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Oracle grits its teeth, promises to support Itanium

After a court ordered it to do so
Wed Sep 05 2012, 12:58
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ORACLE has committed to supporting the Intel Itanium processor on servers, ending what has been a long running feud with HP.

Oracle's announcement is well timed because it was just a few weeks ago that a court ordered it to do just that. It did say however, that it will appeal the court's judgment.

This should put an end to what has been a rather grubby row between Oracle and HP that centered around whether or not the two firms have an agreement about developing software for the IA-64 architecture.

The row, which was not helped by former HP CEO Mark Hurd's abrupt firing from HP and hiring at Oracle, pulled in Intel and saw Oracle force HP into admitting that it had a secretive deal with Intel for development.

Upon hearing the court's decision in August, Oracle couldn't resist taking another dig at HP and its insistence that Oracle continue supporting a processor that as far as it was concerned could die.

"We know that Oracle did not give up its fundamental right to make platform engineering decisions in the 27 words HP cites from the settlement of an unrelated employment agreement. HP's argument turns the concept of Silicon Valley 'partnerships' upside down," said Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger then. "We plan to appeal the Court's ruling while fully litigating our cross claims that HP misled both its partners and customers."

It looks like Oracle has no choice however, and in a statement it said that it will abide by the decision of the court.

"Previously, Oracle announced that it would stop developing new versions of its software on Itanium microprocessors. For example, that meant version 12c of the Oracle database due out in early 2013 would not be available on Itanium," it said.

"However, a judge recently ruled that Oracle has a contract to continue porting its software to Itanium computers for as long as HP sells Itanium computers. Therefore, Oracle will continue building the latest versions of its database and other software covered by the judge's ruling to HP Itanium computers. Oracle software on HP's Itanium computers will be released on approximately the same schedule as Oracle software on IBM's Power systems." µ


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