Vision Debuts PowerPack for POWER7 Migration
March 9, 2010 Alex Woodie
Vision Solutions last week debuted its PowerPack for POWER7 Migration, a collection of software for moving IBM i and AIX environments to the new Power7 servers. With the new PowerPack offering, Vision says it can “virtually eliminate” downtime as a result of migration.
Upgrading server platforms can be a major event for many System i shops. Traditionally, moving to a new box requires the administrator to follow a strict protocol: kick everybody off the system, run a full save to tape, mount the tapes to the new system, tell it to restore, and pray profusely.
If everything goes well, it may take just a day or so to migrate a medium-size environment. Many an AS/400 administrator has spent his or her entire weekend at the office, overseeing the restoration process, sleeping under the desk, and making sure everything is hunky dory before the business opens up again on Monday morning.
When things don’t go well–and a reliance on magnetic tape almost guarantees things will not go well for a certain percentage of organizations–well, let’s just say the migration will take a wee bit longer.
Enter Vision with its new PowerPack for POWER7 Migration. The software, which is based on Vision’s high availability and data replication, enables customers to synchronize the old and new environments, and to run them in parallel for a given amount of time, before pulling the trigger and switching to the new environment–an action that is much like a “role swap” in the high availability world.
The capability to run both environments simultaneously gives administrators the protective cover to track down the inevitable problems (incompatible programs, file name changes, job scheduler snafus, etc) that crop up in a migration, and to fix them before going live on the new box.
Ed Vesely, Vision’s senior vice president of marketing, says the new PowerPack for POWER7 Migration will be particularly applicable to medium-size and large System i shops. “This new offering provides valuable protection in a nonstop world by addressing any migration concerns customers have while enhancing the resilience of their Power Systems environments,” Vesely says in a press release.
The PowerPack for POWER7 migration isn’t so much a shrink-wrapped product as a customizable solution. Depending on the customers’ needs, Vision will include any one of a number of high availability and data replication products in the PowerPack offering, including iTERA, MIMIX, ORION, EchoStream (for AIX), “or even our cross-platform database replication solution, Replicate1,” states Bill Hammond, Vision’s director of product marketing, in an e-mail.
A survey conducted by Vision indicates about half of its Power Systems customers and prospective customers are considering an upgrade to the new Power7 servers, including the Power 750 and Power 755, which became available February 16, and the Power 770 and Power 780, which become available on March 16. You can read more about the roll-out here.
Vision is hosting a Webinar on Power7 migration on March 16. To sign up for the free event, called “Ride the POWER7 Surge!,” visit Vision’s Web site at www.visionsolutions.com.