Forward! by Unisys Platform Boosts Performance and Predictability for Mission-Critical Applications in Beta Test at JMC Steel Group

Fabric architecture with secure partitioning boosts ERP application performance by 40 percent, with more consistent execution

Apr 15, 2014, 08:00 ET from Unisys Corporation

BLUE BELL, Pa., April 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS) today announced that beta-testing of the new Forward!™ by Unisys enterprise computing platform at JMC Steel Group – the largest independent pipe and tube manufacturer in North America – has shown that the platform delivers superior performance and consistency in running mission-critical applications.

In a controlled beta test environment, the Forward! platform's advanced fabric computing architecture delivered 40 percent better performance for JMC Steel's mission-critical SAP applications than JMC's current servers, with greater predictability. An additional test demonstrated that the physical partitioning on the Forward! platform provides a performance advantage over virtualized environments.

The Forward! platform combines Unisys' advanced secure partitioning (s-Par®) technology with industry-standard Intel® Xeon® family processors into a powerful, secure, highly flexible fabric architecture. Each partition creates a secure "container" that dedicates resources to each application workload.

"We couldn't have been more impressed with the improvements in performance and predictability that Forward! by Unisys delivered for our SAP applications," said Bill Kempert, director of IT infrastructure, JMC Steel Group. "We believe that Forward! could deliver significant value as a platform for future mission-critical workloads as we transition to the SAP HANA platform and other big-data applications."

Forward! Shows Superior Performance, Compensates for Shortcomings of Virtualization JMC Steel had recently experienced performance bottlenecks when running key enterprise requirements planning (ERP) applications SAP Business Information Warehouse and Business Objects on its current production systems. Approximately one-third of the company's employees – including the sales organization – use Business Objects to access the latest transactional information, such as inventories, product features and price quotations. An application performance bottleneck can impede a sales representative from accessing updated information in real time from their laptop or other mobile device.

In just a few days, Unisys migrated the SAP applications from JMC Steel's servers running Microsoft Windows 2008 Enterprise Edition to a two-node Forward! configuration running the same operating environment.

The configuration comprised one node for each SAP application. Each node used two partitions – the first for the business application and the second for a CPU and I/O "burner" designed to stress-test the partitioning. Both nodes were in the same physical rack and linked by a high-speed InfiniBand connection. The tests used actual production data.

Through multiple runs, the test showed that the Forward! fabric delivered a 40 percent improvement in performance for each application over that which JMC Steel's existing production environment provides.

In addition, a further test showed that running the second partitions at half to full utilization caused no more than one percent variability in performance of the business applications. This test demonstrated that the workload isolation afforded by the Forward! platform's secure partitioning provides predictable application performance.

In yet another test using the same workloads, Unisys ran the SAP applications on the Forward! platform with a widely used hypervisor to compare the performance of the Forward! physical partitioning against a virtualized environment.

While application performance in the partitioned Forward! environment showed steady one-percent variability, performance in the virtualized environment immediately declined 10 percent and degraded to 20 percent with the addition of more workloads.

"The tests at JMC Steel Group provide compelling evidence of the superior blend of power and predictable performance that the Forward! platform delivers for mission-critical applications," said Rob Cashman, vice president, mission-critical servers and solutions, Unisys. "We look forward to helping other clients realize the benefits of Forward! by Unisys."

For more information on Forward! by Unisys, visit

About Unisys Unisys is a worldwide information technology company. We provide a portfolio of IT services, software, and technology that solves critical problems for clients. We specialize in helping clients secure their operations, increase the efficiency and utilization of their data centers, enhance support to their end users and constituents, and modernize their enterprise applications. To provide these services and solutions, we bring together offerings and capabilities in outsourcing services, systems integration and consulting services, infrastructure services, maintenance services, and high-end server technology. With approximately 23,000 employees, Unisys serves commercial organizations and government agencies throughout the world. For more information, visit

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SOURCE Unisys Corporation