The world of MainFrame VS the world of Startups

What exactly is MainFrame ?

It is mainly used by large industrial groups in the banking and insurance sectors.

The MainFrame is everywhere without realizing it !

When you withdraw money from an ATM or when you go to your supermarket checkout, you have the MainFrame behind you.

It is a central Supercomputer with unparalleled processing power. It serves as the central unit for a terminal network.

A MainFrame these days !


It originated in the 1960s and has evolved since the first machine, the IBM 360. Today, IBM offers System Z-based cloud-based offerings at prices based on consumption.

They carry out deferred “batches” processing, usually carried out at night, in order to carry out daily accounting operations based on the data from the various transactions for the day.

The MainFrame opens at the Blockchain

The blockchain started in 2008 based on Bitcoin. Nowadays many banks or financial services are experimenting with the Blockchain such as HSBC, UBS, ING Bank or UniCredit.

In a secure environment, all nodes in a network are accepted by all other nodes. Thus, the members of the network ensure the security of exchanges. All transactions such as money transfers are distributed on a peer-to-peer basis via all members without a central control authority. The Blockchain is thus compared to a tamper-proof digital ledger. The world of finance has great interest and opportunities.

There are 3 types of implementation: the establishment of private, public and hybrid blocks.

In the Startup world

There are many reasons why they do not use it :

  • Requires a large initial investment : MainFrames are expensive computers that most Startups cannot afford.
  • Programmers are not easy to find : MainFrame uses programming languages such as COBOL, JCL, REXX, CICS, etc., and databases such as IMS, DB2 for which there are few skills. Startups prefer languages such as Python, Ruby, Java, Mysql, etc., for which talents are easier to find.
  • Mainframes are used for high processing powers : The machine is able to process millions of transactions per day when a Startup does not need it. They are not expected to invest a lot of money in the early stages of their launch.
  • Cheap alternatives are available : With the emergence of the cloud, Startups can install their IT infrastructure at low cost.
  • MainFrame is an old technology that is not as flexible as the Cloud: MainFrame is almost 50 years old. In its design, it uses powerful centralized machines. The emergence of the Cloud, the culture of startups and distributed computing are adequate to get traction.
signature Pierre-Christophe

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