The Gipper of Linux

Will "Gipper" McNealy battle "Bully" McBride?

Spence lolled in his litter box, glancing from his PDA news feed, where he read of SCOs threats to block Sun from releasing Solaris under the GPL, to his TV and the nonstop memorials for Ronald Reagan. "Great communicator ... evil empire ... boyish good looks." Thats it! A synapse fired in the felines febrile brain. Scott McNealy could be the "Gipper" of the open-source movement. Sun watchers, including the Kitty, have been lamenting the fact that since Scott made nice with archenemy Bill Gates, his comic antics and barbs have lacked a worthy target—unless you count Big Blue, one empire that could easily outspend Sun in the long run.

But, the Mouser mused, who wouldnt pay to see the Sun chairman verbally body-check the bully of IP, SCO boss Darl McBride? Sure, it once seemed like McNealy wasnt as enthusiastic as Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz about taking Solaris open source, but with SCO tossing down the hockey gloves, one can hope McNealy is already penning an anti-SCO Top-10 list. McNealys wit and regular-guy attitude could make him the free-software worlds leader as the Linux crowd fights SCO. "I can see McNealy tilting his head at McBride and saying, There you go again," said the Katt.

Rrrinnng! Spence was about to call Don King to arrange the match when a crony called to say Deepak Taneja, the CTO at Netegrity, had quit. Netegrity was keeping the departure quiet, perhaps because in his six and a half years with the company, Taneja had been considered the heart and soul of the operation. Netegrity has been struggling against Sun, IBM and Novell in the identity management space and may be hoping for an acquisition. The crony also said the buzz at Computer Associates is that Sanjay Kumars recent decision to quit was his own and that no one at CA knew about it until he announced it to senior management. "Everyones a comedian," muttered the Mouser.

Spence turned off the tube and went for a bite with a pal, who predicted that sparks will fly at the HP Software Forum, formerly known as the HP OpenView Users Forum, in Montreal this week. Hewlett-Packard is changing its license fees for different-size networks managed by OpenView Network Node Manager Advanced Edition. After examining its installed base, HP apparently decided it was owed big-time, the pal postulated. It seems there wasnt much difference between the cost of managing a 500-node network and a 5,000-node network. So now, big-network users must pay "through the node," as it were, with a 5,000-node upgrade pack priced at $45,000 and an unlimited-license upgrade costing $140,000. Certainly, an IT boss at a company running two of those systems and facing a $280,000 bill will not be a happy camper. "Sacre bleu!" exclaimed Le Chat. "Ze fromage may indeed hit ze fan, eh?"

/zimages/5/28571.gifClick here to read the latest Spencer cartoon.

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt, the Whiskered Wonder, has been the mascot and tipster extraordinaire for eWEEK and its predecessor print publication PC Week since 1984. The Gadabout Gatto makes the rounds of...