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IBM updates COBOL to extend System/z into the cloud

18 May 2013
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IBM has updated its COBOL server software platform in the hope of extending its mainframe platform into the cloud and web applications space.

The company said that its System/z COBOL software update would look to add Java 7 and XML server capabilities to the platform, allowing the mainframe line to host cloud computing applications and services.

The update is part of what IBM sees as an effort to extend the lifespan of COBOL into the cloud computing era. The company estimates that there are currently around 200 billion lines of code and 15 percent of enterprise applications.

IBM fellow and Rational chief technology officer Kevin Stoodley said: “COBOL powers many of the critical systems people rely on everyday. With this new software, IBM is helping companies reduce operating costs and processing time associated with these applications while delivering new capabilities to take advantage of cloud, Web and mobile devices.”

In updating its COBOL software, the company hopes to modernise the platform without the need for dramatically rewriting applications. The company said that the mainframe platform will be able to power mobile and web applications for fields ranging from finance to insurance and retail applications.

Additionally, IBM said its new software will speed up the performance of applications with a compiler, which is said to increase the performance of code by 10-20 percent.

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Shaun Nichols
About

Shaun Nichols is the US correspondent for V3.co.uk. He has been with the company since 2006, originally joining as a news intern at the site's San Francisco offices.

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