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Top IT Channel Marker blogs for April 2010

Symantec cuts and HP channel news were hot stuff in April.

Layoffs at Symantec and the hot tips out of Hewlett-Packard's Americas Partner Conference were of high interest to's Channel Marker blog readers in April. And, proving that old chestnuts still have their place, an item on IBM's pretty-much-defunct OS/2 also drew attention.

Here are the most-read Channel Marker blog posts for April 2010.

1: Symantec starts FY 2011 with layoffs

In early April, word surfaced that security kingpin Symantec was cutting jobs as it kicked off its new fiscal year. Some groups were reportedly sliced by 20%, although a spokesman declined to confirm or detail the moves. There was a silver lining at least for Symantec VARs. Some layoffs were made as the company transitioned more support and service deals to Symantec partners.

2: Top takeaways from Hewlett-Packard APC 2010

HP partners flocked to Las Vegas to hear all about HP's converged data center hardware pitch at the HP Americas Partner Conference (APC) -- at least the VARs that hadn't opted to attend the simultaneous Cisco partner summit in San Francisco. (Apparently, if you're smart enough to be a Cisco VAR and an HP VAR at the same time, you can also suspend the laws of physics and attend two events 700 miles apart.) But I digress. From HP CEO Mark Hurd on down, it was clear that Cisco was a top concern, although Hurd barely mentioned the data center rival by name.

3: OS/2: Mostly gone, but not forgotten

IBM OS/2 -- the object-oriented, multitasking, Workplace Shelled operating system that lost market leadership to Microsoft Windows -- is defunct, but definitely not forgotten. Many aficionados still rue the day that IBM pulled the plug on the OS, ceding the world to Windows. Talk that IBM might resuscitate OS/2 by layering OS/2 services atop Linux got an awful lot of attention last month.

4: Microsoft plugs away on SQL Azure

Microsoft execs reiterated that they want cloud-based SQL Azure to have feature parity with on-premises SQL Server and outlined how the former will catch up to the latter. This cloud-versus-on-premises parity issue dogs Microsoft across its product lines. The company makes its dough on old-fashioned PC- and server-resident applications and so it must protect that business while also fending off cloud-based rivals like Google and that do not have to worry about legacy on-premises software business.

5: Cisco's pipeline remains plugged

As it touts its high-falutin' unified computing system, Cisco Systems might pay more attention to its bread-and-butter hardware business. That's because VARs can't get the Cisco firewalls they need from the networking giant. As of early April, VARs reported months-long delays getting orders filled on some popular Cisco networking products including Adaptive Security Appliance firewalls and other non-glam but essential products.

Check out the most-read Channel Marker blogs for March 2010.

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