HP Joins ‘Unbreakable’ Linux Party

When the dust settled from the Oracle , Dell and Red Hat “Unbreakable” Linux love fest, there was a cry from outside the room.

It was Hewlett-Packard scratching at the door saying, “Can we come in? We love Linux too.”

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based computer and printer maker must have done some real sweet-talking because as of Wednesday HP is now officially a part of the team.

The company said it has combined engineering resources to certify and deliver Red Hat Linux Advanced Server on an 8-Node Oracle9i Real Application Clusters (RAC) environment running on the new HP’s ProLiant DL580 servers.

HP was the first vendor to deliver a RAC certified configuration on Linux with the launch last year of Oracle9i. So it was kind of a surprise that Oracle tapped Dell to make its announcement. But, you know – that merger thing.

“In working closely with HP, Oracle is delivering a proven combination of Oracle9i Database products, including Oracle9i Real Application Clusters, with the Red Hat Linux Advanced Server operating system,” said Oracle Database Servers executive vice president Chuck Rozwat. “Together we have built a flexible and fault tolerant infrastructure that delivers the high levels of enterprise capabilities that our customers have been asking for, all at an affordable price.”

Now this means that rivals HP and Dell will have to share the affections of Oracle and Red Hat, but even the “Unbreakable” partnership is open to interpretation.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and Red Hat CEO Matthew Szulik repeatedly said that even though they have an agreement with each other, it doesn’t preclude branching out to other companies looking to make what they call cheaper and more reliable alternatives to Big Blue Iron (IBM ) or that company out of Redmond, Washington (Microsoft ).

HP does bring something to that cause. According to research firm IDC’s Q1 2002 numbers, ProLiant lead the standard Intel architecture server market in Linux server unit shipments with 25.9 percent market share. In fact HP said it’s the 17th straight quarter in which ProLiant servers have led the sector in worldwide Linux server unit shipments.

“As the industry moves increasingly toward the adoption of standards-based computing, customers will expect the highest levels of enterprise-class performance, availability and scalability,” said Gary Campbell, vice president of strategic architecture, HP Office of the CTO. “Together, HP, Oracle and Red Hat are delivering rock-solid solutions along with the economic benefits of industry standards, making it easier and more cost effective for customers to adopt Linux into their IT infrastructures.”

Oracle’s Release 2 of its 9i Database, Application Server and Oracle9i Developer Suite for Linux were released yesterday as a free downloaded from Oracle’s Technology Network.

HP is sure to make sure that their customers (especially the Linux ones) know that too.

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