10 Things That Happened 10 Years Ago In IT, November 2001

Turning Back The Clocks

In November 2001, Microsoft's litigation woes started coming to an end, while other solution providers successfully completed mergers. Observers saw much smaller growth for the coming year, as the Las Vegas-based Comdex show attracted its smallest crowd to date. But 10 years can change how a show fares: reborn as COMDEXvirtual, the tech show is rebuilding its grandeur and attracting online attendees in droves.

See what other IT solution providers and vendors were up to in November 2001.

Attending Comdex

Ten years ago, Comdex reported its lowest attendance figures in its history. Still, we were there covering keynotes, including Gates Marks 'End of the Beginning' for IT and Chambers: Future Couldn't Be Brighter.

Fast forward to 2011, and Everything channel is hosting COMDEXvirtual, with vendor booths, training and keynotes all accessible via the desktop.

Microsoft's Latest, $1B Settlement May End Legal Nightmare--For Now

November 2001 marked the end of the class-action pricing lawsuit that effectively put an end to Microsoft's litigation nightmares, which began nearly four years earlier. Microsoft's legal woes included a major antitrust suit, competitive damage lawsuits filed by competitors Sun Microsystems and Bristol Technologies, a discrimination lawsuit and a legal action filed by temporary workers who claimed the software giant unfairly deprived them of benefits.

IBM And HP's Compaq Acquisition

IBM president and COO Sam Palmisano said Hewlett-Packard's proposed acquisition of Compaq Computer as an endorsement of the long-term strategy Big Blue has been following for the past 10 years. "This deal is all about, as they say, copying the IBM strategy," Palmisano said during a meeting with Wall Street analysts Wednesday. Ten years later, the legacy of the HP-Compaq merger remains mixed, and then-HP CEO Carly Fiorina has subsequently been criticized for alienating both customers and engineers as well as for the slumping stock price at HP during her tenure.

Palm CEO Resigns After Rough Year

Palm CEO Carl Yankowski resigned after a turbulent year during which the company's market share and stock price decreased and Palm's handheld computing business became the target of several powerful competitors, including Microsoft. Palm, which still dominated the handheld market despite an off year, said board chairman Eric Benhamou will act as CEO until a successor is named. Observers noted that the recent internal upheaval and restructuring into divisions that focused on handheld devices and handheld software platforms, was not supported by Yankowski.

CompuCom Buys Federal Integrator

IT solution provider CompuCom Systems took advantage of the fertile M&A environment, with the purchase of a smaller company to expand its services for federal agencies. CompuCom acquired Colorado Springs-based Northern NEF, a systems integrator and IT solutions provider with expertise in the federal market.

Court Decision Lets SunGard Buy Comdisco

SunGard Data Systems was finally able to complete its purchase of Comdisco, after weeks of battling with the U.S. Department of Justice. Justice had argued that since SunGard and Comdisco were the second- and third-largest providers of disaster recovery services (behind IBM Global Services) the merger would violate antitrust laws. Comdisco's disaster recovery business was valued at $440 million; the deal, reported to be worth $825 million in cash, went through after the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the purchase would not violate antitrust laws.

Novell to Cooperatively Target Global 2000 Accounts

Novell unveiled a new channel initiative that provides business partners new guidance for working more cooperatively with Novell in Global 2000 accounts. Clear Channel was aimed at reducing confusion over what role channel partners would play in the marketplace after Novell merged with IT solution provider Cambridge Technology Partners.

Dual Chips Deliver Affordable Power

AMD released a new dual-processor architecture that gave white-box systems builders an alternative to Intel in the workstation market. CRN's Test Center found AMD's dual-processor platform could provide users with a significant performance boost over a single processor, as long as the client's application was designed to take advantage of the second processor. CRN Test Center engineers tested a dual Athlon 760MP Model 6 Workstation, supplied by AMD for testing purposes.

2002 IT Budgets to Rise

Gartner and SoundView Technology Group released their IT Spending Confidence Survey, an indicator of technology spending levels on Nov. 15, 2001. According to the survey, budgets executed by IT departments for U.S. businesses were to rise 2.5 percent in 2001 over 2000 budgets, a decrease from the initial 8 percent rise that respondents planned for in January 2001.

Top 20 Visionaries

In November of 2001, CRN named the top Top 20 Visionaries of that year. Check out those shining stars whom we recognized as making a difference in technology. Their efforts did not always grab headlines, but their endeavors deserved recognition.