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Cognos will Mature its 3000 customers

Cognos updated its product roadmap for PowerHouse yesterday, giving the HP 3000 community a new service name for what's becoming a norm in the community: MPE/iX support extended  into 2009.

The new level of support is extended beyond HP's confirmed 3000 support date of December 31, 2008. HP itself is "conceptualizing" such support for its customers in 2009. Cognos announced today that the users of the Application Development Tool PowerHouse — at least those who cannot migrate by the end of next year — can count on support through the end of 2009.

The Canadian company that offered the 3000 market the first third-party reporting option in Quiz, lo those three decades ago, put up a roadmap document (a three-page PDF file) on its PowerHouse Overview Web page yesterday. The map covers the destiny of every kind of PowerHouse which Cognos still supports. HP 3000 customers will receive "Mature Platform Extended Support."

Cognos would prefer that its HP 3000 customers migrate. In fact, the company says that

As part of our HPe3000 migration strategy, PowerHouse 4GL, PowerHouse Web, and Axiant 4GL support Marxmeier AG's Eloquence, which has an IMAGE emulation layer. To assist in migration planning, we published an MPE/iX Migration Planning Guide in March 2005 that was updated in 2007.

The HP 3000 is beyond Vintage Support, by Cognos standards. Your platform qualifies as mature.

Roadmaps have become popular with vendors who sell long-running product lines. After 10 or more years something newer has usually surfaced, a product that might replace the long-running solution. The roadmaps are an assurance to the customers that the future includes their product, perhaps even some new features.

HP 3000 customers saw roadmaps in 1999, 2000 and even in 2001. HP announced the obsolescence of its HP 3000 operations at the end of 2001. As guarantees go, most of these roadmaps don't measure up. It's always better to look at the size of the installed base for a guarantee.

The PowerHouse plan for MPE/iX support includes the usual encouragement to migrate to other supported platforms. At the moment those are HP-UX, Windows, OpenVMS on the Integrity HP servers — and just last month, Linux, for PowerHouse Web and PowerHouse.

As for MPE/iX support, the version installed at hundreds to thousands of HP 3000 sites will be fully support through the end of next year. In 2009, "Mature Platform Extended Support is available
for selected products after the maturity date."

PowerHouse on OpenVMS for Alpha servers gets Vintage Support, just like IBM's iSeries and AS/400 servers. What will PowerHouse HP 3000 customers get in Cognos support during 2009? The roadmap letter explains:

Mature Platform Extended Support is similar to Vintage Support. There are two differences.First, Mature Platform Extended Support is intended as a short-term  stopgap between the end of development support and migration. Second, since the [HP] no longer supports the platform, some of the support provisions, such as providing workarounds, may be limited if the platform itself is not available.