big iron

noun
variants: or Big Iron

Definition of big iron

computing
:large mainframe computers
  • … it will wither as most customers find the courage to shift to so-called client-server systems, which are networks of smaller computers. When that happens, other IBM businesses that depend on big iron will also decline.
  • —Stratford ShermanFortune3 Oct. 1994
  • Next month, several large companies will lead the charge back to big iron in an attempt to rescue unwieldy or stalled client-server projects.
  • —Martin J. GarveyInformation Week7 July 1997
  • A few years ago the big iron would almost certainly have been provided by the likes of IBM, Hewlett-Packard or Digital Equipment Corp.
  • —Eric NeeForbes12 Jan. 1998

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First Known Use of big iron

1981


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