more — these main storage indicators can be analyzed to better understand how storage is affecting system performance. If you find that these metrics are lacking, it could be time to move to a solid state drive or free up storage group capacity.
- Optimization: Storage can be analyzed for concrete performance metrics — this is especially useful for recording data before and after optimization activities. For example, compare how IOs per second and response time perform before and after adjustments are made to understand if the optimization was successful. This helps illustrate how storage cache (front end) and backend disks relate to z/OS performance.
- System topology: There will come a time when your team needs to optimize mainframe performance, and when this time comes, system topology — the culminating effect of all interconnected software and hardware — will be crucial. By analyzing how storage is situated within the greater mainframe strategy, you can better understand how storage is contributing to, or inhibiting, z/OS performance.
- Chargeback: When a business unit uses storage it needs to be held financially accountable so the IT team can make back the expenses associated with those services. This process is known as “chargeback.” Many companies struggle to track how much storage each department uses, but with storage analytics you can easily identify which business departments, subsidiaries, or outsourcing partners are responsible for which share of the storage.
The insight outlined above ultimately illustrates how storage cache (front end) and backend disks relate to the efficiency and affordability of z/OS.
Simplify Storage Analytics With ZETALY
ZETALY is the all-in-one, mainframe analytics platform that makes storage analytics easy and accessible to anyone. ZETALY offers in-depth analytics tools for understanding IO activity, IO types, response times, channels throughput, GB distribution by volume, by dataset and by storage group, etc. ZETALY can track a complete storage subsystem in just a few minutes.
Thanks to analytical features like custom dashboards and machine learning, ZETALY helps experts and novices alike uncover concrete data on how storage affects performance — helping to optimize storage and configuration to make your mainframe perform better for cheaper.
Whether you use ZETALY to uncover new performance strategies, optimize storage, make sense of system topology, or divide storage per business unit to improve department accountability, this all-in-one mainframe analytics platform adds unprecedented insight into storage to help relate raw data to real-world ROI. Check out our guide to mainframe storage The Value of Mainframe Storage Analytics and learn how your team can optimize z/OS through storage analytics.