IBM Makes More Room In The Catalog For Power8 Stuff
March 3, 2014 Timothy Prickett Morgan
As generally happens before a big product launch, IBM is gradually winding down sales of earlier generation Power Systems processor cards and various peripherals and giving resellers and customers ample warning that it will stop peddling certain products.
In announcement letter 914-047 dated February 25, a bunch of things were ripped out of the Power Systems catalog with two different effective dates. On May 2, a bunch of routing indicators for Power Cloud Integrated Solutions, PureApplication, Smart Analytics Systems, and Balanced Warehouse Solutions are being withdrawn. I haven’t the foggiest what this means, and I am pretty sure you don’t know either and that you don’t care.
The withdrawals that probably matter to a bunch of IBM i shops hit on September 26. At that time, IBM is withdrawing processor transition features for the 9407-M15 and 9409-M50, which converts the machines to Power 520 boxes using Power6 processors. Activations for a slew of Power6-based machines, ranging from high to low, are being withdrawn, so look carefully at the list to see if your machine is among those. The 5250 Enablement feature on these Power6 machines is also being withdrawn, as are a bunch of memory features for Power6-based iron.
In case you haven’t got the message, the Power8 generation is upon is and the Power6 generation is, well, toast.
It would take me a while to figure out what, if any, Power6 and Power6+ processors, memory, and features are still available, if any. IBM could do a real service to customers with Power6 and Power6+ machines by telling them what features are still available and what ones, if any, will persist beyond the Power8 launch around mid-year. I think as a rule of thumb, you can think of it this way: If you have a Power6 or Power6+ machine, and you need to add some features to it for any reason, you might want to get in touch with IBM or a reseller. Once these features are withdrawn, you will be looking into the secondhand market for parts. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. But you can never know what will be available from used equipment dealers, even if they do have good warranty coverage.