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IT Channel News Briefs, Nov. 14

Today's headlines: Sun plans to cut 6,000 jobs, and Oracle updates Siebel CRM with gadgets.

Information technology (IT) channel news in brief for Friday, Nov. 14, 2008.

Sun announces massive layoffs

Sun Microsystems is going to cut up to 18% of its workforce, or 6,000 people. The company said today it will reduce costs by up to $800 million a year and take a charge of up to $600 million in the next 12 months.

Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz positioned the move as a realignment that will bolster the company's software business. The company is dividing that business into three groups: application platform software, systems platforms and cloud computing and developer platforms. Rich Green, who had headed Sun's overall software effort as executive vice president, is leaving the company.

"Today, we have taken decisive actions to align Sun's business with global economic realities and accelerate our delivery of key open source platform innovations -- from MySQL to Sun's latest Open Storage offerings," Schwartz said in a statement.

Many Sun VARs have complained that Schwartz's focus on inexpensive or free software has undermined the company's ability to make money.

Oracle upgrades Siebel CRM

Oracle is releasing a set of enhancements to its flagship CRM product, Siebel CRM -- its second release since acquiring Siebel Systems-- and is throwing in free gadgets to boot, according to

Siebel 8.1.1 will come with Oracle CRM Gadgets for Sales, the latest release in the company's push towards Social CRM. Gadgets -- mini-applications that combine information from a corporate CRM system with information from the public Internet -- are available as free downloads for existing Siebel and Oracle CRM On Demand customers. Oracle is also working on integration with PeopleSoft CRM applications, said Dipock Das, Oracle's senior director of CRM.

VMware joins PCI SSC

VMware this week joined the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC), according to VMware said it wants to incorporate virtualization into future PCI regulations and clear up confusion about how virtualization fits into existing data security standards.

Zenoss integrates virtual, physical machine monitoring

Open source IT systems management company Zenoss updated its Linux-based enterprise application that integrates monitoring of physical and VMware virtual machines, reported. Zenoss 2.3 monitors configuration and the state of both virtual and physical machines, including resource consumption, performance, availability and real-time migration. Once the software collects information from both sources, it integrates the data into a single reporting space. Zenoss has free, open community software, but software and services for medium-sized businesses and enterprises are licensed for $150 per user annually. Smaller businesses can expect to spend around $10,000, while larger enterprises would put out about $100,000.

Check out yesterday's IT channel news briefs.

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