Since the 1980s, Racine Water & Wastewater Utilities relied on an PA-RISC A-400 with MPE/iX 6.5 as their primary billing system. When they moved to a new platform in 2008, only four years of history carried over to the new system. The PA-RISC still held more than 25 years of important records. The state of Wisconsin mandates access to billing history records, and they needed a way to continue using the PA-RISC to access archived information. That’s when they considered PA-RISC emulation.
After contacting Stromasys for the job and in the early stages of demoing a Charon solution, one of the system’s disk drives stopped working. In this case, the only method to recover the system’s data was from old DDS1 backup tape, although this appeared to be missing from the legacy system. For this, Stromasys purchased a DDS1 tape drive for the data recovery and, utilizing Oracle Box, built a virtual machine and recovered the PA-RISC system. Once the data was safely retrieved, the Stromasys engineer working with Racine Water implemented CHARON-PAR/A408 as the virtualized PA-RISC environment. Now, the original hardware has been replaced with a PC that runs the legacy applications on Charon software, exactly as they did on the original hardware.