ERP stalwart folds legacy application into SAP

Legacy computing carries on for decades after a system vendor loses interest. At one ERP site, though, the end of the manufacturing line arrives sometime this week.

TE Connectivity is closing down all HP 3000 operations by the end of this year. The company uses MANMAN to manage its manufacturing operations, including IT leadership from Terry Simpkins. The work at TE is moving into SAP, for years now, one database at a time.

About 35 years after he arrived at Lucas Control Systems — a cog in the engine that’s become TE —Simpkins and the N-Class servers at TE are retiring. One of the databases in the 3000 cluster at TE had been running since 1978. Now that set of servers is available for sale.

“As we wind down the last remaining MANMAN database here at TE, it’s time to think about the new home for our HP 3000s,” Simpkins said in a message. “Therefore, we have four N-Class machines, all of them 8-way 750Mhz, that are for sale. Two are available immediately; the other two will be available in early December. Anyone interested, please contact me via email or by phone at 757-532-5685.”

A long run

Simpkins says he started managing the MANMAN operations that became part of TE in 1993, when his job was at Lucas Control Systems. It’s been 27 years with the same phone number and mailing address,” he says. “My HP 3000 time started at HP in 1981. That’s over 39 years on the same platform, not a bad run. I started on MANMAN in 1985 at Spectra-Physics.”

The last MANMAN database at TE converts to SAP over this Thanksgiving weekend. “Our legacy begins in the mid-1970s, but I can’t quote an exact year — way before my time. That said, the 3000 was turned on before 1978.”

The 3000 closeout puts two other TE veterans into the markets, Al Nizzardini and Tracy Johnson. Releasing good talent and assets into the world is one of the upsides to shutdowns. Experience in the 3000, so rare these days, becomes available once more.

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