Martin Fink Webcast - VMS

This is a discussion on Martin Fink Webcast - VMS ; As I was unable to participate in the webcast due to family issues, I'm hoping there will be a transcript/recording/download/etc. of it available at some point. I think its fair to say that the question I posed - as I ...

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  1. Martin Fink Webcast

    As I was unable to participate in the webcast due to family issues, I'm hoping
    there will be a transcript/recording/download/etc. of it available at some
    point.

    I think its fair to say that the question I posed - as I posed it - was not
    addressed:

    1. OpenVMS, HP Business Continuity

    HP recently went around to the major OpenVMS ISVs (Cerner, MiSys (aka Sunquest),
    and others) and promoted UX instead of OpenVMS on Itanium causing a large-scale
    abandonment of both OpenVMS and HP in favor of IBM and AIX. We know this because
    our vendors told us this is what happened and our colleagues at other sites tell
    us that this is how their management have responded to the word from the
    vendors. Please explain HP's thinking in this action, and what, if anything, HP
    is doing to stem this tide, if not reverse it.

    --
    David J Dachtera
    dba DJE Systems
    http://www.djesys.com/

    Unofficial OpenVMS Marketing Home Page
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/market/

    Unofficial Affordable OpenVMS Home Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/soho/

    Unofficial OpenVMS-IA32 Home Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/ia32/

    Unofficial OpenVMS Hobbyist Support Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/support/

  2. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    David J Dachtera wrote:
    > As I was unable to participate in the webcast due to family issues, I'm hoping
    > there will be a transcript/recording/download/etc. of it available at some
    > point.
    >
    > I think its fair to say that the question I posed - as I posed it - was not
    > addressed:
    >
    > 1. OpenVMS, HP Business Continuity
    >
    > HP recently went around to the major OpenVMS ISVs (Cerner, MiSys (aka Sunquest),
    > and others) and promoted UX instead of OpenVMS on Itanium causing a large-scale
    > abandonment of both OpenVMS and HP in favor of IBM and AIX. We know this because
    > our vendors told us this is what happened and our colleagues at other sites tell
    > us that this is how their management have responded to the word from the
    > vendors. Please explain HP's thinking in this action, and what, if anything, HP
    > is doing to stem this tide, if not reverse it.


    Assuming the veracity of this report (amongst others in this forum) the
    VMS 30th Anniversary feels an awfully like being amongst the relatives
    and well-wishers gathered around the ICU bed of a much-loved sportsman
    seriously injured in a low-speed collision with a shopping trolley. The
    respirator chugs its whirrr-chup-sigh-whirrr-chup-sigh. The heart
    monitor continues its intermittent and largely silent trace. A urinary
    catheter drains the kidneys into a clear plastic bag placed discretely
    below eye-level. The gastric feeding tube ensures macro- and
    micro-nutrients, electrolytes, and fluids continue to sustain essential
    metabolic activity. Venepuncture administered barbituates suppress
    potential seizures. All these are periodically checked and supplemented
    or replaced as necessary. The EEG display is flat and the high-profile
    club for which the sportsman was once an elite player has quietly
    suspended the contract. Sponsors continue to fund the expensive
    life-support (just as well it's cheaper on the subcontinent) out of an
    awkward sense of responsibility. It's a melancholy affair. Admirers
    extoll the achievements of the nearly-departed. Those wishing to get on
    with it are anxious not to appear anxious to get on with it. Nobody,
    least of all immediate relatives still receiving royalties from
    high-profile sponsors, seems willing to sign the release. Anything else
    would seem a lot less deserving for a (once) elite sportsman.

    --
    Clevinger was dead. That was the basic flaw in his philosophy.
    [Joseph Heller; Catch-22]

  3. Re: Martin Fink Webcast


    "David J Dachtera" wrote in message
    news:4722AFBE.A92777F@spam.comcast.net...
    > As I was unable to participate in the webcast due to family issues, I'm
    > hoping
    > there will be a transcript/recording/download/etc. of it available at some
    > point.
    >
    > I think its fair to say that the question I posed - as I posed it - was
    > not
    > addressed:
    >
    > 1. OpenVMS, HP Business Continuity
    >
    > HP recently went around to the major OpenVMS ISVs (Cerner, MiSys (aka
    > Sunquest),
    > and others) and promoted UX instead of OpenVMS on Itanium causing a
    > large-scale
    > abandonment of both OpenVMS and HP in favor of IBM and AIX. We know this
    > because
    > our vendors told us this is what happened and our colleagues at other
    > sites tell
    > us that this is how their management have responded to the word from the
    > vendors. Please explain HP's thinking in this action, and what, if
    > anything, HP
    > is doing to stem this tide, if not reverse it.
    >
    > --


    Answers to the questions sent to Martin Fink can be viewed at:

    https://www.encompassus.org/communit...onsAnswers.doc




  4. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Dave Gudewicz wrote:
    >
    > Answers to the questions sent to Martin Fink can be viewed at:
    >
    > https://www.encompassus.org/communit...onsAnswers.doc


    And for those thet prefer PDF before MS-Word,
    I've made a PDF version that can be found here :

    http://www.jescab.se/upload/FinkQuestionsAnswers.pdf

    Regards,
    Jan-Erik.

  5. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Jan-Erik Söderholm wrote:
    > Dave Gudewicz wrote:
    >>
    >> Answers to the questions sent to Martin Fink can be viewed at:
    >>
    >> https://www.encompassus.org/communit...onsAnswers.doc


    I really have to wonder about a user group dedicated to VMS which
    publishes application/msword documents. At least their web server didn't
    feed as as "application/octet-stream". And can ayone explain why they
    would publish an https: URL for a document that should be public ?



    > I've made a PDF version that can be found here :
    >
    > http://www.jescab.se/upload/FinkQuestionsAnswers.pdf



    Many thanks for taking the time to provide a document in readable format.

    As for the contents, there is no point in commenting.

  6. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Ok, there is one comment I cannot resist because this appears to be a
    new spin at HP.

    I was startled by Fink's comments about VMS customers not wanting
    regular/frequent software upgrades.

    Once HP management accepts the brainwahsing that VMS customers don't
    want upgrades, it becomes far easier for them to slow down VMS
    development to include only support for new devices.

    Very dangerous slope.

  7. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    At this years bootcamp and at previous bootcamp there was no interest
    from attendees in upgrading vms more than once a year, and in fact
    once a year was too often for some people. (There is a lot of work in
    upgrading a operating system version on a live production system.)

    This is consistent with HP's position that a new release every 18-24
    months fits with what customers want.





  8. RE: Martin Fink Webcast


    > -----Original Message-----
    > From: IanMiller [mailto:gxys@uk2.net]
    > Sent: October 27, 2007 4:08 PM
    > To: Info-VAX@Mvb.Saic.Com
    > Subject: Re: Martin Fink Webcast
    >
    > At this years bootcamp and at previous bootcamp there was no interest
    > from attendees in upgrading vms more than once a year, and in fact
    > once a year was too often for some people. (There is a lot of work in
    > upgrading a operating system version on a live production system.)
    >
    > This is consistent with HP's position that a new release every 18-24
    > months fits with what customers want.
    >



    And lets put things in perspective - the upgrade from Windows XP SP2 to Vista was
    approximately 3+ years as I recall.

    Windows 2003 to V.Next will be in the same range (might be longer).

    Regards


    Kerry Main
    Senior Consultant
    HP Services Canada
    Voice: 613-592-4660
    Fax: 613-591-4477
    kerryDOTmainAThpDOTcom
    (remove the DOT's and AT)

    OpenVMS - the secure, multi-site OS that just works.




  9. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    IanMiller wrote:
    > At this years bootcamp and at previous bootcamp there was no interest
    > from attendees in upgrading vms more than once a year, and in fact
    > once a year was too often for some people. (There is a lot of work in
    > upgrading a operating system version on a live production system.)
    >
    > This is consistent with HP's position that a new release every 18-24
    > months fits with what customers want.
    >
    >
    >
    >


    An O/S upgrade can be a major undertaking in any commercial environment.
    I've been through an upgrade that required ~3000 man hours of
    planning and testing. The actual upgrade, O/S and layered products
    combined (ACMS, RDB, etc,etc.) was a small matter compared with the
    necessary preparation. This included cloning a test cluster from the
    production system, upgrading and testing the test cluster and doing a
    lot of tuning of ACMS/RDB. The upgrade not only provided the new
    features that were wanted but also a substantial peformance improvement
    thanks, in large part, to the tuning and testing and tuning and testing.
    .. . .



  10. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    On Oct 27, 3:21 pm, JF Mezei wrote:
    > Ok, there is one comment I cannot resist because this appears to be a
    > new spin at HP.
    >
    > I was startled by Fink's comments about VMS customers not wanting
    > regular/frequent software upgrades.
    >
    > Once HP management accepts the brainwahsing that VMS customers don't
    > want upgrades, it becomes far easier for them to slow down VMS
    > development to include only support for new devices.
    >
    > Very dangerous slope.


    JF,

    The response about "... do want to update their software environments
    on a regular basis." was in response to a question about open source
    software.

    Many open source projects are in a continuous state of flux, versions
    appear in some cases on a weekly basis. It is my opinion, reading the
    document from the Encompass www server that Mr. Fink's comments in
    that regard are correct. The production community does not, in my
    experience, want to deal with new component versions on a frequent
    basis. This is not about fixes for known problems, these are new
    releases with both fixes and new features.

    Having had clients where the supported environment is in a constant
    state of flux, it is extraordinarily frustrating production
    experience.

    I would not interpret this comment negatively, it is a comment
    directly in response to a particular question, and is, IMHO, a
    reasonable response to that question.

    - Bob Gezelter, http://www.rlgsc.com


  11. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    On Oct 27, 5:22 pm, Bob Gezelter wrote:
    > On Oct 27, 3:21 pm, JF Mezei wrote:
    >
    > > Ok, there is one comment I cannot resist because this appears to be a
    > > new spin at HP.

    >
    > > I was startled by Fink's comments about VMS customers not wanting
    > > regular/frequent software upgrades.

    >
    > > Once HP management accepts the brainwahsing that VMS customers don't
    > > want upgrades, it becomes far easier for them to slow down VMS
    > > development to include only support for new devices.

    >
    > > Very dangerous slope.

    >
    > JF,
    >
    > The response about "... do want to update their software environments
    > on a regular basis." was in response to a question about open source
    > software.
    >
    > Many open source projects are in a continuous state of flux, versions
    > appear in some cases on a weekly basis. It is my opinion, reading the
    > document from the Encompass www server that Mr. Fink's comments in
    > that regard are correct. The production community does not, in my
    > experience, want to deal with new component versions on a frequent
    > basis. This is not about fixes for known problems, these are new
    > releases with both fixes and new features.
    >
    > Having had clients where the supported environment is in a constant
    > state of flux, it is extraordinarily frustrating production
    > experience.
    >
    > I would not interpret this comment negatively, it is a comment
    > directly in response to a particular question, and is, IMHO, a
    > reasonable response to that question.
    >
    > - Bob Gezelter,http://www.rlgsc.com


    JF,

    I hit too soon.

    There is northing in Mr. Fink's response indicating that customers do
    not want upgrades, merely that they want them at a measured pace.

    One does not want to have support dealing with many different versions
    of the code, it quickly becomes unmanageable. Think of calling support
    and inquiring about a problem:

    Customer: I have the following problem .....
    Support: What version of this code are you running?
    Customer: 5.23-145
    Support: Oh, it looks like something like you describe was fixed in
    5.23-199; the current version is 5.23-345. The only fix is to upgrade
    to the latest version.
    Customer: This is a production system, I need a patch kit, if there
    is new functionality, I will have to re-qualify the entire
    application.
    Support: Sorry, they do not do patch kits, only new versions

    In the non-OpenVMS aspects of my practice, been there, done that. It
    does not make for a good situation.

    - Bob Gezelter, http://www.rlgsc.com


  12. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    >> On Oct 27, 3:21 pm, JF Mezei wrote:
    >>
    >>> Once HP management accepts the brainwahsing that VMS customers don't
    >>> want upgrades, it becomes far easier for them to slow down VMS
    >>> development to include only support for new devices.
    >>> Very dangerous slope.

    >> JF,


    Right, let me ask, how many mission-critical systems
    do *you* currently support either as hired system manager
    or as a consultant ?

    It would be very intersting to know, since it would make
    it easier to judge the real-life background to your
    opinions and put them in some context.

    Best Regards
    Jan-Erik
    (2 mission-critical systems at 2 customers as a consultant)

  13. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    In article <1193515660.500967.181420@22g2000hsm.googlegroups.c om>, IanMiller writes:
    >
    >
    >At this years bootcamp and at previous bootcamp there was no interest
    >from attendees in upgrading vms more than once a year, and in fact
    >once a year was too often for some people. (There is a lot of work in
    >upgrading a operating system version on a live production system.)


    Ian,

    Were these the _same_ attendees with the Micro$haft Weendoze laptops
    rebooting every 18-24 mins and broadcasting ad hoc wireless networks
    called 'bootcamp'?



    >This is consistent with HP's position that a new release every 18-24
    >months fits with what customers want.


    What customers *do* want is an OS that doesn't require them to have to
    upgrade and reboot frequently; strangely, this desirable trait is dia-
    metrically juxtaposed to the reality of Weendoze.

    --
    VAXman- A Bored Certified VMS Kernel Mode Hacker VAXman(at)TMESIS(dot)COM

    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"

    http://tmesis.com/drat.html

  14. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Mark Daniel wrote:
    >
    > David J Dachtera wrote:
    > > As I was unable to participate in the webcast due to family issues, I'm hoping
    > > there will be a transcript/recording/download/etc. of it available at some
    > > point.
    > >
    > > I think its fair to say that the question I posed - as I posed it - was not
    > > addressed:
    > >
    > > 1. OpenVMS, HP Business Continuity
    > >
    > > HP recently went around to the major OpenVMS ISVs (Cerner, MiSys (aka Sunquest),
    > > and others) and promoted UX instead of OpenVMS on Itanium causing a large-scale
    > > abandonment of both OpenVMS and HP in favor of IBM and AIX. We know this because
    > > our vendors told us this is what happened and our colleagues at other sites tell
    > > us that this is how their management have responded to the word from the
    > > vendors. Please explain HP's thinking in this action, and what, if anything, HP
    > > is doing to stem this tide, if not reverse it.

    >
    > Assuming the veracity of this report [snip]


    E-mail me privately and I'll forward you the messages that came directly from
    the vendors and from other sites.

    --
    David J Dachtera
    dba DJE Systems
    http://www.djesys.com/

    Unofficial OpenVMS Marketing Home Page
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/market/

    Unofficial Affordable OpenVMS Home Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/soho/

    Unofficial OpenVMS-IA32 Home Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/ia32/

    Unofficial OpenVMS Hobbyist Support Page:
    http://www.djesys.com/vms/support/

  15. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Bob Gezelter wrote:

    > I would not interpret this comment negatively, it is a comment
    > directly in response to a particular question, and is, IMHO, a
    > reasonable response to that question.



    Instead of:
    ##
    Response: OpenVMS customers typically do not want to update their
    software environments on a
    regular basis. Therefore, the strategy for OpenVMS, regarding
    OpenSource, is to monitor (open source releases for a stable one to port
    to vms).
    ##


    He could have said:

    VMS customers typically want stable and reliable software so the
    stragegy for OpenVMS regarding OPenSource, is to monitor (etc etc).


    Sorry, but VMS customers do want to update their software on a regular
    basis. We can debate the frequency between once a year, once every 18
    months, 2 years etc, but we still want regular software updates.


    the owner of VMS has used that argument to justify not providing the
    promised 8.* version for VAX-VMS. And from the real world perspective,
    the statement "customers do not want regular software updates" is usally
    translated as "customers are running legacy environments that do not
    evolve".

    Will HP now start to use that argument for the Alpha installed base to
    justify a decision to stop developping Alpha-VMS ?


    Anyone who runs TCPIP Services probably wants an accelerated development
    speed so that we can catch up with the rest of the world, especially wth
    regards to SMTP software that needs to evolve to mainain the ability to
    send/receive emails and filter spam.


    When Steve Jobs speaks, people listen, and they will not only read
    between lines, but also between words and between letters to try to get
    a peak at possible future strategies. And Jobs knows this and his
    speeches are designed to leave some easter eggs between the lines so
    that the customer base and media can speculate about improvements that
    might happen. Jobs has leaked the possibility of the iphone in that very
    same way.


    This webcast was pre-prepared with edited questions and pre-prepared
    answers. So words were carefully chosen.

  16. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    JF Mezei wrote:
    > Bob Gezelter wrote:
    >
    >> I would not interpret this comment negatively, it is a comment
    >> directly in response to a particular question, and is, IMHO, a
    >> reasonable response to that question.

    >
    >
    >
    > Instead of:
    > ##
    > Response: OpenVMS customers typically do not want to update their
    > software environments on a
    > regular basis. Therefore, the strategy for OpenVMS, regarding
    > OpenSource, is to monitor (open source releases for a stable one to port
    > to vms).
    > ##
    >
    >
    > He could have said:
    >
    > VMS customers typically want stable and reliable software so the
    > stragegy for OpenVMS regarding OPenSource, is to monitor (etc etc).
    >
    >
    > Sorry, but VMS customers do want to update their software on a regular
    > basis. We can debate the frequency between once a year, once every 18
    > months, 2 years etc, but we still want regular software updates.
    >
    >
    > the owner of VMS has used that argument to justify not providing the
    > promised 8.* version for VAX-VMS. And from the real world perspective,
    > the statement "customers do not want regular software updates" is usally
    > translated as "customers are running legacy environments that do not
    > evolve".
    >
    > Will HP now start to use that argument for the Alpha installed base to
    > justify a decision to stop developping Alpha-VMS ?
    >



    Is anyone who is still using a VAX in production REALLY interested in
    "evolution"? The VAX was a fine machine in it's day but the Alphas are
    a lot faster!



  17. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Richard B. Gilbert wrote:
    > Is anyone who is still using a VAX in production REALLY interested in
    > "evolution"? The VAX was a fine machine in it's day but the Alphas are
    > a lot faster!



    A few points:

    Fink used "regular" not "frequent" when refering to software upgrades.
    Big difference.

    Secondly, the point about VAX is that this argument of customers not
    needing upgrades was used to justify breaking a promise. But this time,
    he didn't mention "VAX", it mentioned "OpenVMS" which means all
    customers, alpha and iA64 included.

    Take a careful look at question 8. Consider that HP has told Cerner to
    drop VMS and tell me if Fink's answer with regards to support of ISVs is
    credible. And tell me if he actually answered the question about
    continued development of VMS.

    Also important in the answer is the tense use to open the response: THE
    PAST. Yep, it all mentions about investments made in the past. And the
    big whopper: Those investments have allowed sales of IA64 to grow since
    IA64 was first made available. Big woopty doo. Like Digital being the
    fastest growing PC maker when sales of its PC went from 1 to 10 (1000%
    growth)

    Except for the statement about VMS customers no longer wanting regular
    software updates, there is nothing of substance in that message/document.

  18. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Main, Kerry wrote:

    >> From: IanMiller...
    >>
    > > At this years bootcamp and at previous bootcamp there was no interest
    >> from attendees in upgrading vms more than once a year, and in fact
    >> once a year was too often for some people. (There is a lot of work in
    >> upgrading a operating system version on a live production system.)
    >>
    >> This is consistent with HP's position that a new release every 18-24
    >> months fits with what customers want.

    >
    >
    > And lets put things in perspective - the upgrade from Windows XP SP2 to Vista was
    > approximately 3+ years as I recall.
    >
    > Windows 2003 to V.Next will be in the same range (might be longer).



    The most recent major release cycle (8.2 to 8.3) on OpenVMS on Alpha and
    Itanium was about 1.5 years or so. (Not counting maintenance releases
    nor hardware releases in that, obviously. Nor OpenVMS VAX.)

    2.5 years for the most recent Mac OS X; from Tiger 10.4 to Leopard 10.5.

    Linux provides anything from the "dailies" to the distribution
    formulations that target stability and support.

    Probably the biggest difference across these platforms is the scale of
    the upgrades involved, and the packaging of the many and varied pieces
    (eg: web servers, file services, networking, etc) involved.

    OS upgrades are a continuum. As are user and software environments.
    The requirements and expectations and cycles are unique; each site differs.

    Though release cycles and release intervals are a bit of a canard.

    Releases and release cycles are just numbers embedded on ephemera,
    lacking specific meaning,

    Release contents and changes are the real consideration here; components
    such as the Apache and LightTPD web servers, languages such as Ruby, php
    and perl, databases such as MySQL, PostgreSQL and SQLite, etc. UI tools
    including the native interface and the browser DOM tools.

    The OS version and even the OS itself is of decreasing interest and of
    decreasing relevance; the tools and applications further up the stack
    are increasingly central. How many of us are still choosing to use
    platform-specific tools and interfaces if a viable open or standard
    interface or command or application alternative exists, after all?

    The OS applications are an increasingly large part of an OS (version)
    system upgrade and of upgrade-related and application-level testing, and
    -- if and when a customer decides upon it -- of a platform port. And it
    is these OS-level applications that are an increasing part of a typical
    OS upgrade; that either drive the upgrade, or that can limit it.

    And then there's the "fun" of how all of these increasingly important
    components are all off-cycle in an OS release, something that can drive
    an inexperienced release manager or business manager, well, bonkers.
    But I digress.

    If you're locked into a platform -- and this can be locked into an
    application such as a web server, or locked into an operating system --
    you're left with a business decision around the cost of upgrading and
    the cost of porting, and (and this can be the nasty one; like staying on
    older software and older hardware becoming increasingly expensive) the
    cost of lost opportunities from the unavailability of newer tools and
    mechanisms.

    Upon re-reading all of this text, I'll probably turn this message into a
    blog posting.


    --
    www.HoffmanLabs.com
    Services for OpenVMS

  19. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    Stephen Hoffman wrote:
    > Releases and release cycles are just numbers embedded on ephemera,
    > lacking specific meaning,


    Actually, there a meaning when you are looking are serious applications.

    When a bank buys a big applications for its mainframe to deal with
    millions of dollars, that application comes with a pedigree of
    requirements and has been tested/certified to run on a specific
    configuration of version for each OS/middleware that are required.

    An OS that is a constantly moving target in terms of
    updates/upgrades/patches makes it harder for an ISV to certify an
    appplication for that OS.

  20. Re: Martin Fink Webcast

    JF Mezei wrote:
    > Stephen Hoffman wrote:
    >> Releases and release cycles are just numbers embedded on ephemera,
    >> lacking specific meaning,

    >
    > Actually, there a meaning when you are looking are serious applications.
    >
    > When a bank buys a big applications for its mainframe to deal with
    > millions of dollars, that application comes with a pedigree of
    > requirements and has been tested/certified to run on a specific
    > configuration of version for each OS/middleware that are required.
    >
    > An OS that is a constantly moving target in terms of
    > updates/upgrades/patches makes it harder for an ISV to certify an
    > appplication for that OS.



    You're certainly very close to understanding how this delegation of
    responsibility and the related marketing and version-numbering works,
    but not quite there yet.


    --
    www.HoffmanLabs.com
    Services for OpenVMS

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