One option is to download The Arcati Mainframe Yearbook 2006. It’s a fairly large PDF file (5.8MB – maybe these days not such a giant file) and is available from http://www.arcati.com/yearbook.html. It is also possible to order a printed copy.
The Yearbook describes itself as an independent annual guide for users of IBM mainframe systems, and is 124 pages in size. The Yearbook contains some well-written articles and lists of information. For example there are articles entitled, “Software compliance and the mainframe”, “Consolidation and integration in the zSeries environment”, “Event-driven automation: why real-time matters”, “The mainframe market: zIIP and the ‘baby’ z9”, “Linux and z/OS, side by side on Itanium 2”, “Optimizing DB2: get the distribution straight”, “The next generation of Adabas and Natural”, “Taking advantage of the second-user alternative”, and “The main idea: monitor mainframes too”.
There are also some interesting quotes about mainframes including this one from a user: “The current IT budget is roughly 5 times what it was five years ago, only a small fraction of which is spent on the bread and butter mainframe system doing almost all the work”.
The Yearbook contains the results from a survey of 92 mainframe users, and analyses their profiles, plans, and priorities.
A large part of the Yearbook is taken up with a Vendor directory, a media guide for IBM mainframers, a glossary of terminology, and hardware tables. There’s also a timeline showing hardware and software development.
I’m told that there will be a 2007 version of the Yearbook very early next year. I just thought I’d draw your attention to the Yearbook because it is full of useful and reliable information, you can get hold of it straight away, and it’s available at a price you can afford (ie free!).