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At a high-level, any application can be made to run on a different platform by modifying and re-compiling its source code to provide a binary module for execution on the target platform.

The reason recompilation is required is that the machine level instructions generated by a compiler are particular to the architecture of the underlying hardware and its operating environment. For mainframes, this architecture is built on the Z mainframe instruction set, whereas the main target platform for rehosting of these applications is x86_64 running Linux.

However, requiring recompilation to effect the rehosting of mainframe applications, is fraught with problems, such as:

This white paper details how the Software Defined Mainframe handles the issues raised by source-code recompilation, leveraging readily available functionality such as the Linux operating system, PostgreSQL relational database, LDAP and x86.

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