Gartner Research

Migration from UNIX/RISC to x86

Published: 08 October 2009

ID: G00203820

Analyst(s): Richard Jones


Difficult economic times and extremely tight budgets have IT organizations questioning the old adage: "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Reduced instruction set computer (RISC) customers trying to react to the IT budget crunch are tantalized by the prospect of lower costs that may be achieved by moving to x86-based platforms. But can cost savings be achieved in all cases? And what's the best approach to planning and accomplishing a RISC-to-x86 platform migration? In this Burton Group assessment, Service Director Richard Jones outlines the planning and migrating steps for moving proprietary RISC hardware systems to open x86 systems.

Table Of Contents

Summary of Findings


  • Business and Technical Drivers for Migration
  • Migration Methodology
    • Organizational Buy-In
    • Environmental Assessment
    • Planning
    • Execution
  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Ensure the Organization Is on the Same Page
  • Spend the Bulk of Your Time Assessing and Planning
  • Spend Time to Document Homegrown Applications
  • Migrate to a Virtual x86 Environment
  • Plan Each System Migration Independently
  • Do Not Compress the Project Time Frame
    • Keep the Project in Scope
    • Break a Large Project into Smaller Projects

The Details

  • Custom Application Porting Issues
    • Sample C Program Issues
  • Additional Reading and Resources



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