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Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

 
Brad McCusker
Respected Contributor

Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?


According to this web site: : http://h71000.www7.hp.com/openvms/openvms_supportchart.html, Standard support for OpenVMS V8.3 will end when V8.4 ships, because V8.3-1H1 is considered to be a separate “version” from V8.3.

Historically, hardware dash releases such as V8.3-1H1 were not considered to be separate releases. For example, Alpha V7.2-1 and V7.2-1H1 both ceased support at the same time (summer 2002 when V7.3-1 shipped). I questioned Ann McQuaid and Shobha about this during a session at HPTF in June 2009 and I was lead to believe it was a mistake to call V8.3-1H1 a separate release and V8.3 would continue under Standard Support after V8.4 ships.

I've got questions in to HP, but the response is filtering back that V8.3 will be available for EES (aka PVS) once 8.4 ships. In other words, the web site is correct.

It seems wrong to make customers upgrade to a hardware release when they aren't running the topic hardware. The customer has to endure the expense of an upgrade for no benefit. That doesn't seem right to me.

(Yes - I know that there are bug fixes, etc in 8.3-1H1, but to the best of my knowledge all of those fixes are also available for V8.3. All of our customers that are on 8.3 are well beyond 8.3-1H1 with patches. So, if they upgrade, they will also need to apply a boatload of patches just so they don't fall behind)

Is my thinking out of line? Am I the only one unhappy about this?

Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International
www.sciinc.com
Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International
14 REPLIES 14
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Brad,

this question becomes even more interesting, when applied against OpenVMS Alpha V8.3 ! There HP can't argue about the 2nd subsequent release, V8.4 is just the next release.

Volker.
Jan van den Ende
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Brad,

as far as Alpha is in question, there never ever WAS a dash-version!
So, 8.4 IS only the next version.

fwiw.

Proost.

Have one on me.

jpe
Don't rust yours pelled jacker to fine doll missed aches.
Jan van den Ende
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Ahhrg

Volker is just too quick!

So, I just have to agree with him.

Proost.

Have one on me.

jpe
Don't rust yours pelled jacker to fine doll missed aches.
Brad McCusker
Respected Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Volker and Jan raise excellent points.

According to that web page, Alpha V8.3 support ends in 2010! So, for Alpha they only provide standard support for current version (8.4), not "current and immediately preceding versions".

According to the web page, HP appears to be breaking its own statements.

Do all the folks running Alpha 8.3 realize their standard support ends this year?

Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International
Robert Brooks_1
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

I'll bet the issue of V8.3 support ending in 2010 was predicated on V8.4 shipping
some time in late 2009, not in 2010.

(Just a guess; I have no official clue as to what's going on in VMS Engineering [or product management] these days).

-- Rob
Brad McCusker
Respected Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

I missed this when looking previously.

The Dec 09 roadmaps indicate V8.3 support through mid-2012, and 8.3-1H1 support through 2012. See attachment.

So, the intent is to keep V8.3 under support for some period of time after V8.4 ships.
Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Brad,

so the openvms_supportchart web page needs to be updated - or the roadmap ?! Please feed back that discrepancy to your contacts at HP.

Volker.
John Gillings
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Brad,

> It seems wrong to make customers upgrade
>to a hardware release when they aren't
>running the topic hardware

Yes and no... We run all our IA64 systems on V8.3-1H1, even those that aren't on the target hardware. We do it for consistency, and it was the latest version at the time of our code freeze for deployment (Highest common denominator?).

Given the compatibility guarantee of dash releases, upgrading to -1H1 shouldn't be a big deal. Just think of it as a big P1 patch.

On the other hand, in the world where stability is paramount, HP just have to live with the bottom line that customers aren't interested in upgrading just because some bean counter at HP decides that they want to trim costs by eliminating support obligations. Too much exposure to "thou shalt incur a reboot on the 3rd Tuesday of every month because we can't be bothered producing quality software".
A crucible of informative mistakes
Ian Miller.
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

I'm not sure what your question is.

The web site says "Unless otherwise agreed to by Hewlett-Packard Company (HP), HP provides HP Support Services only for the current and immediately preceding versions of HP software, "
and V8.3 Alpha and I64 enter EES in 2010 - presumably when V8.4 ships.

So the web is consistent.

According to that site Standard support ends (and EES starts) for VMS I64 V8.3 in 2010 and for V8.3-1H1 in 2011 Q1.
____________________
Purely Personal Opinion
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Ina,

I believe Brad's concern is this:

For Alpha it's easy: when V8.4 will be shipped, the previous is V8.3 and V8.2 will enter EES (PVS). Support for current (V8.4) and previous (V8.3) - but even that simple rule is not correctly reflected in that WEB page.

For I64, the question is: is V8.3-1H1 (a so-called 'hardware-release') considered a 'version'. Examples from the past seem to indicate, that a 'H' release was not considered a 'version'.

It's HP to make the rules or interpret (bend ?) them.

Volker.
Brad McCusker
Respected Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Ian,

I'm sorry I wasn't clear about the question.

Never before, that I am aware of, has a hardware release been considered a seperate "version" with respect to the support policy â HP provides HP Support Services only for the current and immediately preceding versions of HP softwareâ . I don't think it's appropriate now, or ever, to consider it a version, therefor forcing customers to upgrade to a version which has no functional benefit for them.

The question I asked is - Is my thinking out of line? Do others think it is OK to be forced to upgrade to a hardware release that gives them no benefit?
Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International
Ian Miller.
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Top of that page "A version is defined as a release of a software product that contains new features, enhancements, and maintenance updates. ". V8.3-1H1 did include enhancements.

The issue appears to be the web page says V8.3 standard support ends in 2010 but the page also says "Standard support ends when the second subsequent release ships. HP supports the current version and one back. " - and this appears to be contradictory.

I have asked and await a reply.
____________________
Purely Personal Opinion
Volker Halle
Honored Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

Brad, Ian,

about whether V8.3-1H1 qualifies as a 'hardware release', you might want to look at:

http://h71000.www7.hp.com/openvms/binary_compatibility.html


With the upcoming HP OpenVMS hardware release (version 8.3-1H1), ...


Volker.
Brad McCusker
Respected Contributor

Re: Standard Support for OpenVMS V8.3?

UPDATE

I recieved mail from someone in BCS Marketing, a person that the Office of VMS Programs forwarded my mail to.

The posted roadmap (I attached it to an earlier reply) is the correct support plan. They will be updating the web site so it is consistent.

V8.3 I64 and V8.3 Alpha standard support end in June 2012. V8.3-1H1 standard support ends in Dec 2012. So, there is no urgency to get off of V8.3.

I assume this means they plan to release V8.4-next before June 2012.

Thanks to everyone for their feedback.

Brad McCusker
Software Concepts International