Connectix CEO Weighs Companys Future

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2003-02-20 Print this article Print

After selling its VM technology to Microsoft, Connectix is left with two products—both heading toward obsolescence.

Connectix Corp., which this week sold its client and server Virtual Machine technology to Microsoft Corp., is evaluating its future given that it is now left with just two products that are heading toward obsolescence. In an interview with eWEEK on Wednesday afternoon, Roy McDonald, the CEO and president of Connectix, said his firm has developed Macintosh technologies since the launch of its first product in January 1989. While the company still has Macintosh products in the market today that are not based on Virtual Machines—DoubleTalk, which allows Mac-PC networking from within the familiar Mac interface and not in a Windows environment, and the RAM Doubler, which was discontinued last month but is supported until September—both of those products are "heading towards obsolescence" as they are not Mac OS 10 compatible.
"The Microsoft deal has created a significant change in our product roadmap, and so we are going to have to do an evaluation and reset. We dont have any firm plans, but closing the company and starting a new venture is also possible," he said.
The Connectix management team reinvented the firm as an enterprise software company a few years ago as it saw this as an opportunity for bigger growth, McDonald said. It also believed that VM technology had a higher value in that space. More than a year ago, McDonald started looking at how he was going to fund this undertaking, as VMs have such a wide range of possible applications. But, as the company got further into that market, it realized that it also needed access to enterprise software channels as it moved away from its focus on consumer software. "As such, we began to talk to Microsoft, which could help with both. So, while the deal is an acquisition by Microsoft, its also our way of getting an enormous channel for our technology. The company has now split into two pieces, with the technology team largely going to Microsoft and the sales and support team remaining here to sell the VM product.

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


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