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IBM About To Buy Sun For $7 Billion

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the network-was-the-computer dept.

Sun Microsystems 699

plasticsquirrel was one of several readers to send in the sharpening rumors that IBM is on the verge of acquiring Sun Microsystems, as we discussed last week. The pricetag is reportedly $7 billion. According to the NYTimes's sources, "People familiar with the negotiations say a final agreement could be announced Friday, although it is more likely to be made public next week. IBM's board has already approved the deal, they said." After the demise of SGI, one has to wonder about the future of traditional Unix. If the deal goes through, only IBM, HP, and Fujitsu will be left as major competitors in the market for commercial Unix. And reader UnanimousCoward adds, "Sun only came into the consciousness of the unwashed masses with the company not being able to get E10K's out the door fast enough in the first bubble. We here will remember some pizza-box looking thing, establishing 32 MB of RAM as a standard, and when those masses were scratching their heads at slogans like 'The Network is the Computer.' Add your favorite Sun anecdote here."

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"commercial UNIX" (4, Insightful)

Swampash (1131503) | more than 5 years ago | (#27443927)

If the deal goes through, only IBM, HP, and Fujitsu will be left as major competitors in the market for commercial Unix.

Really? I'm posting this comment from a workstation running a commercial UNIX. I'm using a Mac.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27443983)

I was thinking exactly the same. I'm not using a Mac, I'm at work using the anti-christ (Windows), but I was thinking. Where does Apple fit into this?

Re:"commercial UNIX" (5, Insightful)

Bonker (243350) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444035)

Calling MacOSX a 'commercial unix' just doesn't taste right coming out of the mouth. It's like calling Microsoft Windows a 'Server Operating System' or an 'Enterprise Solution'.

Yeah, there are people who use them that way, but that way madness lies.

'Enterprise Solution' tastes pretty damn foul all by itself.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (3, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444175)

Calling MacOSX a 'commercial unix' just doesn't taste right coming out of the mouth. It's like calling Microsoft Windows a 'Server Operating System' or an 'Enterprise Solution'.

OS X is a unix. It is commercial in that it's being sold and to a large market. I don't see the problem.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444449)

OS X is a unix. It is commercial in that it's being sold and to a large market. I don't see the problem.

The difference being the market. One is a server market, the other is a cult.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (5, Funny)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444599)

The difference being the market. One is a server market, the other is a cult.

You mean a religion. A cult is a religion that just started out and has yet to garner success.

Besides, Apple can claim to be a derivative of Christianity and/or Judaism, giving it instant credibility. One has the Book of Job, and I'm sure the other has the book of Jobs. And every other products is sold as the second coming.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (4, Insightful)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444251)

'Enterprise Solution' tastes pretty damn foul all by itself.

Because it doesn't really mean anything if you're not playing buzzword bingo.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444665)

For buzzword bingo, nothing beats "collaborative on-demand e-solutions."

mac != unix (3, Interesting)

russlar (1122455) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444059)

Really? I'm posting this comment from a workstation running a commercial UNIX. I'm using a Mac.

Try running a mac os x server and a solaris server, side by side, running the same application, and tell me that mac os x is truly unix. Any OS requiring >90% of configuration changes to be made in a GUI does not count as UNIX, in my book.
I'll grant you that OS X is UNIX-certified, but OS X is _not_ SVR4 UNIX.


PS- That burning you smell is my karma going up in flames.

Re:mac != unix (5, Informative)

e4g4 (533831) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444105)

Any OS requiring >90% of configuration changes to be made in a GUI does not count as UNIX

100% of configuration changes in OS X can be made from the console. There is not a single setting that *requires* a GUI.

Liptstick (1, Funny)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444297)

You're right, there is no need to put lipstick on the pig.

Re:Liptstick (2, Funny)

Aqualung812 (959532) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444551)

That's a sexist comment, according to US politics. Your karma is gonna burn!

Re:mac != unix (3, Interesting)

Noke (8971) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444531)

Really? I love doing everything from the command line, but am unsure how to do the following (at least I can't find anything after scouring google for some of these). Is it possible to do the following? I just picked some from looking at the system preferences pane:

* Time Machine: Configure what to back up
* Time Machine: Restore files
* Configure Parental Controls
* Change an account's picture
* Configure an account's login options
* Configure when to put the monitor/computer to sleep
* Change the desktop background
* Change the screensaver
* Configure the sounds
* Spotlight: Configure what to index
* Configure filevault settings
* Disable automatic login

I'm aware that some of them may be achievable by editing plists, but of those, the plist may not be in a human-readable format. Others I don't know where to change those settings outside of the GUI.

Re:mac != unix (2, Insightful)

danamania (540950) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444691)

plists are xml. If you don't count those as human readable, you may as well not count *any* text files as human readable.

Re:mac != unix (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444585)

mac sucks, period.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1, Flamebait)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444101)

Really? I'm posting this comment from a workstation running a commercial UNIX. I'm using a Mac.

Heh. +1 pedant.

It has lost most of the characteristics people identify as Unix though.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

mogul (103400) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444247)

Well partly true; it has lost most of the characteristics UNIX people identify as Unix, but it has gained the same identity among the non-UNIX people.
We talk about posix and stuff like that. They talk about config files and vi

Re:"commercial UNIX" (5, Funny)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444257)

It has lost most of the characteristics people identify as Unix though.

The usable GUI? :)

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

pikine (771084) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444129)

I think the summary writer means UNIX servers actually used by businesses to store data and conduct transactions. I don't think Xserve is quite there yet although it is an impressive piece of work.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

RichardJenkins (1362463) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444133)

Yeah, but you can't spend all day counting every single backwards Mom and Pa operation out there.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1, Flamebait)

C_Kode (102755) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444143)

+5 Insightful? There are too many Mac fanboys here. I'm sure he/she was referring to enterprise Unix. OSX is still a home desktop / toy server until further notice. It amazes me that people actually have the nerve to install OSX servers in the Enterprise. At the absolute BEST I would install a OSX server to serve Mac files and nothing more. Give me Linux, Solaris or BSD. (yes, I know OSX is based on BSD, but they are NOT the same!)

Go ahead and mod me down fanboy. :P

Re:"commercial UNIX" (0)

samkass (174571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444353)

Go ahead and mod me down fanboy. :P

Fanboy or not, if you are modded down it's because your post is simply full of your anti-Apple (and anti-Apple user) sentiment without a single ounce of stated fact to back up your opinion (I believe that's the definition of flamebait). Fine, we get that you're an Apple anti-fanboy. But do you have any uptime statistics, TCO values, or other facts to back up your opinion regarding MacOS X Server?

Re:"commercial UNIX" (5, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444167)

True. Apple made a Unix so user friendly that people forget it is Unix.
And so small and light that it runs on a phone.
Maybe they really are a great company.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444309)

True. Apple made a Unix so user friendly that people forget it is Unix.
And so small and light that it runs on a phone.
Maybe they really are a great company.

Apple made a Unix so Baroque that you can't manage it from the command line.
They took an operating system usable on a NeXTStep with a 25MHz 68040 and made its file browser unresponsive on a machine with dual 2 GHz processors.
They opened and then closed the kernel, they bury knowledge base articles that make them look bad (e.g. B&W G3 Rev.1 UDMA data corruption errors which were in the TIL but didn't make it into the KB even though higher and lower-numbered TIL articles were transferred) and they locked the iPhone so that you can't run third-party software without hacking your phone and voiding your warranty.

If you think Apple cares about anything but your money, you must have drank all the Kool-Aid.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (2, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444557)

If you think any company cares about anything but your money then you have drank the coolaid.
I run third party apps on my iPod touch. They are approved apps from the app store but still 3rd party.
Once they jail break version 3 I will probably do a jail break but I have no real want for any of the jail broken apps yet.
Hey so Apple does what Microsoft and Intel have done.
They still made a user friendly Unix. You may say NeXT did but they where even more expensive than Apple.
As far as the lack of command line tools? I have heard OS/X users say otherwise but I am not an expert on OS/X. For most end users the GUI is far more important than the command line.
But please keep the venom to your self. I am not any type of fan boy and really don't have the time for such rants. If you want a light fast Unixish OS might I suggest Mint Fluxbox edition? It is still in beta but it is very light and fast. You have to know the command line but it is pretty full featured.
If you are a strick FLOSS person the Debian with Fluxbox may be more to your liking. I have also had good luck with Zenwalk on older slow machines.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444573)

fuck off jizz mop.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (4, Insightful)

avalys (221114) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444581)

What else should Apple care about besides my money?

I'm glad they care about getting my money, because it means they will continue to try to build products that I want to pay for.

Context: (4, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444191)

TFS says "one has to wonder about the future of traditional Unix" in the immediately preceding sentence. While OSX is indeed commercial and UNIX, it is quite arguably not "traditional Unix". Its distribution in the wild is almost the opposite of most others, quite common on laptops, not very common on desktops, fairly common in specific workstation markets, quite uncommon in smallish servers, and nonexistent in big iron applications. "Traditional Unix" tends to imply lots of big iron, a fair number of smallish servers, and some workstations, with minimal or no desktop/laptop presence.

Further, most "traditional Unix" setups, if they have graphics at all, use X. OSX supports doing so; but the mac users' howls of protest are deafening around any program that actually tries to do so. OSX is UNIX; but there are solid reasons for saying that it is hardly "traditional Unix".

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

No2Gates (239823) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444327)

Oh, UNIX... Wow, good thing it's not commercial eunuchs. Those guys can really mess up a good party.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

Jerry (6400) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444447)

But have wonderful falsetto voices!

Re:"commercial UNIX" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444465)

If the deal goes through, only IBM, HP, and Fujitsu will be left as major competitors in the market for commercial Unix.

Really? I'm posting this comment from a workstation running a commercial UNIX. I'm using a Mac.

Macs are BSD based. BSD is not a commercial UNIX product.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444661)

And anyone who doesn't think Solaris's competition is Linux doesn't know enough about the area to comment.

Re:"commercial UNIX" (4, Informative)

af_robot (553885) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444705)

Are you kidding, right? Information from IDC WW Quarterly Server Tracker - CY2008 total Unix Servers factory revenue:
IBM: $6 387 mln.
HP: $4 561 mln.
Apple: $99 mln.

Sorry, but Apple can't be classified as "major unix competitor".

sigh (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27443951)

another day, another possible layoff.

drink and be merry tonight, for tomorrow we're unemployed.

Now thats some hot real estate! (1)

hhaarrvv (1521241) | more than 5 years ago | (#27443955)

How much would that be per square foot?

Mark Shuttleworth buys new tie - looks great! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27443977)

DIGG THIS UP!

IBM SUN? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27443997)

Wow, IBM is buying our Sun for only 7 Billion US dollars? What are they going to use the Sun for though? Something sinister, probably to power their ultimate War Machine and conquer the EARTH!

Makes one wonder... (4, Funny)

denzacar (181829) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444527)

How much would they be willing to pay for some other celestial body. Say for example... Uranus?

Re:IBM SUN? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444603)

$7bn for the dot in .com is pretty expensive IMO.

The singular of "War Stories" is "Anecdote" (3, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444043)

I remember rockin' coffee machines in the break rooms of their education centers. It's no mystery their most successful product is named "Java".

Re:The singular of "War Stories" is "Anecdote" (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444619)

I think their most successful product is MySQL. They didn't invent it, but they did buy the company that did.

Do Not Want (5, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444055)

... I.B.M. into the dominant supplier of high-profit Unix servers ...

Oh, how pleasent, what a smart move for IBM.

... and related technology.

Woh. Hold on. Wait. Please, I beg of you, save Sun's software from IBM's slow moving process and lack of usability.

I must confess that while I have used Solaris, the only thing I have ever cared about from Sun enough to bitch is Java and Java related thingies. Now, I'm not saying that this is going to fall apart if/when it transfers to IBM's hands and I certainly hope that the people involved in those projects stay there but if I look at the products of the two companies I must say that Sun is far better at Software.

This hasn't always been the case but let's look at web application servers. The free open source Glassfish [java.net] container has been one of my favorites for development. Websphere [ibm.com] , on the extreme other side of the spectrum, was the bane of my existence for a very short time in my life causing me to lose sleep night after night. I would take Weblogic, Tomcat, Resin, anything over Websphere. Please, baby Jesus, if you can hear me do not let this happens and if it does, let Glassfish be the source code they stick with moving forward.

Although I'm sure you'd love to hear me bitch for hours about Rational products, I'm just going to say that I think competition is healthy and also I prefer Sun Software to remain Sun Software. I hope this deal falls apart. I've loved IBM's tutorials but do not care for their software.

Re:Do Not Want (2, Funny)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444165)

Woh. Hold on. Wait. Please, I beg of you, save Sun's software from IBM's slow moving process and lack of usability.

I must confess that while I have used Solaris, the only thing I have ever cared about from Sun enough to bitch is Java and Java related thingies.

I think you have just proved that Java is a fluke. Solaris is... well, it's Solaris. What more need be said?

Re:Do Not Want (2, Insightful)

robthebloke (1308483) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444277)

virtualbox? OpenOffice? They do seem to have a few decent devs there...

Re:Do Not Want (3, Insightful)

TeXMaster (593524) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444549)

OpenOffice? They do seem to have a few decent devs there...

Except that OpenOffice sucks at so many levels that I really can't understand why you're bringing it up as an example of what a few decent devs can do.

Re:Do Not Want (4, Insightful)

rve (4436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444357)

I think you have just proved that Java is a fluke. Solaris is... well, it's Solaris. What more need be said?

What more need be said? Well, please elaborate. What exactly is wrong with Solaris, according to you? What exactly is it lacking that other unixes do offer? What is lacking about the many features that other unixes simply do not have? Even an open source version is made available.

Re:Do Not Want (2, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444493)

Even an open source version is made available.

OpenSolaris is a last-ditch effort to remain relevant in the face of Linux [zdnet.com] .

Solaris is doomed to fail because Sun made it unnecessarily baroque. Speaking as someone who cut their Sun teeth on SunOS 4.1.1 on sun3 (now is your cue, crusty Unix overlords, to come and tell me you started with sun2) I can conclusively say that while SunOS has come a long way it has also become continually more of a PITA. If it's so fucking great, why is Linux eating its lunch? Maybe ZFS and dtrace just aren't enough?

Re:Do Not Want (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444187)

I must say that Sun is far better at Software.

One word : javac

IBM's java compiler and IDE (Eclipse) are way better than Sun's....
Granted there are good things on both sides, IBM's javac is twice faster than Sun's.

What I hope from this transfer is:
- Merge of IBM and Sun code for reference java implementation
- MySQL forks cleanup, and kept as entry level DBMS
- Sun's HW products going to trash...

What I don't get is, what can IBM win from this deal ? Apart from the Java Brand....

Re:Do Not Want (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444371)

I think there are a lot of developers that would argue as of Netbeans 6 and on that Sun actually has the better offering in the IDE department.

Re:Do Not Want (2, Interesting)

Mark Round (211258) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444617)

- Sun's HW products going to trash...

While I may agree with you when it comes to Sun's generic x86 boxes (although they have some really nice engineering) and most of their StorageTek arrays, it would be a tragedy if Sun's Niagara boxes (T-series coolthreads processors) and storage servers (X4500 and 7000 "Amber Road" series) died. Those are truly innovative and unique products, and there is no equivalent out there from any manufacturer.

There's also some great software that Sun have developed, and it would again be a crying shame to see IBM b0rk it all up in favour of their own competing products. For instance, even though you may personally favour Eclipse over Netbeans, the competition from Eclipse lit a fire under Sun's behind and it's come on leaps and bounds recently.

Without competition, the market stagnates and innovation dwindles away. I can't see much good coming from this deal, if it goes through.

Re:Do Not Want (1)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444329)

Well, it'd be nice if IBM applied their trademark snails pace to java's run time environment. I'm sick and tired of having the java update notification thingy pop up in my toolbar every month (or week, depending on how frisky the JRE dev's are). Its a runtime environment, it doesn't need to be updated more often than once a year, at most.

It would be kind of interesting.... (5, Interesting)

wiresquire (457486) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444075)

Sun somehow managed to butcher so many of its acquisitions, that it would be interesting to see what would be the outcome of IBM buying Sun. OpenOffice vs Symphony, DB2 vs MySQL, WebSphere vs Sun's offerings, Solaris vs AIX, and not to mention the hardware side.

If it goes ahead, of course....

ws

I just want to know.... (4, Funny)

greenguy (162630) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444211)

...when I should start going back to calling things "IBM-compatible."

Killed by H1-Bs. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444439)

Sun's dead. That'll be the outcome. Stick a fork in it, it's done.

It's a real shame, as they used to be tops. But blame it all on their management.

They started going downhill when they started with the H1-B proliferation.

It's yet another company killed by H1-Bs.

Re:It would be kind of interesting.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444475)

Personally I'm looking forward to creating a token ring network running NIS+.

The next headline is... (5, Funny)

RancidPickle (160946) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444103)

IBM today announced the outsourcing of 90% of Sun employees. "This will save us a good chunk of the $7B we paid for them," said an IBM representative.

Meanwhile, in Washington, IBM was approved to receive $3B in taxpayer money from the Keep America Working fund.

But...What About... (1)

flyneye (84093) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444111)

But, what will IBM do with Open Office?
Seems I remember IBMs fetish for Office Suite battles. Maybe early onset Alzheimers, but didn't they usta battle Office with some product of their own? Now they'll have our previously free Office Suite.

Re:But...What About... (1)

tscheez (71929) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444455)

It will be called Open SmartSuite, and you'll like it. :)

Re:But...What About... (1)

yuna49 (905461) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444579)

Remember Lotus Symphony? It's vying for a comeback [lotus.com] .

It's not your dad's Lotus Symphony, though. This version was dubbed OpenOffice in Eclipse Clothing [eweek.com] .

Re:But...What About... (1)

SilverJets (131916) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444701)

No they'll have StarOffice which is what Sun owns. Development can continue on OpenOffice.

My concern is Solaris and MySQL. IBM already has AIX and DB2 so I can see both Solaris and MySQL being dropped completely. This buyout probably explains why the top MySQL guys left Sun recently because they knew what the outcome would be.

Stock (2, Interesting)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444115)

I had a friend buy their stock in '01 expecting '00 prices to come back.

I heard about all this a few years ago and was like, get out of it, Sun will never be what it was then.

The make some great stuff, but decent has gotten good enough that the market for great is much smaller than it used to be.

They said "but it was worth so much", and I said "it may never have been worth that much"

It is funny looking at the two next to each-other since 1995, Sun took a ridiculous jump, IBM pretty much tracks with S&P and DOW, but slightly better.

What IBM get's for 7B (2, Interesting)

Capt James McCarthy (860294) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444163)

What market SUN has which is still substantial in certain arenas. Then there is Java, MySQL, and many other products which has been clearly covered. But I think getting their hands on ZFS and dtrace will be big. With ZFS IBM can build cheaper versions of NetApps Filers. Did I use cheap and IBM in the same sentence?

Hopefully IBM will still push out OpenSolaris along with Trusted Solaris. I wonder if this means the sparc processor is done and Solaris will be migrated to the IBM's RISC. What of AIX then? I don't see IBM maintaining two operating systems long term.

"RISC is going to change everything."

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (5, Funny)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444255)

I don't see IBM maintaining two operating systems long term.

You don't know IBM very well, then.

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (1)

Ammin (1012579) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444349)

No kidding. IBM is still keeping PICK operating systems (U2?) on life support.

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (3, Insightful)

russotto (537200) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444397)

I don't see IBM maintaining two operating systems long term.

You don't know IBM very well, then.

You're not kidding. MVS lasted for what, 30 years or so, alongside VM/CMS (and both OSs still have supported descendants). IBM even kept OS/2 on life support until 2007.

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (1)

ErichTheRed (39327) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444467)

They finally killed OS/2, huh?? I never thought that OS would die since it was so prevalent in banking and other niche industries. Companies I've worked for were using it for some new dev right up until 2001 or so, and keeping existing systems barely alive for customers.

I still see a few supermarket POSs, ATMs and airline systems running OS/2. Bad memories.

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (1)

SargentDU (1161355) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444537)

I am sure the bad you remember must have been Microsoft's contributions to the OS. MS got a royalty on every OS/2 sale as I recall due to the agreement between MS and IBM when OS/2 was developed.

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (1)

ckaminski (82854) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444577)

No shit. How long did it take them to finally kill OS/2 support? 10 years?

Re:What IBM get's for 7B (3, Insightful)

McGruber (1417641) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444623)

For their $7 Billion, IBM's Patent Attorneys get Sun's Patent Portfolio.

Scary.

Time to eval a MySQL fork... (3, Insightful)

alta (1263) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444181)

There's a number of decent forks of MySQL out there, time to look at them. People, list all of the forks you can think of here, I'll start with drizzle https://launchpad.net/drizzle [launchpad.net]

Drizzle's no good for me, I want those advanced features.

Re:Time to eval a MySQL fork... (2, Informative)

mutube (981006) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444621)

Er, Drizzle is developed at Sun (lead developer Jay Pipes [launchpad.net] , Sun Staff Engineer).

I built an ISP on Sparc 4s (5, Interesting)

GPLDAN (732269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444183)

I built a dial-up ISP in a major metro city with five Sparc 4s, and a Sparc Classic. Several Bay Terminal Servers and a crate full of USR Robotics Speedsters to attach to the octopus serial cables.

Upstream was a Cisco 2500 running two T1s, bonded with that new cool PPP protocol.

Over 650 shell accounts, usually 500 going at a time. A Special variant of SunOS 4.1.3 and access to tin, trn, pine and even... lynx!

Those Suns never took a break, never died and were solid, despite being located in a colo facility that alternated between being 100 degrees, and being 40 degrees. (Don't ask). Had a mind blowing $7,000/mo of revenue coming in the door to pay three people and keep the lights on the worlds crappiest office.

Good times.

Re:I built an ISP on Sparc 4s (0)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444543)

Had a mind blowing $7,000/mo of revenue coming in the door to pay three people and keep the lights on the worlds crappiest office.

Doesn't seem like much. 7000/mo*12month/3employees (yourself included?) = $28,000 a year. Of course, less than that, once the rent, electricity, ect. is figured in. However, I'm not sure what a good salary was when you're talking about.

Re:I built an ISP on Sparc 4s (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444613)

$7000/month is a lot of money??? Wow, talk about aiming low.

SparcStations (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444185)

In college at Southern Utah University [suu.edu] in 92 we got some SparcStations. We were a VAX/VMS (or NetWare) shop (and the instructors were all VAX (or NetWare)guys) so Seniors, like me, were sitting there with "Unix for VMS Users" (From O'Reilly?) trying to get the damn things on the network. Once that was accomplished we had fun trying to get X running.

Then we had to try to figure out how to do something actually useful with the damn things. It was a fun quarter. A couple years later I discovered Linux. Now I run a commercial Unix, the MacOS, with Debian running in a VmWare virtual machine.

Re:SparcStations (-1, Troll)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444343)

What the fuck? Your Unix is so inadequate you have to run another Unix under it? I can understand running Windows under Linux or OSX, but running Linux on OSX is just bizarre. Why not just run the Unix that you need to get shit done on the bare metal, and throw away the candy-coated one? Alternatively, why does OSX suck so bad that you need Linux concurrently, and why are you still willing to run it?

Re:SparcStations (1)

Markus_UW (892365) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444489)

Myself I just have my linux (slackware) vm for my *nix tinkery stuff.. it takes up 10 gigs on my hard disk, and it lets my do my *nix tinkering in an environment where I can be reasonably sure not to pwn everything in my OSX, which contains all my school assignmnents, etc... It's the same reason I have an XP vm (under XP) on my windoze box. It's nice to have an isolated environment sometimes.

Re:SparcStations (1, Informative)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444569)

Oddly enough, Linux seems to be stable enough to do both things at once. Having sat at OSX I know firsthand that it is not. I had Crystal Reports and Adobe CS on XP and Quark, Indesign, and Adobe CS2 on Mac PPC (Dual G5) and the G5 crashed or locked up probably four times as much as the PC. The really hilarious thing is that I was taking the PC home every night, had a bunch of games installed on it, and it was the machine I surfed the web with... CONSTANTLY (heh heh) It's nice to have an isolated environment when your system is so fragile that the least little thing can take it out. Having used macs since System 6 (I did dip back into System 5 on a Lisa I set up for some people once, whee) I know firsthand what it's like trying to actually get things done on them. I think MacOS reached its peak at System 6.0.8 and that NeXTStep reached its peak on the Turbo Slab. Apple fans are still trying to make the whole thing look like genius; Amiga fans know that Apple succeeded purely because of marketing. A graphics-only computer with no graphics acceleration until its second (Arguably third) generation? Brilliant!

Re:SparcStations (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444499)

I also run Windows XP on VMWare on MacOS. In fact, I run all three simultaneously.

I'm a developer. We do these things.

time to buy stock?? (1)

hort_wort (1401963) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444231)

If anyone wants to jump on the bandwagon with me, the ticker symbol is "JAVA".

And don't we all owe them something for keeping openoffice alive and well?

Re:time to buy stock?? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444503)

If you don't already know what deal arbitrage is (without thinking about it), then no, it is not the time to buy stock.

The first half of March was the time to buy stock:

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?s=JAVA&t=3m&l=on&z=m&q=l&c= [yahoo.com]

Re:time to buy stock?? (1)

hort_wort (1401963) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444641)

Yeah I read that after posting. Shit guys, you're supposed to post news like this faster so we can make the $$moolas$$.

Some advice from an IBM'er (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444293)

RUN!!!!! Ever since Sam Palmisano took over US based IBM employees have been treated worse and worse. Unless something changes the brain drain going on is going to bite IBM in the ass in the next year or so. Keep an eye out for massive published audit failures.

Wow, what a deal (5, Interesting)

ErichTheRed (39327) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444301)

I was reading about this earlier in the week, and remembering when IBM and Sun were arch-rivals in the high-end Unix market. I'm guessing IBM's going to kill AIX and maybe even the p-series servers now.

My question is, does IBM want Solaris, the hardware business, Java, or do they just want to get rid of a competitor?

Every IBM product I've seen in the past few years has had its user interface written in Java. Every piece of middleware they write now is Java. So it seems like they just want to consolidate the market.

That said, they got a good deal in this market, but what a lousy time to do this. How many thousands of employees on both the IBM and Sun side are going to get kicked out over this? I guess it all depends on how many products this kills. Worse still, IBM hasn't been known to be keen on keeping jobs in the US and Europe lately...

IBM About To Buy Sun For $7 Billion (5, Funny)

malchus6 (870609) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444319)

wow that's one hot piece of real estate.... (sorry)

Already moving forward (3, Informative)

skulcap (184906) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444331)

Our Sun sales rep has already reported that 75% of the sales force has been let go - which may not be a bad thing... Sun couldn't sell/market themselves out of a wet paper bag.

I have the utmost respect for a large part of their technology portfolio... and they really do (or at least seem to) try hard, but in the last 5 years support, sales, and things in general with them have just degraded.

Won't happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444335)

The antitrust problems are far too large. Especially in light of the massive "too big to fail" problems we've seen in other industries. The computer tech industry cannot be allowed to put this many eggs in so few baskets.

IBM is evil (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444355)

Any company they buy ends up dieing horribly. It's no coincidence they make the vast majority of their money off user support. They ensure that their products are impossibly frustrating to use.

IBM buying out Sun is a bad thing. A very bad thing. You can also kiss competition goodbye. You can also kiss competition goodbye.

Drop Linux for Solaris? (3, Insightful)

Jerry (6400) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444381)

Will IBM drop their support for Linux and switch to Solaris and OpenSolaris for their hardware? They won't if they want to continue to receive the support of the FOSS community, which they have been enjoying for some time now, otherwise they will be seen as exploiters, like so many who use the FOSS community during their beta period but take their product proprietary. Are you reading this Skype? Get that 4.0 Linux version out NOW!

Will IBM release ClassPath under the GPL2, making Java ENTIRELY GPL? They will if they want Java to remain competitive to .NET and expand.

How is Linux not "commercial"? (3, Insightful)

javacowboy (222023) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444433)

Last time I checked, Red Hat was selling a version of Linux, and so was Novell. They make quite a tidy profit from their Linux business.

Much of Linux's success is due to its community of contributors, but that community also includes corporations.

Re:How is Linux not "commercial"? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444649)

Linux is commercial but GNU's Not Unix.

Add your favorite Sun anecdote here (1)

timelorde (7880) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444469)

First heard this one way back when Sun flirted with OpenStep:

"All the Wood Behind One Arrow"

Those were the days... (4, Funny)

wytten (163159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444491)

Back in college in the 1980's I administered a cluster of Sun2's with 160MB rack mounted hard drives. You could define those days as when a "hard drive" would kill you if dropped on your head from a height of 3 feet.

MySQL vs Oracle? What about DB2? (2, Interesting)

VampireByte (447578) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444575)

The article mentions "I.B.M. could also undercut Oracle by more actively promoting the free MySQL software" but bring up IBM's DB2. Isn't this the more interesting question? Won't there be fear of IBM cannibilizing DB2 with "free" MySQL? Will IBM try to bury (or join the ranks of those who disparage) MySQL so that it doesn't endanger DB2?

SMIT on Solaris? (1)

niks42 (768188) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444611)

Will we get SMIT on Solaris now?

This makes about as much sense as... (1, Interesting)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444627)

...GM buying Ford. Adding and combining more crap has never been a solution for a failing business.

Very Soon (1, Interesting)

olddotter (638430) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444635)

Very soon there will be 3 OS's: Windows, Linux, OS X

Of course windows will have 7 to 14 flavors;
Linux will have 700 to 14,000 different distributions.
OS X will run on all of your All-White appliances, but you won't know its there.

I'm just about to change my career from... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444673)

Firewall guy to Websphere admin. I see this as somewhat good news. IBM has the uncanny ability to get execs to buy there stuff. I never and mean never get to talk to the sales guys. Big Blue puts company execs on their boards, we get a huge huge so called ROI with a product like Tivoli and we have to make it work under any circumstance so the exec won't be wrong.

With IBM essentially owning Java and Websphere platform I think this to be good news for anyone supporting it. Probably bad for the devs though, granted the market usually decides but IMB is good, real good at bypassing those who ask the tough questions.

worried about netbeans (1)

iampiti (1059688) | more than 5 years ago | (#27444703)

You can never know what's going to happen with this but Eclipse and Netbeans being arch rivals I fear about the future of Netbeans.
It's the Java IDE I like most and I'd hate it go away.Yes, I know it's open source but Sun pays most of the people who develop it and it'd never been so big without their help.

NigHga (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27444709)

worse and worse. As see. The Number
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