Release: Novell/PlateSpin Migrate 8.1

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After the acquisition of PlateSpin, Novell made several changes inside its subsidiary. already published some of them, like the migration of the development team in India and the replacement of several members that left after the acquisition.

Novell also split the original PlateSpin PowerConvert in two products: Migrate and Protect.

Migrate gets a new update this week, reaching version 8.1.
The product now supports Windows Server 2008 (it’s not clear if this includes the imminent R2 edition but probably not), Windows Vista and Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise 11. But the major new feature of this release is the support Sun Solaris 10.

This support is very specific: the P2V migration can be performed only from a physical Solaris box with SPARC architecture to a Sun Solaris 10 Container (aka Zone).
The other way around is not available at the moment, and it’s not possible to perform a live migration.

The capability is supported through a dedicated version of the product called Migrate for UNIX, which Novell prices at $1,495 for a flat, perpetual license.

PlateSpin is the first company to offer such capability and it certainly is a welcome addition to the already rich feature-set that PowerConvert always offered. Anyway it’s worth to note that Sun offers a free P2V migration tool that perform a similar task since October 2007: it migrates Solaris 8 and 9 physical SPARC boxes on a Solaris 10 container (of course still on SPARC architecture).

The time of the announcement is not casual: now that Oracle acquired Sun, nobody exactly knows what will happen to the Sun Solaris operating system and the SPARC architecture.
If Oracle wants to kill SPARC as some are predicting, Sun customers may have to drop their systems sooner rather than later, and in many cases the mandatory, intermediate step is to consolidate them into fewer boxes.