April Announcements for POWER, SDMC and PureSystems
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It has been a busy fortnight and I just realised I have micro-blogged (Twitter) comments and link but neglected this AIXpert Blog - sorry about that. Here is a summary and a lot more thoughts that Twitter allows. I actually like the discipline of the Twitter 140 characters as if forces you to get to the point!
First, I have upgraded to Firefox 10 Enterprise from 3.6 - I was having multiple problems with the older release that had previously seemed to be the only safe one for using both HMC and IBM Systems Director. In particular, problems like InfoCenter manual pages coming up blank and support always blaming the cache and cookies - but why did it always seem to be IBM pages that had problems? OK, I guess I go to IBM pages quite a lot, which makes the problem worse. Inside IBM there is a large program getting IBMers moving to more recent web browsers and to Firefox in particular. Now the most favoured browser is Firefox 10 Enterprise - a stable release after the Firefox version explosion. So I gave it a go and it is quicker, just as friendly and looks every so slightly nicer but I could not tell you why! Of course, we are practically banned now from IE 6 because it is a ghastly security reputation (as in nearly no security at all and a hackers delight) but we have figures for user counts for the ~340,000 IBMers and it is very odd how some countries cling on to old version or perhaps they just don't know better.
UKI Local Conferences
If you are in the UK or Ireland book now & see you there, for a "Ask the POWER Expert" free 1 day events:
The plan is for me to have 5 or 6 small 15 minute mini-session and people there vote on what I cover - could go well or be a disaster :-) This is in addition to the larger sessions from Pat O'Rourke from the Austin Labs and Stephen Atkins the local POWER Product guru.
European Technical University May 8th to All IBM Brands including POWER
SDMC has been With
The only guys that panicked are those using the Dual VIOS, LPM and AME features with POWER Blades as this function was only available with the SDMC. Well IBM has committed to put these functions in to the next full release of the HMC, which is probably late in the year (2012).
I think it is all a good move and I was not looking forward to defending the SDMC in two year time when it was to be the only way to run the Power systems. We found that customers prefer taking the simple HMC and adding the full Systems Director over the top rather than the merged SDMC with a staged release of all the function over a few years.
AIX 5.3 "Good bye cruel world!"
Yes, today is the last day you can ever use your regular AIX Support for this ancient AIX level without purchasing the Extended Support. IBM announced this a year ago so it is not a surprise. But it is surprising how much of it is still running even when AIX 6 and now AIX 7 have been out for many years, offering dozens of new features (RBAC, WPARs, ...) and higher RAS with much built into the kernel too. I guess it is the old "if it ain't broke, don't fix it problem". There are alternatives about what to do:
For the Advanced Technical Support team, we have not used AIX 5.3 for 4 years and it genuinely feels like ancient history. Good bye AIX 5.3 - you were a good OS but desires a quiet retirement.
There are a large list of smaller announcements covering adapters, SSD, new remote drawer and I/O enhancements. too many for my brain to cope with in one go. The best place for a summary from Pat O'Rourke talking to the AIX Virtual User Group. There is a slide deck download and I hope shortly a Replay download file. At the time of the session, I was so busy answering questions that I did not get to listen to Pat very much! The AIX VUG is an excellent resource:
Oh yes, IBM also announced the PureSystems etc. Pat covered this in about 30 minutes in the above session which makes a good summary for this very large announcement that can get confusing. I can't say I am anything like an expert - Gareth Coates in the same team as me, covers this technology for POWER in Europe. It certainly looks interesting and is focused heavily on the growing "how can we make rolling out and managing computer systems simpler and less costly?" question. That is a question that is not going to go away. When I know more, I may blog further but not today.
I hope this blog has been useful, cheers Nigel Griffiths.