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This paper introduces, at a high level, the key topics relevant to continuous availability of IBM systems infrastructures. After defining terms and identifying what is encompassed in the scope of continuous availability of IBM system infrastructures, we explain the IT (information technology) life cycle of planning and execution through which an IT organization and its infrastructure pass to create and continuously improve the IT infrastructure. Throughout, we show how each of the subsequent papers in this issue, drawing on real-life deployments, technology developments, and research efforts, expands on important aspects of this introductory discussion.
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