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Oracle leaves Sun users looking for more info about its plans

The software vendor hasn't said much about what it intends to do after buying Sun Microsystems. Users are waiting for answers.

April 27, 2009 12:00 PM ET

Computerworld - Oracle Corp.'s announcement last week that it plans to buy Sun Microsystems Inc. raised questions about, well, almost every aspect of the blockbuster deal that would unite two Silicon Valley icons.

The only sure bets are that Oracle sees benefits in acquiring Java and the Solaris operating system — the only two Sun technologies mentioned as part of the announcement — and that thousands of additional Sun workers are likely to be laid off in order to meet Oracle's ambitious profit goals.

It's unclear, though, what will happen to the Java Community Process and Sun's other open-source technologies, such as the MySQL database. The same goes for the Sun-dominated application suite and its Sun-owned commercial cousin, StarOffice. Whether Oracle really intends to become a full-fledged hardware vendor and chip developer is also uncertain. Another question on the minds of Sun customers is how the deal with affect their service and support.

In a brief conference call last Monday, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison outlined some of the reasons for the move and praised Java and Solaris — and largely left it at that. Ellison and other Oracle executives didn't take any questions about their plans, leaving the details to be spelled out at a later date.

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