HP Outlines 64-Bit Strategy for HP-UX

Customers to Benefit from Evolution Toward Performance-optimized, Standards-compliant Premier 64-bit HP-UX Operating Environment

July 22, 1996

PALO ALTO, Calif., July 22, 1996 -- Hewlett-Packard Company today outlined its strategy for HP-UX, disclosing that a full 64-bit version of HP-UX is expected to be introduced in mid-1997. The company provided highlights of its upcoming releases of HP-UX, along with expected announcement dates.

"Providing customers with investment protection is practically a religion at HP," said Carol G. Mills, general manager of HP's General Systems Division. "We believe our plan for delivering a 64-bit operating environment will give our customers the smoothest, cleanest transition in the industry -- maximizing performance gains."

HP-UX Version

Expected Annc. Date

Major Features

10.10 2/96
(annc. 2/12/96)
file system size increased from 4GB to 128GB
10.20 9/96 file size to increase from 2GB to 128GB, 64-bit integer register calculation, PA-8000 support
11.0 mid-97 full 64-bit implementation -- large physical memory/large virtual addressing, coexisting and interoperating 32-bit/64-bit applications, 32-bit application binary compatibility, PA-8200 support, next generation UNIX(R) system technology APIs,
late 97 PA-8500, additional next-generation Unix system technology
11.X ~1998 Intel Merced support
12.0 TBD next-generation UNIX system technology

Smooth Upgrade to 64-bit Computing

HP's strategy to take its HP-UX customers from current 32-bit computing to 64-bit computing guards against many of the problems typically associated with a migration. These include forced recompilations, forced recoding and forced data reloads -- factors that can consume considerable IT resources.

Furthermore, HP customers can expect forward binary compatibility with all future systems -- including those based upon Intel's forthcoming Merced microprocessor, which is based upon architecture jointly defined by HP and Intel.

Current and future 32-bit applications are being designed to run simultaneously alongside of or interoperate with 64-bit applications using the HP-UX operating environment -- with all applications expected to benefit from the performance and scalability increases in HP-UX. These 32-bit applications are expected to be able to execute in a 64-bit environment without any recompilation.

A mixed 32-bit/64-bit application environment allows for maximum flexibility for customer systems since, for example, a 32-bit application can leverage the power of a 64-bit database.

Standards Compliance

HP has long been a leader in standards definition and development for UNIX systems. HP helped lead the definition of a 64-bit standard that has been endorsed by multiple companies in the UNIX system industry. This 64-bit definition was transferred to the Open Group, which is expanding the Single UNIX system Specification (SUS) to include this 64-bit definition.

HP-UX was the first operating system to ship with the UNIX 95 brand. HP will continue to promote, conform to and adopt UNIX system standards that have the potential to make UNIX systems more open than ever before. HP plans to implement the expanded 64-bit SUS as it becomes available.


The 64-bit PA-8000, the most recently shipped microprocessor of the PA-RISC family, is the industry's fastest microprocessor. Customers of HP-UX benefit from applications running on HP's high-performance PA-RISC products.

HP-UX users have access to more than 12,000 UNIX system applications from more than 5,000 HP Channel Partners. Users can access DOS-based and Macintosh applications through emulation.

HP and SCO are jointly developing 64-bit, next-generation UNIX system technologies, which are expected to begin shipping next year. As they become available, the technologies will be incorporated into both companies' product lines and will be optimized for future systems based on Intel Merced microprocessors.

HP is the world's leading supplier of open enterprise computing and is the second-largest computer supplier in the United States, with computer revenue of $25.3 billion in its 1995 fiscal year. HP has been delivering PA-RISC-based business computers since 1986 with high reliability, data integrity, data availability and systems availability.

Hewlett-Packard Company is a leading global manufacturer of computing, communications and measurement products and services recognized for excellence in quality and support. HP has 108,300 employees and had revenue of $31.5 billion in its 1995 fiscal year.

Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.hp.com

RISC stands for reduced instruction-set computing.

PA-RISC stands for Precision Architecture-reduced-instruction-set computing.

UNIX is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries, licensed exclusively through X/Open(tm) Company Limited.

X/Open is a trademark of X/Open Company Limited in the UK and other countries.