HP, Intel Withdraw Support for SCO Forum

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2003-08-18 Print this article Print

Intel withdraws sponsorhip of event; HP pulls out of keynote.

LAS VEGAS—The immense distaste and anger of the open-source and Linux community, as well as of some enterprises, for The SCO Groups attack on Linux appears not to be going unnoticed by some of the major vendors.

Intel Corp. was recently billed as one of the lead sponsors of SCOs Forum 2003 conference here this week, but then suddenly disappeared from all marketing and press material for the forum.

Sources told eWEEK that Intel, bowing to pressure from the major Linux vendors, the open-source community and some of its largest customers, backed down and withdrew its sponsorship of the event.

Not so, SCO CEO Darl McBride told eWEEK here on Sunday.

While he was "not familiar with all the intricacies of the matter," it appears that SCO took to advertising and promoting Intel as a sponsor even before the deal was signed. As the deal never actually took place, Intel was removed as a lead sponsor of the event, he said.

It appears that Hewlett-Packard Co. also got cold feet. As late as last week, SCO was telling attendees that HP would be giving a partner keynote at the forum on Tuesday morning. But on Sunday the schedule of events given to attendees when they registered makes no mention of an HP keynote. The keynote that was to be given by an HP executive is now scheduled to be made by Maggie Alexander, a vice president at SCO partner Progress Software.

This development is interesting as many members of the open-source and Linux communities, as well as many Linux users, were enraged that HP would consider giving a keynote at SCOs Forum 2003. HP had found itself between a rock and a hard place, as it has long claimed to equally support three operating systems: Windows, its HP-UX Unix operating system and Linux.

But SCOs claims that Linux was an unauthorized derivative of Unix and its threats of legal action against users put HP in a difficult position. Neither SCO nor HP could be reached for comment by the time this article was published.

However, whatever the reason for the withdrawal of its keynote speaker, HP still sponsored the Sunday night welcome reception at the MGM Grand for Forum 2003 attendees, which was well attended and included food and drinks.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at www.eweek.com.


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