These Tech Giants Are the Walking Dead

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According to Wired, tech giants like Dell, EMC, Cisco and HP are the walking dead.

HP. Cisco. Dell. EMC. IBM. Oracle. Think of them as the walking dead. Oh, sure, they’ll shuffle along for some time. They’ll sell some stuff. They’ll make some money. They’ll command some headlines. They may even do some new things. But as tech giants, they’re dead.
 

Cmdrmonkey

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Article uses the F word multiple times, seems like it was written by an Apple fanboi...
 

BravO)))

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IBM dead? Lol. Their r&d has been kicking ass for a while.
 

nessus

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Buzzword fest with no real analysis. Acts like there aren't any downsides to moving everything to the cloud and doesn't consider the effect of the Safe Harbor provisions being pulled.
 

nutzo

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Article uses the F word multiple times, seems like it was written by an Apple fanboi...

Yet they leave out the company (Apple) that is dependent on huge margins, and has almost gone out of business multiple times when it's margins fell.
 

ViperGrendal

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This is the kind of article you get when the author has ZERO understanding of subject he/she is writing about. Complete click bait, zero substance. It pretty much came down to companies A B and C suck 'cause ..things. Companies X,Y, and Z are awesome 'cuase ....stuff.
 

mi7chy

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Yet they leave out the company (Apple) that is dependent on huge margins, and has almost gone out of business multiple times when it's margins fell.

Wired left out Apple since it's being paid for exclusive articles on Apple News app.
 

dgingeri

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I both do and don't agree. This article touts Cloud services, SaaS, Iaas, PaaS, as entirely replacing local servers. I wholeheartedly disagree with that. I would not recommend any company put all their technology into Cloud services, where some idiot with a backhoe could cut the company off for days. A company MUST have local resources to rely on. Cloud is good for backups of some things, but it puts too much reliance on internet connectivity.

What's worse is that our internet infrastructure can barely handle the country's media streaming needs. There are constant complaints from people about companies who can't keep up and constant complaints by companies on people overusing things. The current move to put so much on Cloud services just makes all of that much, much worse. We simply couldn't afford most of our companies utilizing all Cloud services.

I do agree that many of those companies are short-sighted and failing to adapt to new technologies. IBM and HP both have been dying companies for years now. (I just wish HP would put down HP-UX already.) Oracle is one company I would LOVE to see die. After 18 years in IT, in desktop and server support, I have developed a particular hate for EVERYTHING Oracle. Oracle developers are particularly arrogant and incompetent. (Seriously, who puts a GUI in for network configuration, and then doesn't let it be used for actual network configuration, especially when releasing an OS that's released at the same time as, and supposed to compete with, Windows 2012?) Most of those companies listed are horribly incompetent at competing with anything current. Cisco has always done things the hard way, intentionally, to keep "cisco certified" people in jobs, and that is going to cost them. Computer infrastructure that is hard to work with is not going to be able to keep going. In order to survive, it has to be easier to work with. Having servers, networks, and software that is controlled by some nerdy de facto oligarchy is just NOT going to fly in the real world.

Dell, however, is much more nimble than those other companies. Yes, they are relying on local hardware servers, however, they are the easiest servers to work with, and the most compatible of any I have worked with. Of any brand server, my favorite is definitely Dell. Someone asks me to get a server up, if I can't do it with a VM, then getting a Dell up and going is the second fastest platform to use. As far as VMs go, EMC is the parent company of VMWare, so now they're part of Dell. (Vertical integration, anyone?) A Dell server, EMC storage, and VMWare ESXi makes for a great VM platform. Of course, Dell blade servers, FC switches and HBAs, EMC FC storage, and ESXi makes for an even better VM platform. I really think Dell is going to be around for quite some time.
 

Mr. Snrub

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This is the same idiot that wrong an article with the headline "Microsoft kisses up to Tim Cook in Front of Millions" when Apple announced the iPad Pro.

Enough said.
 

Grahamkracka

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This is like saying GE is a dead company because their appliances are losing market share to LG/Samsung/etc.....when in fact GE products are literally everywhere and the company is stronger than ever.
 

Cyraxx

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Seriously? Because Apple is growing in certain mind-warped consumer hands, corporate mecha's like Cisco are going to fall?

The article author probably thinks "new" technology things like Facebook, Twitter, etc... will... somehow replace computer hardware vendors? I don't get the logic, but whatever.
 

Mr. Snrub

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I both do and don't agree. This article touts Cloud services, SaaS, Iaas, PaaS, as entirely replacing local servers. I wholeheartedly disagree with that. I would not recommend any company put all their technology into Cloud services, where some idiot with a backhoe could cut the company off for days. A company MUST have local resources to rely on. Cloud is good for backups of some things, but it puts too much reliance on internet connectivity.

What's worse is that our internet infrastructure can barely handle the country's media streaming needs. There are constant complaints from people about companies who can't keep up and constant complaints by companies on people overusing things. The current move to put so much on Cloud services just makes all of that much, much worse. We simply couldn't afford most of our companies utilizing all Cloud services.

I do agree that many of those companies are short-sighted and failing to adapt to new technologies. IBM and HP both have been dying companies for years now. (I just wish HP would put down HP-UX already.) Oracle is one company I would LOVE to see die. After 18 years in IT, in desktop and server support, I have developed a particular hate for EVERYTHING Oracle. Oracle developers are particularly arrogant and incompetent. (Seriously, who puts a GUI in for network configuration, and then doesn't let it be used for actual network configuration, especially when releasing an OS that's released at the same time as, and supposed to compete with, Windows 2012?) Most of those companies listed are horribly incompetent at competing with anything current. Cisco has always done things the hard way, intentionally, to keep "cisco certified" people in jobs, and that is going to cost them. Computer infrastructure that is hard to work with is not going to be able to keep going. In order to survive, it has to be easier to work with. Having servers, networks, and software that is controlled by some nerdy de facto oligarchy is just NOT going to fly in the real world.

Dell, however, is much more nimble than those other companies. Yes, they are relying on local hardware servers, however, they are the easiest servers to work with, and the most compatible of any I have worked with. Of any brand server, my favorite is definitely Dell. Someone asks me to get a server up, if I can't do it with a VM, then getting a Dell up and going is the second fastest platform to use. As far as VMs go, EMC is the parent company of VMWare, so now they're part of Dell. (Vertical integration, anyone?) A Dell server, EMC storage, and VMWare ESXi makes for a great VM platform. Of course, Dell blade servers, FC switches and HBAs, EMC FC storage, and ESXi makes for an even better VM platform. I really think Dell is going to be around for quite some time.

I love Dell servers. I inherited some HP servers from an acquisition and the number of artificial walls HP put in them is staggering. It seems like you need a license for every single thing in them! I needed to a BIOS update for newer CPU support and it was a nightmare to accomplish. Seriously, a BIOS update! On the other hand, it took me about 15 minutes to update the BIOS on a half dozen Dell servers. No hoops to jump through, no nickel and diming.
 

nutzo

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I both do and don't agree. This article touts Cloud services, SaaS, Iaas, PaaS, as entirely replacing local servers. I wholeheartedly disagree with that. I would not recommend any company put all their technology into Cloud services, where some idiot with a backhoe could cut the company off for days. A company MUST have local resources to rely on. Cloud is good for backups of some things, but it puts too much reliance on internet connectivity......

Agreed.
Cloud services are ok for a small company with little/no IT staff, and/or a dispersed work staff.
But for any decent sized company, it is usually better to keep it internal, where you have some control.

The company I work for only has around 100 employees, but I couldn't imagine trying to manage the dozens of servers and the 50+ TB of data we have on the cloud.

Even backing up to the cloud isn't an option, unless I had a gigabit line in each office, and a huge budget to pay for the cloud storage. LTO tapes are much cheaper.
 

dgingeri

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I love Dell servers. I inherited some HP servers from an acquisition and the number of artificial walls HP put in them is staggering. It seems like you need a license for every single thing in them! I needed to a BIOS update for newer CPU support and it was a nightmare to accomplish. Seriously, a BIOS update! On the other hand, it took me about 15 minutes to update the BIOS on a half dozen Dell servers. No hoops to jump through, no nickel and diming.

I know. They're great.

I'm the admin for three server level software and hardware test labs, containing 27 departments. We have to test our hard drive backup products, tape libraries, and big data products with all sorts of equipment, so I get to see it all. We have over 3000 servers of various types, from vintage 1999 AIX PowerPC and HP-UX RISC boxes to the newest Dell Xeon E5v3 systems. (We even got Dell's R730s before they were released.) Our disk based backup systems and big data control nodes are built on Dell server, for good reason. Our software has to have certain firmware and bios levels in order to ensure reliable operation, and Dell has simple software to check and update these from automated scripts. They make it so easy.

I also happen to be able to get Dell stuff at near cost because of our relationship with them. So, I have two T110 II servers at home running Windows 2012 and ESXi 5.5, helping me with furthering my certifications.
 

dgingeri

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Agreed.
Cloud services are ok for a small company with little/no IT staff, and/or a dispersed work staff.
But for any decent sized company, it is usually better to keep it internal, where you have some control.

The company I work for only has around 100 employees, but I couldn't imagine trying to manage the dozens of servers and the 50+ TB of data we have on the cloud.

Even backing up to the cloud isn't an option, unless I had a gigabit line in each office, and a huge budget to pay for the cloud storage. LTO tapes are much cheaper.

Check out Quantum's DXi line and Q-Cloud. The DXi can take the backup through FC or network, depending on the model, deduplicates the data, and can replcate to a cloud backup service. It can even duplicate the backups to a tape library, for offsite storage, if you want.

I manage 49 VMs around my lab, on 6 hosts, and one physical file server with 14TB of programs, operating systems, and test data, with all their backups to an old DXi6700. We get around 300:1 deduplication. (297.94:1 according to check I just did. 2.93PB of backups stored in 9.85TB of storage on the DXi.) I also maintain the test systems, around 3000 servers and 1400 FC and SAS storage trays, along with 5 vlans worth of IPs for those systems, and being remote users' hands to connect things up in various ways for differetn tests. Most of my users are remote from San Jose or Bellevue, WA. It's not that hard, really.
 
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The great thing about the tech industry is that it turns on a dime.

You never know who is going to what next year and calling anyone "out" is stupid.
 

soulman901

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This was just a click bait article by Wired. Someone will declare something dead just to get clicks and ad looks. I could write that Blu-Ray is a dead format, put it up on a site with a bunch of ad's, post it and watch the ad revenue roll in too!
 

EchtoGammut

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Not even going to bother clicking on the link as it is a Wired article. However, it will comment based on the comments made.

I was just talking to someone at a big company who had moved everything to the "cloud". Mind you at their scale, it is a very custom cloud hosted in Amazon data centers, but still no local server infrastructure. This has become something of a nightmare as they develop very large scale applications and data fees on their OC5+ connections are becoming outrageous. I just ran some numbers for them and setting up a DAS/SAN/NAS in each branch would save them about $20K a month, not to mention dramatically increase development times when they have pull down a 80- 100 Gb Perforce dump (like many big companies they have a lot of problems). After their next big release, I will probably be working with them to bring back a local infrastructure... especially after they ran out of disk space due to not understanding how to correctly provision. It isn't a new story, but one that happens a lot because people thought moving to cloud would somehow solve everything.

CISCO has issues, because they ignored emerging market segments and focused solely on their highest margin customer. EMC is getting replaced by companies building SAN/NAS systems in house, because they kept raping customers by charging them 2-3x the cost of retail storage and not actively improving their storage systems. However all of this stuff is cyclical and customers that moved to other platforms can always come back because of QoS agreements and other incentives that in house IT doesn't guarantee them. That said, smart companies will be investing in training and finding top notch IT people because they can save them a ton. Thanks to Facebook and Google, C-levels are taking note that IT may not be a useless department that just takes money from the bottom line.
 

tetris42

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This was just a click bait article by Wired. Someone will declare something dead just to get clicks and ad looks. I could write that Blu-Ray is a dead format, put it up on a site with a bunch of ad's, post it and watch the ad revenue roll in too!
Wired clickbait article written by someone with little evidence sounding pretentious. 5/5 would barf again.
 

avinash60

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A lot of large companies use private clouds- AWS and public cloud services are only useful if you are going to be small-medium sized. As soon as you reach into the heavy computation/ Petabyte sized databases spread across multiple nodes, most public cloud services don't cut it. And that is one market segment where every one of these "old-guard" companies is trying to get their foothold into.
It would be foolish to think companies like Cisco, Oracle and IBM would die out the way the author puts it- most of the B2B as well as internet backbone runs on one of their technologies.
 

viscountalpha

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Doesn't ibm still pull some unholy amount of cash in every year? That AS/400 stuff isn't going anywhere. I didn't click since wired was clearly talking out their asses on this one.
 

HardUp4HardWare

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Dell looked like it was dying a very long time ago.
Death predictions are notoriously inaccurate.
 

jardows

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Again, another who didn't bother to read the article. But really, who is providing all that hardware for the "cloud?" Who is providing the network infrastructure for all those bits to travel across the wires, and do anything meaningful? Companies like IBM, Cisco, Oracle, etc. Just because they aren't selling as many glorified PC's and calling them servers as they once were, hardly means the companies are on their death bed!
 

daglesj

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Is this another article written by someone who can do all their 'work' on just an iPad?
 

bob616

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Walking dead? I didn't know corporations were alive to begin with. I never did understand the cloud anyway. Maybe because I live in a rural area and getting cut off can happen all too easily. I also never liked the term cloud makes it sound like your data it just magically floating out in the sub-ether somewhere...I blame IBM for putting it on their flow charting templates back in the 70's or early 80's.
 

raz-0

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This is the same idiot that wrong an article with the headline "Microsoft kisses up to Tim Cook in Front of Millions" when Apple announced the iPad Pro.

Enough said.

Is wronging the opposite of writing?

Anyway, I dunno what the apple fanboi comments are about, I read it and I'm not getting them.

As for the article being a pile of shit, well.. yeah it is. On many levels.

EMC is dead because someone made an IPO for a storage company? That focuses on flash? Which is way more expensive than spinning commodity disk (and hey guess what, that massive storage available in the cloud for next to nothing isn't even commodity spinning disk for the most part). The upstart storage company lists all the walking dead as their key partners.

As for oracle, it scales, what it doesn't do is scale cheaply. Not to mention oracle is persuing a business model that likely has legs in providing cloud based oracle DBs for businesses. It's a very attractive model, and which would you choose amazon hosting your oracle DB, or oracle hosting your oracle db? Unless they totally screw the price point, that one will be simple.

As fro EMC, they have VMware. I think they will be collecting patent money for quite a while at the very least.

I think the main difference is that all(most of) these "dead" companies are making money. Most of those cloud offerings have yet to see a profit. They may never see a profit.

However in terms of stocks, they are something to get excited about because there is potential for growth where these established companies don't have huge growth prospects, nor are they paying awesome dividends. So from an investment standpoint, yes, they are very uninteresting. Who cares unless you already own the stuff? Low value + profit means you can buy your stock back to boost share price or go private and not have to listen to the coke snorting gambling addicts on wall street. Or fear how a paper phrases a headline and sets off the algorithms.

There's a huge gap between these companies that can roll their own hardware and the business needs of most companies. Someone will make money bridging that gap.
 
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