Engineers never cease to amaze me. True technological change does not just happen and fundamental change that underpins the ability to drive mission-critical application development takes time and effort. Most of us have grown up in an age of incredible technological change, ok some of us a little longer than others, but we have and continue to witness large advances that some people both inside and outside the industry take for granted. The ClearPath Fabric Architecture may perhaps be one of the overlooked technological gems.
Unisys engineers have spent a decade driving towards an architectural shift that has now ported all ClearPath proprietary hardware technology designs to a firmware stack that functions within a fabric infrastructure. The highly secure ClearPath Operating systems now run seamlessly on the ported firmware. The fabric infrastructure is a collection of nodes, based on industry standard Intel x86 technologies, woven together by a high speed interconnect presenting an environment that runs the ClearPath Operating Systems, MCP and OS 2200, as well as operating systems including Windows, Linux and others. The ClearPath firmware stacks are now software defined compute environments executing on industry standard Intel x86 hardware, an amazing achievement.
To be able to capitalize on x86 iron the engineers also developed a unique containerization technology known as s-Par, that effectively carves up a servers hardware resources into highly secure isolated partitions. Since s-Par secure partitions are variable in size and capability, the better description would be that a servers resources are broken into a set of software defined blades that can be sized and resized according to resources required. Each partition presents an isolated, secure operating system application environment.
We are announcing yet another monumental shift in technology, that of being able to run an MCP development image within a software defined container alongside the main MCP host environment in the fabric. The new ClearPath Software Series is a set of software only products that will deliver game changing capabilities. The first product in the series is the ClearPath MCP Developer Studio. MCP Developer Studio presents a feature rich development environment for MCP applications. The number of MCP development images able to coexist in a fabric is limited only by the expansion capability of the fabric and in fact multiple images can even run on a single node. Why is this important? Imagine being able to stage MCP releases of different flavors, or test MCP changes in their own isolated container to gain confidence. What about being able to cost effectively test developed MCP applications individually – each developer with their own environment, with little to no additional investment in hardware and certainly no requirement for an entire additional system complex. It’s a new day for ClearPath MCP and as I began, engineers amaze me.