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What OpenMPE might be left doing, for now

More than two weeks have passed since the latest lawsuit against OpenMPE was dismissed in a Texas courtroom. The legal hijinks might continue. Matthew Perdue, the ousted treasurer from the group of volunteers, warned us last week that his failed suit didn't clear the group of future challenges.

Using his own reading of our headline "Dismissal clears OpenMPE lawsuit's hurdles," Perdue believes we were announcing the era of lawsuits against OpenMPE has ended. Although we were only stating that existing lawsuit's hurdle was cleared, well, not so fast, he warned us. "You should check your facts before publishing such drivel." On May 25 he wrote us.

Dismissal does not clear OpenMPE’s path. You forget, or do not know, I have time to file various motions (which I will be doing) plus additional claims that were filed [that] have not been dismissed. I will also be taking action in Federal District Court against OpenMPE.

It's now been one year since Perdue's dispute with his co-location vendor first arose. It was an event that triggered a fight he's taken to court employing himself as legal counsel -- four times -- and since spilled over to Perdue's relations with the OpenMPE board, which had paid him for rackspace on one server at the co-lo site. On the anniversary of Perdue's dispute, it might be a fair time to look at what the remaining five people and some 3000 users have at hand to call OpenMPE, and whether any call from last year to disband makes any difference.

Despite earning a source code license for MPE/iX from HP -- one that OpenMPE worked hard to pay for -- these volunteers have no firm plans to use that resource. At one point the source went back to HP after it was in the hands of Perdue. It is not in the volunteers' hands today.

But even while the legal combustibles were being ignited, secretary Tracy Johnson, chairman Jack Connor and other supporters were building a durable resource for the community. It's safe to say that these volunteers will focus on Invent3K (a cloud-based development resource), the Contributed Software Library, and any Jazz utilities hosted on a pair of 3000 servers. These are a community contribution the volunteers can support fiscally. What's more, these cloud and server resources seem to offer the most value to the community at this point. There's no advocacy to pursue with an HP that has ended its 3000 operations.

The volunteers who last arrived on the group's board haven't heard much praise or encouragement for those efforts. For much of that time since the last election in 2010 of 45 ballots or so, the volunteers' efforts have been spent on Perdue.

There's one more resource that remains to be tapped from OpenMPE -- a point of purchase for HP's classic MPE/iX subsystem software. An arrangement between OpenMPE and Client Systems has been in place since April, a means for anyone who wants to buy licensed HP software for their systems.

Connor can be contacted about subsystem software sales at [email protected], or Dan Cossey at Client Systems directly. "Make sure to let Client Systems know this is a purchase via OpenMPE to receive the discounted price," Connor said.

As to licensing, HP's Jennie Hou says all HP licensing (SLT) is still in effect with the exception of HP's Return To Use (not to be confused with Right To Use) product. That product allowed a customer to relicense an HP 3000 for which all paperwork (support contracts, previous SLT, etc) were lost. That option was discontinued as of 1/1/2011. I hope this is of some value in mapping the HP licensing issues; in some aspects, it’s as confusing as US tax law.