By: Jeff Scheel.
Today's common question comes to us from many different sources. What prompts the write-up today is a nice description I recently saw in an email.
Question: How hard is it to migrate applications to PowerLinux?
Answer: It depends on the characteristics of the application, but generally speaking migration is simple and straightforward. Post migration, the real work can be in tuning performance sensitive applications which typically contain more assembler and non-portable, platform-unique code, two attributes which increase migration time.
Looking more specifically, at the answer, we can categorize the applications in groups and further describe their ability to migrate as folllows:
Java and Open Source infrastructure applications will "just run" on PowerLinux
Applications written either in Java or in a scripting language like PHP or Perl will "just run" on PowerLinux. A Java Tuning Guide has been published to assist in running these applications efficiently on Power
- The most popular Open Source applications like Apache, Tomcat, MySQL, Squid, Postfix, etc that ship with the Red Hat and SUSE distributions for Power, will "just run" on PowerLinux
- Customer written applications (C/C++, etc.) compiled with GNU tools will generally require a simple recompile on a PowerLinux server. If these applications avoid specialized code such as assembly language, then they will "just run" as well.
- Our latest Eclipse based PowerLinux Software Developer Toolkit (SDK) provides a very familiar environment for an x86 Linux developer. Multiple customers report that re-compiling can be as quick as few minutes given the years of work by the IBM to enable open tooling.
- The SDK also provides migration tools (like IBM's Chiphopper program) to facilitate the migration process and performance tuning tools for use post migration.
- Addiitionally, the SDK also provides the newest and fastest GNU tools and libraries in a bundle called the Advanced Toolchain for PowerLinux
- The Porting to Linux on Power wiki page is a great place for starting this process.
- IBM SWG applications available for PowerLinux continue to grow each month. These applications are frequently available for multiple platforms and operating systems, including PowerLinux.
- SWG maintains the website below that provides the latest list of products by SWG "brand" supported by platform. An example of how to search by RHEL or SUSE release on Power and generate a PDF listing of supported applications is available in the Software Product Compatibility Reports website.
- More details on using the Software Product Compatibility Reports can be found on the Locating Applications for PowerLinux wiki page.
- The third party ISV application portfolio for PowerLinux also grows each month, primarily around ISVs aligned to Big Data, Industry Applications and Open Source Infrastructure.
- These applications are maintained in the Partner World Global Solution Directory. More details on using the Global Solution Directory can be found on the Locating Applications for PowerLinux wiki page.
- If the application is not available for PowerLinux, IBM has several programs to help ISVs migrate their applications to the Platform, including:
- Rapid Port for sales driven opportunities
Chiphopper for no-charge technical assistance and porting tools for x86 Linux to PowerLinux
Virtual Loaner Program for remote access to PowerLinux servers, porting tools and technical support resources
IBM Innovation Centers for local, onsite access to resources above