Upgrade path offered for aging HP 9000 platform

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HP has offered an upgrade path to HP 9000 users who felt they were left high and dry when the company abandoned the PA-Risc chip, in favour of Intel's Itanium.

HP-UX 9000 Container is a free software virtualisation migration package that will allow HP-UX applications, written for the HP 9000, to run unchanged on the newer Integrity systems. The container is a new capability added to HP-UX 11iV3.

When the Integrity series was released in 2008, HP offered various tools and upgrade paths to offer a migration path. Some users decided it would be too disruptive and have persisted in using their HP 9000 installations running HP-UX 11iV2.

The older operating system will no longer be on sale after the end of the year. HP claimed this would trigger customers to migrate to new systems before support ends at the beginning of 2014.

There is obviously commercial gain in sales of hardware involved in HP's offer and a desire to prevent migrations to any competitors' platforms.

To counter these as the only arguments, HP pointed out the latest Integrity systems were faster, physically smaller and more energy-efficient than the older systems. It also pointed out the increased speed would more than compensate for the virtualisation overheads.

The container approach also simplifies and cuts the cost involved in traditional migration. The HP 9000 software environment is packed into a container and shipped across to the Integrity server.