What’s In A Brand? Pure vs. Flex vs. PureFlex vs. PureApplication vs. PureData


You’re on a customer site.  They’re looking at you to solve their intricate, complex IT problem with a solution that is robust and all-encompassing.  You’re about to present the solution you’ve been working on for the last three weeks and then the customer says, “Uhm, hey, what about this PureSystems/PureFlex stuff IBM’s been promoting?  I heard it’s a pretty good fit for what we’re trying to accomplish here.”


Your beautifully crafted solution now has to adapt – quickly.  You begin looking at the all of the IBM PureSystems documentation and begin seeing potential overlap between the terms being thrown around – Flex, Pureflex, PureApp, PureData.  Luckily we’re going to break down each of these to give you a great starting place to be able to include PureSystems in your next solution.


Flex describes the wealth of options available to you to create your own custom integrated solution.  The hardware and management software are available to you a la carte meaning you can design what chassis, compute notes, network switches, storage capacity, and management consoles that will go into the solution based on your needs.  Order it all and put it together according to your schedule.

This path is useful when requirements are a little fuzzy or short-term and you want to make sure you have the capability to scale the hardware to support potential demand somewhere down the road.  You can build a system to address your immediate needs and rest assured that if the requirements change, you’re not left with a solution that can’t handle it.


Pureflex describes an additional set of value that you don’t get with just Flex.  Want to skip all the cost associated with not only installing the hardware but connecting, configuring, and making it useful?  Have IBM do it!  They’ll work with you to get the info needed to deliver a preconfigured, tested, and working PureSystem you can roll right off the truck/van/hatchback and into your datacenter.   Just fire it up and begin building your solution from day one.

PureApplication (PureApp)

Ahhhh…the application space.  This is just as time consuming to set up as the underlying infrastructure they run on.  You’ve got to download the software, put together a mechanism to automate the installation and configuration of the application (or maybe even manually do this), then test and verify that the applications play well with the environment and each other.  Get your game up with this solution because they’ll give you preconfigured patterns for certified software for PureSystems that again have been tested and certified to run together.

At this time, this additional capability is available on the Linux x86/64 with AIX on Power support to be added shortly.  Windows support is currently out of scope for this so keep that in mind when you’re looking at this option.


Got a ton of data like financial records or consolidated reporting you need to be able to process in a quick, robust manner?  The PureData solution is exactly what the Data Doctor ordered.  This solution is geared specifically towards providing PureSystems support to a small number of databases where each of them are incredibly large and require a large number of operations to be performed with the data being housed.

Again, this capability is limited to Linux and Power-based systems running IBM DB2 pureScale databases.

OK.  You are armed with more knowledge now than ever.  Go forth and update that design before they ask any more questions!

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Nelson Velazquez

About Nelson Velazquez

Nelson Velazquez is an IT Architect at IBM. Responsible for OS deployment and software distribution on physical and virtual systems on a daily basis. These machines are both IBM and non-IBM. I architect deployment solutions targeting both IBM Global and Strategic Outsourcing accounts that require knowledge of customer environments (hardware, network, software, and storage), customer requirements, and managing the teams to get those solutions implemented. I feel that I have a strong viewpoint to be able to assess the applicability of IBM PureFlex systems within this realm. Nelson has produced different artistic endeavors for the last 10 years that require extensive utilization of current social media outlets (Websites, blogs, YouTube, Facebook, Linked-In, Twitter, etc). He has been the Artistic Director for 7 years for a theatre company where he coordinate our public relations endeavors that rely heavily on social media. He personally maintains three blogs with different focuses, have a good understanding of implementing/maintaining content management systems, and attend regular seminars to learn new techniques in converting social media into real world action. Follow Nelson on Twitter @nelsonvelazquez
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