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Archived Features Articles
04 Jul 2011
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Why Enterprises Buy UNIX Systems [24296]
Gabriel Consulting Survey Finds Availability and Stability Most Compelling Criterion

Availability and Stability are the number one criterion underlying the choice of the Unix platform reported by the 306 respondents to Gabriel Consulting Group's (GCG) fifth annual 2010-11 Unix Server Vendor Preference Survey. The remaining three in the top four criteria include Operating System Quality; Predictable Performance; and Vendor Support. GCG notes that less than 20% of customers said Acquisition Price was the most crucial factor in their buying decision. In last place was the"‘We already know the systems," as reported to GCG. Virtualization capability and tools also figured prominently in decision making.
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30 Jun 2011
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Detailed Overview of Oracle in its 2011 Annual Form 10-K Filing [24314]
Filing Provides Fine-grained View of the World's Largest Enterprise Software Company

While Oracle's annual Form 10-K filing runs to more than 140 pages, readers can find a succinct view of the company's business in pages 3-19, where each of the areas of commerce engaged in -- software, hardware systems, and services -- receives attention. Readers wishing further information can proceed to later sections of the filing to learn about risk factors; properties; legal proceedings; selected financial data; management's discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations (Item 7); quantitative and qualitative disclosures about market risk; and financial statements and supplementary data. Additional details are included in the document as well.
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27 Jun 2011
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Gabriel Consulting Group Survey Finds Unix Server Use Growing in Enterprise [24294]
Mission-critical Workloads Numerous Among Users of Unix

Nearly 90% of the 306 respondents to Gabriel Consulting Group's (GCG) fifth annual 2010-11 Unix Server Vendor Preference Survey reported that Unix systems were strategic to their organizations. Further, over 80% of enterprise customers surveyed said that half or more of their Unix workloads are mission-critical, and half of the respondents said that three-fourths of the apps on their Unix systems are mission-critical. Despite the sales volume of both Windows- and Linux-based systems, Unix appears to remain a strong contender in the mission critical arena. GCG also reported that close to half of the enterprise customers reported plans to use more Unix in the near future while only a minority, 21%, are reducing their reliance on Unix, a number that has steadily decreased since 2007, according to GCG.
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20 Jun 2011
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HP Sues Oracle for Dropping Itanium Support [24281]
Observations By Joe Brockmeier of Network World: 'Give It Up, HP'

Rather than sue Oracle for its change of heart on Itanium, HP should instead develop a technology that would enable its customer base to move to a more viable platform, writes Joe Brockmeier in NetworkWorld. Why, he asks, given that Microsoft, RedHat (and now Oracle) have turned their back on Itanium, should HP continue to market this platform aggressively to its customers in the hope of some degree of resuscitation. The court will decide whether Oracle is legally bound to support Itanium, Brockmeier concedes, but even a decision favoring HP will likely not change Oracle's mind.
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08 Jun 2011
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ORCInternational Surveys Users on TOC Between IBM/POWER and Oracle/SPARC Servers [24242]
Oracle Edges Out IBM in Several Categories

In their survey of managers familiar with the Oracle/SPARC and IBM/POWER servers, ORCInternational's purpose was to determine the responses of these individuals to issues such as the respective strengths and weaknesses of both sets of servers; factors affecting total cost of ownership (TOC); key system differentiators; and purchase criteria rankings. The respondents spanned several industries, including banking and finance, telecom, healthcare, and insurance.

Findings revealed that TOC, performance and acquisition cost (including hidden costs) were the three most important criteria governing product choice. Oracle surpassed IBM in terms of both fewer hidden costs and equal or better real-world performance. Oracle won greater favor in the category of required scheduled downtime as well.

Both the robustness and the scalability of Solaris OS won favor with a greater number of respondents than did AIX. Over-dependence on IBM consulting services was another condition that customers expressed wariness about. The need for such over-dependence was mitigated by Oracle's hallmark integrated solution approach to system design in the eyes of respondents.
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01 Jun 2011
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The Value of Linux in Today's Fast-Changing Computing Environment [24193]
Integrated Systems, Cloud Computing, Virtualization Make Linux for x86 Architecture a Prime Candidate OS

Linux, in the eyes of the authors of the IDC white paper "The Value of Linux in Today's Fast-Changing Computing Environments" is supremely suited as an OS to the challenges posed by the current developments in system/software integration, virtualization, and cloud computing. Authors Al Gillen and Gary Chen write that, "Linux is best known for bringing attributes that historically were associated with Unix . scalability, reliability, and portability . to the x86 architecture in a low-cost, easy-to-consume form factor." Their paper reviews the ways in which Linux is gaining acceptance as a solution to turn to in response to the changing datacenter requirements and the increasingly favorable view of preintegrated solutions across the industry today. The increasingly dominant position of the x86 platform creates a strong foundation for operating systems that can take advantage of the integrated hardware architecture at the heart of Oracle's approach to business. Gillen and Chen point out that, as the only Linux distribution provider that is also a hardware OEM, Oracle has the capability of offering fully integrated and tested Linux systems.
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