Hannover Re, the third-largest reinsurer in the world, was running some of their operations on PA-RISC systems that were increasingly hard to maintain. As these systems aged, it became more and more difficult to find replacement parts, and the system failed more often. A planned migration to a brand new SQL-based system was taking too long to complete, and it was increasingly apparent that the existing systems were too complex and inter-dependent. The ideal solution, they realized, would be to replace the existing hardware with a modern and easy-to-maintain system without having to migrate the application.
An Internet search for «PA-RISC emulator» led the company to the Stromasys Charon-PAR emulator. Shelving the migration project, Hannover Re contacted Stromasys and asked to participate in the then-ongoing Beta test program.
Hannover Re decided to use live data for the test. The backup data was copied to the Charon system and the batch processes were executed in parallel on the existing PA-RISC and Charon systems. After testing, the results and execution times were compared. With no apparent differences, and with processing times equal to or better than the existing system, migration to Charon-PAR was approved.