While every man and his dog in the IT industry was been commenting on Cisco Systems entering the server business, the IT vendor community has been pretty mum about the rumors of IBM looking at acquiring rival Sun Microsystems for perhaps as much as $8bn. Until now. Reuters is reporting from Tokyo that Dell CEO Michael Dell is …
What do you expect Mickey Dell to say ? Holy crap ? I am worried ?
Seriously, when has asking an executive anything resulted in anything other that biased BS ?
The worst thing...
...IBM could do is kill SPARC/Solaris.
Many companies heavily depend on SPARC /Solaris and will for many years.
If IBM kills SPARC/Solaris , these companies will get angry and will start to buy from other vendors.
Certainly not from IBM.
@Michael Dell: We use Sun Hardware extensively, and I don't have the time to listen to FUD. In fact, I just ordered a few new SPARC servers today.
Tim, you're hopelessly out of date
Sun and Dell don't compete?
Dell only sells to SMB customers?
There are many large corporate and high end customers that have hundreds - thousands - of x86 servers. Who do you think they are buying their servers from - Sun ? No, HP and Dell are #1 and #2 in this space. IBM is a distant third according to IDC and Gartner.
Secondly, haven't you seen the decline in Unix busines and the consistent rise in x86 server sales? More and more apps are being ported to Linux and no longer are customers having to put their
Thirdly, the massive increase in performance from AMD and Intel chipsets has accelerated x86 adoption for new applications. Think of Salesforce.com, SAP, Oracle Apps, etc. They all run really well on x86, despite what Accenture, Deloitte and other consulting companies with hardware margins to protect and services to sell may tell you.
Fourthly, Sun recognised this trend - too late it appears - and got back into the x86 business.
You're correct that Dell doesn't make a mainframe, or anything similar to an E25000, but really, why go after a declining market space? Even HP is seeing that message.
I don't work for Dell (or HP, IBM, Sun, etc.), so have no axe to grind, but please think about where the market is and where it's going, not just on where it's been. AC, because I have a legitimate reason for being a coward.
Who listens to Michael Dell ?
I remember Michael Dell saying about Apple:
"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders,"
Who listens to him? If you do the opposite he recommends you will probably win big...
All Dell needs is something more serious than: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/16606
and you will see people taking another look at sparc...
like the opportunity in the PC market when HP and Compaq merged? Many customers didn't like it at the time, but HP has won a lot of business since then, at Dell's expense.
There is a huge market demand for UltraSPARC processors, even though they are underpowered and overpriced compared to the dime-a-dozen x64 processors. The reason is they are reliable.
Fujtisu continue to develop and fabricate UltraSPARC procesors, and if IBM purchase Sun, Fujitsu will still offer their own M series (M3000, M4000 ... M9000) servers based on Fujitsu's own technology
The question of the future of the SPARC processors is called in to question about once every three to five years, this is just the next iteration
I do work for Fujitsu, however my views here do not represent the company I work for.
All systems go!
If Dell are smart they'd bid for Sun
With the cash Dell has available a smart move maybe would be to bid for Sun?
like your comments.
its not so much the ultraSPARC processors as the Fuji SPARC64 processors that are the ultra reliable ones
you're right SPARC lives on and that's good and will live on even given Sun takeover rumours
it puzzles me why Fujitsu doesn't and hasn't bid for Sun if they could find a way, it may be a very good fit and would help SPARC longevity
With the ECC throughout the SPARC64 processors have a great reliability track record and the roadmap looks pretty firm and fast
PS: are you with Fujtisu Siemens or Fujitsu Services or another bit of the Fujitsu empire?
RE: Tim, you're hopelessly out of date
You're absolutely right, of course, but had Tim brought himself kicking and screaming into the 21st century El Reg would have missed out on yet another opportunity to slag Dell off and let's face it, that's never going to happen.
Let's face it...
If you want reliability - go proprietary! It's always been the same, it always will be.
The Apple arguement of PC's always crashing and having buggy software is down to Apple being a proprietary box and the PC having to maintain compatability (backwards and forwards) with fairly loosely standard-compliant kit.
IBM's decent boxes are all based on Power chips and are hence proprietary. Yes, I know AiX is a bit of a bitch and AS/400 (iSeries) is a steep learning curve but they ARE great boxes.
Sun's SPARC architecture is great too - but again proprietary.
Surprised nobody mentioned HP's PA-RISC or DEC Alpha's... All good kit with their proponents, however, all proprietary and therefore expensive due to lower volume and ROI on the R&D to go up against Intel - whilst I am an AMD fan, I don't really consider them a player in the server space apart from x64 Opteron based kit and that isn't exactly high volume is it.
If you want cheap crap that you don't mind bouncing a few times a year - buy x86 Intel based kit.
If you want mission-critical, no need to IPL/bounce/shutdown whatever - buy proprietary. The downside is it will cost you.
You get what you pay for!
SPARC is NOT proprietary!
Why does everyone keep saying SPARC is proprietary?! It's not! SPARC is an open standard owned by SPARC International:
"Sun's SPARC architecture...is proprietary."
Here we go again.
How many frickin' times does this need to be repeated?
THE ARCHITECTURE IS NOT PROPRIETARY
Re: SPARC64 et al
Hey Ray, Yes you're right, Fujitsu are producing SPARC64, but it is all SPARC (sparcv9) compatible so it all falls under the same banner. I work for Fujitsu Services
@Duncan You missed the Intel IA64 (Or Itanium) architecture. Which is also proprietary, co-developed by HP and Intel
I'm glad someone pointed out the open nature of the SPARC CPU!
up the price
dell should bide just to up the price for big blue
@Anon: If Dell are smart they'd bid for Sun
I was thinking the SAME THING!!!
That would give Dell, the last significant independent server maker, an open RISC architecture...
That seems like a better fit than IBM...
People are confused... SPARC is one of the most open architectures in the mainstream.
It seems strange that people are still confused about SUN & SPARC being proprietary.
SPARC is a specification, anyone can design & create CPU's as well as systems... and many have done so. http://sparc.org/
A few examples:
Solbourne computing systems created SMP SPARC systems before other SPARC vendors like SUN were producing them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solbourne
The HyperSPARC processor is a fine example - it was made by Ross Technology, which created a very competitive 32 bit implementation of SPARC under MBus based equipment. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HyperSPARC
HAL Computer Systems produced the first 64-bit SPARC V9 of the SPARC architecture, were later purchased by Fujitsu, and their architecture lives on in Fujitsu and SUN platforms today. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HAL_Computer_Systems
The CoolThreads processor is a fine example - it was created by a Afara Websystems Inc., which was later purchased by SUN. Fujitsu partnered with SUN to re-sells this technology, today. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afara_Websystems
Funny, there are no lawsuits in the Open SPARC world, like Intel levies against AMD every few years in the proprietary x86 and x64 worlds.
SUN has even shared Open Firmware on their systems with most other non-x86 computer system vendors. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_firmware
A few examples of vendors leveraging includes: SUN, Apple, Fujitsu, and IBM.
SUN had released Solaris as Open Source, as well. http://opensolaris.org/os/
Some companies claim products have an Open Architecture, SPARC has continually demonstrated it, from soup to nuts.
Sun & SMBs
Just a quick mention that Sun will lick anyone's boots to make a sale... even the S-est of SMBs. They'll even try to get you investors to buy their kit. Check out the Sun Startup Essentials Program to see how low they'll go.
I personally hope IBM would keep Sun's x86 blades and storage systems. We quickly skipped over IBM's and Dell's bland offerings for Sun when building out our datacenters.