U.S. Airways (Now United Airlines) Needs a Mainframe

U.S. Airways, which is merging with United Airlines, had to stop flying on Friday when key applications, notably their boarding system, became unavailable. The airline claims that a power outage near their (only?) data center in Phoenix caused the outage, which in turn caused chaos at U.S. Airways counters and boarding gates despite clear skies and good weather.

If U.S. Airways had a pair of IBM mainframes — one in their primary data center, one in a second data center — if they configured them in a remote cluster (using an appropriate flavor of Geographically Dispersed Parallel Sysplex), and if they actually used those mainframes to support their most critical business processes, end-to-end, then it's extremely unlikely they would have had this problem — and certainly not for hours. That particular infrastructure formula should be familiar. Was U.S. Airways following that formula? If not, why not?

UPDATE #1: The International Monetary Fund needs a mainframe.

UPDATE #2: The United States Senate needs a mainframe.

by Timothy Sipples June 12, 2011 in Business Continuity, Security


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Looks like they did have mainframes: (http://newsreviewstime59.co.cc/power-outage-foundation-us-airways-mainframe-ops/).
Maybe just not enough of them?

Posted by: Keith A | Jun 14, 2011 10:08:34 AM

By reading the article one can conclude that Airways lacks Mainframe

Posted by: buy gold coins | Jun 22, 2011 8:59:50 AM

Having worked as a mainframer in the airlines industry I know that the bottom line in that industry does not allow for expensive DR configurations such as GPDS. They are lucky if thier bottom line allows them to buy enough fuel to keep jets in the air....

Posted by: Steven Wigg | Feb 6, 2012 3:13:30 PM

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