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Table of Contents

Executive Summary

Brief History of HP-UX


Math behind Server

Scenarios Analyzed

Data Collection Strategy

Respondent Profile

Customer Perceptions
about v3

Benefits of v3

Time Spent Implementing
v3 Upgrade

Two Sides of the
TCU Equation

The Power of Upgrades

Cash Flow Analysis for
Scenario #1

Cash Flow Analysis for
Scenario #2

Cash Flow Analysis for
Scenario #3

Cash Flow Analysis for
Scenario #4

Oracle Users Will Enjoy
Greater Savings


Quantifying the Total Cost of Upgrade (TCU) for HP-UX Environments to HP-UX 11i v3

Detailed analyses of costs and benefits associated with upgrading earlier versions of the HP-UX 11i operating environment to HP-UX 11i v3. (February 2009)

In 2008, HP marked the 25th anniversary of the HP-UX® operating system. Since the 1990 introduction of HP 9000® servers with PA-RISC® microprocessors, HP-UX has been a leader in the UNIX market. In 2001, a version of HP-UX was released for the newly announced HP Integrity® server product family. Today, thousands of companies worldwide rely on the HP-UX operating environment running on HP 9000 and HP Integrity servers as key components of their IT infrastructure.

In 2007 HP introduced HP-UX 11i v3, the latest version of HP-UX. Also known as v3, this operating environment came bundled with new features and applications designed to make HP-UX more reliable, robust and easier to deploy and manage. A study conducted by TechWise Research® in 2007 found that customers had already started running v3 on production servers. Since more than a year has passed, TechWise® conducted this current study to determine whether or not v3 is delivering on its promises of increased performance, manageability, and reliability. In this study, TechWise collected detailed operational data about HP-UX 11i v1, v2 and v3 running on both HP Integrity and HP 9000 servers. Thousands of IT managers who are currently running HP-UX 11i v1 or v2 are facing the decision of whether or not they should upgrade to v3. This paper explores this question by conducting Total Cost of Upgrade (TCU) analyses, based on data provided by 130 respondents in 14 different countries.

Overall, customer data indicates that v3 is delivering on most of its promises. Each server installation is unique in terms of hardware, software applications, and configuration. In terms of performance, some respondents see a moderate difference between v2 and v3 while others see a significant difference. On average, respondents who have v3 running on Integrity report that it is 29% faster than v2 on Integrity. In terms of manageability, Integrity servers running v3 require far less time to manage on an ongoing basis than HP 9000 servers running v1 or v2. The story is a little different on Integrity. Respondents reported that on average Integrity servers running v3 require slightly more time to manage than Integrity servers running v2. The difference between Integrity v2 and Integrity v3 is small and has a negligible impact on the TCU analysis.

Where v3 shines the most is in the area of reliability. For some companies, the cost of an hour of downtime is measured in the tens, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars. Integrity servers running v3 averaged only 2 hours of unplanned downtime over 12 months compared to 4.5 hours for Integrity servers running v2 and 14.2 hours for HP 9000 servers running v1/v2. On Integrity, v3 offers a 56% reduction in unplanned downtime compared to v2. Much of this reduction is due to the virtual elimination of unplanned downtime caused by server failures during planned maintenance. This is an area that v3 was designed to address.

TechWise Research conducted TCU analyses on four different upgrade scenarios. Rather than selecting these scenarios randomly, TechWise approached HP, requesting that they provide scenarios representative of the market. Three scenarios involve upgrading systems to HP BL870c blades running v3. Two of these scenarios break even in less than one year while the third breaks even in 1.7 years. All three result in positive cumulative cash flows after just three years. The final scenario involved consolidating 14 midrange HP 9000 servers into two Integrity Superdomes. Despite the fact that these two enterprise-class servers have a list price of over $5.2 million, this scenario breaks even in 1.3 or 1.9 years, depending on whether or not an Oracle database is running on the servers.

In these challenging times, IT managers will undoubtedly face even greater pressure to reduce costs. Those who are managing HP-UX servers more than three years old should seriously consider upgrading to HP-UX 11i v3 as a way to position their company for success while saving valuable IT dollars in the near future.

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