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Small white hp UX logo
developer Hewlett Packard Enterprise
License (s) Proprietary
First publ. 1984
Current  version 11i v3 May 2017 Release (May 2017)
ancestry Previously (up to version 2.x)
↳ UNIX System III
Since version 5.0
↳ UNIX System V
Architecture (s) PA-RISC , Itanium , Itanium 2 (discontinued FOCUS , 68k )

HP-UX ( H ewlett P ackard U ni x ) is a commercial Unix - Operating system of the company Hewlett Packard Enterprise and comes from the System V family.


The HP-UX operating system was developed for computers of the HP 9000 series, starting in 1982 with a System III (later System V ) compliant version and the HP 9000 Series 500 , which was based on the FOCUS developed by HP independently . CPU architecture worked. A porting to 680x0 -based workstations of the 200 series (later also the 300 and 400 series) took place as early as 1983 . From 1986 the porting to PA-RISC took place with the series HP 9000 series 800 (server) and the later introduced HP 9000 series 700 (workstations). Since 2000, starting with the HP-UX 11i version, the Intel Itanium architecture has also been supported. Since 2003, starting with version HP-UX 11.23, only servers , either PA-RISC or Itanium-based , are supported.

After the acquisition of Compaq, it was planned to incorporate cluster technologies (especially the cluster file system AdvFS and the cluster software TruCluster) from the Tru64 UNIX operating system into HP-UX, but this project was discontinued at the end of 2004.

HP-UX is currently showing a clear downward trend, which is probably at least largely due to the fact that the HP-UX platform "Itanium" has been stagnating for a long time and, with the performance increases and further developments of the x86-64 systems, will probably be permanent will not be able to keep up and is therefore gradually losing the trust of manufacturers, the trade press and ultimately also customers. The further development of HP-UX is also stagnating, at least compared to Linux or Windows, the future is uncertain. The biggest competitor Linux is not limited to certain HP hardware and runs on all current architectures, HP-UX, on the other hand, can only be used on Itanium machines in addition to the PA-RISC architecture, which is now out of print.


HP-UX introduced the access control list for the first time under UNIX for the extended control of permissions when accessing files. With AIX, HP-UX was one of the first Unix derivatives to integrate a logical volume manager in the operating system. In addition to the HP-LVM, which was derived from the joint project OSF / 1, from version 11.11 there is the VxVM (Veritas Volume Manager), which, like the VxFS file system used by default, comes from the collaboration with Veritas .

The software is installed and program packages are managed by the software distributor (SD-UX), who implements the POSIX 1387.2-1995 standard. SD-UX is able to manage central software depots and to carry out installations via networks.

The operating system is scalable, from workstations with one CPU to superdomes (HP's largest computer class) with 128 CPUs (cores) and 2 TiB maximum main memory (and 16 TiB maximum file size). With OLA / R (On-line Addition / Replacement) it is possible to add or replace PCI cards to a running system .

Programs compiled for the PA-RISC architecture can continue to be used on Itanium computers without changes. An emulation layer (ARIES - Automatic Recompilation and Integrated Environment Simulation ) takes care of the necessary implementation.


version publication Remarks
1.0 1982 First available version for HP 9000 series 500 with FOCUS-CPU
2.0 1983 Porting to HP Workstations Motorola -680x0-CPU
5.3 1985 Last version with FOCUS support
7:00 1989 Motif becomes part of the standard installation
8.00 1991 Visual User Environment (VUE) is introduced as a graphical user interface
9.00 1992 Support for the PA-RISC 7100 , hardware changes to the running system possible (with the new ioscan command)
10.00 1995 The file system layout corresponds to the System V conventions, introduction of LVM and SD-UX, 680x0 -based systems are no longer supported
10.20 1996 Support for PA-RISC 2.0
11.00 1997 Consistent 64-bit capability, support of Fiber Channel , NFSv 3 and reloadable kernel modules
11.11 (11i v1) 2000 Kernel parameters can be changed without restarting. Last version with support for PA-RISC workstations. Newer HP-UX versions may run on selected 64-bit PA-RISC workstation configurations, but these are not supported by the manufacturer (and have not been evaluated). OLA / R
11.20 (11i v1.5) 2001 First version for Itanium processors.
11.22 (11i v1.6) 2002 Support for Itanium-2 processors, IPv6 and IPsec stacks are included.
11.23 (11i v2) 2003 Common version for Itanium 2 and PA-RISC processors
11.31 (11i v3) 2007 Support of dual core Intel Itanium 2 processor with Hyper-Threading , NFSv4 , revised Fiber Channel / SCSI layer


  • Asghar Ghori: HP-UX: HP Certification Systems Administrator, Exam HP0-A01 - Training Guide and Administrator's Reference, 3rd Edition. Endeavor Technologies Inc., 2008, ISBN 978-1-60643-654-7 ( limited preview in Google Book Search).
  • Charles Keenan: HP-UX CSE: Official Study Guide and Desk Reference. Prentice Hall PTR, 2004, ISBN 0-13-146396-9 .
  • Chris Cooper: HP-UX Internals. Prentice Hall PTR, 2004, ISBN 0-13-032861-8 .

Individual evidence

  1. [1]
  2. HP 9000/840
  3. HP-UX loses 40.9% market share in the SAP environment
  4. Itanium quad-core "Tukwila" postponed again
  5. Unisys gives eulogy for Itanium
  6. ZDNet: Why Intel's Itanium failed

Web links