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ITS staff power down Carolina's mainframe computer.
Hugo Clark of ITS Enterprise Operations, on the far right, had the honors of entering the shutdown commands of the mainframe computer.

On Cinco de Mayo, Information Technology Services retired the University’s mainframe computer, the environment that housed Carolina’s legacy student information, financial reporting and payroll systems.

Mainframe used for more than 40 years

The computer was used for large-scale computing for more than four decades. As many as 3,000 users once signed onto screens each day to update files. It was a workhorse that managed the University’s business and student data.

“It could process a lot of things at once and it was reliable,” said Ray DeCristofaro, Director for ITS Enterprise Operations.

Work shifted to more powerful ConnectCarolina system

As other technology advanced, the mainframe lacked the functionality and flexibility of newer systems. The mainframe was no longer needed after its work shifted to ConnectCarolina, which is a much more powerful system with modern capabilities.

Carolina's mainframe computerBoth systems used during transition

For a year prior to shutting down the mainframe, the Legacy Decommissioning team worked with campus users and leaders from Finance, Human Resources, the Office of Sponsored Research and General Administration to review operational and data-retention requirements. Together, they ensured the University had all required data readily available on PeopleSoft and other current technology platforms. Individual leaders from across campus also signed off on the decommissioning.

During the transition, ITS needed to keep the mainframe running as well as the ConnectCarolina system. Now, DeCristofaro said, “we can zero in on helping the PeopleSoft community operability.”











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