11 June 2002 Hewlett-Packard (HP) has ported its HP-UX Unix operating system to Intel’s forthcoming 64-bit Itanium 2 microprocessor. It has also signed a deal with application server vendor BEA Systems to port its WebLogic and Tuxedo software to the system.
HP-UX11i version 1.6 for Itanium 2 is 100% source-code and binary compatible with previous versions for HP’s PA-RISC chip, HP claims, and also has the same interface. It supports application development tools for Java, C, C++ and Fortran, 64 processors and hot-swappable components.
It also has a dynamically tuneable kernel and intrusion detection software. In addition, the company promises Linux source code and binary compatibility in early 2003 and hopes to include key features of Compaq’s Tru64 64-bit Unix, such as TruClusters and Advanced File System, in future releases.
BEA says it will make fully supported versions of BEA WebLogic and BEA Tuxedo available to customers during the second half of 2002, making HP-UX the first Unix operating system BEA will support on Itanium. The two companies are working together to encourage adoption of Itanium among enterprises, they claim.
Adoption of Intel’s first 64-bit chip Itanium was poor, with few enterprises wanting to make the move from their existing, 32-bit systems to 64-bit systems that offered little extra and with many drawbacks. Intel is hoping Itanium 2 will provide more reasons for companies to upgrade. Itanium 2 offers improved performance and better memory handling for database and other server technologies in particular.