In addition to Unix-based HP-UX, the Integrity servers run on Linux and OpenVMS. OpenVMS will get Kittson support in the fourth quarter, according to a recently updated OS product roadmap on the website of VMS Software, which is leading the software development.
Many customers may skip Kittson and jump to x86, but that could be an expensive proposition, McGregor said. The process involves porting legacy code over to new systems based on x86, and that process could take years.
Some Itanium users -- especially financial organizations who rely on the rock-solid servers for transactions -- may not be willing to take the risk.
"Sooner or later these guys have to convert to something else," McGregor said.
HPE and Dell are offering services to port code over from mainframe systems to newer x86 servers, but the process is complicated and requires a lot of testing to ensure the code is stable.
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