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IBM MQ Appliance M2003 is available

By Jamie Squibb posted Tue August 02, 2022 11:57 AM


The IBM MQ Appliance M2003 is now available, which is the latest generation of IBM’s appliance-based offering of IBM MQ. The M2003 comes with several upgrades over its predecessor, the M2002, including increased CPU capacity, increased memory, 100Gb Ethernet connectivity, and NVMe SSDs that provide significantly faster disk I/O for persistent messaging. Customers who upgrade their M2001 appliances, which go out of support next year, should notice considerable improvements in the processing power of the M2003.

IBM MQ Appliance M2003

The M2003 appliance is designed with:

  • Simple setup and configuration
  • Optimised performance
  • Resiliency with built-in support for high-availability and disaster recovery
  • Cost efficiency and simplified maintenance
  • Built-in security features, including disk encryption, TLS, and IBM MQ Advanced Message Security (AMS)

It is available with two capacity modes, as per previous generations. The full appliance capacity is available to the M2003A, and the M2003B is available with a reduced CPU and disk quota for customers who do not require the full hardware capability. The M2003B has 8 cores enabled, compared to the 6 cores that are enabled with previous hardware models, and a software upgrade to enable the full capacity of the appliance remains an option to support increased workloads over time.


A table that compares the specification of the M2001, M2002 and M2003 hardware models is below.

M2003 (new model)

M2002 (previous model)

M2001 (older model)

2 x 16-core 2.90GHz processors (8 cores for B model)

2 x 12-core 2.60 GHz processors (6 cores for B model)

2 x 10-core 2.80 GHz processors (6 cores for B model)

256 GB RAM, 3200 MHz DDR4 DIMMs

192 GB RAM, 2666 MHz DDR4 DIMMs

192 GB RAM, 1600 MHz DIMMs

2 x 1Gb management Ethernet ports

2 x 1Gb management Ethernet ports

2 x 1Gb management Ethernet ports

8 x 1Gb Ethernet ports

8 x 1Gb Ethernet ports

8 x 1Gb Ethernet ports

4 x 10Gb Ethernet ports

6 x 10Gb Ethernet ports

4 x 10Gb Ethernet ports

4 x 40Gb Ethernet ports

4 x 40Gb Ethernet ports


2 x 100Gb Ethernet ports



4 x 3.2 TB NVMe SSDs, RAID 10 (6 TB effective, 3 TB effective for B model)

4 x 3.2 TB SAS SSDs, RAID 10 (6 TB effective, 3 TB effective for B model)

2 x 3.2 TB SAS SSDs, RAID 1 (3 TB effective)


The M2003 appliance comes with IBM MQ 9.3 long-term support (LTS) firmware pre-installed, which is the minimum firmware version that it supports. The 9.3 firmware includes many MQ family enhancements that are available on other platforms, plus a newly designed look and feel for the web management interface (UI).

IBM MQ Appliance 9.3 UI

For customers who currently use the 9.2 long-term support release, the 9.3 firmware includes several other enhancements that have been developed over the past couple of years through MQ’s continuous delivery releases. Notable enhancements in the 9.3 firmware include:

  • Streaming queues for insight into the data flowing through MQ
  • Encrypted file systems to protect IBM MQ data at rest
  • Synchronous replication for disaster recovery (DR) between two appliances
  • Simplified administration for high availability (HA) resource failures
  • Retrieve HA and DR configuration settings using REST
  • Process dead-letter queues by using a remote client DLQ handler

For more information about IBM MQ 9.3 see the official documentation (links below), and Ian Harwood’s blog post at

9.3 support for older hardware models

At present, the 9.3 firmware is only available for the new M2003 appliance, but we intend for the 9.3 firmware to also support the M2002 appliance. A statement of direction confirming this intent is included in the M2003 announcement letter, and we hope for this to be available soon.

The 9.3 firmware will not support the older M2001 hardware model, which has an end of support date of 10 July 2023. The 9.2 long-term support (LTS) and 9.2.5 continuous delivery (CD) firmware releases will be supported on the M2001 hardware until that date to ensure that a supported firmware remains available.


If you would like to learn more about the M2003 appliance, or how the MQ Appliance can be used to provide a secure, highly available and cost-effective solution for IBM MQ, then you can join a webcast on Thursday 11 August. You can register for the event at

Additional information

IBM MQ Appliance M2003 announcement

IBM MQ Appliance documentation

 IBM MQ documentation

IBM MQ Appliance 9.3 firmware readme