The AIX 5.3 Workload Partitions for AIX 7 (AIX 5.3 WPAR) is licensed program product designed to simplify the consolidation of older AIX environments on newer, more efficient hardware.
Many clients have older, less critical workloads running on AIX V5.3 on POWER5™ or POWER4™ processor-based servers that they would like to consolidate onto newer servers. Unfortunately, for various reasons, some customers cannot upgrade AIX and their applications to a level that supports POWER7 or POWER8 processors. AIX 5.3 WPARs can provide another way to consolidate those older applications on new hardware.
AIX 5.3 WPARs allows an administrator to simply backup an existing AIX 5.3 environment with the standard AIX mksysb utility and then to restore that environment inside of a special Workload Partition (called a “versioned” WPAR) in AIX 7 on a POWER7 or POWER8 processor-based server.
The simple backup and restore process eliminates much of the workload of consolidating these older workloads to a new server environment and provides a way to work around problems such as programs that are not portable between POWER process generations or applications that are no longer supported by an independent software vendor (ISV).
Not only can the old environments run on the newer, more efficient POWER7 processor-based systems, but because they are running on top of the AIX 7 kernel, these old applications can actually exploit POWER7 features such as Simultaneous Multithreading 4 (SMT4), POWER8 features such as Simutaneuos Multithreading 8 (SMT8), MicroPartitioning, Virtual I/O and mobility between servers.
No instruction emulation or translation is involved – processes run at full speed.
Although it is always better to update to a newer level of AIX and in some cases, new applications to exploit the latest generation of POWER processors, the AIX 5.3 WPARs product provides a easy way to stage those upgrades while allowing you to take advantage of the newest generation of POWER servers.