POWER6 machines reached end of support on 3/31/2019, with the end of support for many POWER7 models following in September. Many companies are still running these models, and they are looking for options.
In the past, IBM has not offered extended hardware support, but things have changed, and there is a new option available for those of you who won’t be able to move off old hardware before the end of support dates.
IBM is offering Hardware Support Extension, which will allow you to purchase extended hardware maintenance for those systems which are going end of life in 2019. The contracts are limited in time and don’t provide any guarantees that your hardware will actually be fixed.
However, if you are getting continued technical support from IBM, and they will come onsite and fix any issues if they have the parts and a skilled resource available.
Extended Hardware Support should not be your long term strategy
Extended Hardware Support should not be your long term strategy; it should be a short term strategy that allows you to budget and plan for your POWER9 upgrade. The longest term IBM offers is 12 months. There is also the caveat that IBM may withdraw this support with one month’s notice at any time. So, there is a risk that you could be left without support in the long run.
We were pleased to see that the costs are very reasonable, but again, this is not a reason to think this is a good long term option.
The great news is that you can extend your hardware support, without breaking your budget and you have time to plan for your migration to new hardware. That makes this option a win for you.
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