[THIN] Re: OT: Scheduled demise of HP NetServers

  • From: Jeff Rapp <JeffR@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "'thin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx'" <thin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 28 Jun 2002 07:39:28 -0400

I know that everyone must be getting tired of this thread but I feel the
need to set straight a couple of things. (Plus, I can't let Steve get the
last word, can I?!)

How long has it been since you worked with Compaq? Over the past 13 years I
have worked with all the equipment you list except of ALR plus the Digital
equipment, both Intel and Alpha, before it was Compaq (which might be why I
am a Compaq fan) and I find that the servers put out by Compaq today far
exceed any other manufacturer in stability, management, service response and
parts availability. 

As for the things you mention below, I have not seen a compaq server that
won't post when connected to a QUALITY KVM switch when focus is not on that
server. Not a cheap Belkin that you can pick up at Bob's Backyard Computers
but a real KVM switch that keeps the ports active. And quality cables are
also important.

As far as the SCSI issue you mention I do not think that there is a Compaq
today that has this problem. If you have two channels on your SCSI
controller you can use one internally and one externally. It is true that
the old 1500, 2500 and 5000 series that came with a single channel
controller that you could only use internally or externally. But did you
know that you could buy an adapter that extended the internal channel to an
external port which allowed you to run both internal and external devices?
You will not find a Compaq on the market today that comes with anything less
that a dual channel controller, except the 330 which is sold as a entry
level and has an ATA IDE model.

Delivery of parts with Compaq has not been an issuer I have experienced, as
a service center I could call up and get parts the next day with no problem!
And as far as paying to be a Compaq reseller, that is the way it might have
been a long time ago, but I do not think it is anymore. My last job was with
a consultant that was a reseller and authorized service center and they did
not pay to become one, and although we had to pay for training I believe
that any good supplier makes you pay for the high end training. Look at
Novell, MS, Cisco and Citrix their training does not come for free and
believe it or not the Compaq training and certification is more in depth
than just a review of their implementations of different technologies and
they do have a certification program.

As for the NT 4 HAL, I agree that it is a bit strange, however, I think that
a properly configured and maintained Compaq server will blow the doors off
of any comparably spec'd Intel based platform. And part of that is the HAL
and the integration testing and modification that Compaq puts into each
server, which explains the higher cost to some degree. I think the superior
support and management utilities explain the rest of the cost.

Believe it or not I agree with you on the Dell PCs although I can not stand
Dell servers, I have a few of them at this job and I feel like I am putting
a PC in a mission critical application and that is about the level of
support you get also.

Anyway, this is my last post on this issue. I don't want to upset anyone by
adding to what some might see as fodder on this list.

BTW- Altos and Acer are some of the machines I cut my teeth on back with
Xenix (YIKES!) And I'll never even look at another Acer.

- Later


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Steve Snyder [mailto:steven_snyder@xxxxxxxxx] 
> Sent: Thursday, June 27, 2002 6:14 PM
> To: thin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [THIN] Re: OT: Scheduled demise of HP NetServers
> You? Naaah... well, maybe. :-)
> But seriously, you seem to enjoy the good-humored
> jousting as much as I, and your exquisite musical
> taste belies your keen intellect, which only serves to
> make your fascination with quirky overpriced computer
> equipment all the more perplexing. (BTW, tickets for
> Rush are on sale for all cities, except Portland
> <groan> http://www.rush.com/tourdates.html )
> But my bias for HP equipment comes from my experience
> with it and all other equipment, nothing else.
> Personally, I despise HP. They built a large plant 10
> miles from my hometown, causing massive growth in the 
> population and cost of housing, ruining the town. And call me 
> sexist if you like, but I dumped all of my HP stock when they 
> hired Carly (which saved me a lot of money).
> But over the years working for various companies, I've 
> installed HP, Compaq, Dell, Gateway, Unisys, IBM, ALR, Acer 
> (yep, they make servers, albeit very cheap), etc. Intel-based 
> servers. And I have consistently found the HP equipment to be 
> easier to setup, work on and service, more reliable, better 
> supported and at a more reasonable price-point than anything 
> else. Whereas I've found the Compaq stuff breaks more often, 
> they take longer to deliver parts (1 week average for tape 
> drives, for example), and they have bizarre nuances: you 
> can't hang scsi devices on the internal and external scsi 
> controller simultaneously; you can't use a tape library on 
> the external controller; God help you if you apply an NT4 SP 
> and forgot not to overwrite the OEM HAL; they won't post when 
> connected to a KVM when they're not selected; etc. The HAL 
> issue is really annoying becasue there's no reason for having 
> a hardware specific HAL for a simple Intel based platform - I 
> can forgive Unisys for doing it, but there's no reason why 
> any standard OEM needs to. And then there's the minor 
> annoying issue that as a reseller, I have to pay them for the 
> privilege of selling their stuff, and I have to pay for their 
> training and then pay them more money for the honor of fixing 
> it. But lots of resellers like to sell Compaq for no other 
> reason than its higher markup.
> I also like the Dell stuff and you certainly can't
> beat the value that they provide, but they have no
> partner channel and no enterprise management
> capability, so I make no money from it's sale or
> service. Still, I have steered many a client to buy
> Dell servers, and almost always their PCs, because I
> have my clients buy what's best for them, not me.
> Of course, I don't love everything about HP servers -
> like those crappy bezels, and I'll certainly agree
> that some of their boxes just plain suck - the entire
> E-series for example. But the old LH4s and LH6000s and
> LXr8500s just plain kick butt.
> Probably the most disappointing thing about the
> HP/Compaq merger is that they're still not going to
> produce even 1 single decent PC.
> But as long as the local 7-11 doesn't run out of Dew
> Slurpees, I'll be happy! :)
> Oh heck, I should make this post somewhat pertinent to
> Thin: TSE is not supported on the HP E60. How's that?
> - peace

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