Eye on Oracle

Jun 8 2009   9:55PM GMT

Oracle edges closer to final approval of Sun deal

Shayna Garlick Shayna Garlick Profile: Shayna Garlick

Last week, Larry Ellison spoke publicly for the first time about the Oracle-Sun deal. At Sun’s annual JavaOne conference, Ellison revealed his plans for using Java on mobile devices and swapping AJAX for Java FX on Sun’s OpenOffice product.

But when will we actually see these proposed changes take place?

We’ll be one step closer to knowing the answer to that question next month, when Sun stockholders will meet to vote on Oracle’s proposed acquisition.  Sun announced today that this meeting will take place on July 16. If it goes through, the approval will mark the end of more than seven months of negotiations between Sun and interested buyers such as Oracle, IBM and HP, according to eWeek.

Oracle first announced its agreement to acquire Sun on April 20. Until now, the software giant has remained tight-lipped on the deal, with only a brief mention of it at the Collaborate ’09 conference in May.

But now, even with the recent announcements at JavaOne, many questions remained unanswered about the future of Sun, especially surrounding what exactly Oracle plans to do with Sun’s hardware business.

An article today in ComputerWorld suggests that Sun customers remain skeptical about Oracle’s plans for Sun and the assurances made by Ellison at the JavaOne conference.

The Sun customers interviewed in the ComputerWorld article were concerned about the future of a variety of Sun’s technologies, including Java, its Sparc architecture and its free GlassFish open-source application server.

Others were nervous not just about the technologies, but the future of the JavaOne conference itself. One attendee was quoted as saying that the conference had “the look and feel of being the end of the road for JavaOne… It was hard not to get a sense that this was the last one.”

In a recent blog post, JavaWorld’s Dustin Marx also speculates that Oracle will not continue to hold the annual conference.  First, he points out that in the current economy, it may not be feasible for Oracle to hold both Oracle OpenWorld and JavaOne and still make money. Marx also points out that Oracle already has many Java-related presentations at its Oracle OpenWorld conference, and simply expanding those offerings would not be too difficult.

We’ve already looked at how the Oracle-Sun deal will affect you, but as the approval of the proposed acquisition gets closer, new questions are beginning to emerge, on everything from Oracle licensing to the future of Java and JavaOne.

As more details of the Oracle-Sun deal start to surface, what new questions or concerns do you have?  As an Oracle customer what do you think about what the Sun customers have to say? Are their concerns justified? Leave a comment or talk about this in our Oracle-Sun discussion on the IT Knowledge Exchange.

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