Archive for January, 2010

After next week, Oracle’s $7.4 billion roller-coaster ride will finally come to an end, as there remains little doubt that the European Commission will approve the company’s acquisition of Sun Microsystems. With that being the case, protesters from the MySQL community have all but given up the battle in Europe and are now turning their attention to regulators in Russia and China, ITNews.com reports.

"The European Commission showed courage and competence during most of the investigation but looked very weak in the end," said MySQL founder Michael ‘Monty’ Widenius in a statement on Monday, adding that China and Russia "are powerful, self-confident, and open-source friendly countries and they have every right to do a better job on this than the EU."

Both nations are still investigating the deal and have yet to give Oracle the green light. So far, Widenius’ helpmysql.org campaign has managed to attract 600 supporters in China and over 800 in Russia. On a global scale, the campaign stands at 30,000 signatures strong since its launch on December 28.

Despite a super-positive fourth-quarter earnings call, Intel wasn’t very pleased with enterprise spending in 2009, instead noting that consumers drove the company’s revenue up.

"It was not a robust year in the enterprise," said Paul Otellini, CEO, Intel.

Otellini also expects that to change in 2010 while Intel does its part in helping push the corporate market. Not only will Intel release its eight-core Nehalem EX Xeon processor for servers with four or more sockets, but the chip maker also plans to replace every chip in its server portfolio with 32nm Westmere parts, and do so within the next 90 days, Otellini said.

"Companies that haven’t bought in a while are — and probably have been for a while — planning their purchases for this week," John Spooner, an analyst with Technology Business Research, told eWeek. "So they can essentially put 32nm Xeon servers in their budgets now, and plan purchases for the rest of the year."

Spooner went on to say something we’ve heard several times before, which is that there exists a lot of pent up demand.

Image Credit: fmeusa.com

It looks like Intel really killed it in the fourth quarter of 2009, with revenue up about 28% year over year to $10.6 billion. These numbers are after the $1.25 billion settlement paid to rival AMD. Sales were so good, in fact, that Intel is proclaiming the return of consumer demand. ” We have seen a return of consumer demand and replenishment to normal inventory levels after the precipitous demand drop at the end of 2008 and beginning of 2009,” said Intel CFO Stacy Smith.

Intel is predicting continued momentum going into 2010. They are expecting revenue of about $9.7 billion this quarter. That’s nearly as much as the Q4 holiday shopping season. Wall Street’s own estimate is quite close at $9.35 billion.

Intel CEO Paul Otellini talked up Intel’s plans for 2010 in a call with analysts. He stressed the value of Nehalem and was looking forward to the introduction of the new 32nm process technology. He also held that Intel’s Atom processors would continue to dominate the low end of the market.

intl

AMD certainly turned up the heat in 2009 and ended the year by wrestling away the performance crown from Nvidia in both the single- and dual-GPU landscape. Citing water cooler chatter from behind the scenes at graphics card makers, DigiTimes says AMD is expected to ride that momentum well into 2010 as Nvidia’s discrete graphics chip market share slides backwards.

As it stands, Nvidia dominates the discrete graphics chip market with a 65 percent share, but sources say the company will drop to 60 percent, or lower.

That’s news to Nvidia, who dismissed the speculation and says it expects to see strong demand, no mater what the videocard vendors think.

Should Fermi live up to the hype, Nivida wouldn’t have much to worry about. But will potential upgraders hold out that long? Fermi will launch in March, which is still two months away, and that could mean mass shipments won’t kick in until three months from now.

For AMD’s part, the chip maker claims to have shipped a total of two million HD 5800-series GPUs.

Image Credit: Nvidia

Security firm Symantec this week said it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire privately-held Gideon Technologies, a risk management company that should slip nicely into the firm’s security portfolio.

"As the U.S. Government continues to make the cyber security of our country’s public and private infrastructures a priority, Symantec will support public sector customers with standards-based solutions that meet their complex compliance requirements with the highest degree of accuracy," said Gigi Schumm, vice president and general manager public sector, Symantec. "As demonstrated by this acquisition, Symantec is committed to SCAP and emerging standards and intends to lead the ongoing advancement of these standards."

Symantec said it plans to integrate its Gideon Technologies’ SecureFusion product with the Symantec Management Platform (formerly the Altiris platform) to help flesh out the company’s automated situational awareness, continuous compliance, and remediation management offerings.

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