|To RTE... or, not? Stay the course with
HP RTE Systems or migrate to another platform? The long term
viability of the HP 1000 platform is an important issue for many
Users as the platform matures, and manufacturer support declines.
There are several things worth considering on the topic...
In spite of what Users may have heard, Hewlett Packard has made a
formal commitment to manufacture HP 1000 Series hardware through the
turn of the century, and support the platform with parts and service
until the year 2010.
This commitment is not merely a gesture of generosity. HP is
contractually obligated to numerous large 1000 Series Users, the
government and military in particular, to supply equipment and
support the platform for the foreseeable future. Thousands of HP
1000 computers are still in use. As a consequence, smaller HP 1000
Users also are the beneficiary of this arrangement. Some Users may
say skeptically, "yes, but support at what level?"
|It cannot be denied that lead times on new or
replacement HP 1000 hardware could be improved upon, or that
software support is on the wane. However, anyone utilizing other
platforms, whether HP, IBM, DEC, or PC, knows that this is an
While HP 1000 Users may be tempted to convert to other, "newer"
platforms the question remains: what platform is really better for
the application? Is there an alternative Real-Time (or other-wise!)
computer and multi-user operating system which is certain to be
available from any manufacturer five or ten years from now?
The answer is most likely there is not, and the costs associated
with migration, including the purchase of new equipment, retraining
of personnel, and down-time while the conversion occurs, can be
staggering. In terms of performance, the unique features of the HP
RTE operating system and system architecture match up very well with
any of the alternative Real-Time platforms on the market today.
|The HP A990, for instance, performing a variety of
I/O, networking, and interrupt-driven tasks is comparable to that of
a much more powerful CPU running UNIX or NT.
HP RTE Users also may be concerned about costs for purchasing
additional equipment and ongoing maintenance and service.
Hewlett-Packard has stated that it has no plans for price increases
in 1996, a policy carried over from the previous year. Regarding
maintenance/service, Users desiring to reduce these costs have many
options available, including: reduced level of HP support,
third-party service providers, an on-site (or hotsite) "spare"
In conclusion, there are many advantages to staying with the HP 1000
platform as opposed to migrating to another. And, in addition to all
the reasons noted above you can be assured Monterey Bay
Communications will continue to support all your RTE needs well into
the next century.