IBM recently announced that it is ending support for IBM WebSphere Application Server (WAS) V7 and V8 on April 30, 2018. The end of support date is coming up fast. If you haven’t prepared for the change yet, it’s important to act quickly and take steps to ensure your software, and in turn, your business processes are fully supported. In addition, support for certain versions of Java are coming to an end or have already ended.
Here’s a list of important IBM end of support dates to be aware of:
- WebSphere Application Server V7.0 – April 30, 2018
- WebSphere Application Server V8.0 – April 30, 2018
- Java 6 in traditional WAS V8.5 – April 30, 2018
- Java 7 in traditional WAS V8.5 – September 30, 2019
- Java 6 in Liberty - September 30, 2017
- Java 7 in Liberty - September 30, 2019
What can the newer versions of IBM WAS offer your business?
The good news is that companies with active subscription and support from IBM can upgrade today to WAS V8.5 and WAS V9 at no additional charge. By upgrading to these newer versions of WAS, companies can take advantage of several key enhancements and capabilities. For example, WAS V9 supports the ability to:
- Create new cloud apps: WAS V9 allows companies to create apps on the cloud with a cloud-first Java app platform, which helps to speed development with composable runtime and microservices architecture.
- Move apps anywhere, in any way, to increase speed and optimize costs: WAS V9 supports the ability to create a borderless environment with easy app portability regardless of the architectural environment (e.g., cloud container services, Docker or VMWare).
What happens if you don’t upgrade or migrate from WAS V7 or V8?
The bad news is that choosing not to upgrade to the newer versions of IBM WAS means more than missing out on great new features. There are some key business risks involved as well:
- Choosing not to upgrade from an older WAS version will leave your business with a lack of IBM support for mission-critical applications. If you don’t upgrade on time, you will lose out on IBM support, meaning that enhancements and patches won’t be delivered. This also invites the possibility of security breaches. This could put your business processes at risk if they rely on software functionality that is supported by WAS.
- Opting to purchase extended support from IBM is another possibility. However, in our experience with clients, taking this route can be quite expensive, as it involves costly monthly payments to IBM for extended support, and isn’t a particularly sustainable option.
Overall, it's considered a good business decision to be ahead of these changes instead of being behind them.
What are your options to get support?
If you’ve yet to upgrade IBM WAS or move to an alternative technology, we strongly suggest that you meet with a Lighthouse Solution Architect to discuss your options for getting ahead of this change. There are several approaches to get your business to a supported level. These include:
- Upgrading to a supported version of IBM WAS.
- “Right Fitting” your WAS environment by migrating to one of IBM’s more lightweight application servers.
- Consider choosing and migrating to an alternative technology to IBM’s offerings.
In each of these options, Lighthouse’s Migration Services can help you get the support you need.
The next steps
It’s important that you consider what you’ve done so far to address the WAS end of service deadline. If you haven’t yet, you should take a quick inventory of where you stand now and where you need to be. If you need help with any part of the process, you can talk to a Lighthouse Solution Architect. Together, we can go through your different options for supporting your applications and business processes with IBM’s latest technology or an alternative option. We’re here and ready to get started. Let’s make it happen.