back to article Massive Sun cuts planned as IBM focuses on software trio

If IBM purchases Sun Microsystems - as expected - the fallout will be brutal. IBM staffers have, according to a Reg source close to the parties, been talking to Sun about its software portfolio and - unsurprisingly - they don't like what they've found: It's not making any money. IBM's now interested in three Sun software …


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  1. Cesar
    Thumb Up

    IBM will monetize better MySQL's investment

    Sun has failed to monetize its $1B MySQL investment primarily because has been extremely stubborn on the kind of users they are going after. They believed that going after new Web 2.0 application was sufficient to obtain a desirable ROI. IBM will do a way better job monetizing on the acquisition of MySQL.

    IBM can actually position MySQL not as the database for Web 2.0 apps but as a database replacement for IBM competitors in the small to medium size market. There are millions of applications worldwide that are paying extremely high database premiums. That in this current economic crisis is completely unjustified as many analysts are saying that up to 80% of all applications worldwide are ready for a MySQL migration. So I would only imagine that IBM might want to provide a low cost alternative to Microsoft’s SQL Server, Oracle and others.

    Cost and complexity of the application migration process has been THE impediment to MySQL migration but there are new migration technologies that are really accelerating this process. Analysts like Forrester are saying that ANTs Software (, my current employer, is the only company able to migrate from database A to database B without the painful/costly job of rewriting the business app and we have customers like Wyndham Hotels to confirm this.

    If you are interested in getting more information or a quick briefing, please feel free to contact me at cesar(dot)rojas(at)ants(com).

  2. Anonymous Coward

    they should hang pony tail boy by his toes

    But I am glad my investment will continue with a company I can trust....IBM

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Time to take Sun private!

    Maybe Scott and Carl have something up their sleeves. While the whores that took down the stock market continue to suck the value out of anything innovative, Sun should be taken private and may yet be. . IBM makes its money by making things that don't work (on purpose) so they can sell you a ton of Global Services. When the money for that runs out, they just outsource the complexity. Sun believes that you can engineer your way out of complex technical issues. So, Frankenstein will be buying Einstein, from an intellectual capital perspective. While the font on 'Invent' continues to get smaller with each passing year at HP, SGI is sold for parts and M$'s biggest asset is XP, who will all of those IBM lovin' CIOs go to for a 'third quote' to keep the worlds largest body shop honest? Hmmm. Dell? So many much mediocrity.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Money from Software

    "IBM staffers have, according to a Reg source close to the parties, been talking to Sun about its software portfolio and - unsurprisingly - they don't like what they've found: It's not making any money."

    Like Apple, Sun makes it's money from hardware. The software is a value add.

  5. amanfromMars Silver badge

    The Shark Pool ...... is a Phish Pond. And a Phorm of Pound too in Quantum Fundamentalism*

    "Owning Java would help ensure the platform's continued survival to suit IBM's own goals, ..."

    In your dreams, IBM. Which sort of puts Big Blue between AIRock and a Hardware Space in the Virtualisation Sector, doesn't it? For they are venturing into unfamiliar Virgin territory, which they cannot afford to be without in order to survive, but ITs Infrastructure/XXXXOskeleton is more than just ably defended and astutely protected by all Manner of Apache Renegade Server and MODified Amazon Ninja Almed and Armed with Prior Arts and Sweet and Sticky Booby Traps ...... for the Honey Pot XXXXStreams of Perfect Entrapment and the Sublime Semantic Submission and Sinful Surrender to Specialist Server Services. And the Nymphs and Satyrs/Mistresses and Masters in those Immaculate Domains of Dominion have their own Platform/Raft/Structured Investment Vehicles of Prime IDeas and Optimum Goals for IBM suits?

    What's it to be IBM .... A Titanic Sink or a NeuReal Space Launch ..... with Pyongyang Rock IT Chips for the Power and Control of MkUltra Sensitised Enigmas? A Simply CompleXXXX Choice between Toxic Barrels of Dead Fish and Rotten Pork or Silent Virgin Stores of Untold and Unimagined Natural Riches? Armageddon or Shangri La?

    *XXXXistentialism .... For and with Privileged Soaring Rights by Virtue of Natural Assumption and SupraNational Ability with InterNetional Facility.

  6. Danyer

    What about

    is it not part of Sun portofolio?

    IBM has released Lotus Symphony based on, Sun has StarOffice based on

  7. vonBureck

    What about OpenOffice?

    And here I was hoping that IBM would finally get Sun's finger out and give that final, long needed push to create a truly realistic rival to M$ Office, even on Windows boxes. If OO gets fully "released" to the community, that may well be its end. And yes, I do know OO is formally already a community project, but let's face it - without Sun's engineer's the project would be nowhere.

    Also, I wonder what's going to happen to VirtualBox - Sun only bought that last year :)

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sick just thinking about being sold to IBM

    All this talk of IBM buying Sun makes me feel gen-you-ironly sick from stress. If the deal goes through, as an eleven year veteran at Sun, I just *know* my cumulative forty-something days of sick leave will get used up before IBM has a chance to fiscally-negate me... Thanks IBM, I'm feeling less stressed already!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sounds good to me

    Solaris, MySQL and Java - that's the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

  10. zvonr
    Jobs Halo

    It's all about HP...

    HP's after EDS acquisition is a threat to IBM. And IBM's Open Source "love" will be tested.

    With Sun in IBM's hands the competitive landscape changes significantly...

    IBM's Linux support does not make so much sense anymore since it strengthens it's competitors HP and Dell, even Red Hat (Jboss vs Websphere).... One example: IBM has engineers in the System TAP team, while HP and Dell have none, does this make sense for IBM? HP and Dell kill IBM in the X86 server market, selling Linux servers without spending money on developing Linux... also Linux will not be needed to undermine Sun anymore...

    Apache Harmony will have some problems, it will be hard to justify those IBM headcounts working on that project...(project that beside providing the java libs to Android will become useless to IBM). Apache Harmony will not be needed anymore to undermine Sun, IBM will have everything they need and it will not make sense for them to share it with their competitors...(unless they pay for it)

    Sun's products that are not profitable and have no future will be shut down as they should.

    Sun Industry influence was a lot larger than its revenue, IBM will benefit tremendously if they are doing the acquisition right. If I would be Cisco,EMC, Oracle or HP I would be worried about a Sun + IBM combo...

    These leaks to the press are probably done to bring in another bid ... and frankly they should at least bring one to make the acquisition more expensive for IBM (like Garmin did to Tom Tom's Tele Atlas acquisition...). IBM + Sun is serious competitor...

  11. Paul Tubing
    Paris Hilton

    One other winner

    One other potential winner in this scenario would be Schwartz. How much does he stand to make from the buyout? Having systematically destroyed Sun, making every wrong decision possible, I hope IBM has the wit to leave him with the revenue model he espoused.

    Paris. For all that is wrong about her, she creates wealth.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    Isn't Derby the OS Database option that IBM punt in the same way as Geronimo/Webpshere CE is the bottom end of that stack? In which case I don't see much use for MySQL....

  13. joe

    oh god

    Would IBM and Sun please wake up! The only real winner in the OS game will be Red Hat. The reason why shops don't run AIX is because it IS IBM. If the merger/buyout/assimilation does come to fruition many Solaris shops, like mine, will be running Red Hat on Proliant when our HW warranties expire. I guess patching will be easier verses Solaris 10 these days. At least i have something to look forward to..

    Now what are we going to do with all our StorageTek gear? What a waste :(

  14. David Viner Silver badge


    And what about VirtualBox? Any plans/rumours about that?

  15. David Halko
    Thumb Down

    This article does not seem reasonable.

    Writer says, "IBM's now interested in three Sun software assets: the open-source MySQL database, Java, and Sun's Solaris operating system."

    The writer should be aware that SUN's Solaris is open-source, just like MySQL is. The parallel sentence structure is broken.

    Writer says, "The rest, including all that open-source work Sun's spent years building and hyping, will succumb to that classic of big vendor lingering deaths by being, ahem, 'released' to the 'community'."

    Since SUN's owned open sourced OpenOffice is the foundation for one of IBM's own products, I highly suspect that IBM is not going to buy the source of the code for it's own office product and then release the code to the community.

    Since SUN owns the most prolific open sourced clustered file system in the HPC world, I highly suspect that IBM is not going to buy the source of the code and then release the code to the community.

    At this point, this article does not look reasonable.

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Well that will be that then.....

    Not long until we see the death of anything new in the computer world...... Sun was the only group that has powerful enough hardware to do anything serious to Big Iron. Shame sorely missed...

    Now they've got the whole portfolio a lot of people in the 60's and 70's innovators did their best to avoid them having....

    Cheerio, its been nice having you

    Mines the one with a nice cedar veneer..... with silver pockets...

  17. Mark Wills

    Java commerce model?

    Can anyone tell me (just curious) about the Java commerce model?

    I had assumed one was just free to develop applications in Java and sell them to anyone, with no licences payable to Sun for use of the Java system. Is that the case, or am I wrong? If that *is* the case, you have to wonder how Sun make any money from Java at all? Especially when you look at things like NetBeans, which is a truly brilliant product, and must have cost millions to get it to where it is, yet (unlike Micrsosoft), they just give it away...

    How do they make money from Java?

    Just curious, thanks.

  18. Lou
    Thumb Down



    Massive people cuts - speculation. And then you say "This is of course assuming IBM's deal proceeds in the first place"? Maybe you should go and work for one of the UK Pony papers - they place these type of "let me suck my thumb and see what that produces" articles.

    You start you article with a statement of fact "the fallout will be brutal.". And then you rapidly degenerate into would, likely, could type of wording?

    IBM will buy Sun for two reasons only

    - to take out the competition - the thing will pay for itself - Sun $13.880 billion turnover Fy2008 and cash and marketable securities of $3.3 billion. (actually Sun can buy itself at current share values - how screwed up is that!).

    - and for its client base. It would leverage a slow move from Solaris based Sparc's to P6 monstrosities (and no IBM do not get (understand) the small server business anyway) and take the hp Itanic servers out of the equation and do Intel a huge favour.

    Of course - IBM could go through the motions and then walk away without spending a cent - because Sun has lost the trust of its base - when the Sun management recons the company is dead - then it is per definition DEAD!

    RIP Sun.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Java commerce model?


    Sun makes money on the licensing of the Java platform to hardware and some software manufacturers. If you buy a Nokia handset it comes with Java and Nokia have paid a royalty to Sun for including Java in the handset. You as a developer don't pay anything.

  20. peter
    Black Helicopters

    and now JAVA is tanking

    what a difference a day makes: thanks to NYtimes speculation of the possibly non-existant deal falling through, Sun's stock price just dropped almost 2 bucks on opening.

    so was any of it real?

    so long as they sack pony boy (as in chuck him out without a golden parachute) i'll be happy

  21. Robert Moore
    Gates Horns

    IBM > MS

    Couldn't you see MS buying them.

    MS has a proven track record of buying companies that are useless to them, just to kill off the products they produce that annoy MS.

    MS hates Java and would love to be able to kill it off.

    Goodbye Solaris.

    Watch as all corporate support for Open Office and MySql disappears.

    After reading that IBM seem like a White Knight riding in to save the day.

  22. This post has been deleted by its author

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Google is giving away Firefox

    Ok Sherlock - I mean Frank - what are you smoking - I want some. You may have made spelling mistake - Chrome - Firefox - easy mistake.

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