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Judge Rules Oracle Must Continue Porting Software To Itanium

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the stick-around dept.

HP 109

angry tapir writes "A California court has ordered Oracle to continue porting its software to the Intel Itanium chips used by Hewlett-Packard in a number of its servers. Last year, Oracle, which competes with HP in the hardware market but shares many customers with the vendor, announced it would cease supporting Itanium. HP filed suit in June 2011, maintaining that Oracle was contractually bound to continue supporting Itanium."

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Tor Discussion F0rums! UNITE! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852255)

mature adults should visit and post at one or both of these unofficial tor discussion forums, these tinyurl's will take you to:

** HackBB: []

** Onion Forum 2.0 []

Each tinyurl link will take you to a hidden service discussion forum. Tor is required to visit these links, even though they appear to be on the open web, they will lead you to .onion sites.

I know the Tor developers can do better, but how many years are we to wait?

Caution: some topics may be disturbing. You should be eighteen years or older. I recommend you disable images in your browser when viewing these two forums[1] and only enabling them if you are posting a message, but still be careful! Disable javascript and cookies, too.

If you prefer to visit the hidden services directly, bypassing the tinyurl service:

HackBB: (directly)
http://clsvtzwzdgzkjda7.onion/ [clsvtzwzdgzkjda7.onion]

Onion Forum 2.0: (directly)
http://65bgvta7yos3sce5.onion/ [65bgvta7yos3sce5.onion]

The tinyurl links are provided as a simple means of memorizing the hidden services via a link shortening service (

[1]: Because any content can be posted! Think 4chan, for example. onionforum2 doesn't appear to be heavily moderated so be aware and take precautions.

Judge rules Slashdot must link to Goatse. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852279)

Slashdot: The Missing Interview (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852281)

Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda is a 29-year old white male with a stocky build and a goatee. He responded to my ad to be interviewed for this article wearing only leather pants, leather boots and a leather vest. I could see that both of his nipples were pierced with large-gauge silver rings.

Questioner: I hope you won't be offended if I ask you to prove to me that you're a nullo. Just so that my readers will know that this isn't a fake.

CmdrTaco: Sure, no problem. (stands and unbuckles pants and drops them to his ankles, revealing a smooth, shaven crotch with only a thin scar to show where his genitals once were).

Q: Thank you. That's a remarkable sight.

(laughs and pulls pants back up). Most people think so.

Q: What made you decide to become a nullo?

(pauses). Well, it really wasn't entirely my decision.

Q: Excuse me?

The idea wasn't mine. It was my lover's idea.

Q: Please explain what you mean.

Okay, it's a long story. You have to understand my relationship with Hemos before you'll know what happened.

Q: We have plenty of time. Please go on.

Both of us were into the leather lifestyle when we met through a personal ad. Hemos's ad was very specific: he was looking for someone to completely dominate and modify to his pleasure. In other word, a slave.

The ad intrigued me. I had been in a number of B&D scenes and also some S&M, but I found them unsatisfying because they were all temporary. After the fun was over, everybody went on with life as usual.

I was looking for a complete life change. I wanted to meet someone who would be part of my life forever. Someone who would control me and change me at his whim.

Q: In other words, you're a true masochist.

Oh yes, no doubt about that. I've always been totally passive in my sexual relationships.

Anyway, we met and there was instant chemistry. Hemos is about my age and is a complete loser. Our personalities meshed totally. He's very dominant.

I went back to his place after drinks and had the best sex of my life. That's when I knew I was going to be with Hemos for a long, long time.

Q: What sort of things did you two do?

It was very heavy right away. He restrained me and whipped me for quite awhile. He put clamps on my nipples and a ball gag in my mouth. And he hung a ball bag on my sack with some very heavy weights. That bag really bounced around when Hemos fucked me from behind.

Q: Ouch.

(laughs) Yeah, no kidding. At first I didn't think I could take the pain, but Hemos worked me through it and after awhile I was flying. I was sorry when it was over.

Hemos enjoyed it as much as I did. Afterwards he talked about what kind of a commitment I'd have to make if I wanted to stay with him.

Q: What did he say exactly?

Well, besides agreeing to be his slave in every way, I'd have to be ready to be modified. To have my body modified.

Q: Did he explain what he meant by that?

Not specifically, but I got the general idea. I guessed that something like castration might be part of it.

Q: How did that make you feel?

(laughs) I think it would make any guy a little hesitant.

Q: But it didn't stop you from agreeing to Hemos's terms?

No it didn't. I was totally hooked on this man. I knew that I was willing to pay any price to be with him.

Anyway, a few days later I moved in with Hemos. He gave me the rules right away: I'd have to be naked at all times while we were indoors, except for a leather dog collar that I could never take off. I had to keep my balls shaved. And I had to wear a butt plug except when I needed to take a shit or when we were having sex.

I had to sleep on the floor next to his bed. I ate all my food on the floor, too.

The next day he took me to a piercing parlor where he had my nipples done, and a Prince Albert put into the head of my cock.

Q: Heavy stuff.

Yeah, and it got heavier. He used me as a toilet, pissing in my mouth. I had to lick his asshole clean after he took a shit, too. It was all part of a process to break down any sense of individuality I had. After awhile, I wouldn't hesitate to do anything he asked.

Q: Did the sex get rougher?

Oh God, yeah. He started fisting me every time we had sex. But he really started concentrating on my cock and balls, working them over for hours at a time.

He put pins into the head of my cock and into my sack. He attached clothespins up and down my cock and around my sack. The pain was pretty bad. He had to gag me to keep me from screaming.

Q: When did the idea of nullification come up?

Well, it wasn't nullification at first. He started talking about how I needed to make a greater commitment to him, to do something to show that I was dedicated to him for life.

When I asked him what he meant, he said that he wanted to take my balls.

Q: How did you respond?

Not very well at first. I told him that I liked being a man and didn't want to become a eunuch. But he kept at me, and wore me down. He reminded me that I agreed to be modified according to his wishes, and this is what he wanted for me. Anything less would show that I wasn't really committed to the relationship. And besides, I was a total bottom and didn't really need my balls.

It took about a week before I agreed to be castrated. But I wasn't happy about it, believe me.

Q: How did he castrate you?

Hemos had a friend, Zonk, who was into the eunuch scene. One night he came over with his bag of toys, and Hemos told me that this was it. I was gonna lose my nuts then and there.

Q: Did you think of resisting?

I did for a minute, but deep down I knew there was no way. I just didn't want to lose Hemos. I'd rather lose my balls.

Zonk restrained me on the living room floor while Hemos videotaped us. He used an elastrator to put a band around my sack.

Q: That must have really hurt.

Hell yeah. It's liked getting kicked in the balls over and over again. I screamed for him to cut the band off, but he just kept on going, putting more bands on me. I had four bands around my sack when he finished.

I was rolling around on the floor screaming, while Hemos just videotaped me. Eventually, my sack got numb and the pain subsided. I looked between my legs and could see my sack was a dark purple. I knew my balls were dying inside.

Hemos and his friend left the room and turned out the light. I lay there for hours, crying because I was turning into a eunuch and there wasn't anything I could do about it.

Q: What happened then?

Eventually I fell asleep from exhaustion. Then the light switched on and I could see Hemos's friend kneeling between my legs, touching my sack. I heard him tell Hemos that my balls were dead.

Q: How did Hemos react?

Very pleased. He bent down and felt around my sack. He said that it felt cold.

Zonk told me that I needed to keep the bands on. He said that eventually my balls and sack would dry up and fall off. I just nodded. What else could I do at that point?

Q: Did it happen just like Zonk said?

Yeah, a week or so later my package just fell off. Hemos put it in a jar of alcohol to preserve it. It's on the table next to his bed.

Q: How did things go after that?

Hemos was really loving to me. He kept saying how proud he was of me, how grateful that I had made the commitment to him. He even let me sleep in his bed.

Q: What about the sex?

We waited awhile after my castration, and then took it easy until I was completely healed. At first I was able to get hard, but as the weeks went by my erections began to disappear.

That pleased Hemos. He liked fucking me and feeling my limp cock. It made his dominance over me even greater.

Q: When did he start talking about making you a nullo?

A couple of months after he took my nuts. Our sex had gotten to be just as rough as before the castration. He really got off on torturing my cock. Then he started saying stuff like, "Why do you even need this anymore?"

That freaked me out. I always thought that he might someday take my balls, but I never imagined that he'd go all the way. I told him that I wanted to keep my dick.

Q: How did he react to that?

At first he didn't say much. But he kept pushing. Hemos said I would look so nice being smooth between my legs. He said my dick was small and never got hard anymore, so what was the point of having it.

But I still resisted. I wanted to keep my cock. I felt like I wouldn't be a man anymore without it.

Q: So how did he get you to agree?

He didn't. He took it against my will.

Q: How did that happen?

We were having sex in the basement, and I was tied up and bent over this wooden bench as he fucked me. Then I heard the doorbell ring. Hemos answered it, and he brought this guy into the room.

At first I couldn't see anything because of the way I was tied. But then I felt these hands lift me up and put me on my back. And I could see it was Zonk, the guy who took my nuts.

Q: How did you react?

I started screaming and crying, but the guy just gagged me. The two of them dragged me to the other side of the room where they tied me spread eagled on the floor.

Zonk snaked a catheter up my dick, and gave me a shot to numb my crotch. I was grateful for that, at least. I remember how bad it hurt to lose my balls.

Q: What was Hemos doing at this time?

He was kneeling next to me talking quietly. He said I'd be happy that they were doing this. That it would make our relationship better. That kind of calmed me down. I thought, "Well, maybe it won't be so bad."

Q: How long did the penectomy take?

It took awhile. Some of the penis is inside the body, so he had to dig inside to get all of it. There was a lot of stitching up and stuff. He put my cock in the same jar with my balls. You can even see the Prince Albert sticking out of the head.

Then they made me a new pisshole. It's between my asshole and where my sack used to be. So now I have to squat to piss.

Q: What has life been like since you were nullified?

After I got over the surgery and my anger, things got better. When I healed up, I began to like my smooth look. Hemos brought friends over and they all admired it, saying how pretty I looked. It made me feel good that Hemos was proud of me.

Q: Do you have any sexual feeling anymore?

Yes, my prostate still responds when Hemos fucks me or uses the buttplug. And my nipples are quite sensitive. If Hemos plays with them while fucking me, I have a kind of orgasm. It's hard to describe, but it's definitely an orgasm.

Sometimes Hemos says he's gonna have my prostate and nipples removed, but he's just kidding around. He's happy with what he's done to me.

Q: So are you glad Hemos had you nullified?

Well, I wouldn't say I'm glad. If I could, I'd like to have my cock and balls back. But I know that I'm a nullo forever. So I'm making the best of it.

Hemos and I are very happy. I know that he'll take care of me and we'll be together always. I guess losing my manhood was worth it to make that happen for us.

Not an Oracle Fan (5, Funny)

imemyself (757318) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852291)

Hahahahaha! Not that I really think there's any use in prolonging the inevitable with Itanium, but I just love hearing about Oracle getting fucked.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (3, Insightful)

slashmydots (2189826) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852417)

But...cue the horribly glitchy, barely working, piece of crap Itanium port edition rofl.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (3, Insightful)

CheshireDragon (1183095) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852679)

yup, I kind of see patches and other developments coming very slowly to glitchy software. No where does it say how fast they have to code and release patches. i see problems ahead. Usually the bully picks on the kid too hard and the kid comes back and shoots up the whole, bad analogy

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (2)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853675)

It doesn't even need to be bad. The fact that it's a dead platform that is only supported as the result of a lawsuit ought to set off warning bells for anyone considering buying it. As soon as the agreement expires, it's going to be dropped. It's also likely to be a wake-up call for anyone still using Itanium: if even Oracle (a company well known for being motivated solely by money and willing to support anything if they think there's a dollar in it) won't support it without legal pressure, then no one else is going to either.

At this point, the only possible reason for using Itanium is that you have a large OpenVMS deployment. If you're running any flavour of UNIX on Itanium, you should ask yourself why you didn't migrate away at the last upgrade cycle. Or the one before that...

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854233)

" As soon as the agreement expires, it's going to be dropped"

I know reading the original article is considered bad form, but the article makes it clear the Judge ruled that Oracle has to support the Itanium as long as HP continues to manufacture systems based around it.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (4, Interesting)

OnlineAlias (828288) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854827)

Neither company wants to continue down this path...HP knows no one will buy the platform with a gun to Oracle's head. This judgement merely forces Oracle to pay HP in an agreement not to have to port the code and then sales of everything will stop.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (2)

ifrag (984323) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854353)

willing to support anything if they think there's a dollar in it

I think Oracle would request a great deal more cash than 1 dollar.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#40855209)

At this point, the only possible reason for using Itanium is that you have a large OpenVMS deployment.

Some people are forced by a software vendor to upgrade from their perfectly-working Alpha AXP systems to an Itanic with vastly more power than they need because of OS upgrades.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40855643)

This looks like the perfect opportunity to switch platforms - maybe something like SparcServers

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856643)

This looks like the perfect opportunity to switch platforms - maybe something like SparcServers

Nice irony. But the upgrade path from Digital Unix on Alpha doesn't lead to a SPARC anyway, it leads to HP-SUX on Itanic, or at least it did. I know of at least one case where this was the only option presented (other than "good luck getting your data out of our databases and into another system") that resulted in an otherwise unnecessary move from a quad Alpha to an eight-way Itanic.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40856619)

Can't anybody resurrect the AXP 21364, build an around that, and offer it to the few companies still on OVMS? Sounds more affordable than migrating to either Itanic or Unix

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40855559)

OVMS is a poor excuse - people should have moved away from that when Alpha was killed. If one is running Itanium, chances are that one is either using something from HP or SGI. If one has paid top $$$ for it, then it's worth extending it's life using either Debian or FreeBSD. But yeah, anyone would be stupid to buy a new Integrity server

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (3, Informative)

Niomosy (1503) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856833)

The Tandems / NonStop servers also use Itaniums.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854867)

Actually I would argue that Oracle wins friend, simply because having this public lets everyone know that if a major software house has to be forced to support your platform? Well it's deader than BeOS friend, time to abandon ship.

I bet what little Itanic sales HP had are gonna dry up and blow away like a fart in the breeze and all Oracle has to do is provide some buggy half assed ports to comply with the ruling, certainly not gonna sell Itanic with those.

Lets face it folks Itanic was a BAD idea, just like netburst and on the AMD side Bulldozer. In the case of Itanic the ONLY way to get really superior to X86 performance was to have the compiler be able to perfectly predict and feed the code in and even Intel's compiler just couldn't do it, then AMD shot it in the head by bringing out Opteron64 which solved the 32bit problem which had led to hacks like PAE being implemented.

HP just needs to take Itanic out back, tell it to think about the rabbits and put one behind its ear.

Re:Not an Oracle Fan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40855837)

Any VLIW or related architecture was bad for the Market due to basic compatibility breakage guaranteed to happen when one added new registers, ALUs and other blocks. Unlike w/ RISC/CISC, the compiler has to handle these details - no register renaming, speculative execution or anything like it. Another thing that sunk the Itanic - once the Windows codebase was merged into NT & multi-processing sw became common, Intel & AMD could just dump more cores @ the problem, eliminating the historical RISC vs. CISC advantage, let alone VLIW

Free enterprise! (0, Flamebait)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852301)

But... FUHREEEEEE ENTERRRPRIIIIISE!!!!11 It should be perfectly fine to introduce incompatibility and leave customers without upgradws to sink a competitor! This is how true American businesses work!

Re:Free enterprise! (3, Informative)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852317)

It is. Unless you haven't freely entered into a contract guaranteeing you won't do it.

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852323)

Urgh. Double negative. Teach me to rewrite a comment without re-reading it.

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852335)

Double negatives aren't necessarily bad (see this sentence). It's the incorrect negation that's the problem.

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852391)

Yes. It was shorthand for "unintended double negative". I figured the context of me not reviewing my comment would be sufficient to imply that.

Re:Free enterprise! (5, Funny)

rve (4436) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852473)

evacuate City 17 at once, if not sooner! I cannot state this without enough undue emphasis.

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854099)

If you do not want to not have your hard drive formatted, do not click "no".

Starting format in 10... 9... 8... 7...

[yes] [no]

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852573)

And that, my friend, is a double-clarification! :)

Re:Free enterprise! (5, Informative)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852337)

This is free enterprise. Oracle and HP entered a contract. Oracle disputed, and the judge said they can't back out of their contract. So there you have it.

Re:Free enterprise! (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | more than 2 years ago | (#40855181)

Ya, hardly a surprise.

20 years ago or more I worked on an ancient project on Prime computers (with language RPG II -- sweet!) and it had Oracle on it. However, Prime had paid Oracle for the port since there weren't enough Primes around to justify it to Oracle based purely on Oracle sales.

But, also take from this that many enterprises deem Oracle a necessity.

Re:Free enterprise! (1, Insightful)

CMiYC (6473) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852345)

There was a contract. When the contract is violated, [American] businesses sue.

Sure it's the Itanic (4, Informative)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852309)

But if Oracle was stupid enough to agree to support a chip for a long period based on Intel and HP's suggestion of everlasting server dominance, then they deserve what they get. Oracle should have bothered to do a little research, and if they had they would have realized Itanium was the turd most of us "little people" figured even at the time.The term Itanic wasn't coined yesterday or for no reason Mr Ellison.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852343)

easy fix.

sleep 100. for each query if its an itanium chip.

they only have to "support it" not make sure its as efficient :)

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852477)

I would love to see some of the diffs for the(Itanium-specific) patches they submit. My guess is it will be a masterpiece of passive-aggressive coding.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (2)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852525)

Yeah required to code for X doesn't say shit about efficiency running on X. While not in the same position and required by legal ruling, MS Office for Mac is a total dog as an example. And I'm sure it isn't because MS doesn't have the resources. I expect Itanium Oracleware to be horrifying in every way possible. At the same time HP has an ace too, because as long as they ship, Oracle needs to code for it. Imagine a (unlikely) 2ghz 2013 model Itanic still getting a 10 unit ship in 2031 (for contract support har har har). If HP builds it Oracle has to support it according to TFA. I see no unit shipment size referenced. Yup Oracle we expect a current version for our internally shipped small batch hand assembled boxes they will demand. HP is mean too, and they buy lots of support parts, so if you think the end of the Intel Itanium fab will kill the chip, think again. Good news for the few folks who bothered to learn the platform. Just depends on how far both sides will go to screw each other. Knowing these 2, expect to hear more and more in the future.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (4, Funny)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852581)

I was going to suggest that iTunes for Windows was another good example of this, but then I remembered that it sucks on Mac OS X as well.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852719)

True, but not to the level that it sucks on Windows. Safari is another great example. Usable on a Mac, horseshit and bloatware on a PC.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854365)

And apparently now gone on a PC.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854935)

Thank God.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854863)

This is wildly off topic, but...

The main reason I use iTunes as opposed to anything else is the ease of streaming to Airplay devices. I have two stereos in different rooms that I regularly stream to. I've actually used WinAmp for this (found a shareware plugin for the purpose), but didn't find any pressing reason to use it over iTunes.

*shrug* I'm open minded. I really don't care if its iTunes or something else. iTunes just seems to suit my needs the best.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

philj (13777) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854067)

MS Office was originally written for the Mac, then ported to Windows. Just FYI :P

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1, Informative)

msauve (701917) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854655)

Well, no. Excel and PowerPoint came first on the Mac. Word and Outlook came first on PC.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40856795)

Given the volumes involved here, can't HP just buy that 1 fab from Intel, & let Intel quit that business in peace? Didn't they @ 1 time fab pa-RISC before handing that over to Intel?

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

metacell (523607) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854329)

"sleep 100" won't do you much good. You need to do "for i=1 to 100 do null" ;=)

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

garyebickford (222422) | more than 2 years ago | (#40855587)

Funny thing, I worked a little bit on an IBM 5100 desktop computer back in the day. This was a rather cool little machine, which ran BASIC, APL and one other language I forget. IBM had an accounting package written in BASIC for the 5100, but it was rather slow. So I looked at the code, trying to find why. I found multiple instances of empty loops to 1000, just like yours. (I forget how to write BASIC so I won't try.)

That machine was also the one where I played with APL, which I still think was a cool language. It forced you to think in terms of 'input array: transform: output array' rather than the twiddly bits of for-loops. So the classic programming solution of 'nibble at the edges of a problem until you get to the middle' can't be used, and you have to sit down and think about the pure more-or-less mathematical solution in its entirety, until you can get to 'A = f(B)' for some complex function f. IOW it requires you to be smarter.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854745)

Right because the chip is going to be blamed when the software sucks. HP did the right thing and protected their customers that bought into itanium. Oracle just wanted to shovel their own hardware and cutting support for something that is now a competing product made sense.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40857041)

Does that also explain why Microsoft, Red Hat, Canonical & just about everyone else has abandoned the platform? When even Linux guys are unwilling to support it, that ought to tell a story

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (4, Interesting)

sangreal66 (740295) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852383)

They actually made the agreement when Itanium was already dying (2010). It was (a vague) part of the settlement when HP sued them for hiring their former CEO

At least, that is what I got when I RTFA

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852429)

Fair, but I didn't read it quite the same. Either way, even if one agrees to shitty terms, they are still bound; unless illegal- not the case here. The fact that it had to do with Hurd just adds to the drama nothing more. From TFA it sounds like they are stuck rearranging deckchairs on the S.S. Itanic until HP kills it. That's ano doubt a shitty deal for them to agree to, especially for the Hurd turd. But again, nobody forced them to agree to this. And like one of the poster's mentioned, I'm sure their new updates will be total garbage from the team that brings us the HP printer software "suite". I guess shitty deals go both ways on this one.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852791)

What I want to know is what advantage HP gets by sticking with the good ship Itanic instead of just switching their kit over to say Ivy Bridge Xeon chips...

locked-in customers (3, Insightful)

Chirs (87576) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852843)

They likely have big enterprise customers that have spent oodles of money customizing the software. It's not just a matter of recompiling at that point.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (3, Insightful)

walshy007 (906710) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852859)

It's about the large enterprise customers, they bought into itanium and want continued support for it. Asking a gigantic company (the clients who bought itanium) to change architectures or use a mix of them in a short period is a quick way to lose the customer.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

harvey the nerd (582806) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853737)

Forcing a gigantic customer out by breaching support promises is a good way to get a lawsuit also.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854123)

Backwards compatibility with Pa-Risc, AFAIK. Those HP/UX - and whatever their mainframe-ish OS is called - machines aren't going to start running on x86 overnight.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

Niomosy (1503) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856957)

They've got the HP 3000s which run MPE/iX but that was EOL'd so I'm not sure if that's what you were referring to, though they do run on PA-RISC.

They've also got Tandems which are considered mainframes by some.

Honestly, I think HP can move the Tandems and OpenVMS to Xeons, though OVMS may be a bit of work.

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854199)

The x86 arch is not very nice either... I would prefer arm chips...

They both run linux and HPUX on itanium based systems... Calculate cost of migrating both software and hardware to using intel-chips... Not too hard to see why they are sticking to it for now...

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (1)

Shimbo (100005) | more than 2 years ago | (#40855349)

What I want to know is what advantage HP gets by sticking with the good ship Itanic instead of just switching their kit over to say Ivy Bridge Xeon chips...

They will use a proportion of their HP-UX and OpenVMS customers during the port, just as they did when they abandoned Alpha and PA-RISC. It's a profitable business for them to take the support money, and do the occasional hardware refresh.

Even if HP did do the ports, third party suppliers aren't going to be rushing to port to HP-UX/OpenVMS on x64. What would Larry say about a port of Oracle do you think?

Re:Sure it's the Itanic (5, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853883)

GNU/Hurd, please. Don't set Stallman off again.

Why is this a problem to Oracle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852373)

Why does this pose a problem to Oracle?
It seems to me that the people of Oracle just needs to compile the software to Itanium and be done with it. Surely not a problem worth taking to court.

Re:Why is this a problem to Oracle? (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852631)

Well, it's almost never as simple as a re-compile, but even if it were, there's an issue of supportability. If you develop your software with certain performance metrics in mind, and a particular platform does not support those metrics adequately for new features, then continuing to offer versions for that platform will result in a support nightmare.

Even if that platform does perform adequately, if you're truly going to support something, you should test your software on it, and it takes extra resources to do so. I'm not an insider on this topic or anything, so I don't know the reasons why Oracle wanted to stop supporting Itanium, but assuming it's not something petty and competitive, it's likely to be one of those.

Hyper Proprietary (-1, Offtopic)

Penurious Penguin (2687307) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852393)

Maybe the judge will also rule that HP must stop binding their hardware to BIOS to prevent users from customizing their own systems. Yeah, a little off topic, but HP sucks big enough to bitch anywhere their ugly name is found.
"System cannot boot. Unsupported hardware"
Hardware Pugnacity, louts!

Re:Hyper Proprietary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854215)

Last time i had a problem like that was probably 10-13 years ago...... Don't like most branded systems for totally different reasons..

Silly Oracle (5, Interesting)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852399)

Do you *really* want to depend on a forced port?

One that the developers' heart isn't in?

One that their company puts all their least competent people on?

One were a few deliberate bugs would be just as bad for you business as not having a port at all - if not worse?

(And how are you going to prove in court that a bug is deliberate, unless some manager is stupid enough to send the order to the developers by e-mail.)

Re:Silly Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852489)

> Silly Oracle (Score:3)
> Do you *really* want to depend on a forced port?
> One that the developers' heart isn't in?
> One that their company puts all their least competent people on?

Of course not, but it give HP another cause of action to sue for damages later. They will get a bigger award then, because not only will Oracle have broken the contract, but they will have defied a court order.

Re:Silly Oracle (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852545)

I think you are vastly overestimating the amount of effort to support Itanium.

Because Oracle already supports several platforms, most of the code will already be platform-neutral. That means the specific changes they'll have to make will be minimal, and may even consist of just re-enabling (and updating) previously working code. The major cost will be in testing and certification the newly supported configurations.

Re:Silly Oracle (3, Insightful)

steelfood (895457) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852619)

Agreed. The difference between "supported" and "not supported" more or less amounts to whether a support drone logs a ticket or not when you call in. Especially where Ellison (who is only slightly less evil than the RIAA and MPAA) is involved, there's no "spirit," only "word" of the law.

Obviously, Oracle will honor their contract with HP. If the contract can be honored by poor-performing 60-year old guys trained in supporting S/370s somehow managed to squeak by and not be forcibly retired (not that all 60-year old guys supporting IBM mainframes are poor performers), then so be it. And if those guys throw their hands up in the air after a few hours on site, because in reality they have no idea what they're doing, as long as the contract does not stipulate a time limit before fixing each problem, then that's fine too.

Good luck, HP. Dealing with Oracle is a step down from dealing with the devil. At least the devil actually gives you what you asked for (while all the numerous ancillary things somehow end up going horribly wrong).

Re:Silly Oracle (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852847)

Having dealt with with Oracle support, I'm almost sure that any problems that arise with Oracle's newly-ported software will be hardware/hp related and they won't to shit.

Short of actually showing the part of code that is faulty, I've never had oracle step-up and patch anything. The upside is I've learned a lot in quite a short period of time.

Re:Silly Oracle (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853561)

Not necessarily. Oracle has to weigh up the cost of being further sued by HP for not putting in any effort against the cost of actually making some effort. I imagine they least they will do is the least they have to in order to avoid being sued.

Courts generally seem to be quite harsh when dealing with people who try to flout previous rulings.

Re:Silly Oracle (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852697)

OTHO, the software will still represent Oracle to customers. Deliberate bugs and deliberately substandard support will just be their own foot they're shooting. Their sales managers will *not* like dealing with that, so it's unlikely.

Re:Silly Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852753)

It's not that the bugs are deliberate; Oracle is just that incompetent!

Re:Silly Oracle (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852757)

Well if it is under contract then yes they better damn support it and pay up to HP.

Do you really x is irrelevent if Oracle signed a contract with Digital/HP back in the day. The US constitution itself guarantees protection of contracts as evil as Oracle or else dimwitted and inept HP is. There is real damaged too as HP lost money relying on a contract from Oracle. Larry probably just assumed the increase of revenue from former OpenVMS, HP-UX, and other other platforms will pay for the lawsuit itself.

Re:Silly Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853313)

This is so the sales people at HP can say "Why yes, it will run all your enterprise apps - even Oracle" to the managers who want to buy hardware.

How badly it does so, is only discovered after the sale is complete.

And also, they can (and the clients will anyway) blame Oracle for any problems.

Re:Silly Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853511)

My experience of Oracle support is that it's pretty awful even when you are paying for it.

(The product I develop recently made the leap to Linux and Red Hat's support is _so_ much better.)

Re:Silly Oracle (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853605)

A lot of us still put our best effort into whatever our job is, even if the corporation didn't want to do it.

So don't assume that the quality of the development work will decrease due to the corporation being uninterested in the product.

Re:Silly Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40855529)

One that the developers' heart isn't in?

I agree with everything else you said, but don't assume the developers' hearts aren't in it. As someone with a fair bit of IA64 experience, it's a really fun platform to write assembly for. It's not fun if you're getting the bill for the hardware and it's maybe not so fun if you're fighting with C compilers since most C compilers are weak on IA64, but even that's just dealing with slow compilers, not broken compilers.

Well I can't guarantee that the developers in charge of this port are having a great time, but they are definitely having a much better day than their managers are, ha!

Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852425)

Who is going to want to use software that a company was forced to port to a dying platform?

Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre? (1)

theodp (442580) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852431)

Rehire fired workers? Or doesn't HP feel its own statements should be binding? :-)

Re:Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852459)

Being a trustworthy hardware entity isn't really the HP Way since at least the late 90's. Now it's just the same shit Dell and Acer and the rest sell, but with a roll of the dice CEO and enough money from printers to pretend that they still have anything to bring to the table. Innovation is a four letter as they have selected the role of yet another OEM. HP used to be awesome, now... not so much. Still Oracle laid their bed on this one, and HP is just treating them the way they would have treated HP if the roles were flipped.

Re:Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre (4, Interesting)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852731)

Being a trustworthy hardware entity isn't really the HP Way since at least the late 90's. Now it's just the same shit Dell and Acer and the rest sell, but with a roll of the dice CEO and enough money from printers to pretend that they still have anything to bring to the table. Innovation is a four letter as they have selected the role of yet another OEM. HP used to be awesome, now... not so much. Still Oracle laid their bed on this one, and HP is just treating them the way they would have treated HP if the roles were flipped.

They still support old mainframe boxen from a different era running VMS, HP-UX, Non-stop and I think Tandom? These things run nuclear power plants, air traffic control systems, financial markets, and things that IBM still makes money today. These are not your typical XP to Windows 7 migration issues upgrading boxes but are part of decades old infrastructure. HP acquired some hardcore players like Digital back in its day.

True I have not even seen opensource software work on VMS ports of perl and apache since the beginning of the century. No new customers and my guess is they are supporting old.

But still you are right with new purchases and this pulling of Itanium has scared the crap out of customers who are already investing in crappy wintel or lintel replacements in clusters for many things that are not industrial scale.

Re:Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853223)

They still support old mainframe boxen from a different era running VMS, HP-UX, Non-stop and I think Tandom?

As a mainframe sysprog, recently escaped from HP, I can assure you that at least the boxen I was working on wasn't 'old'. It was a state-of-the-art Z196, capable of running thousands of linux images under VMS with essentially cross-memory comms between the images and the the z/OS LPARs, and virtually 100% uptime.

Give me a mainframe running linux images to front end the mainframe over a swarm of crappy, consumer grade X-Boxes any day.

Re:Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40855285)

Ummm, what?

Z196 isn't HP, it's IBM.

VMS doesn't run on z/OS LPARS; VMS is HP and z/OS is IBM.

What the hell are you talking about?

Re:Then shouldn't HP have to support TouchPad? Pre (0)

cmdrbuzz (681767) | more than 2 years ago | (#40855697)

You mean MVS (as in now called zOS) not VMS which is the ex Digital / Compaq OpenVMS.

zOS / MVS is IBM not HP....

Open source impact? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852637)

From the article:
"For approximately three decades, these corporate giants dealt on an informal basis," Kleinberg wrote in his decision. "Even when the financial consequences were in the billions, they shared resources, worked together, supported mutual customers, and with only a handful of exceptions did so without a written contract."
HP had "every reason to believe" the settlement agreement "was consistent with 'business as usual,'" Kleinberg added.
Overall, Oracle's statements amounted to a valid contract and the company is required to continue porting its products to HP's Itanium servers at no cost to HP, the judge ruled.
Those products constitute the list of software products that were offered on HP Itanium platforms as of Sept. 20, 2010, "including any new releases, versions or updates of those products," Kleinberg added.
Oracle is obligated to continue the ports until HP stops selling Itanium-based servers, the judge wrote.

Surely this will be overturned on appeal? Essentially the case seems to be:
* You guys worked together in the past
* You guys talked about your continued commitment to the platform
* Even though no contract is in place, you have to do what you said you would do and support this platform in perpetuity regardless of whether a technical and business case for continuing to do so exists.

Wow - that sounds like the end of any informal agreement and collaboration between big companies for the foreseeable future. Won't this impact open source as well?

Re:Open source impact? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852685)

You miss-read that. The judge pointed out that even when they *didn't* have a contract, they had (for decades) worked together in good faith on huge, and expensive projects. In the face of that past behavior, HP's belief that Oracle would *honor* the terms of a settlement agreement (which is a contract), was beyond reasonable, and Oracle doesn't have a leg to stand on with regard to reneging on that agreement.

Re:Open source impact? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852877)

Sounds like common law marriage to me.

Too late (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852707)

No one in their right mind would invest money in this now and have already started porting their apps to Windows or Linux.

This reminds me of when Sun cancelled x86 solaris only to reintroduce it. Corporate customers shunned it and software vendors stopped supporting it which caused customers to shun it more in a perpetual loop.

The only people running VMS, HP-UX, and Windows on Itanium are not upgrading or buying new. Just keeping their existing infrastructure or moving or are in the process of moving to a modern more supported platform.

I hate Oracle with a passion but they are asshats in this who voided the contract in order to drum up support for their own offerings even after the lawsuit will make up in increased sales. Bastards.

What with the hate for Itanium? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40852743)

And all that considering Oracle started out on Itanium's "grandfather" (of sorts), VAX/VMS.
Decency would suggest Oracle support Itanium as long as it exists.

Re:What with the hate for Itanium? (2)

sjames (1099) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853633)

It is a very expensive CPU that never even started to live up to it's considerable hype. Because of that, it never really caught on, so there's not a lot of ROI for a software vendor supporting it.

Even a verbal contract can be a contract.... (2)

khb (266593) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852919)

While I found it somewhat surprising, it isn't totally amazing. The Judge reviewed the totality of the joint corporate history and ruled. While it's inevitable that Oracle will appeal, IANAL but successful appeals usually require there to be an error in Law, not in "Fact". It seems to be a finding of "Fact" (there's little doubt that if there was a valid contract, it's a contract ;>).

As for Oracle then producing intentionally buggy software that would be unprofessional and begging for suits from the customers (who tend to be Fortune 100 companies, with their own nasty Legal departments).

It is not clear to me from the media coverage if Oracle is required to do the work for free (or, if like Intel, HP can/must pay for the work done on their behalf). Or if Oracle still has to do the work, how many boxes will HP have to ship Oracle for Development and Testing (that's another way to potentially extract pounds of flesh from HP).

Re:Even a verbal contract can be a contract.... (1)

Targon (17348) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854663)

Fortune 100 companies would move away from a DEAD platform, and that is what Itanium is at this point, a dead platform that never got enough traction for ANYONE to really want to support it. HP is foolish to continue selling a dead platform, and there was more of a case to continue supporting webOS than Itanium.

Is this a California thing? (1)

namgge (777284) | more than 2 years ago | (#40852987)

I thought that the remedy for breach of contract in common law systems was for the parties to be restored to the position they would have been in had the contract not existed. Hence, I'm very surprised that in this case the judge reportedly is compelling someone to do something against their will other than pay damages. Is this standard practice in California, is this really a voluntary settlement, or will it be overturned on appeal?

Re:Is this a California thing? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853517)

No, the remedy is to restore to a position they would have been in had the contract been properly performed.

Injunction or specific performance (i.e., directing a party to do something "against their will") are very common remedies when monetary damages are not adequate.

Oracle is not doing so well in court (1)

krelvin (771644) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853091)

Google case, now this one... wow. Oracle is not my favorite company, extremely dislike their support services etc...

Who is going to write the code? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40853587)

In other news Oracle is actively recruiting the services of Robert Ballard.

Brilliant. (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 2 years ago | (#40853679)

I can see it now: Oracle does a quick and dirty (read: half-assed) job of porting their RDBMS to Itanium, and assigns an intern for bug fixing.

What could possibly go wrong (for HP).

Re:Brilliant. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854079)

[...], thus not only being in noncompliance with a valid contract, but also defying a court order.

What could possibly go wrong (for Oracle)


until HP stops *selling* them? and punishment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854279)

From TFA: "Oracle is obligated to continue the ports until HP stops selling Itanium-based servers, the judge wrote."

*Selling*? How about supporting? Oracle should be required to continue supporting Itanium for as long as the contract stipulates or there are still HP customers *using* (not buying, using) Itanium machines (until whichever ends first of course).

Making the support contingent on HP just selling Itanium will tank HP's Itanium sales, since who is going to buy one at the risk that they are the last one to buy one and the very next day Oracle stops porting to them?

And now what's Oracle's punishment for being douche-bag dicks and not holding up their end of the contract? They can't just be required to do what they were supposed to do in the first place and that's all, otherwise they never have an incentive to hold up their end of a contract as soon as they decided they want out.

Think about it. Who would ever do what they are supposed to do when the only punishment for not doing it is having to do it. One would never have anything to lose trying to not do what one is supposed to. Everyone would constantly just not do what they are supposed to do and wait to be called out on it.

I say Oracle should have to pay HP 1 billion dollars just for being dicks.

The real motivation (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40854327)

Let's face it: this has little to do with the relative quality or potential lifeline of the Itanium family. Oracle simply wants to force folks to use Oracle hardware. Not supporting Itanium is just another way to eliminate competition for their Sun/Oracle servers.

Why can't they just half-ass it? (0)

JDG1980 (2438906) | more than 2 years ago | (#40854891)

What's to stop Oracle from taking the Homer Simpson solution? ("When you don't like your job, you don't strike. You just go in everyday and do a half-ass job.") In other words, the judge can order them to port their software to Itanic, but can the judge really order them to do a good job of it? How would this even be measured? Is the judge really going to be acting as a de facto project manager, holding Oracle in contempt of court if there are too many bugs? (Imagine how much they'd have to pay people to work on that project.)

Just don't BUY Oracle for Itanium: It'll suck (1)

Theovon (109752) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856295)

Not to say that Oracle database doesn't already suck, but now Oracle is being forced to maintain their database for a platform they see as unprofitable. Oracle cares only about profit, remember, and Itanium is, objectively, not a profitable platform. And not to say that they already have much incentive to do a good job, but now for Itanium, they have even LESS incentive to do a good job. So if you thought Oracle was a nightmare already, just wait until you see what a horror show it'll evolve into over the next few years on Itanium. Oracle for Itanium will consistently lag behind on security patches and new features. Even old features will mysteriously exhibit buggy behavior that never existed on other platforms. Oracle will be able to weasel out of any definitive claim that they're doing a bad job, and they won't care about what it does to their reputation because few customers buy Oracle for Itanium in the first place. Dollars to donuts, Oracle is going to act like a passive-aggresive three-year-old.

But I really don't blame them. By court order, they're being forced to invest in development that will cost more than it earns. So they're going to cut corners as much as possible, within the letter of the law. I don't like to waste my time, despite the fact that I have some altruism, and Oracle, being a psychopathic corporation, REALLY doesn't want to waste its time. I have complaints about Oracle's handling of Sun's assets like SPARC, Solaris, Java, and OpenOffice. In many ways, these are mind-share assets that can make people have positive feelings about a corporation that ultimately lead to more profit, because people are more likely to buy your profitable products. Oracle has squandered this opportunity. But in the case of Itanium, the whole thing is a completely pointless exercise. There is nothing to be gained by supporting it.

Itanic is an HP chip not an Intel one. (1)

yayoubetcha (893774) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856353)

For all the criticism of the Itanium chip spewed at Intel over the years, the reality is that Itanium is an HP design. HP did not have a means to produce their "vision" on their own, so they partnered with Intel as an HP/Intel product.

Match made in the court room (1)

CHK6 (583097) | more than 2 years ago | (#40856911)

I can't see this as a real win for anyone. Basically the judge has forced a friendship; akin to a school teacher making two kids that hate each other play together on the playground. In the end HP looks weak as it exposes their dependence. And Oracle wins because they still have an in with customers.

HP customers will be happy that HP fought for them, but the exposure that HP does not have a real database to call their own becomes blarringly obvious.

Oracle can be the big winner if in fact they not only support Itanium, but do so well that when customers are ready to upgrade, they will want Oracle hardware too.
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