HP ponies up millions for boardroom spying
MPE Education.com readies for class load

Ideal, Advant merge on hardware, support

HP 3000 suppliers Ideal Computer Services and Advant have announced a merger of their companies, effective immediately. Ideal and Advant have had an overlap of services and customer areas for many years. Both companies sell used HP 3000s and PA-RISC servers, and both firms offer support for HP 3000 systems.

Advant's Steve Pirie reported the merger to us last week by explaining that national coverage of HP 3000 sites can now permit all of the Ideal support customers to make use of Advant's Immediate Recovery Solutions (IRS) products. These include SSEDIT, the program that Advant wrote itself to modify stable storage of HP 3000 servers for disaster recovery scenarios — like when you need a CPU board reset.

"This gives HP 3000 customers nationwide hardware support without the intervention of HP," Pirie said. Advant has been promoting its Generic Replacement Boxes this year, PA-RISC systems which don't require HP intervention to load a legal copy of MPE/iX or HP-UX.

Organizationally, the two companies remain largely the same. Pirie becomes Chief Operating Officer for the merged company, which Paul Lawrence of Ideal remains CEO of the ICS group.

"This expands our products out the IRS group," Pirie said. He added that existing support customers of both companies will continue to be served by their existing company. A full merger with logo-swaps and other legalities will "probably take a year," he said.