With 2019 upon us, it’s natural for one to wonder what’s in store for IBM i in the upcoming year. According to iTech President, Pete Massiello, the outlook for IBM i is looking good for this year.
“2019 is going to be one of the best years ever for the IBM i community,” Massiello writes.
“IBM has publicly stated (see chart below), that the next version of IBM i, currently called iNext, is coming out sometime this year. I have seen what is in this release, and in my opinion this release will have the most amazing features and functions that have ever been part of an OS release. I know that is a lot to say, but I had numerous demonstrations, and I was very impressed.”
Is IBM i going away? iNext is an indication that notion is false.
“IBM has again publicly stated that there are two releases in the planning stages after 7.3, when the next release is announced it will be great if IBM continues that support for two additional releases. The current versions of iNext and iNext+1 are scheduled to be supported until 2027 and beyond 2028, could we see the next version of iNext+1 to be supported into 2030? Or perhaps until 2032? That would be great news for the IBM i community, and finally get rid of once and for all that stupid notion that IBM i is going away.”
The IBM i roadmap is becoming a busy highway.
“The scale-out POWER9 servers will soon be one year old, and here at iTech Solutions, we are seeing more and more customers moving to these new more powerful servers,” Massiello continues.
Last year, here at iTech Solutions we did just over 400 OS upgrades. That was a record for one year, but it shows that people are moving forward.Pete Massiello, iTech Solutions
“Upgrading from a POWER7+ to a POWER9 we are seeing CPW performance improvements anywhere from 84 percent to 117 percent depending on the processor. Even upgrading from a POWER8 to a POWER9 we are seeing CPW performance improvements of 40 percent to 51 percent. With support going away for many POWER6 and POWER7 servers this year, we will see even more customers moving to POWER9 servers, which provide better performance at a lower cost. That is a great combination. The POWER6 has certainly been supported too long, but the POWER7 servers can still run the gamut of OS releases 7.1, 7.2, and 7.3. The POWER7 servers won’t run the next release of IBM i, so to take advantage of the new release will require you to be on POWER8 or POWER9 servers. Additionally, with the new POWER9 servers only running IBM i 7.2 and 7.3, we are seeing more customers moving forward to the latest releases. Last year, here at iTech Solutions we did just over 400 OS upgrades, that was a record for one year, but it shows that people are moving forward.”
Will 2019 be the last year of the spinning disk?
“While you might think that is a bold statement, if it isn’t this year, it will probably be next year. The price of both SSD and Flash continue to drop, and you don’t see the disk manufacturers creating faster spinning drives, I believe their death is soon. We are installing more and more systems with exclusively SSDs, and in every situation the customer is ecstatic with the performance. As Flash becomes more prevalent, SSD prices will continue to drop, making these better alternatives to spinning drives in the reach of everyone.”