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HP Lays Off Unix/IA-64 gurus

Hemos posted more than 13 years ago | from the bad-times-for-everyone dept.

Unix 341

A reader writes "On Tuesday HP announced that it is closing a lab in NJ. This was an HP-UX development lab, responsible for porting HP-UX to IA64. The lab employed top engineers, including some who have worked in Unix kernels for over 20 years (originally from Bell Labs, Novell, and other companies). " That report came from a soon-to-be former employee.

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Wow, Closed source Unix emulating Linux (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2363964)

...and shutting everything down. Who'd a thunk it?

RE : HP layoffs (1)

dhfoo (238759) | more than 13 years ago | (#2363976)

Probably giving up on HPUX and concentrating on Linux IA64!

Re:RE : HP layoffs (1)

xtermz (234073) | more than 13 years ago | (#2363995)

Personally, I wouldn't end that statement with a '!' ... considering the fact that people are losing their jobs.... even if thats the case, it's not really something to be 'happy' or even excited about ...

if anything , it's a testament to the crappy way big corporations treat loyal and qualified employees

Re:RE : HP layoffs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364072)

Economy = crap
HPUX market = crap
HP profit margins = crap
IA64 market = crap
Cost of developers = high

Markets change. Companies must reorganize, redeploy, and if nothing else works, fail.

Re:RE : HP layoffs (1)

alen (225700) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364083)

I'm reading Jack Welch's book. In the 80's he laid off thousands, but he said he tried to give notice of a months of a plant closing or lay off.

Re:RE : HP layoffs (1)

n3bulous (72591) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364216)

These are jobs, not lives. The people laid off are probably in the top 1% intellectually and will get new jobs fairly easily at very nice salaries.

Now, I like HPUX more than solaris, but both of those dogs are too expensive when compared with linux or NT.

Business decisions suck. Whether this decision is smart is to be seen.

Re:RE : HP layoffs (5, Interesting)

amorico (40859) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364255)

if anything , it's a testament to the crappy way big corporations treat loyal and qualified employees
Exactly! Instead of figuring out ways they can be rid of the expensive employees, why don't companies see them as valuable employees? People who have been in the industry that long have valuable experience and so what if they are not working on the project of the moment. I have met people like this. You don't fire them, you beg them to stay and hope your junior employees don't piss them off.

The capricious way that companies seem to be doing this (I shudder to think what else will happen during this merger), is staggering. If I ran a company I wouldn't let experienced engineers loose on the streets and give them a possible reason for a grudge. Someone is going to snap them up and the short term profit of axing them will be a pittance compared to the revenue and goodwill you lose from them in the long run. Think about what DEC/Alpha engineers did for AMD and then think about what these people could do for IBM or SUN or any number of companies.

The analyst in the article said it does not make any sense and he's right. This leads me to believe that their strategy is not as coherent as they claim. What's going to happen when they tell their customers "Not only are we giong to sell you an Intel box for your server, but it's not going to have HP-UX on it." Thus, the original reason for buying an HP (their architecture and software) is now gone. If they think their "brand" is something else, then they will be horribly surprised when their customers say "well as long as we're changing platforms and OSs I think I will check out what Sun and IBM have to offer." No one is strong enough in times like these to crap on valuable employees and customers this way. Doesn't anyone understand that this is the time to keep valuable employees and steal them from others? When the dust settles it will be painfully obvious that they need them.

Re:RE : HP layoffs (1)

JWW (79176) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364179)

Sure, but then they would probably be laying of the people best suited to help in that effort.

w00t! (-1)

cyborg_monkey (150790) | more than 13 years ago | (#2363989)

That's right, w00t!

byebye hp-ux (1)

omaha_boy (512639) | more than 13 years ago | (#2363997)

the less time spent on developing hp-ux further the better in my opinion.

Re:byebye hp-ux (1)

t00tie (518552) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364219)

There's a reason they call it HPSUX.

gee, that makes an entry level guy feel great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364000)

when they are laying off their top people
with 20 years experience.

job market (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364012)

So how does the job market look for people who have these kind of credentials? Let's just hope that they don't end up asking us if we wanna supersize...

NJ C programmers (5, Funny)

tshoppa (513863) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364242)

I can see perhaps the most famous NJ Unix guru of all trying to get a job as a C programmer:

Interviewer:So, Mr. Ritchie, you claim you're a C programmer, yet you've never taken a class or been certified as one, right? And you claim decades of experience in Unix, yet you don't have any certifications? Sorry, don't call us, we'll call you...

HP...(rant) (2, Interesting)

crumbz (41803) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364016)

...are on the downward slope. The BEST thing about HP was their engineering. I bought a new Omnibook 6000 in June and love it.
How are they supposed to compete in the upcoming 64-bit arena if they are laying off key development personnel? Leave it up to Compaq? Look what they did with Alpha. I guess I'll be building my own Itanium system in about three years...

Re:HP...(rant) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364065)

Windez XP, that's what.
Yes, it'll be a disaster, but they're a big company that is out of touch....

Leave it to Compaq? No...Leave it to MS! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364093)


Look, 64-bit NT is what's going to drive that platform, so let's not have any illusions.

It's wise for HP and big-Q to get out of the chip business -- Intel spends (has has the money to spend) billions on chip and fab R+D. HP and Q cannot compete...they can't.

Likewise, Microsoft spends billions on OS design and user interface enhancement and product integration. Can HP or Compaq match that? No.

Intel's will make the chips, Microsoft the OS. And that's the way it's gonna be. No one else can touch them at their respective tasks. What HP and Compaq will do is integrate and provide support and service -- there's plenty of money to be made there without the substantial costs of chip and software development, which, against hard-nosed deep-pockets competitors like MS and Intel, might as well be a bottomless money sinkhole. That's the way the wind's blowing, and there's no point in resisting it. No one else is.

HP's Marketing (1)

Sagarian (519668) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364133)

I spent several months working with HP about 5 years ago, and they had a saying inside the company that went something to the effect that if HP were trying to market, say, a Bacon Cheeseburger, they'd call it "Fried dead cow and pig on a bun with dairy and plant matter."

Marketing joke (1)

amorsen (7485) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364287)

It's an old joke. I prefer this version from back in the Amiga days:

If Commodore had sold sushi, it would have marketed it as cold, dead fish.

Re:HP...(rant) (1)

tomknight (190939) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364148)

Their engineering is indeed lovely. Just look inside one of their Unix servers. Mmmm... clean, tidy internals. I also love the flashing LED 'heartbeat' on the box. Kind of reassuring.....


Tom.

Re:HP...(rant) (0)

crumbz (41803) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364178)

I guess that I suspect that IBM or EDS will kick the crap out of HP/Compaq in the services. I am amazed at how deftly Compaq hollowed out the DEC service organization. We have a former senior DEC service manager at our shop and we are amazed at the stories. Pure incompetance. (I guess this is a Compaq rant.)

This isn't a big suprise (2, Flamebait)

glenmark (446320) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364027)

After all, HP is acquiring Compaq, and with it Tru64 Unix. Makes sense that HP would axe the lesser of the two operating systems.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (1)

Gameshow Bob (31940) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364116)

Don't count on that! HP-UX runs on IA64, Tru64 does not!

Re:This isn't a big suprise (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364258)

It will. [compaq.com]

Now, I will ruin this powerful statement with a fart joke. I'm farting right now. He he, that was funny! Smelly though!

This stupidity brought to you by the slashcode lameness filter.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (1)

sys$manager (25156) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364122)

HP-UX may be a lesser operating system but it is far more common than Tru64. Tru64 is far faster though.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (2, Insightful)

jshep (194929) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364176)

HP-UX may be a lesser operating system but it is far more common than Tru64. Tru64 is far faster though.

I especially agree on the "far more common" statement. This is probably just a cost-cutting measure in a market that's not particularly hot right now, but HP should be wary that this might send the wrong message to folks who have committed to HP-UX. Every client I have ever had during my professional career has utilized HP-UX in their network infrastructure to some degree... hopefully they won't get panicky as a result of HP's lack of commitment on IA-64!

Re:This isn't a big suprise (1)

JWW (79176) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364209)

I would have to agree. As an HP-UX administrator, I would say they've got the wrong message coming trough loud and clear.

Time to look at Sun and IBM, at least they actaully try to market their machines.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (1)

sys$manager (25156) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364336)

I've noticed HP-UX is especially common in corporate type environments, as is AIX. I have worked at or know of several very large companies using these operating systems. I'm a Sun guy though.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (5, Insightful)

sql*kitten (1359) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364143)

Makes sense that HP would axe the lesser of the two operating systems.

It's not about products, it's about people. In the R&D business, that's where all the value is. Getting rid of people who are probably in the top 1000 kernel engineers in the world make no sense at all. Why not assign them to merge the best bits of HPUX and Tru64? After all, HP has PA-RISC people, Compaq has Alpha people, but Itanium is a new platform.

This is Fiorina screwing up, again, that's all. I wouldn't be at all surprised if these engineers found a warm welcome waiting for them at Sun or IBM.

Re:This isn't a big suprise (5, Insightful)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364327)

At first I was going to agree with you whole heartedly. However, when I thought about it I realized something. In the computer industry it can be difficult to teach old dogs new tricks. Mainframe programmers don't do well in the world of Unix, simularly Apple people don't cross over to Intel well either.

These guys are incredibily intelligent, but if they don't want to learn something new, it would take a lot of time and money to convince them to do so. I'm sure their salaries were already well above six figures, and it was probably in HP's best interest to let that kind of expense go. They can start fresh with new minds that they can manipulate for a lot less money. It may take a little more time to get them up to speed, but I've got a lot of friends jumping at the chance to play with 'big iron'. They'll work for a lot less money, and get comparable work done in just a little more time. They can also hire four or five new guys for the price of one of the old ones. More man power gives them a larger resource for creativity, more man time, and better 'employee redundancy', which geeks world wide know how great redundancy is.

Business is business, no room for emotion wasted on the trusty old porch dog. Sometimes you need to bring in a new pup (or two, or three, or four ... ).

~LoudMusic

Re:This isn't a big suprise (2)

wirefarm (18470) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364198)

Yet then again, think of the calibre of the people that they are letting go.
I just can't help but believe that there's not much dead weight here.
Guys who do this kind of stuff are the kind of guys that you want to have around for any good project.
Whatever the reality of this is, it shakes my confidence in this whole merger dealie.

Cheers,
Jim in Tokyo

Linux moving in front (4, Interesting)

null_session (137073) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364028)

At a presentation I recently attended concerning Linux for zSeries (zSeries is IBM's new 64bit mainframe platform) the comment was made that one of the big research firms (don't remember which...) had said that in seven years there would only be three operating systems: Windows, Linux, and zSeries(also what IBM calls the 64bit replacement for OS/390). Could this be the start of that? I'm not suggesting that Linux will replace HP-UX today or this year, but could they be holding off on the port since Linux already runs on IA-64?

Just wondering.

Re:Linux moving in front (0)

blafasel (471018) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364098)

given the amount of quarrelling in the linux development scene, and the lack of acceptance of the GPL i would not be so sure about that.

Re:Linux moving in front (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364170)

I wouldn't count Solaris out entirely. Even though it was the darling of lots of the dot-gones, they picked it for a good reason. However, a LOT may change in seven years; if Sun can't weather the current crisis, I can see it being very marginalized in seven years, but SunOS is still around for cryin' out loud!

Re:Linux moving in front (4, Informative)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364171)

Speaking of Linux, I hope some intelligent company (like RedHat, SuSe, etc.) grabs up these guys as fast as possible -- especially before they end up posting resumes to Microsoft.

Too bad the Apple zealots used up their mod points (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364218)

With all those recent Apple stories running around, they ran out of mod points to obliterate you. Sucks for them.

Not that anyone else has any points left either, after the VIM article (article about VIM, yes, that's what it was, I won't fall into the trap of listing one text editor in front of the other or vice versa - or verse vica, or whatever ;).

Re:Linux moving in front (3, Interesting)

cnkeller (181482) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364244)

had said that in seven years there would only be three operating systems: Windows, Linux, and zSeries(also what IBM calls the 64bit replacement for OS/390).

Solaris. Sun may have accepted Linux's role in the world, but don't expect them to be nice about it. I have to believe that Solaris has a higher marketshare than anything IBM put out. I can't see that going away in the future. Solaris 8 (and future versions) have some nice features that are going to start becoming more crucial as technology evolves....

Re:Linux moving in front (2)

null_session (137073) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364296)

I'm not argueing at all, I was reporting a prediction, not making one myself. I'm not sure I totally agree that Linux will be the only UNIX. I do see some of the less popular ones dying off. SCO is dead, IRIX is dead, IBM said they would eventually drop AIX for Linux, perhaps HP-UX is next. I agree wholeheartedly that Solaris will not be gone any time soon.

Re:Linux moving in front (1)

MKaufmann (58554) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364259)

Some years ago, everyone claimed that these three operating systems will be Windows, Solaris and their own OS.

HP said it will be Win+Solaris+HP/UX.
IBM said it will be Win+Solaris+AIX.
SCO said it will be Win+Solaris+SCO.

I think, that it will be something like Win+Solaris and Linux or perhaps only Win + Linux.

Of course, there will be still much more operating systems around - just they will be so rare that the average power user won't even know their name.

bye
Markus

Re:Linux moving in front (2)

CrackElf (318113) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364260)

I assume that you are talking about desktop os's ...

Re:Linux moving in front (2)

hawk (1151) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364281)

>I assume that you are talking about desktop os's ...


Sure. My bos is buyiing a mainfraim for my desktop; isn't yours? :)


hawk, who really could use a multi-node zseries on his desktop

Re:Linux moving in front (1)

christophersaul (127003) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364352)

I can't see why they would drop HPUX for Linux. The support issues would be horrendous, they have 1000s of customers running on HPUX, porting to IA64 has long been their plan and has been what customers loyal to HP have bought into (whilst the others go off and talk to Sun).

Linux is good, but is nowhere near the 'enterprise' quality of HPUX. It doesn't even scale anywhere near what HPUX can do (let alone Solaris) and has nowhere near the number of apps that 'real' customers use.

It would make no business or technological sense for any of the big Unix vendors to drop their own Unix in favour of Linux, for several years, at least, the only exception being SGI, whose only chance might be to become a cheap Linux box shifter to survive, regardless of their OS and hardware technological superiority.

Weird... (4, Interesting)

ajuda (124386) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364032)

Everyone says they want linux to be the next big o/s. Then, when Linux starts grabbing market control from other groups, the same people wine and complain! If open source takes market share from closed source competitors, some people will be laid off. It's not that complicated.

Re:Weird... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364153)

Linux is not taking any market share from HP/SUX. We're talking about high end machines, many of which are sold with clustering software which allow multiple machines to share a single hard drive through fibre channel. HP/SUX comes with VxFS, a jounaling file system, built in. It comes with a much better volume manager than any linux distro I know of.

For all intents and purposes, Linux and HP/SUX cost the same. Sure, Linux can be customized to do just about all the things that HP/SUX does out of the box, but that costs money. If you want source code, HP/SUX source code is available. Not many people want it though.

Re:Weird... (1)

ebresie (123014) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364222)

Just curious...you say the source code for HP/UX is available....do you have any links to information on that??

Re:Weird... (1)

On Lawn (1073) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364177)

This is a good case of oversimplification. HP makes an embarrisingly larger percentage of their money on hardware/tech support rather than one-time OS sales.
Maybe try the True64/HPUX collision route instead.

Re:Weird... (1)

Ozric (30691) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364217)

There is no per seat fee with HPUX they are all unlimited now. HPUX is a POS, The only reason it is still around in the installed base, If you could get Linux on most HP9000's with support, people would switch in droves. And yes UPUX LVM is very good, but service guard is what keeps most people on HPSUX.

Still no HP icon???? come on guys! (0, Offtopic)

Gameshow Bob (31940) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364035)

I'll even send one to you!

I feel for these guys (1)

Slashdot Cruiser (227609) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364038)

It's tough being lain off. I just try to remember my personal philosophy:

I only have one life and I'm going to live it up.

So I'm taking flight and now I'll never get enough. I'm standing tall.

Yes, I'm young. Yes, I'm kind of proud.

But I'll be on top (as long as the music is loud). :)

lay IT on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364040)

you could NEVER be laid off (not that some other things couldn't happen), if you had your very own o-s project WebSite [opensourceworks.com] , complete with a year's free web hosting, compliments of us.

Does it smell.. (1)

yooden (115278) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364045)

..of Spheniscidae here?

more specificially (1)

Sagarian (519668) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364159)

It kinda smells like Eudyptes chrysolophus for the laid of HP-UX people!

Less Diversity..This sucks! (1, Interesting)

zarathustra93 (164244) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364048)

It seems to me that laying off some of your top OS engineers is really stupid. HPIX may not have been the best flavor of unix out there, but it did provide an alternative. I'm really saddened by how many OS's and architechtures ar biting the dust at the moment. Looks like it's gonna be a one chip three OS world in not too long....

Moderators: please browse at 0. I may have made some stupid comments in the past, but I do have something of value to say occasionaly :-)

True64 wins? (2, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364054)

In light of the merger announcement you couldn't expect them to keep two versions of UNIX around.

Re:True64 wins? (1)

gmkeegan (160779) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364306)

Yes, but if that was the choice, shouldn't they have stuck with the one that runs on the cpu that the industry expects to dominate for the next 10 years instead of the one that's on the way out the door?

Layoffs GOOD! (-1, Troll)

huckda (398277) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364061)

These top doods were prolly overpaid =)
and now can get the opportunity to put
in some time for good 'ole opensource!

Wheeeeee!!! Let the good times roll!
Besides, they probably needed some vacation time too...locked up in a dev. lab all the time with no one to fraternize with...*shudder*...and in Jersey of all places...*double shudder*

I consider these ppl LUCKY! Now they can go somewhere they will be appreciated.

It's All In The Plan (0, Flamebait)

macsforever2001 (32278) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364067)

These layoffs are the latest move in Carly Fiorina's brilliant plan to run HP into the ground so she can have an excuse to leave and get a golden parachute on the way out and retire to the Bahamas. The last move she made was to buy Compaq.

Damn she's good!

Re:It's All In The Plan (4, Interesting)

jgerry (14280) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364146)


These layoffs are the latest move in Carly Fiorina's brilliant plan to run HP into the ground so she can have an excuse to leave and get a golden parachute on the way out and retire to the Bahamas. The last move she made was to buy Compaq.

Damn she's good!

In today's environment, it doesn't really matter if she's good. These executives sit in their offices and make decisions for people that they've never met and whose jobs they know nothing about. She says she can do it, HP's board of directors let her try until it gets so bad that they have to oust her, then she'll get her parachute and some other moron will say that they have the magic beans and that they'll make everything better. And for some reason, people always want to believe it.

Killing HP/UX probably isn't a bad move anyway. Killing TRU64 probably isn't a bad move, either. Is anyone still buying and using significant numbers of these things? When I worked for MCI Worldcom 3 years ago, they INSISTED on using Digital UNIX instead of Solaris or Linux... Man, I bet that Manager/Director is real happy now... Actually, I bet he got promoted out of his job before the shit hit the fan.

That's the way it works: Do your worst, and then get out before the shit hits the fan. This is why I'll always be an engineer and I never want to manage, ever again.

Re:It's All In The Plan (0)

crumbz (41803) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364211)

DEC got their clock cleaned after Compaq bought them. Just a shell and cague memories of greatness.

Re:It's All In The Plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364245)

is she hawt? somebody should give her a golden shower instead.

For the record (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364070)

For the record, most of the Florham Park site was not working on IA-64, and will not be let go.

What will they do? (2, Funny)

ryepup (522994) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364074)

So, how many people are we talking about here? 20? 100? Maybe they will disperse into existing Linux companies (Redhat, Suse, etc...) and improve the overall state of Linux. Maybe start a slew of consulting companies. Either that, or exploit all those backdoors they built in HP-UX, just in case they ever got fired.

Re:What will they do? (2, Funny)

ksamuel (525186) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364238)

They could always go work for Columbia Internet.

Re:What will they do? (1)

NineNine (235196) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364342)

You honestly think that RedHat or SuSe could afford to pay these guys what they're worth? Have you seen these companies' financial statements? A few of these guys would eat up a good percentage of their revenue.

Effect on GNU/Linux? (1)

SlipJig (184130) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364085)

Maybe these guys will be interested in helping out with the Linux kernel or other projects (if they haven't been already)?

Yes, they should do that! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364253)

And not get paid.

Hunt around for a new job, OR work on GNU/Linux and not get paid. I bet the bill collectors will go "Oh, you have no job, no income, and you are instead of paying me, your creditor, you are working on GNU/Linux? Oh, please, kind humanitarian, let me forgive the debt you owe me!"

Who said anything about not getting a job... (2)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364316)

They could work on it in their spare time like the rest of us. Or, perhaps get hired by the likes of Red Hat, SuSE, MontaVista, or Lineo. Just becuase they're hurting has little to do with Open Source- it has much more to do with the economy being the way it is right now (and will be for some months yet, it seems...)

The downward spiral continues (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364086)

unix is dying

These guys should get their MCSE's

So they can install WinXP

Re:The downward spiral continues (1)

omaha_boy (512639) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364223)

why is unix dying? xp won't make an advance on who's running unix now - few will leave the unix arena for a product such as xp which *does* follow the same lines as its predecessors, mainly security holes, poor performance, poor reliability, and overall high administration costs.

Re:The downward spiral continues (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364271)

YHBT YHL HAND

Lame troll... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364334)

'nuff said..

Playing taps.. (-1)

Guns n' Roses Troll (207208) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364087)

Play Taps for the Camaro and Firebird. GM announced that '02 is the last year for them. Even though I'm a Ford man, I still have lots of respect for a competitor that many times overpowered my group.

It makes sense... (3, Insightful)

frleong (241095) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364089)

They've got Compaq. When 64-bit computers become mainstream, they can either go the "Compaq" way and use Windows or TRU-64. Or go IBM's way and stick with Linux. There is really no need to have a third way which is a waste of time porting things in and out. I think R&D should be better spent in improving e-paper or faster scanners/printers.

Re:It makes sense... (2, Insightful)

sys$manager (25156) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364140)

64-bit computers are mainstream and have been for years. Think UltraSPARC, Alpha, RS/6000 PPC.

GURUS are not imune even........ (1)

the_2nd_coming (444906) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364099)

ok, if HP has to lay off guys that were around when UNIX was a youngin, then the IT industry my be in bigger trouble than we thought.

for god sakes, UNIX to these guys is like a part of their body, they probably have memorised all file locations and commands and programs that exist in UNIX.

well I guess it shows you that knowlege and experience is not always your savior.

Re:GURUS are not imune even........ (1)

bornholtz (94540) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364182)

they probably have memorised all file locations and commands and programs that exist in UNIX.


What? You haven't??

Slacker!!!

It won't save any money (1, Troll)

The Cat (19816) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364131)

A year from now, when they want to have a 64-bit UNIX product, it will cost a LOT of money to hire 100 senior UNIX developers again.

Re:It won't save any money (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364213)

or they can just put linux/ia64 on a cdrom.

So where are these engineers going? (0)

lowieken (522530) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364134)

I can't imagine they're just firing this "crème de la crème" group.
HP must have quite a few projects up the sleeve they could be put to very good use for.

...Linux related development, for example?

The law of evolution (4, Interesting)

garoush (111257) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364141)

Reading the article and the brief comment about it on Slashdot, I get the feeling that this should not have happened and that it is a bad move by HP for those gurus.

Let me first tell you that I feel sorry for those guys, just like anyone else, but at the same time I want to point out that this is the natural of evolution/change.

Some may argue that those guys are so-important/good and should not have been let go, or that the project at hand is so-important/good et. al..., and so on.

I think we need to look at this, and everything else, as part of what makes us "advance" forward and look ahead. To me this is nothing but "change-in-action" for which without "change" we will never see beyond our current perspective.

I am very confidence that those HP engineers (and the project) that are being doomed today, will go out and come back with a much superior product now that they are faced with higher challenges due to this "change" that has been forced upon them.

Unix is going... how sad... (1, Interesting)

kypper (446750) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364145)

Linux is so based on Unix, that it's kind of sad to see the father go.


If linux wants to stay alive, though, and maintain it's buzz, it has to do one thing: Don't fully emulate windows. Reason? OS/2 did it, and so all the developers said, "Why should I port to OS/2? That OS runs windows anyway"

Re:Unix is going... how sad... (1)

F2F (11474) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364237)

unix needs to go.. it's what, 30+ years old.. the ideas behind it are still viable, but need to be reincarnated in something new, not only add-ons to existing operating systems (same goes for microsoft)...

take a look at plan 9, to see what the only research in operating systems design is developing...

http://plan9.bell-labs.com

Re:Unix is going... how sad... (4, Interesting)

kevin@ank.com (87560) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364314)

unix needs to go.. it's what, 30+ years old.. the ideas behind it are still viable, but need to be reincarnated in something new, not only add-ons to existing operating systems (same goes for microsoft)...

This is soooo misguided! Software that is 30 years old is probably the only software in the world that has all of its bugs worked out. If it is still useful then use it, don't worry about how old it is. Having looked at the minimalism of plan 9, I can't say I've ever been tempted to use it. Plan 9 suffers from reinvention syndrome; the creators want to create something that perfectly represents the abstractions they were trying to create in Unix; but it doesn't balance use with ideal in any pragmatic way.

Similar to Plan 9 was the old NT3.51 kernel, a perfect microkernel architecture. Dead slow because nothing but the kernel was running in ring 0, so even video access had to go through a couple of layers of OS context before modifying a register, but beautiful in its construction.

Utility trumps perfection.

I wonder if Intel or AMD would get them ? (4, Interesting)

johnjones (14274) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364152)

HP engineers are nice because they are into the team thing

I wonder how long until Intel or AMD get down there and start recruiting

realistically Intel needs help with IA64 because it's compiler is not really up to scratch (witness the compaq/digital guys moveing to intel)

AMD needs to get O/S AND Compiler to work on x86-64 realistically the new win2k kernel to work on it

so I dont think that they will be unemployed for long

its a big gaff on HP part because HP-UX was going to be the successor going from PA-RISC to IA64 meaning that customers had very little to worry about compared to True64 customers

the only real big guys not laying off core people seems to be SUN

(remember that alot of linux people got layed off as well recently )

so remember good engineers are never in need of a job just projects that need good engineers the problem is of course finding the true good engineers

regards

john "curently trying to get a job" jones

THIS IS BAD!! (1, Informative)

ankit (70020) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364163)


I am really shocked on this news. Dont these so called managers have the slightest idea on whom to axe, and whom not to? These people are really good. They deserve better treatment. They have been working on these technologies for over 20 years, and are absolute gurus in their fields. They are being treated as 'unskilled labor'...

The company decides...

We need to layoff 6000 people.

hmm...Lets see.

Lets close down one of the research labs. Who cares who works there. To hell with them.

This will keep the stock holders happy.

It is really ironical since it is due to these people that the stock holders got what they want to protect today!

ankit

Re:THIS IS BAD!! (1)

alen (225700) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364227)

Everything evens out in the end. I bet some people were saying similar things when IBM laid off their mainframe people in the 80's. These people should be able to find work doing Solaris or Linux projects. If HP laid off the wrong people then their management screwed up and will be in a world of hurt later. Or maybe they didn't like their Unix business anymore and wanted out.

DMCA in action (0, Offtopic)

twitter (104583) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364172)

So if someone breaks your anti-copying technology, are you going to sue?

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act prohibits users from circumventing copy protection. It's now a crime in America to do that.

There you have it. Fair use is now illegal.

Any Linux distro... (1)

2Bits (167227) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364221)

is willing to pick up some of them? I'm sure
they will be able to contribute some major
improvements and functionalities into the Linux
kernel.

assembly woes (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364228)


I have been using tasm+tlink for a DOS app that I am writing but it turned out i needed MMX support and that forced
me to change my assembler. I chose nasm because I have been using it before in my other programs. I am still linking
everything with tlink.

The problem is: Everything compiles and links without warnings and usually runs but I can't link the debug version
correctly - if I do: nasm16 -f obj -g myfile.asm tlink /zi myfile.obj I get some messages
about wrong segment offsets and don't get any executable (if I exclude -g and use tlink /x everything is fine)

Other thing I found out is that the code mov ax,seg variable mov ds,ax mov di,var loads ds:di with different (however
valid) segment and offset than equivalent tasm code. My question is: what should I do to make nasm produce object
files that exactly match ones produced with tasm, so that I can link debug executable and don't get these segment/offset
differences?

Any this is on /. because why?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364254)

Are you accepting story submissions for every tech company that lays ppl off now? Can any dotbomber email /. when they get laid off?

I'd understand if this was an announcement of the release or death even of HPUX, but in these times layoffs are common and hardly worth reporting on here.

The Next Big Thing (2)

fobbman (131816) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364275)

In case anyone is interested, FuckedDistro.com [fuckeddistro.com] is available.

Sounds like a strategy shift (1)

gmkeegan (160779) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364280)

This strikes me as the second major move towards a Windows-only shop. The first being acquiring Compaq. "Let Intel make the cpu's, let MS make the OS, and we'll sell boxes and service." Too bad.

Management Chinese Firedrill (2)

Darth RadaR (221648) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364305)

The CEO says:
But axing the development group may run counter to statements CEO Carly Fiorina recently made that the computer-and-printer giant plans to increase research and development staffing.

H-P executives say:
H-P executives let go the majority of workers at the company's Enterprise Intel Architecture Lab in Florham Park, N.J. The facility, which specializes in Unix operating software that can work on both on traditional RISC-based and Intel-brand chips, will close.

Not only is HP shooting itself in the foot by dumping its best and brightest in PH-UX research, but it looks real stupid when everyone is following conflicting plans. Hey, HP, how about dumping some of the mangement drones that pulled this one off.

Carly trips up again. (1)

oerlikon (198562) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364308)

This is further evidence that Carly has NT-itis. Wake up HP! Compaq is a freakin' boat anchor. Don't give up your enterprise operating system to sell PC's. Geez!

It is about lack of money and good numbers.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364321)

It is less about people or technology and more about money. HP is desperately in the "layoff to save money" mode.

And, as others have mentioned, the rise of Linux is going to put a lot of senior folks out of work as these old versions of UNIX die..

Ooops (2)

invenustus (56481) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364322)

More IT layoffs in NJ, eh? I probably should have gone to the Rutgers career fair this morning.

Looking good for the stockholders? (3, Informative)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364323)

Perhaps after swallowing Compac, they need to trim something to improve the (short-term) bottom line?

And, of course they can't layoff any sales/marketing people, and all those tech-support people have to stay, so...

Mind you, the long-term bottom line might not be too rosy.

I hate to say it, but.. (2)

Junta (36770) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364325)

If HP-UX goes away I won't miss it. I work with HP-UX, AIX, IRIX, Solaris, and Linux machines all day, and HP-UX is in a dead heat with AIX for my least favorite. In answer to those that say "see, Unix is dying, look at HP-UX!" I point out that many Unix people don't like HP-UX and use Solaris or Linux or FreeBSD when they can get away with it. I really don't understand why people could prefer HP-UX, AIX, or IRIX if given a choice. I only have grown to accept Solaris more because they seem to be moving to having GNU versions of the standard tools available on install. The GNU fileutils and bash are two of the best things about Linux distros, aside from TCO and hardware support that is..

IA64, is it really HP's (1)

nafeger (461840) | more than 13 years ago | (#2364328)

Do you think this is just the beginning of several steps HP may start making? Perhaps HP finally realized intel has strongarmed the procedures and processes of the IA64 architecture that HP's finally going to just let Intel run the whole show, rather than vainly try to pretend its theirs and Intel is really just helping them.

Linux wins again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2364344)

Linux keeps eating the competition alive. Way to go Linus!

Fabulous! Linux, the choice of a GNU generation.

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