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Thoughts on IBM and Sun in acquisition discussions…

Posted by Preston on 2009-03-19

So the net is rife today with speculation that IBM and Sun are in close discussions on IBM buying Sun. My immediate thoughts are:

  • What will happen to EBS? In the past Sun actively considered replacing EBS NetWorker with NetBackup, but that never went anywhere. Will they replace EBS NetWorker with TSM?
  • The storage synergies achieved between IBM and Sun would be interesting.
  • I hope to hell that AIX does not replace Solaris. I don’t want to start any religious OS flame-war, but there’s a lot of administrators out there, including myself, who would rather have a frontal lobotomy than use AIX over Solaris; there’s an equal number who’d feel the reverse. So the two operating systems should not be either merged or one replace the other.
  • The development community is already up in flames over the potential that IBM’s development tools will replace Sun’s (either in joy, or horror – it seems to be in equal measure).

My 5c worth is different – I think Sun would be a logical acquisition target for EMC. There’s good logic to this, I think:

  • Storage synergies.
  • Storage enhancements (EMC and tape, at last).
  • Complete mid-range systems architecture immediately available to EMC, covering Windows, Linux, Solaris.
  • A better and more feature rich OS for embedded systems (e.g., EDLs).
  • NetWorker and EBS are practically exactly the same other than a search and replace anyway.
  • Immediate growth of support capabilities.

If IBM and Sun have reached the point where news of talks have leaked, it seems like it may be too far along. Pity – I rather preferred the idea of EMC buying Sun.


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