Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A general view on Mainframe computer

Mainframes (often colloquially known to as big iron) are large and "expensive" computers used largely by government institutions and large companies for mission important applications, typically mass data processing such as censuses, ERP, industry/consumer statistics, and financial transaction processing.

The word originated during the near the beginning 1970s with the introduction of smaller, less difficult computers for example the DEC PDP-8 and PDP-11 series, which became recognized as minicomputers or just minis. The industry/users then coined the word "mainframe" to describe bigger, earlier types (before known simply as "computers").

Mainframes often maintain thousands of simultaneous users who gain right of entry through "dumb" terminals or terminal emulation. Early mainframes either supported this timesharing mode or operated in batch mode where users had no straight access to the computing service, it exclusively providing back office functions. At this time mainframes were so called for the reason that of their very substantial size and requirements for specialized HVAC and electrical power. Nowadays mainframes support right of entry via any user interface, including the Web. Blade servers rather than mainframes are currently increasingly requiring "exotic" cooling technologies.

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