Modified on by Jwestern
POWER7+ systems are now available in the VLP
April 24, 2013
Today the VLP is announcing support for IBM's latest Power Hardware using the POWER7+ processor. Standard reservations can now be processed on systems using the new POWER7+ processor.
In addition, several OS images have been updated to the latest OS support levels. Currently provided OSs and releases for the POWER7+ systems are AIX 7.1 TL2SP2, RHEL 6.4 and SUSE 11 SP2. Images saved from these OS releases are supported on previous hardware levels as well, however system images saved prior to this announce will not restore on the POWER7+ systems.
For access to these new systems, please go the VLP web site at http://ibm.com//systems/vlp
For more information about IBM Power7+ Systems - http://www-03.ibm.com/systems/power/
New: Remote access for simplified solution porting and development on IBM PowerLinux.
The IBM Virtual Loaner Program (VLP) now offers ISVs a set of pre-installed tools, including the Advance Toolchain, the IBM PowerLinux Software Development Kit (SDK) as well as a C++ Compiler for easier solution porting to and development on IBM Power Systems servers running Linux.
The Advance Toolchain provides development products specifically tailored to make use of IBM hardware features.
Complementing the Advance Toolchain, the IBM Linux SDK is a an integrated development environment (IDE) that integrates C/C++ source development with the Advance Toolchain, post-link optimization, and classic Linux performance analysis tools, including OProfile and Valgrind.
This no-cost access to the latest IBM Power Systems hardware, development tools and IBM middleware helps ISVs save time and resources, enabling them to move their solutions off competitive platforms and develop their solutions on IBM Systems more quickly and successfully. To find out more, go to the VLP
Toolchain - http://linuxpatch.ncsa.uiuc.edu/toolchain/at/at5.0/suse/SLES_11/release_notes.at5.0-5.0-0.html
SDK - http://www-304.ibm.com/webapp/set2/sas/f/lopdiags/sdklop.html
The AIX Porting and AIX Currency images in VLP now have with the latest WebSphere, DB2, and Java already installed.
The How To section of VLP has a link about the porting and currency image.
Dear VLP User,
We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for using the IBM Virtual Loaner Program during the last six months. You may have noticed a few changes during this time. Late last year the maximum memory allowed for a reservation changed from 4GB to 6GB, and then on March 18th, the disk allocation was upgraded so that AIX and Linux systems now have a 35GB base disk, instead of the previous 20GB allocation. The VLP will continue to make additional changes this year as we transition to the IBM Cloud provisioning infrastructure.
As part of the ongoing changes to the VLP, on May 31, 2011, we will discontinue providing the current 10GB shared user space currently mounted as your user /home/u000xxx directory. While we know some users utilize this space, most users do not. The significant increase in the base disk allocation should mitigate the removal of this space. If you currently have data stored in this mounted space, you will need to make a reservation (or use a reservation you created after March 18th, with the larger disk) and move the information currently in /home/u000xxxx to another place on the base disk. Then "save" your reservation. In the past, the 10GB space was automatically saved, but after April 30 it will no longer exist, and you will be required to request a save of your reservation, if you want your information to persist. If you need the information in this space on multiple reservations, you will need to copy it to the base disk in each system, as the automatic sharing will also no longer be provided.
Any reservation created after May 31, 2011 will not have this space mounted or available. Reservation created prior to April 30, will still have access to the space mounted until the end of that reservation, Restores of previous reservations will NOT have the space mounted.
If you have any questions or need assistance with this migration before May 31, 2011, please feel free to request support thru our web site, either via our e-mail support, or our interactive Live Chat function.
Virtual Loaner Program Administration
VLP System Users,
There was a catastrophic failure at the electric power substation which supplies power to the data center housing the IBM Virtual Loaner Program, the morning of 24-Feb. The VLP data center has a fully functional and frequently tested backup electrical power system which includes diesel generators. However, the erratic nature of the failure at the substation resulted in the loss of part of the backup configuration. As such, the entire remote access computing environment was shutdown in an abrupt but organized fashion rather than expose the equipment to a shutdown caused by the sudden and total loss of electric power.
Most of you experienced an outage from about 0930 CT to about 1900 CT. With a few exceptions, the VLP is again fully functional. If you are still having trouble, please contact VLP Support via the Support tab on our website or Live Chat so we can help you resolve the issue.
The VLP team, Dallas sincerely regrets the inconvenience caused by this failure. The events and associated logs will be carefully reviewed and appropriate preventative measures will be implemented.
Thanks for using the VLP
The IBM Industry Application Platform (IAP) pre-configured stack on the Virtual Loaner Program is now available with AIX 7.1 in addition to AIX 6.1 and AIX 5.3 systems. We have also updated the software components and user guide.
The IBM Industry Application Platform is a pre-configured instance of IBM WebSphere Application Server, IBM DB2 and WebSphere MQ that is available for your IBM AIX 7.1, AIX 6.1 and AIX 5.3 operating- system images on the IBM Virtual Loaner Program (VLP). You can use VLP to develop, test and validate applications by using these products. After reserving your VLP partition, which includes choosing the hardware configuration and operating system, install the IBM Industry Application Platform on that partition. This is a great way to reduce middleware setup time for ISVs!
For details on how to use the IAP on VLP, see the user guide - www.ibm.com/partnerworld/wps/static/pdf/IBM_Industry_Application_Platform_VLP_Guide_v1.pdf
The IBM Industry Application Platform contains the following software components:
WebSphere Application Server v188.8.131.52
DB2 Workgroup Server Edition 9.7.3a
WebSphere MQ 184.108.40.206
IBM Rational Agent Controller v8.3
Users can reference the IAP user guide from the VLP How To page - www.ibm.com/partnerworld/wps/pub/systems/vlp/howto
Have you every wondered what products are included in the VLP IBM i 7.1 image?
IBM Virtual Loaner Program Was Cloud before the Cloud
With all the attention on cloud computing these days—including the
recent architectural metaphors for private cloud solutions—you might be
surprised to learn that IBM has been a cloud services provider since
2004. Through IBM’s Virtual Loaner Program (VLP), IBM’s PartnerWorld
members can get access to IBM i, AIX, and Linux on POWER, running their
very own instance with virtually total control.
Read the whole article - http://systeminetwork.com/article/ibm-virtual-loaner-program-was-cloud-cloud?ref=nf
The Virtual Loaner Program now offers the GA level of AIX 7.1
on POWER7, POWER6 and POWER5 systems. Try out the latest release of AIX at www.ibm.com/systems/vlp
IBM Systems magazine has an article about System i on the Virtual Loaner Program.
Test Drive IBM i For Free
Virtual Loaner Program gives you the keys to the newest OS
IBM AIX 5.2 Workload Partitions for AIX 7
Workload partitions (WPARs)
are virtualized operating
system environments within a single instance of the AIX® operating
system. WPARs secure
and isolate the environment for the processes and signals that are
used by enterprise applications.
Applications running in an AIX 5.2 WPAR use AIX 5.2 commands and
If you have applications that have not been certified on newer versions
of AIX, the AIX 5.2
commands and libraries
provides a way to run them in an AIX 5.2
environment on top
of AIX 7.1. Such
a setup allows running those applications on currently available
that might not support the use of AIX 5.2 as the
system. The AIX 5.2 WPARs
are also referred
to as versioned WPARs. A versioned WPAR is always a system WPAR,
and is not shared.
Versioned WPARs own writable /opt and /usr file
Quick how to:
To Create a versioned WPAR on the VLP, make an AIX 7 Open Beta Reservation on Power 7.
After the reservation is active, from the My Reservations page, select that reservation.
Under the Reservation(s) Information section, under the Select a reservation action drop down, choose "Add Versioned WPAR".
A new Versioned WPAR will be created on your AIX 7 system. Once completed, go back to the Reservation info page to see the IP address and the root password for the Versioned WPAR.
You can now ssh to the Versioned WPAR from yor VLP lpar or from the SSH Gateway using your normal VLP user ID and password.
ssh <user id>@<wpar IP address>
You can then "su -" to root for full access to the Version Wpar.
From the AIX 7 host, use the "lswpar" and the "lswpar -L" to see more information about your versioned wpar.
For more details on IBM AIX 5.2 Workload Partitions for AIX 7go here:
Active Memory Expansion now available on VLP.
Find out how to use AME from the VLP user guide - http://cot.ag/byaXp6
Active Memory Expansion is an innovative POWER7 technology that allows the effective maximum memory capacity to be up to 100% larger than the true physical memory maximum for AIX 6.1 partitions.
Active Memory Expansion relies on compression of in-memory data to increase the amount of data that can be placed into memory and thus expand the effective memory capacity of a POWER7 system. The in-memory data compression is managed by the system, and this compression is transparent to applications and users.
Active Memory Expansion is configurable on a per-logical partition (LPAR) basis. Thus, Active Memory Expansion can be selectively enabled for one or more LPAR's on a system.
When Active Memory Expansion is enabled for a LPAR, the operating system will compress a portion of the LPAR's memory and leave the remaining portion of memory uncompressed. This results in memory effectively being broken up into two pools - a compressed pool and an uncompressed pool. The operating system will dynamically vary the amount of memory that is compressed based on the workload and the configuration of the LPAR.
Because Active Memory Expansion relies on memory compression, some additional CPU utilization will be consumed when Active Memory Expansion is in-use. The amount of additional CPU utilization needed for Active Memory Expansion will vary based on the workload and the level of memory expansion being used.
More info on DeveloperWorks wiki:
Please be advised that a planned outage is scheduled for the IBM Virtual Loaner Program website and reserved systems on Wednesday, April 21, 2010, from Noon CST until 6 pm CST. We will be upgrading the hosting environments for these systems as we prepare for exciting new offerings associated with the General Availability of the products and updates announce on April 13th, 2010. Please be aware that the reserved systems will be restarted during this process, and make appropriate plans. A normal system shutdown will be attempted first on all systems, but if that does not shut down a system, then a force power off will be used to shut down the system. The systems will be restarted after the upgrades are complete. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Virtual Loaner Program Administration
Follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ibmvlp
The IBM Virtual Loaner Program new offering - IBM i 7.1 early program. Try out the latest IBM i now!
Details about the VLP IBM i 7.1 Early Program
- VLP will offer i 7.1 Beta level code on POWER6, and Beta level i 7.1 will also be available on POWER7 after April 23rd.
- Reservations can be made for up to 21 days duration, 2 CPU / 4 GB RAM / 100 GB of Storage
- VLP will offer new beta images until a GA level image is available, approximately 30 days after GA of IBM i 7.1
- Once the GA image is available, no NEW Beta images will be allowed, but saved Beta images can be restored for 30 days to allow information to be moved from the image to a GA level image.
- A beta image cannot be upgraded to a GA level image.
- VLP will dispose of all IBM i 7.1 Beta saved images 30 days after GA level images are available in the VLP.
- After the 30 day post GA availability period, the beta promo code will be removed to prevent restore of saved images
Please contact Bill Schulz at firstname.lastname@example.org
for more details
Leveraging IBM's virtual loaner program (VLP) can help you
experience the new IBM POWER7, the next generation of Power Systems
technology. Starting February 9th
, VLP users can reserve POWER7 systems running AIX 6.1 TL4 SP2 or SLES 11. This is a great way to test/port/evaluate/demo your solutions on the all new POWER7 AT NO-CHARGE!
Where else can you get a POWER7 system within 2 hours?? Come try it out and let us know what you think - either by filling out the end of reservation survey, responding to the VLP blog or by contacting our VLP support through e-mail or Live Chat. We'd love to hear from you!
IBM PartnerWorld members can enjoy this easy-to-use, fully
automated and dedicated environment at no charge. The VLP provides a
wide range of operating systems, including AIX, IBM i, Red Hat and SUSE
Linux along with POWER7, POWER6 and POWER5 hardware.
Users on the VLP Web site (www.ibm.com/systems/vlp) can use live
chat or e-mail via "We're here to help" for answers to questions or
help along the way. Visit the site to sign up and reserve a system.
New video about Dynamic Infrastructure highlighting the VLP and the IBM Innovation Centers. Please let us know your comments and thoughts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZ8KjSHt0xU New and enhanced offerings from IBM deliver the right solutions
to help you succeed in this increasingly complex and interconnected
world. Whether your organization is just beginning your journey towards
a dynamic infrastructure, or ready to do more, IBM's new offerings are
an ideal step in the right direction towards maximizing your business
and IT investments.
Test and develop on the JS22 POWER6 blade
Users are now able to reserve LPARs on JS22 Power6 blade hardware for development. If you prefer to develop on the blade hardware or simply want to test/validate your solution simply select the POWER Blade JS22 hardware architecture when filling out the resource reservation.
Learn more about IBM Bladecenters and Power blades:
The Virtual Loaner Program now offers ISVs the ability to instantly connect to VLP support staff using the Live Help Chat function. This feature is a great addition to the existing email based support and will help users get answers to their questions or problems related to VLP.
VLP Live Chat is accessible from all VLP pages once users log on with their PartnerWorld Id. Our staff will be available 17x5 (2AM CDT to 7PM CDT, M-F) and support English only at this point. The page UI is updated automatically to reflect the Chat as unavailable during off hours in which case users can submit their question through the VLP support tab just as before.
In addition, this Chat client is connected to the Virtual Innovation Center (VIC) support team so users can receive platform (HW/SW) support from the same Chat client.
As a reminder, the VLP team provides support for issues related to VLP such as creating a system reservation, connecting to the system, or any program related questions. The VIC team provides technical support for IBM platforms such as installing IBM Middleware or configuring an OS. When initiating a Chat from any VLP page, the user can select VLP or VIC support (with examples to help decide). And the VLP and VIC teams can pass Chat sessions back and forth in case the user needs to be redirected
Use Promo code 35678 when making a reservation with the IBM Virtual Loaner Program and receive an extra week for your engagement. Instead of the normal two week engagement you will get three weeks. You can always save your reservations and come back again, but this allows more time to get those important projects completed. Just a little something extra from your place for Power systems, AIX, Linux and IBM i. And of course all of this is for no charge. World-wide remote access to the resources you need!
IBM Virtual Loaner Program
Dear VLP User,
We want to make you aware of some new features and enhancements to our Linux systems within the IBM Virtual Loaner Program (www.ibm.com/systems/vlp).
Whether you actively develop on Linux or are new to the platform we believe these updates are worth noting. Remember that the VLP is a no charge offering for IBM PartnerWorld Members so come try it out!
SLES11 is now available! You can make SLES11 reservations on both POWER5 and POWER6 servers.
Version updates have been applied to RHEL4, RHEL5 and SLES10
New versions and updates also applied to PowerVM Lx86 images. PowerVM Lx86 supports the installation and running of most 32-bit x86 Linux applications on IBM Power Systems models. If you have never worked are new to Lx86 find out how to get started.
Additional information about VLP Linux systems:
All images use the default package selection as chosen by Redhat or SuSE. Gives the user flexibility to customize the operating system to their needs.
By using this methodology, all Linux images, including the PowerVM i386 environments, are configured to use their built in package management utilities. The FTP hosted package repositories are the actual ISO's used while building the images.
The utilities are:
SLES10... yast2 or rug (rug is a real pain to use, I'd suggest using yast2)
SLES11... yast2 or zypper (zypper is a huge improvement over rug, but yast2 is still easier to use)
RHEL4... up2date (up2date isn't nearly as flexible as yum, but it gets the job done)
Time synchronization with our internal NTP server. (This is very important for development as time skew can disrupt a compiler)All images use the 'noop' disk I/O scheduler. (This increases disk performance and reduces system load by handing the responsibility over to the VIO server)The latest OS supported version of XL C/C++ is always a clean install for every reservation.Apply PTF's which are found in /stage/middleware/Dynamic LPAR and Live Partition Mobility functionality are enabled for RHEL5, SLES10, and SLES11. Reference the VLP LPM User Guide to find out how to get started testing with Live Partition Mobility.
Virtual Loaner Program Administration
Follow us on twitter @ibmvlp
Please be advised that a planned production outage is scheduled for the IBM Virtual Loaner Program website only on Saturday, July 11, 2009, from 8 am CDT until 12 pm CDT Saturday, July 11, 2009.
User systems will continue to be available during this time.[Read More
You are invited to join a Live Chat with the Virtual Loaner Program (VLP) team as they host an open Question and Answer session.
VLP Live! Q&A ChatDate: Tuesday July 14, 2009
11:00 a.m. India
1:30 p.m. China/Malaysia
2:30 p.m. Japan/Korea
3:30 p.m. Australia
This will be an open forum to discuss topics related to the IBM Virtual Loaner Program. Ask questions and tell us your thoughts.What do you like or not like about the VLP? How do you utilize the VLP? What could we do to improve your experience with the VLP?
We hope you will join us for this event!