BizTalk Server allows programs running on Windows to call IBM Customer Information Control System (CICS) or Information Management System (IMS) programs on IBM Mainframe as well as the inverse. IMS or CICS programs can also call a program running on Windows Server. Utilizing BizTalk Adapters for Hosts Systems and Host Integration Server, RPG and Cobol programs on IBM Midrange systems can also be accessed and exposed as XML Web Services.
This allows business transactions to be composed of programs running on both Windows Server and the mainframe, which is especially valuable during periods of partial migration.
Using these interoperability capabilities, services can be exposed to enable a service oriented architecture that runs on Windows Server and serve as proxies to mainframe transaction programs or collections of transactions. All EBCDIC-ASCII conversation and XML formation and decomposition is performed on Windows using processor cycles and memory that are dramatically less expensive than if this processing were done on the mainframe directly.