HP puts $360 million on LeftHand to say OS is no matter

Summary:The deal is good for LeftHand because many of its current needs have been for sales management positions. HP closes that gap. And with money tight its customers need not fear that their storage vendor will get hit by a bank note call.

Hewlett-Packard Co. logo
The key point in HP's purchase of LeftHand for $360 million isn't the target market, but what it says about HP's attitude toward operating systems and source code, even for smaller customers.

It doesn't matter.

HP was already one of LeftHand's technology partners. Alongside IBM, Novell, Red Hat, Sun, and Oracle. All offering open source operating system contracts to customers.

LeftHand's attitude toward technology is, in a word,  yes. VMWare? Yes. Embedded Linux? Yes Indeed. Entry-level environment? Sure. Solaris? Practically a specialty.

The deal is good for LeftHand because many of its current needs have been for sales management positions. HP closes that gap. And with money tight its customers need not fear that their storage vendor will get hit by a bank note call.

This might be because, as vice president-business development Karl Chen (a former HP executive) said in a 2006 interview, LeftHand began as an Internet storage network outfit. The magic acronym in this case being iSCSI SAN.

HP doesn't need to care about what you got. This attitude is being driven down to smaller-and-smaller enterprises. LeftHand is a strategic acquisition in that drive.

But in a virtualized world no one outside the legal department has to know whether your source is closed or open, whether you're based on Linux or Windows. Does it transport over IP? No problem, then.

Topics: Software, Hardware, Hewlett-Packard, Linux, Open Source, Operating Systems, Storage

About

Dana Blankenhorn has been a business journalist since 1978, and has covered technology since 1982. He launched the Interactive Age Daily, the first daily coverage of the Internet to launch with a magazine, in September 1994.

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