Thursday, March 11, 2010

HP-UX 11iv3 U6 will include an optional parallel rc sequencer

One of the questions users ask me most is How come HP-UX takes such a long time to boot and shutdown?

I always reply that the startup rc sequencer works serially, thus any subsystem that takes a long time to either start (CIM) or stop (OVPA) will have a negative impact as everyone else will be waiting in queue. And yes, I also add that Linux's been doing it in parallel for years.

In the old days, HP-UX used to stand above many other BSD-derived Unix flavors with its really nice startup checklist. Yet, as startup times are getting longer and longer, a new parallel sequencer was needed and HP announced one a few days ago through a whitepaper. I expect startup and shutdown times to decrease at least twofold in the long term with this.

Details are in this whitepaper here:

The RCEnhancement bundle is available in the software depot and it sure looks promising. At first glance, I'm not sure I like the way it's being implemented with the "rcutil" command when compared to some Linux offerings I've seen which use config files. On the upside, administrators used to the current SYSV sequence will feel comfortable right away using this one.

I know nothing of what's going on in the labs but my take is that the parallel sequencer is a backport of what's being developped for 11iv4. If that is the case, chances are strong that HP will rewrite many of their startup scripts under 11iv4 to use the new sequencer, thus promoting "now boots 200% faster!" as a marketing incentive to encourage users to migrate to v4 when the time comes.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I really don't see much benefit in speeding up the boot process. IMHO they should invest more time into not needing to reboot the system instead of copying 'trendy' Linux stuff.

And compared to the chaos that is a Linux boot.log, HP-UX displays your bootup very cleanly. I hope they keep this.

Rant over ;-)

Michael Leu