Many NonStop vendors, as well as many NonStop-centered publications, are already beginning to look back on what transpired in 2017. While it isn’t really a case of defining a year as ending and beginning with the NonStop Technical Boot Camp, it’s not unreasonable for the NonStop community to look at any given year this way as Boot Camp more often than not proves to be the catalyst for further product development, and so it is here at Data Express. We are looking forward to the messages that will likely come from this upcoming event just as much as our customers – when you look back through the years, it is at Boot Camp where we have seen first introduction to NonStop of the support for the Intel x86 architecture as well as where the veil was lifted off NonStop running on virtual machines. This year at Boot Camp we will be represented by Susie Raye, who is well-known to the NonStop community having participated in multiple Boot Camps in the past. If you see her, stop her to say “Hi!” as we are sure she would like to hear from you. If you don’t happen to see her, you may want to check the comForte booth, as this year’s Boot Camp will be the first time you will see the fruits from our many discussions with comForte on display. comForte is now our sales partner for both our NonStop and Open Platform products. We are really quite thrilled by how this came about and feel certain that customers and prospects alike will benefit from this new relationship. comForte has a really solid reputation within the NonStop community and as we already integrated its security products for SSL and SSH into DataExpress, taking the relationship up another level just seemed the right thing for us to do. While we have few data points to work with, it would seem that the NonStop community is gradually getting behind NonStop X. Whether it is because HPE is beginning to more aggressively price upgrades to NonStop X or whether the NonStop user base has been convinced that the x86 servers better position users for future growth, isn’t clear to us at this time. However, NonStop X offers considerable platform headroom capable of accommodating additional applications on NonStop with little impact on current applications and this is becoming obvious to everyone who has run tests of their applications on NonStop X. Any time we hear any news about additional applications being brought up on NonStop we are excited as it simply means NonStop will continue to be around for a lot longer than we had thought just a couple of years ago. What isn’t quite so clear to us is the future impact virtualized NonStop (vNS) will have on the NonStop community. Certainly, the driver behind the move to support virtual machines was the telco marketplace and we have been reminded of this many times this year. But traditional deployments in support of financial services, we believe, will continue for some time with about the only possible use of vNS being in their Development and QA organizations. For the moment, we have only heard whispers to this effect and aren’t aware of any of the NonStop users we support making any moves to vNS. The tantalizing benefits for us remain and we continue to discuss them internally – is there potential for Data Express to rationalize its products such that our Open Platform could run on NonStop under the OSS personality or might it be just as easy to deploy our Open Platform solution in a guest open system, such as Linux, linked to an adjacent guest NonStop system both running within virtual machines configured on top of x86 commodity servers. Could be very interesting to see which model our NonStop customers prefer once they become familiar with vNS and either OpenStack / KVM or VMware, which we understand should be a supported VM shortly. But again, this is why Boot Camp always attracts a crowd and why Data Express always participates in such events. There isn’t really any substitute to hearing about the roadmaps for NonStop, deployments in a traditional manner on NonStop X systems or as guests of virtual machines with vNS, and it is only after consultation with our customers and HPE before we fully understand the opportunities that may be on offer for products like DataExpress. As we look back at 2017 we know that perhaps the biggest change that took place was the formalization of our relationship with comForte. This was a big step we took and we have expectations that our customers will benefit from this partnership. For us, our deployments on NonStop continue to quietly go about support for secure, managed, file transfers and yet, as we follow the news headlines that point to vast amounts of data arriving at each enterprise we serve, data becomes information and information is stored in files so yes, DataExpress is well positioned to meet all your future file management needs. See you at Boot Camp and should you have any questions in the lead-up to this big event, don’t hesitate emailing us at sales@dataexpress.com  or calling us on +1.972.899.3476