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CNET News.com/Meta Group: Hewlett-Packard takes out Linux insurance

Dec 06, 2000, 15:43 (11 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dale Kutnick, Val Sribar, Peter Burris, William Zachmann, David Cearley)

"Hewlett-Packard is taking out cheap insurance with its hiring of open-source advocate Bruce Perens, just in case Linux becomes more of a force in the marketplace than anyone expects."

"Users negotiating with HP can use this new commitment to Linux as a ploy in negotiations, but they should not expect HP to develop Linux into a replacement for HP-UX. Linux will fit into HP's product set as an operating system for embedded and low-end boxes suited for peripheral, nonstrategic operations only, and where users request it as an application or Web server."

"...the chance exists that Linux will become a larger force than everyone outside of the Unix server community expects. If it does, then Perens and the reinvigorated and renamed Linux Systems Operation will give HP at least some credibility in that market. This move is a cheap way for HP to buy a fig leaf to cover its nakedness in the Unix server arena in case Linux does become important."

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