HP suffered some setbacks a year or two ago as a result of shipping some client devices the world was not ready to embrace. Now they are taking a big mis-step with servers. They are restricting firmware patches to paying customers… This will hurt many small IT businesses, small organizations running on used equipment, refurbishers, and folks doing in-house maintenance etc.
It certainly would make it difficult for some of the organizations I worked for to use HP’s servers. Check out some of the comments by others. e.g. “In the end we will have this fixed, tested and working before the rest of staff get back from the New Years holiday. The only ones who will know be the people who sign off on my overtime, my girlfriend who may be spending the week of new years by herself and anyone who mentions HP to me in the next couple of years.”
It is likely HP will end up with fewer customers although those may pay more. It remains to be seen whether this improves the bottom line. Servers are periodically replaced and there are always those who will supply firmware upgrades at a lower price than HP’s subscriptions. I know HP makes good solid servers. I may be able to pick up some cheaply after this takes effect.
This is yet another example of why FLOSS is vital for end-users even those unaware of its existence. If the firmware were FLOSS, HP would indeed have customers and not slaves. Strange HP doesn’t get that. They’ve been around long enough to know better.
“HP will only release updates in return for an in-warranty product serial number or an active Service Agreement ID.”