May 15, 2024 By Mark McInnis 3 min read

IBM Power8® generation of IBM Power Systems was introduced ten years ago and it is now time to retire that generation. The end-of-service (EoS) support for the entire IBM Power8 server line is scheduled for this year, commencing in March 2024 and concluding in October 2024. EoS dates vary by model:

  • 31 March 2024: maintenance expires for Power Systems S812LC, S822, S822L, 822LC, 824 and 824L.
  • 31 May 2024: maintenance expires for Power Systems S812L, S814 and 822LC.
  • 31 October 2024: maintenance expires for Power Systems S821LC, S822LC, E850C, E870, E870C, E880 and E880C.

What does it mean for me?

Following the effective date, IBM® will discontinue full hardware maintenance service for the listed machine types. It is highly recommended by IBM that clients transition to current supported hardware technology. EoS signifies that designated Power Systems will no longer receive full IBM maintenance services, including machine code updates and security patches addressing known potential vulnerabilities. Unsupported hardware might not meet security standards required for audits such as GDPR, potentially exposing businesses to fines. Also, replacement parts might become scarce.

What are my options?

  1. Upgrade to IBM Power10 servers on-premises: Opting for this server on-premises provides the convenience of running upgrades effortlessly while granting the advantage of owning your assets within your data center. Power10 provides up to 2x the performance of Power8 for faster workload processing and improved productivity, along with advanced security features to protect your data and operations against today’s increasing cyberattacks. They also offer scalability to accommodate your business growth seamlessly. With superior reliability and efficiency, Power10 servers optimize your IT infrastructure, reducing downtime and operational costs.
  2. Move to Cloud: Migrating workloads to the cloud offers numerous benefits, including increased agility, flexibility and cost efficiency. A hybrid cloud approach to IT infrastructure has been shown to deliver 2–3x the return on IT investments and Power Virtual Server with IBM Cloud® provides a near seamless transition for your Power workloads. Transitioning some or all workloads to the cloud helps organizations streamline operations, enhance agility and leverage advanced cloud services for improved performance and innovation. Also, cloud migration enables easier access to data, facilitates collaboration and enhances disaster recovery capabilities.
  3. Get extended maintenance contract: It is essential that you have continued support, while planning for your upgrade. IBM is a world-class services provider delivering the most reliable, consistent and high-quality services with an exceptional client experience. That said,extending a maintenance contract often leads to increased costs and lacks essential benefits such as security patches. Moreover, service extensions beyond the end date offer limited support, including constraints on parts availability, absence of preventive service, no support for newly reported or known defects and the absence of new machine code updates or patches, including those addressing security concerns.
  4. Rearchitect or refactor onto other technologies: Moving from an outdated platform might appear to be the logical progression, yet it entails a complex process of full application migration, which poses high risks, costs and unpredictable timelines. This endeavor needs transferring all applications and data to a new platform. Furthermore, many modern applications are Linux-based, demonstrating superior performance on the Power platform compared to x86, often resulting in a lower total cost of ownership.

Why IBM Power Virtual Server

As the EoS for Power8 servers draws nearer, one recommended approach is migrating your workloads to the cloud and modernizing them with IBM Power Virtual Server. This IBM virtual machine as-a-service offering provides access to IBM Cloud services and mirrors the architecture of enterprise Power Systems on-premises. This matching architecture stack ensures that no application changes or refactoring is needed.

IBM Power Virtual Server enables frictionless migration to the cloud as part of your modernization journey. It offers dependable failover solutions, including backup, high availability and disaster recovery. With a flexible consumption model, you pay only for the resources you use. It reduces the reliance on specialized skills enabling broader usability and adaptability.

Also, it establishes a highly secure environment with improved isolation, encryption and compliance measures. This offering presents a straightforward and swift approach to help modernize your infrastructure, whether through the process of moving workloads or hardware upgrades, granting you quick access to the immediate benefits typically associated with cloud infrastructure.

Who should I contact?

Maintaining the status quo with server hardware can contribute to technical debt and increased business risk, especially with Power8 that will reach EoS in 2024. We encourage you to upgrade to IBM Power10 on IBM Power Virtual Server. With 21 data centers worldwide, many leading businesses are using IBM Power Virtual Server to successfully expand to hybrid cloud and achieve their business objectives. Please contact IBM today to get started.

Get in touch with IBM today

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