As far as still running old versions of the OS goes, do you know that IBM
support will only give you six months upon the announce date of SUSE Linux
to get to that version if you still want support?
IBM i is a bit different
V5R4 has been GA for 7 and a half years.
6.1 has been GA for almost 5 and a half years.
7.1 has been GA for almost 3 and a half years.
If your vendor can't support 7.1 well after 3 years of general
availability, dump them. I don't speak lightly. I dumped vendors who
weren't ready for 6.1 within 6 months of GA date.
I don't pay vendor support so they can spend all the money on solely
paying off their last leveraged buy out. I expect product.
Hope you're not running BPCS. Support for that running on V5R4 dies
9/30/2013. I didn't see any offer of a program extension available for