The Connect Germany GTUG conference, workshops and exhibition held in Munich, at the end of last month, had more than its fair share of surprises. Coming after the formal announcement of the first member of the new NonStop X family of NonStop systems, the HP NonStop X NS7 X1, just four weeks earlier, those attending the Munich event heard firsthand what’s just over the horizon. Additional family members – some with more cores, some with less – helped mitigate any anxieties that may have developed that HP was providing more power than most NonStop users could consume, a circumstance that is without precedent in the world of NonStop. Price / performance improvements are certainly tantalizing for those planning to deploy NonStop X, but with the mid-range system just announced, providing better overall performance than the top of the line Itanium blade system, the NB56000, considerably more interest was being given to possible new entry-level systems. In the product roadmaps presentations that were given by HP NonStop product management, that interest was duly slated – a new plan for NonStop X will deliver an entry class system much earlier than previously stated! The new entry level system will feature both single and dual core options that promise to meet the needs of those looking for test and development systems as well as systems better suited to being distributed throughout an enterprise – similar to the current NB2200 / NB2300 rack and tower systems. For many of the participants, it wasn’t just the price / performance improvements and indeed, it was the announcement of a lower priced entry-level system that evoked the most support from the NonStop community and the news of the improved Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for NonStop was equally well received. In the presentation given by HP NonStop PreSales engineer, Azucena Ubierna, Better TCO and Higher Availability than Oracle RAC with HP NonStop, put real Euro amounts to just how much better the TCO truly has become. Expect to read additional commentary on this by DataExpress in the upcoming issue of Tandemworld later this month, as among the closing statements in that commentary are some certain to generate a positive response from all within the NonStop community. “Lower overall TCO than competing systems and databases. Higher levels of availability all from a system that remains highly scalable. Easiest-to-deploy cluster-in-a-box than is available from any other vendor,” notes DataExpress. “It all speaks volumes of the many changes HP has overseen for the NonStop system family and a message that is recharging the enthusiasm of HP sales and marketing.” The HP investments continue for NonStop and this helps counter comments from those portraying NonStop as a legacy system. Nothing could be further from the truth for NonStop, and this is the highlight of the post to the NonStop community blog, Real Time View, We may want to leave a Legacy, but NonStop stands apart! When it comes to retaining vendor support for NonStop, with the news that came out of this latest event, HP is making all the right moves. When it comes to NonStop being modern, “We remain firmly customer driven as it’s the customer who sets the requirements for a solution; if an industry body or government agency mandates a daily file transfer, then so be it,” said OmniPayments, Inc. CEO, Yash Kapadia. “But it hardly qualifies any platform as being Legacy.” And customer-driven requirements that include NonStop is what really underpins the continuing investment in NonStop by HP and that keeps it every bit as modern as any alternate server offering – modern yes, and indeed, better for most real-time application use-case scenarios. As Michelle Marost, President of DataExpress, observed even as she supported those comments from Yash (in that same post to Real Time View), “In all honesty, in an economy which, despite what Wall Street is telling us, is still under stress, and flooded with software vendors trying to catch a break, we have no choice but to be customer driven.” For the NonStop community, the news of new entry-level NonStop X systems together with better TCO even as the Price / Performance metrics continue to improve, is the good news they all want to hear. None of what was presented represented anything less than a continuing and significant investment in NonStop systems. For all those who heard the messages from HP – those responsible for driving requirements that vendors pay attention to – it reaffirmed why NonStop remains central to their future plans. Now, onward to 2015 HP Discover to be held in June at Las Vegas!