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HP and SGI Boost Linux

CmdrTaco posted more than 15 years ago | from the it's-all-good dept.

Linux 107

Panix writes "Good news today from HP and SGI. Both have announced that they plan to offer Linux as one of their "core" operating systems. HP even stated that it would develop a special version of Linux for Merced!" It's crazy- 2 companies once known for their OSs have chosen another.

cancel ×


is this good or bad for free software? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031252)

If Merced becomes dominant and doesn't suck,
could HP legally release only binary for Linux?

is this good or bad for free software? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031253)


Legally, they would be responsible to make all source available freely (free as in liberty, not gratis). They can't just change the licensing terms.

Of course, I wouldn't put it past H-P to try that, as they have lots of lawyers and hackers like you and me can't hire armies of landsharks.

Cheers, Joshua. (Yes, I know my site is down. xfsttos2 is available from Hobbes.)

Linus - 29 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031254)

Hey, when's Linus' 30-year birthday?

I have to stock up on some penguins... :)

good alternative to security hole called IRIX (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031255)

Maybe the idiots at SGI will adopt the GNU tools and stop writing setuid utilities with buffer overflows.

Wait, no, most of the setuid holes are in GUI sysadmin tools. I think RedHat is on the SGI path >:)

Hold on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031256)

Why would HP want to use Linux, considering they
have been developing their own version of Unix for years?
It's happened before kiddies. Unix has already been torn
into different closed systems, don't let them do it again with Linux.


Very positive article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031257)

I think the WSJ article is a very positive piece. Towards the end, it mentioned that HP may support Linux on desktop, which is a good thing for me and Linux advocate. Besides, I didn't see anything in that article intrepeting Linux as language? Maybe I missed something or what ...

HP Merced Linux Port (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031258)

The hp merced project has been underway for quite some time now. On 1-20-99 it executed it's first user land program (Hello World!)

Linux as language (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031259)

A while ago someone suggested that Un*x be looked at as literature. Perhaps Linux as a language isn't that far fetched. I mean, what else can it be?

Kernels / HP / GPL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031260)

HP can work on a Merced kernel internally. They
can't however release it without source. This
I suspect means Linux/Merced appears on an HP
ftp site the day intel release the chip officially
and therefore drop all the NDA's.

Nothing sinister, no magic.

Oddly enough however VA Research are doing a Merced
port too. Eric Raymond stated this publically.

SGI is not offering IRIX (Linux Only) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031261)

I drove down to the SGI demo in Alabama yesterday.

The question was asked, "Can I get UNIX on this

The answer was, "Well, the only UNIX we are going
to provide will be Linux"

That isn't exactly word for word.. but almost

Joseph Chandler

Will Linux development on Merced be free? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031262)

Given that it will probably take ages for gcc/egcs to get up and running on Merced...

Will the Merced compiler binary (forget about the source, it aint going to happen) be distributed freely for Linux? Using the Merced in x86 compatible mode isnt really attractive, and neither is a kernel you cant recompile without a commercial compiler.

Just to clarify (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031263)

Me again.

I just wanted to specify that those comments were
made at the demonstration/presentation of the new
NT visual workstation.

They will not offer tech support for Linux however

We are on our own in that reguard.


OK, now Where is RogueWave and ObjectSpace?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031264)

With new hardware vendors being added as well as major database support, where are the guys developing software toolkits? I called rogue wave
and they said they did NOT intend to support linux. They made it sound like I was the only one calling in to ask. They told me they would give me a discount if I ported the software myself.

If you are an enterprise developer using external tools, HOUND the HELL out of these guys for linux support.

M$ toe-suckers at SGI! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031265)

Those pinheads at SGI brought their cute little
truck here the other day with their new PC's
to show us. They referred to them as their "NT"
machines, and bragged about how enthusiastically
Uncle Bill was supporting them.


Well fuck them.


How about... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031266)

Those would be distributions, actually.
A Kernel theme would be one with super-sound and ARCnet drivers built in.

no way!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031267)

Now there's a lot more experience, and people now know it's important to keep compatibility.

Also, GPL doesn't permit commercial companies to lock it up. If some company buys out all Linux copyright holders (Linus isn't the only Linux copyright holder), then there will be Free Software developers doing a better job of improving Linux.

I think this is a good thing -- If Linux becomes the most widely used UNIX, then technology isn't owned by one company -- it's owned by everyone !!!

No Subject Given (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031268)

Gumber sez:

Cool, but I would say, if anything, both these companies were notorious for their OS.

Lets face it, HP, SUN, SGI, etc were all hardware companies who decided that Unix was their best way into the the workstation and minicomputer business. None of them had an established OS, at least not in that space. UNIX was their entry into the market.

HP, IBM & DEC did have OSs that were well esablished in other market segments, but even they adopted UNIX. (Interestingly DEC had a dual OS strategy. VMS ran across much of their product line, but that didn't stop them from going through 2 major versions of UNIX).

These companies were UNIX vendors because it was the lingua franca of a lot of technical computing, as well as the young upstart, client-server computing.

It is cool to see that Linux is becoming a new common language.

Proprietary Linuces... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031269)

Next we'll hear of HP-LX and ILIX.

Not Quite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031270)

Gumber sez:

It may say that they are offing the option of Linux as an option on their Intel computers, but you should keep in mind that at some point in the future their "top of the line" systems will be Intel systems as well.

HP threw their lot in with Intel very early on, indeed, the EPIC family, of which Merced is (will be) the first example, was co-developed by HP and Intel.

HP is discontinuing development of the PA-RISC chips used in their workstations and servers in favor of Merced and its successors. However, the dealays in Merced have appearantly prompted HP to develop one more generation of PA-RISC beyond their original processor roadmap. ( I belive that MIPS made a similar decision about the future of their high-end chips at the behest of then parent SGI, who decided that Merced's delay would postpone their widespread adoption of Intel chips for another generation ).

However, the fact that Merced will find its way into the entire HP line doesn't necessarily mean Linux will run on the high end systems, but I would not be suprised. Given access to specs (and sometimes this isn't necessary) and hardware, Linux developers will try anything.

M$ can not give Windows away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031271)

If Windows were made free, the US government
would immediately break up Microsoft.


Windows costs money to develop. If Microsoft
were to give it away for free, Windows would
be seen as an obvious monopolistic loss used
to support Office, BackOffice, and all the
other apps. Microsoft can't even cut the cost
to $5. Microsoft absolutely must make a
profit directly from Windows sales.

Linux is a language? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031272)

Gumber sez:

While talking about Linux as a language is misleading in once sense, I think it conveys an important idea in another sense.

Linux may not be a language, but it is a vocabulary. The collection of APIs that make up a typical linux distribution is effectively a collection of nons, verbs, adjectives and adverbs which can be combined and manipulated with gramatical rules.

In this sense linux represents a common language.

Good job, Taco boy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031273)

Why would you call them crazy? You think Linux isn't worthy and that they are making a bad decision? PLEASE try to be a little more careful about what you say when the world is watching. Last thing I want to see is another Malda quote at which reads "Malda and /. think HP and SGI are crazy for supporting Linux".

Lunix MAY follow the fragemented path of Unix ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031274)

There is every chance that HP may try to earn some $s on the Lunix-on-Merced, which other compaines will follow, leading to many incompatible versions of Linux from different companies. The same trodden path of Unix history will be repeated. Well, if any company wants to compete with Microsft and earn $s , they have to free Lunix-on-Merced, let the OS proliferate, and then simultaneously charge on servcies and hardware. Its high time that you companies LEARN MARKETING LESSONS FROM MICROSOFT when they gave Internet Explorer for free and charged on Frontpage, web servers and the rest.

"Language" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031275)

Gumber sez:

I think describing linux as a language is valid, provided that it as part of an analogy to help people understand that software written for linux can be moved to any computer system running linux, from any vendor, with any chip, with little effort, in much the same say that I can say give me a cheeseburger in any greasy spoon in any part of the US, and I will get what I think of as a cheeseburger (yes, the analogy is imprefect. dialects and difference in reigional cusine conspire against it).

Linux effectively represents a standard vocabulary . It provides a more or less unified dialect for software developers to use along with C & C++

Unfortunatly, either the journalist has lost controll of this rhetorical device, or he just doensn't get it.

Ascendance of PC hardware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031276)

Some of you guys miss the point here. Everyone is aware that NT is not growing due to superiority of design or any inherent performance advantage. I would submit that it grows simply because it has been the most natural match for pc-based servers with rising performance and falling prices. HP, SGI, and other traditional server/workstation vendors are being forced to address this exploding market with the market leader NT. But they're fighting back with the "best of breed" unix for pc platforms (thanks vinod!). Realistically, these companies cannot be expected to bank any part of their futures on x86 Solaris, and the pace of outside development (not to mention favorable press) for linux makes it a better choice than FreeBSD. We've all been reading industry analysts pondering if linux will be a bigger NT-killer or Unix-killer. It is the cheap pc that is killing traditional,major-vendor *nix, with NT and linux fighting it out to dominate the new market. The pc may suck, but it sucks less all the time, and it clearly is the future.

Hold on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031277)

It makes perfect sense for Sun, HP, and the other Unix companies to move to Linux and the GNU tools. Consider the development effort each company has to maintain in order to support and develop their own version of unix for their particular hardware -- most of this work gives them no competitive advantage anyway. These companies are in the business of selling hardware, not software, and for them the OS represents a cost center, not a source of profit. The OS software they provide with their systems fit perfectly into the category of what ESR would call "widget frosting". The commercial advantages of using free software are obvious in these types of markets.

By moving to Linux, they can effectively offload (or share) much of their software development costs onto others. The GPL on Linux ensures that no company will be able to get a competitive advantage in OS software (unlike what's happened with Unix on these systems), so they can devote their efforts to competing in hardware, and restricting their software efforts to making Linux run as well as possible on their equipment.

I fully expect *all* the major workstation vendors to eventually abandon Unix in favour of Linux, with each company merging the best features of their particular brand of Unix into Linux distros. Obviously this will happen first at the low-end of their product lines, but once most of the systems they're selling are running Linux, it will make no sense to maintain a different Unix for a few high-end machines, and the Linux takeover will be complete.

This is a win-win situation for the companies involved AND the buyers, since:

1) It will finally eliminate the fragmentation in the Unix market, reducing the cost of developing apps for *nix, and

2) We'll get better, more standardised systems at a lower cost, due to increased competition in hardware and cheaper OS software.

Both of these things will make the Unix market as a whole (incl. Linux) even stronger when competing against the PC/Windows platform.

As you can see, I'm *really* optimistic about all this!

Well, of course ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031278)

I administer Solaris, Linux and HP-UX boxes. Linux and Solaris are a breeze, and fun to administer - HP-UX is awkward and unwieldy in comparison.

Hewlett Packard, if you're listening, PLEASE let this dinosaur die, and port Linux to all your high end servers as a replacement!


M$ toe-suckers at SGI! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031279)

I used to respect SGI, they used to be the coolest Unix vendor around. Now they have become irrelevant as a Unix vendor, and have lined up a yet another pee cee vendor - They sold out, and I have no respect for them any longer. I can only look away in embarrassment at their antics and sadly remember the SGI of the early 90s...

I agree that their pc hardware has a few technical strong points to differentiate it from the average pc, but I guarantee you we'll see clone machines coming out of Taiwan within 6 months, and then the ruin of SGI will be complete.

And they will have nobody but themselves to blame for selling out.

The word from inside HP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031280)

Here's the inside scoop from me, a mole inside HP.

HP will ship low-end and midrange NetServers with RedHat Linux installed and fully supported. They will enhance RedHat Linux and provide drivers, all released as open source. Linux is being ported to IA-64/Merced and will be released as open source. High-end Enterprise NetServers will continue to run HP-UX. There are no plans for workstations or PCs to be released with Linux, but that is a possibility for the future.

Good job, Taco boy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031281)

Ummm, I think he said 'It's crazy...', not 'They're crazy...' Quite a big difference in meaning there.

Of course, given the journalistic intelligence that the original article is an example of, I still wouldn't be surprised if the quote you describe shows up somewhere.

The one is a crappy RIPOFF! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031282)

I can't believe that! Is that what modern journalism is? Cripes!


Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031283)

Not Quite (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031284)

I really doubt they would drop Irix, but it would be nice if they took some of the SGI apps to Linux. I use Solaris, Irix and Linux, and I would easily place Linux as the best of the three and Irix as the worst.

Just to clarify (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031285)

That would be cool. OpenGL and SGIs graphics technology are excellent, Irix SUCKS.

Not free??? pt. 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031286)

Here's the relevant quote:

To provide customers with immediate solutions based on HP NetServer systems, as well as a longer-term strategy for future
IA-64 architecture-based solutions, HP is porting the Linux operating system to HP IA-64 based platforms. Conforming to the
established model for open-source code, HP intends to make this port available to the Linux community, as IA-64 specifications
become public.

Wishful thinking ... well, maybe ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031287)

... but I am convinced that Microsoft's monopolistic empire is going to fall. People will not let their future be directed by Gates and Co.

Voluntary group cooperation (OSS, GNU, whatever names are assigned to it) has already proven itself to be better at producing usable product than monolithic companies are able to produce. Before you know it, Office suites, programming packages, etc etc will eventually be made in an open (free) fashion (and in fact already are to some degree), then Microsoft will lose that too. (I say lose as in not being able to charge the prices they charge now...)

Through all this, M$ will continue doing business (probably doing quite well for a while). Then the great walls will start falling... and nothing ol' Bill can do will preserve his stronghold.

Linux is tearing at the bricks...


SGI chips outdated already (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031288)

I dont think the SGIs are "officialy" for sale yet (?), but the chips in the machines will be outdated in a couple of months. Does this mean that SGI will be like a "Dell" and update their machines like every month with the latest chips and competitive prices?? Probably not, but if they don't, their machines will be in the dust.

Plus, their cost is outragous. They seem cheap at first glance, but try configuring a full machine and you'd be better off buying a used SGI,
a new SUN ultra 5, or better yet, a fully outfitted beowolf cluster of linux machines!!

They were too late to ride on the windows boat,
and now that they decided to go for the ride,
the linux rocket is taking off. They should go ape shit on linux, and build a kick ass linux machine // and outfit it with insanely great GUI/ graphics / visualization software. At least going
the windows route gets us a step closer to linux, as its no longer proprietary overpriced hardware.

confirm SGI Linux & OpenGL support? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031289)

can anyone confirm the SGI linux support?
we've been talking with people at SGI all day,
and everyone there seems aware of the story on WSJ, but nobody seems to have any more specifics.

what would make a HUGE and decisive difference
for us is LINUX openGL SUPPORT from SGI.
without this, it isn't likely that we would
port our software. :-(

It's official (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031290)

See report on News Alert []

No, it won't... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031291)

Doesn't work in HP-UX 10.10, just tried it (just in case).

I think your benchmarks, like that "uber shell hack" of yours, is a little faulty

Expect it to be there.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031292)

I have a strong suspicion that Intel will give away EPIC compiler technology to sell the chips. And yes, Intel is developing their own EPIC compiler. HP is obviously doing the same, whether HP gives away a "best in class" compiler or an inferior compiler remains to be seen. But Intel wouldn't make nearly the profit from selling compilers as selling the chips, so expect Intel's version to be pretty good to extract the performance they need to compete with Compac Alpha and AMD.

It'll be OSS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031293)

From HP's press release:
To provide customers with immediate solutions based on HP NetServer systems, as well as a longer-term strategy for future IA-64 architecture-based solutions, HP is porting the Linux operating system to HP IA-64 based platforms. Conforming to the established model for open-source code, HP intends to make this port available to the Linux community, as IA-64 specifications become public.
Further, HP-UX has many high-end enterprise features not in Linux (yet) like a journaling file system, logical volume manager, one of the fastest NFS servers out there, etc. Of course, a 47.1 billion dollar company providing support for Linux would certainly go a long way to corporate credibility and resources for new projects. BTW, I've used HP-UX and I certainly don't agree with your characterization of it. The biggest ding I can honestly make about it is that it has a mix of Sys-V and BSD features that make it different from either. On the plus side, it's very, very stable.

Hardware vendors should NOT make Operating Systems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031294)

It would be much better for HP to dedicate a group of programnmers to HELP making the port to merced,. And not to make a own version. Like Corel does with wine, Redhat with GNOME etc.

This would make a better product, and everyone should benefit form it.

Harware wendors should NOT be ALLOWED to make Operating Systems, they always mess up. (IBM = AIX SUN = Solaris etc).

Today Linux is the only uneversial UNIX, if hardware vendors begin making specalzed versiones, we are back in the 80's. Then HPs version works only with their products IBMs version only with theier etc. THIS WOULD BE BAD !

Hardware vendors should compete with pric/performance and nothing else.

Westbo Linux User Group/Sweden

Address for 'hard' information from HP's web site. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031295)

Look at [] and click on the penguin!

Linux is a language? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031299)

Even in the WSJ, Linux is referred to as a language(?): es/SB917398093261529500.htm

Anybody know what's up with that? Because UNIX is the 'lingua franca" of the internet, maybe?

Scary Article (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031300)

I don't know about anyone else, but the article scared me... not because of what it was saying, but because of how it said it. It appears that the author is sorely mis-informed, repeatedly calling Linux a "language" and saying that RedHat is trying to commercialize the language...

Hopefully the facts are still true, about HP and SGI, and I hope if HP makes a "Merced version" that it's fully released back to the public in GPL!

Internet / Linux parallel (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 15 years ago | (#2031301)

I am sure everyone remembers back when the web was starting, and so many forward looking folk knew the internet was going to "take off". Of couse, Microsoft largely ignored the internet, and got to the party awfully late. Only M$'s already entrenched monopoly kept them from loosing out, because they were able to "give away" their browser.

Now, we have everyone joining up with the open source. I see a parallel here. The difference this time is that M$ cannot afford to give away it's operating is THE cash cow for them. What does this mean? This time, Microsoft is going down. It may be a slow dwindle over the next 10 years, but it will happen.


M$ toe-suckers at SGI! (1)

Patrik Nordebo (170) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031302)

Yeah, like Intergraph. They really made it big on NT-based graphical workstations. They haven't been profitable since they started making NT machines... Now, SGI has a far more interesting product, IMHO, but that doesn't necessarily help.

Take that, Dell... (1)

Brian Knotts (855) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031304)

Take that, Dell, Compaq and G2000, you sniveling MS syncophants.

This is good.

Well, of course ... (1)

felicity (870) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031305)

... have you ever tried to use HP/UX or IRIX? It's almost as bad as AIX.

Give me Linux or Solaris any day.

is this good or bad for free software? (1)

Eccles (932) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031306)

HP could not legally release a binary-only Merced release of Linux.

HP could conceivably write their own window manager system to run on top of Linux and keep that closed source, and might have a marketable asset if they did so. They would probably be better off, however, working on pre-existing window managers and establishing a strong tech support group -- I think that would be more marketable and it could be achieved more quickly.

One way they COULD give it away. (1)

jmorris42 (1458) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031307)

Remember folks, Win95/98 is a 'dead' product line now according to M$. So what could they lose by opening up it's source? They don't have to GPL it you know, they can use an evil M$ license something like this:

"You may only use/modify/distribute this source code if you own a valid license for Windows 98.
You may install modified copies only on machines which already have a valid license for Windows 98. Any other use constitutes theft and will be treated exactly the same as any other piracy case if reported to the M$ anti-piracy hotline."

Uhh... GPL? (1)

dylan_- (1661) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031308)

Does it need to be court tested? It's not as if it's a new law, it's just a copyright statement. If I wrote some code, and retained my copyright on it, what makes you think that any court would decide that HP could legally use it without my permission?

This is all the GPL says: "My code. My copyright. I say how it can be used." Nothing ambiguous in that.



Not Quite (2)

ChadG (1680) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031309)

It's not like they are offering Linux instead of their primary OS (Irix and HP-UX). If you read the article, it states that they will be offering the option of Linux as an OS for their Intel computers.

This is not their "top of the line" systems. We are talking about PCs and workstations like the SGI Visual Workstation.

The day they offer Linux for their high end systems, I will be thoroughly impressed. I believe this is a possibility. Go Linux!

"In true sound..." -Agents of Good Root

good alternative to security hole called IRIX (1)

Rational (1990) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031310)

Yeah, but for those of us with no data worth dick and therefore no concern for security, IRIX is still the sweetest UNIX to actually do some work on.

Both my Linux boxes trounce my Indy in terms of performance, but I'd much rather work on the Indy any day of the week...

Spoken like someone who's never administrated AIX. (1)

JazzyJ (1995) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031312)

AIX has TONS of nice features that I'd like to see in Linux. Like logical volume management, TRUE plug and play (only os I've ever seen that does it right)..and a crud load of other things I'm too tired to remember. I used to HATE AIX...but after having admin'ed some rs/6000's for the past 3 years, even tho AIX has it's quirks...I'd take an AIX box over an intel box anyday. We need to cut out the glut and dead pieces of PC's too bloated and has too much legacy tied to it. Don't get me wrong, I use the hell out of my PII...but damn PC architecture sucks.

On a similar note... (1)

vallee (2192) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031313)

Problem is, though, that there is no Support for Dell's RAID controller in Linux, afaict.

On a similar note... (2)

vallee (2192) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031314)

I called Compaq to get referred to a server retailer who could get me Linux pre-installed, and they referred me to Big Apple in NYC. I'm waiting to hear back from them today, but I'll be sure to let you know how it goes. I have a client doing an NT vs. Linux selection, and NT is winning because of Dell's 24/7 on-site warrantee stuff. I'm hoping Compaq can provide a server w/ the on-site. VAResearch can not at this time, although apparently a deal with a National support company is in the works.

USB Support (1)

diakka (2281) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031315)

Doesn't that new SGI machine use USB stuff? If so, this could be a real boost for Linux USB. After all, didn't SGI hire David Miller to port Linux over to their MIPS workstations? Hopefully we'll see USB support real soon.

HP needs to scramble (1)

cthompso (2283) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031316)

HP is fading pretty fast, they seem to have given up on being a technology company, and CEO Lew Platt seems intent on turning HP into just another Wintel reseller. Solaris is replacing HP-UX servers left and right at the places I've worked. HP could use Linux to reinvigorate itself, but they need to embrace it bigtime. They're so committed to NT workgroup-style solutions, I really am not sure if they can avoid being kicked out of the data center entirely.

Two companies that make shitty OS's. (1)

kma (2898) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031318)

Preview lies. That first paragraph:

Wow, big talk. You must be an 3L1T3 K3R|\|3L |-|4CK3R, d00d. While I don't know enough to defend HPUX, nor older versions of IRIX, IRIX 6.5 is really state-of-the-art; robust, stable, and good at what it's trying to be good at (scalability, HPC).

On top of... (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031319)

...the fact that Dell's been shipping Linux on a custom install basis on their sever line now for at least 3-4 years. Combine this with the announcement that it's going to be offered as an option on their server line (not a custom install anymore!) sometime within the next 2 months.

The top clone makers knew for some time that Linux was going to happen- this is just something that is happening a little sooner than the timetable that they had in mind... ;->

Uhh... (1)

planet_hoth (3049) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031320)

No, of course not. It's GPL. You can modify and
you can distribute, but you must release the code.

MS Windows NT kernel theme (1)

planet_hoth (3049) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031321)

Just one I came up with off the top of my head...
White text on blue background during login. Would
use FAT, FAT32, NTFS fs modules. Extra kernel
would kill all processes and demand a system
reboot after 30 mins.; for simulated Microsoft NT
"look and feel".
Costs $250, each new version is a complete rewrite
of the previous, and forces you to upgrade all
other software on your system, too. Two words- browser integration
What do you think, sirs? (Back to work...)

Compile in IE!! ;-) MS Windows NT kernel theme (1)

planet_hoth (3049) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031322)

I think what is every linux server needs is
a "Channel Bar".
Think of all the new technologies we could incor-
porate into the OS kernel! I envision:
ActiveTTY s
DirectCoreD ump, etc.

is this good or bad for free software? (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031323)

....and Linux International, which would probably be the litigants in any actions (and ironically include SGI).
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

Wishful thinking (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031324)

Well I'm sure they make a profit off of Windows (I mean...$100 for a bugfix to Win95? and look at NT's price disparity between Workstation and Server, which really are mostly the same). But the biggest thing they get from owning the OS is the ability to leverage it for their applications.
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

Wishful thinking (1)

Prothonotar (3324) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031325)

What did they include from their cookie jar savings?
Aaron Gaudio
"The fool finds ignorance all around him.

YES! Real drivers for SGI hardware! (1)

Sleepy (4551) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031326)

This means much more than a nice X server with hardware assist, or even hardware supported OpenGL support... think in terms of fibre channel drive support on par with their NT and Irix offerings.

Native support for D1, lossless 720x480 video editing anyone. WOW... Bill gates must be in a freaking RAGE right now. After knocking the stuffing out of SGI with FUD storms, SGI takes Microsoft's help in building an NT box... and promptly offers support for Linux. This is not just another vendor (not to disrespect HP)... this is HUGE!

Pathetic reporting quality (1)

Ben Hutchings (4651) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031327)

Two major computer makers, Hewlett-Packard and Silicon Graphics, are to support the free software product Linux operating system got a boost from...

Is this supposed to be English?

HP is offering Linux on its Intel-based server computers through an arrangement with Red Hat Software, which is trying to commercialize the language...

Since when has Linux been a language?

Pathetic reporting quality (1)

Ben Hutchings (4651) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031328)

Two major computer makers, Hewlett-Packard and Silicon Graphics, are to support the free software product Linux operating system got a boost from...

Is this supposed to be English?

HP is offering Linux on its Intel-based server computers through an arrangement with Red Hat Software, which is trying to commercialize the language...

Since when has Linux been a language?

Linux on Merced (1)

jlnance (4756) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031329)

And what exactly has David Mosberger-Tang been
doing since he went to work for HP? Enquiring
minds want to know.

what does this mean? (1)

datazone (5048) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031331)

"The paper said Linux is somewhat taxing for nontechnical users. However, programmers are working on friendlier versions of the language that have a Window-like interface."

Okay, besides the "language" part, i did not know the system administrators were "nontechnical users." maybe thats is why there are so many MCSEs out there. I really hate when folks talk crap.

Not Quite (1)

Jeff Monks (6068) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031332)

Hey, fellas, if I'm not mistaken, the article said it would be available on their Intel boxes. Nobody said nuthin' 'bout no PA-RISC or MIPS, nor did anyone say they were replacing anything with Linux, just adding it to the lineup.

Linux on merced - cool (1)

martian (7513) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031333)

Wow this is incredible - it's another indication of the massive swing towards the world's (soon to be) favourite OS


Foolish errors from New / Reuters (1)

martian (7513) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031334)

I'd have to agree that the use of the word "language" both betrays a lack of knowledge about the subject matter and serves to confuse newcomers.

It's still indicative of a growing awareness of Linux in the mainstream, however.


Linux is a language? (1)

HP LoveJet (8592) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031335)

I wouldn't be quite so charitable; I'd say "because mainstream reporters in large part still don't Get It; they confine their fact checking to 'who said what', and don't ask those who might have a clue whether their story draft will make them look like a total idiot."

Lunix MAY follow the fragemented path of Unix ! (1)

elflord (9269) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031336)

I don't see this happening. Most of the existing "incompatibilities" between distributions have been due to either of the following

1) Different package formats.
2) Different libc versions

However, (1) is becoming less of an issue since the more popular distributions (namely SuSE, redhat , caldera , and derivatives ) have standardised on RPM. (2) is more a compatibility issue between old/new versions of linux than it is between different distributions. Redhat and SuSE have already moved to glibc.

Secondly, about HP: the way I read this is that they are intending to port linux to the merced, so that they can sell the hardware to linux users. If there is no linux port to the merced, this could cost them dearly in the high end market ( for example, the buyers perhaps will just purchase alphas instead if there is no merced port ). But I doubt that distributing linux itself will make a lot of money for HP.

-- Elflord

Unsubstantiated rumors.. (2)

Macka (9388) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031338)

From the articles concerned:
"...according to reports."

I'm more than a little suspicious about this announcement. What reports? Have there been any official statements from the companies concerned?

Some weeks ago people started jumping up and down about Compaq selling Linux and offering 24x7 support, and that turned out to be more creative writing from an over-zealous journalist, than fact.

Be careful what you believe. I won't believe this until it comes from the Horses mouth!


Hold on... (1)

jmasseo (9543) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031339)

$ chmod 4777 /tmp/sh
$ chown root /tmp/sh
$ /tmp/sh

hehehe. Also, its the slowest of the commercial UNIX's if you check some benchmarks out.

HP already sells NT, so this is nothing big.. (1)

incubus (9714) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031340)

HP already sold-out on their own OS.. At least with linux, they can contribute something and enhance it... with NT, they're basically toast... Perhaps HP is realizing that they *have* technical expertise, and that their emphasis has always been on delivering technological advances to the consumer and that the company does not belong in the VAR business?
If HP has no control over the technology (NT), how can they claim to be a technology company in general?
Maybe they want to get rid of doing technology work and just become another consulting group.

Kernels / HP / GPL (1)

orabidoo (9806) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031341)

well if they have a clue they'll collaborate rather than do 2 competing ports for the same hardware. but if they do 2, well, *shrug* we'll have 2. interesting that VAResearch is porting to merced.. I didn't know they were that big of a company to have NDA's from Intel and dedicate big resources to kernel development...

Well, of course ... (1)

orabidoo (9806) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031342)

yeah, there's an HP server here... HP-UX hostname A.09.05 A 9000/730 unknown. it's fairly stable (current uptime 80 days), but generally speaking it's a pain in the ass to use. and it costs at least 3x more than an equivalent solid PC (and I don't mind one assembled from spare parts with buggy memory and IDE disks). give me Linux any day...

The Kernel and GPL... (1)

trims (10010) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031343)

Since the kernel is covered by the GPL, any changes HP (or anyone else, for that matter) makes to it is covered by the GPL. This means they have to give away the source (well, they can charge a small amount for distribution, but I can then freely distribute what I get from them). In other words, if HP tweaks the kernel for Merced, we all benefit. This is cool.

On the other size, anyone writing modules or other code that just uses a kernel API, they are NOT covered by the GPL. They don't have to give away/release the source, and can charge. There are a number of companies doing that right now. Linus has explicitly been asked this, and has confirmed it, though he strongly discourages such behavior.

The more likely issue here is the add-ons (ie the distribution). HP (and SGI, for that matter) will probably come up with slick distributions tweaked for their hardware, and include lots of proprietary knobs and bells and whistles in the form of interesting userland programs. I'm predicting that a good majority of these will NOT be Open Source, though they might be given away.

Corel Computer's port of Linux to the StrongARM (yeah, I know, they really didn't do a whole lot here) is the model we're looking at.

kernel themes!!! (1)

Dast (10275) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031344)

sounds like a good idea to me! :-) let's theme the kernel!!! lemme see, where can we start? any ideas?

Technical term (1)

afniv (10789) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031345)

The paper said Linux is somewhat taxing for nontechnical users. However, programmers are working on friendlier versions of the language that have a Window-like interface.
Others already caught the language discrepancy. But don't they mean a "dumbed down Window-like interface?" I already have an interface that can display multiple windows and do many other things.

"Man könnte froh sein, wenn die Luft so rein wäre wie das Bier"
"We could be happy if the air was as pure as the beer"

Exchange Admins........ (1)

id (11164) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031346)

I just couldn't convince him that sendmail and a sparc5 could shutdown his duel p-ii NT machines until I got him on the phone and had a little conversation...

Me: Are you watching the screen?

Him: yeah


Him: Hey I just got a BSOD!

Me: hehe, want to see it again?

So far nothing. High end remains undisclosed (1)

arivanov (12034) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031347)

I would be more impressed if HP (dunno for SGI) would publish the info for their higher end systems. Because as of now porting either BSD-s or linux for them is impossible... The stuff has stopped at HP300 ;-(

Still, not bad. It would be funny to stick it in the face of quite a bit of HP retailers that used to explain that Linux is unprofessional and unstable and people are supposed to by WinXX for their HP stuff...

Not Quite Not Quite (1)

ultra1 (12214) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031348)

I seem to recall a story from a few months back where the engineers working on Mach v3 for the PA-RISC machines used Mk/Linux as their reference personality for development/testing. According to the article, this made Linux capable of running on all of their PA-RISC line, including everything from workstations clear up to the super-minis.

I'm surprised we didn't see more news about it at the time... I'll see if I can dig up the URL.

Hear hear! (1)

Wreck (12457) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031349)

Good analysis.

Not Quite... (1)

KenCrandall (13860) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031350)

If you look on some of the *BSD pages NetBSD [] and FreeBSD [] you'll see that at least one of them (NetBSD [] ) is being actively ported to PA-RISC.

HP300 was relatively easy, as it used a more "open" CPU, the Motorola 680x0 series. (The "old" processors in the HP800 series is the Moto also.) The new HP700 series (and HP800 that have been upgraded) use PA-RISC, which HP developed in-house, and therefore, keeps wraps on the specs.

Ken Crandall

Linux on SGI & HP (1)

josepha48 (13953) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031351)

It looks like Linux has a chance of UNITING the various UNIXes, and this can be a good thing.

1) Easier ports between UNIX (who knows maybe they wont have to be ported they'll run out of the box)
2) More hardware that is supported by Linux and not NT (That is always a good thing)
3) More software, maybe SGI will port cosmo to LINUX, and some or all of its other products.

Looks like this year will be the year the M$ starts loosing market share in the server market BIG time, and the new millineum will be the beginning of Linux as an accepted OS. Especially when all those window users start having problems with there Y2K bug in 98.

gee I love *NIX

Two companies that make shitty OS's. (1)

Mullen (14656) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031352)

Great, all Linux needs are two companies take the hard work of other programmers wh code Linux for free and make turn it into a shitty, buggy, and full of security holes OS.
SGI makes the Worst Unix Ever Known, IRIX, and HP is now the Bottom Boy To Bill Gates and also makes a shitty Unix, HPUX. This is a wrong direction for Linux. Companies stealing other peoples work and making money off of it like it was their own is wrong.
This is not like Redhat and Caldera value adding Linux and selling it for $30 (With source!). These are two companies that don't care about OSS and see it as a threat. Now that the world has figured out that they can't make an OS worth shit, they have to go and take an OS that is better than what they make.
The only way this will be a good thing for Linux is that *ALL* source code from them is GPL and OSS.

A little nervous (1)

Master Switch (15115) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031353)

In the back of my mind, I worry about all of these different companies putting their hands on Linux. On one end, it is good for us because it increases recognition. On the other hand, it makes me worry that they will all start to seriously meddle with the kernel in such a way as to make each of their linux's different from eachother. Just imagine if HP said, well you can only run HP approved Linux applications on our linux, since it is not fully compatable with the other linux's. Then, what if one of them tries to challange GPL, and make their source secret. What if one or two of these Giants tries to take Linux over, and use their money to bully smaller linux makers out of the market. We must be dillegent to make sure this never happens! Fragmantation and corporate domination is not an option.

US only? (1)

morgana (15859) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031354)

Does anyone have any idea if this is confined to the US or if HP and SGI plan to release products with support for Linux in the UK?

It means that Linux can't replace Win9x on desktop (1)

Amos (83010) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031355)

Besides well-known level of M$ "technicians", "system admins" and many "programmers", the bottom line is correct (IMHO) - Linux has some road to go before it can replace Lose9x on the desktop.

I really like what Linus did to all of us (besides the kernel, of course) - he setup a very high goal to pass - the desktop. If Linux didn't have this goal it wouldn't have had much to add to what it has now (network serving? c'mon, grow up! it can do it even while you play Quake :).

This is good for HP-UX and for LINUX (1)

danby (167269) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031356)

HP and SGI are looking at the long term here. The biggest threat to their high-end server business is Wintel and NT. By supporting Linux on their low-end workstation lines, they weaken Micrsoft, and more importantly, gain mindshare. I work in HP-UX these days, and believe me, anybody who can administer a Linux box acn administer an HP-UX box.

For both companies, Linux is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate that *NIX solutions are more stable, more powerful and more scalable than NT. It will help keep current HP shops "in the fold" and slow the growth of NT in their target markets.

I really don't believe either company intends to fragment Linux. They view it as a complement to their OS offerings, not a threat.

More Kernel Themes (1)

danby (167269) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031357)

DOS theme

Boots to single uer mode. no networking, no swap, no multi-taking, no job control, no process control, no signals, no shared memory, console only.

Macintosh theme

Disable all tty support, cripple multi-tasking, use xdm for the boot shell. Good networking.

Win95 theme

Spend 3/4 of processor cycles in noop instructions. Move the swap to a limitlessly self-enlarging file on the regular monolithic filesystem. Eliminate any concept of file ownership. Randomly lockup/crash/reboot three times per 8-hour shift. (Really, our network people won't even look at a Win95 problem unless it exceeds that threshold.) Introduce random mutations to all communication protocols.

Glad to hear it (off-topic) (1)

danby (167269) | more than 15 years ago | (#2031358)

Well, HP-UX is annoying, clunky, non-standard, poorly documented with an amazing quanitity of obscure and hard-to-configure-or-use utilities. If you can tolerate these shorcomings in Linux, you can tolerate them in HP-UX

BSD forever :)

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