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The recent benchmark is a good example of just how scalable and reliable COBOL-based BANCS is on a Windows environment, with batch load peaking at 21 million accounts per hour and online transaction load peaking at 811 transactions per second.” Sitting between the COBOL code in the BANCS application and the Microsoft operating system used for the benchmark test, is Micro Focus Server for COBOL, the deployment component for Net Express.
“Micro Focus Server for COBOL handled all of the run-time facilities between BANCS and Windows Server operating system including communications, user interface, database access, and file handling.
As with the other components of our test, Micro Focus technology outperformed expectations under extremely high loads.” “811 transactions per second is an extremely high transaction throughput.
However, the recent benchmark study shows that a mission-critical banking solution, such as BANCS, could be effectively implemented in a Windows server environment for considerably less cost than setting-up a similar system on a mainframe or UNIX environment,” said Mathieson.
“I think a lot of people in the industry were surprised by the strong results we achieved and by how particularly robust the Windows environment proved to be,” Mathieson commented.
For example, if you combine the transactions of the major banks in Australia, a country of 19 million people–even in the most busy trading times, you would probably not see a load as high as 811 tps,” said Mathieson.
“In the banking industry it’s vitally important that mission-critical systems are robust and highly available.For example, if your key requirement is performance, you may use native code optimization for specific hardware chips.If your key requirement is portability, applications can be created where the object code can be built once and run on any supported platform with the confidence that the code will work exactly the same way, regardless of differences in operating systems or hardware platforms.Traditionally, COBOL-based critical banking software such as BANCS runs on a mainframe or in a UNIX environment, rather than a Windows environment.This was the first time that a benchmark study of this type had been attempted.Although many financial organizations moved to a Microsoft platform for their front-end staff workstations and customer-facing systems, Microsoft was traditionally overlooked for back office processing.The less mature financial markets of Asia, Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East have found the architecture and cost of ownership to be a major driver in changing their core back office systems.FNS estimates that, depending on associated business and IT drivers, many of the world’s financial organizations could gain cost benefits by migrating from the mainframe, and even UNIX servers, to a lower cost Windows model.The multi-process application, BANCS, was built using the Net Express COBOL development environment and component business object techniques.“Being COBOL-based is one of the keys to the BANCS success and the success of the benchmark study.Micro Focus COBOL actually does what some other languages promise–you can basically write once and run anywhere,” Mathieson said.