IBM announce end of support date for IBM POWER 7+ Servers

IBM is set to remove hardware support for IBM POWER 7+ systems at the end of 2020.

IBM has announced the removal of hardware support for IBM POWER 7+ systems at the end of 2020. These are the ‘D’ model systems – those systems with a model number ending ‘D’, for example E4D, E6D, MMD. All other POWER 7 systems (those with model number ending ‘B’ or ‘C’) had their hardware support ended as of 30th September 2019. IBM are expected to offer extended support at a premium after the end of service date for each system. If you would like to learn about this option visit our IBM Maintenance page.

What impact does this have on IBM i Operating System support?

IBM POWER 7 and IBM POWER 7+ were the last generation of processors to run IBM i V6.1. IBM closed their extended support for V6.1 on 30th September 2019, so this means users have to migrate to new hardware and software before the end of next year to remain in standard IBM support at any level. An OS upgrade from V6.1 to V7.2 is supported in a single jump, but V7.2 has also been announced that it will cease standard support in April 2021. So after this date V6.1 really does become a legacy release with no supported upgrade path.

Users who run IBM i V7.1 on POWER 7 or POWER 7+ will also face the same scenario, though it is conceivable that IBM will lengthen  their extended support for V7.1 into 2021 allowing users to pay the premium and remain in software and hardware support for their POWER 7 or POWER 7+ system. Being at V7.1 allows a direct upgrade to V7.3 which has no announced end of program support and so offers this safety net. For IBM POWER 7 or IBM POWER 7+ users at V7.1, their recommended path is an upgrade to V7.2 or V7.3 followed by a hardware migration to IBM POWER 9 – the latest CPU from IBM – and then onwards to the latest and greatest V7.4.

System Processor POWER Model Hardware End Of Support Date
IBM POWER 7
E4B
30/09/2019
IBM POWER 7
E4C
30/09/2019
IBM POWER 7+
E4D
30/12/2020

Important dates to know for IBM POWER and POWER 7+ users

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