By Brian Edminster
As great at it would be to see, it really doesn't matter if MPE/iX's network software is never updated to natively handle IPv6 addresses Here's why.
HP 3000s are rarely the only computer system in a datacenter. There's almost always some other system to handle DNS and email and file-serving (although our beloved systems can serve these functions) — to say nothing of firewalls and switches and routers that shield our systems from unwanted accesses, while optimizing the flow of information that we do want to occur.
These other systems (especially the firewalls and routers) are going to be the network access salvation for our legacy systems. That’s because many can, or will, provide bridging between IPv6 and IPv4 address spaces.
And not yet discussed, but even more important, is that in the long run Hewlett-Packard’s HP-PA iron won't be hosting MPE/iX. It'll be running in an emulator (The Stromasys Charon-HPA, as of now) emulation that is hosted on hardware and under an OS that does support IPv6.
I can't say for sure if anyone's tried this approach, but if they haven't at least planned on it yet, Stromasys might want to put this on their to-do list.
One more thing. Anybody that's feeling pushed to migrate or replace an MPE/iX-based application, just because of worries about IPv6, is being driven by Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt. And I'm willing to bet that the FUD is being supplied by any number of parties that have other things to sell, too. It's like a forensic accounting friend of mine used to say. "If you want to know what's really going on, follow the money."