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Exertis gets claws in Hammer for undisclosed sum

DCC Technology today confirmed its subsidiary, Exertis, has gobbled specialist storage and lesser known server distie Hammer for an undisclosed sum, which should help ease recent top line pressures. Hammer trades with “almost” 1,000 reseller, system integrator and cloud service provider punters, selling infrastructure gear …
Paul Kunert, 14 Oct 2016

Oracle rip-off merchants Rimini Street fined another $28m, hit with permanent ban

Rimini Street has been hit with yet another fine for infringing Oracle's copyright, as well as a permanent injunction barring it from providing any Oracle software to customers. In a judgment [PDF] on Tuesday, a Nevada judge fined the company $27.7m in prejudgment interest – with more to come. He also issued a permanent …
Kieren McCarthy, 12 Oct 2016

Fujitsu Tech Products boss channels his inner Sid Vicious

If the rhetoric from the latest chief straddling Fujitsu’s UK Technology Product Group (TPG) sounds familiar, it’s because it is. James Johnston quietly took over from Tom Roche two months ago but his change of role was not the only move at TPG; more recently, sales director Kevin Matthew jumped ship, perhaps before he was …
Paul Kunert, 07 Oct 2016

BlackBerry: You can't just roll up and make one

Interview BlackBerry says it won’t license its brand and security hardened Android “to any Tom Dick and Harry” as it tries to maintain the value of its brand. The BlackBerry senior VP for sales for its Mobility division Alex Thurber - stopping to talk to El Reg as he sailed through London on his honeymoon - also told us BlackBerry had …
Andrew Orlowski, 05 Oct 2016

Invasion of the Brandsnatchers: How Nokia and BlackBerry inhabit the afterlife

Analysis Early next year you should able to buy Nokia phones and BlackBerry phones, two of the giant names of the Noughties. None of these phones will be made by Nokia or BlackBerry, and all of them will be Android phones. The famous brands will inhabit new bodies, with the licensees hoping to rekindle some nostalgia both giants once …
Andrew Orlowski, 30 Sep 2016
HP 3D printer

HP Inc: No DRM in our 3D printers, we swear (unlike our 2D ones)

While HP Inc is getting a lot of flack over its DRM lockdown on 2D printing consumables, in the 3D world the company wants to address that it won't be setting the prices on consumables. Speaking at the 50th anniversary party for HP Labs, Tim Weber, global head of 3D materials for the firm, said that HP Inc would not be the …
Iain Thomson, 28 Sep 2016
I quit

Fujitsu UK sales director: I'm off

It is all change at the top of Fujitsu’s product business with UK sales director Kevin Matthews quitting after he struggled to get the revenue dial moving in the right direction, sources have told us. Former HP veteran Matthews signed up to lead the vendor’s direct sales and channel organisation in October. He joined amid …
Paul Kunert, 27 Sep 2016
Red Hard Hat photo via Shutterstock

Big biz happy to whip out credit cards for pay-as-you-go – Red Hat

Analysis Linux and open-source cloud supremo Red Hat is looking at adapting its licensing to please enterprise customers who want greater flexibility in the way they pay for software and services, including a possible pay-as-you-go model. The move was mooted by chief executive Jim Whitehurst during a conference call for Red Hat’s Q2 …
Dan Robinson, 22 Sep 2016

DDoS attacks: For the hell of it or targeted – how do you see them off?

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks can be painful and debilitating. How can you defend against them? Originally, out-of-band or scrubbing-centre DDoS protection was the only show in town, but another approach, inline mitigation, provides a viable and automatic alternative. DDoS attacks can be massive, in some cases …
Danny Bradbury, 22 Sep 2016

Tech Data to slurp Avnet TS for $2.6 BEEELLLION

Tech Data is to buy Avnet Technology Solutions for $2.6bn in a deal that, when completed, will create the chunkiest enterprise IT distie on the planet. Under the terms of the transaction, Tech Data will stump up $2.4bn in cash and 2.785 million of its shares (roughly seven per cent of the ownership position), the US companies …
Paul Kunert, 19 Sep 2016
Oracle's cloud plan

Spoiler alert: What Oracle is going to announce today

OpenWorld It's that time of the year again. Oracle's OpenWorld is in San Francisco. Supremo Larry Ellison has given his Sunday keynote. Here's a summary of what the database giant is going to reveal today in easily digestible chunks. And, yeah, warning: everything is now cloud. Anything you'd call an application or a software service is …
Chris Williams, 19 Sep 2016

Bad news: MySQL can dish out root access to cunning miscreants

Updated Security holes in MySQL can be abused to gain remote root access on poorly configured servers, it emerged on Monday. Patches to fix up the programming blunders were quietly released last week. The flaws are present in all default installations of MySQL 5.5, 5.6 and 5.7. Grab versions 5.5.52, 5.6.33 and 5.7.15 to avoid any …
Chris Williams, 13 Sep 2016

Meet DDoSaaS: Distributed Denial of Service-as-a-Service

Analysis It’s not often an entirely new and thriving sector of the “digital economy” – one hitherto unmentioned by the popular press – floats to the surface of the lake in broad daylight, waving a tentacle at us. This is the DDoS-for-hire industry, and it’s fascinating for a few reasons. This shady marketplace has done everything a …
Andrew Orlowski, 12 Sep 2016

Midwich slurps Euro and Kiwi AV disties

Midwich has confirmed to the London Stock Exchange a couple of acquisitions in the AV distributor market. The Diss-based firm, itself a wholesaler of AV and document “solutions”, floated on AIM in early May with the proceeds going to selling shareholders, to pay down debts and to fund the buy of Kern & Stelly. In today’s …
Paul Kunert, 08 Sep 2016
UK pound crashes after Brexit

Brexit? We have heard of this, says Dixons Carphone CEO

The UK's vote to leave the European Union has not dampened UK shoppers’ gadget lust, according to Dixons Carphone, which has reported a four per cent year-on-year hike in Q1 sales for the 13 weeks ended 30 July. The consumer electronics and mobile tech borg, created in 2014, saw sales bounce across the entire group – led for …
Paul Kunert, 08 Sep 2016

Arista slapped with import ban after US Trade Rep lays down law

The US Trade Representative has upheld a ban on all Arista Networks products, following a complaint of patent infringement by Cisco. A federal commission found in June that the company's products infringed patents owned by the switchzilla. "The International Trade Commission determined that Arista wilfully and intentionally …
Kat Hall, 24 Aug 2016

Nutanix scoops Cisco. Everyone's really happy ... but Cisco is strangely quiet about it

Nutanix has independently validated Cisco UCS C-Series servers to run its hyper-converged Enterprise Cloud Platform software. The hyper-converged product market leader says its software is now available on the platforms of three of the four leading x86 server vendors, meaning Dell and Lenovo, which we knew about in June. …
Chris Mellor, 19 Aug 2016
Still from Stand By Me movie. Pie eating contest

Swiss firm still wants to eat up Pi flogger Premier Farnell

Swiss components distributor Dätwyler is still interesting in acquiring mega electronics distie Premier Farnell, despite their last offer being trumped by a later (and larger) one from Avnet. In its bolshy take on the first half of this year's finances, Datwyler boasted that its net revenue was increasing - though only when …
Man counts pounds and pence. Photo by Shutterstock

Post-Brexit spending freeze in UK is real, says enterprise distie titan

Arrow Electronics Inc’s Enterprise tech division in Britain was struck by delayed spending among customers following the outcome of the EU Referendum, the distributor’s chief bean-counter claimed last night. CFO Chris Stansbury estimated “late purchases and weakening of accounts” after the 24 June vote “negatively impacted our …
Paul Kunert, 03 Aug 2016

What's on a road to nowhere? Ingram's Q2 numbers

Ingram Micro outlined progress, or rather lack of it, when it reported calendar Q2 numbers last night and did little to convince financial markets - including Shanghai’s Stock Exchange - that it is a business going places fast. The world’s largest tech distributor said revenue for the three months ended 30 June were down four …
Paul Kunert, 29 Jul 2016

Microsoft axes 2,850 more Windows Phone, sales staff – a week after Justin Timberlake sang on stage for them

Vid Microsoft is laying off a further 2,850 smartphone and sales staffers on top of the 1,850 workers it axed in May. The job cuts were revealed in paperwork filed on Thursday with US financial watchdog the SEC. The doomed staff will leave the business by the end of next June. They all work in Microsoft's sales teams and its …
Raspberry Pi Zero

Avnet sees Dätwyler's bid for Raspberry Pi slinger, raises to £868m

Avnet, the American technical component distributor, has come in at the 11th hour to outbid an existing offer for Premier Farnell, distributors of the Raspberry Pi. Farnell was all set to be sold to Swiss group Dätwyler Holding for £792m, including debt, but a new offer from Avnet with an enterprise value of £868m has now been …
Image by gyn9037

Odds are your office is ill-prepared for network-ransacking ransomware

Organizations are unprepared for future strains of more sophisticated ransomware, a report by Cisco warns. The networking giant's 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report concludes that the next wave of ransomware is expected to be more pervasive and resilient. While current strains typically infect a single computer, future …
John Leyden, 26 Jul 2016
Woman looking sceptical. photo by shutterstock

They kept that quiet. PC sales via distributors DID rise in Q2

It is a Friday and El Reg is pleased to be able to answer the burning question on the lips of readers across the land - just how did PC sales via distribution do in the second quarter? They went well. Though retailers and wholesalers bought in stock conservatively, as recorded by Gartner and IDC, channel analyst Context …
Paul Kunert, 22 Jul 2016
Pennies in a jar. Photo via Shutterstock

Three pence in a pound awaits Steljes' trade creditors

Unsecured creditors of audio visual distributor Steljes that are owed £6.72m by the fallen specialist will likely receive just three pence in the pound, according to the company’s administrator. Steljes collapsed in late May after cash flow dried up and directors were forced to call on AlixPartners, which decided the only …
Paul Kunert, 19 Jul 2016

EU uncorks €1.8bn in cybersecurity investment. Thirsty, UK?

The EU Commission has launched a public-private partnership on cybersecurity that is expected to trigger €1.8bn ($2bn) of investment by 2020. The EU is promising to invest €450m ($502m) in a bid to spur innovation in cybersecurity with the remainder coming from the private sector. Some security commentators reckon the Brexit …
John Leyden, 05 Jul 2016

Now Intel swings axe at sales, marketing peeps

Intel has turned its axe on sales and marketing staff as part of its ongoing workforce decimation. In April, Chipzilla announced it will lay off 12,000 employees worldwide – roughly one in ten of its 107,000 staffers – over the coming months as it weans itself off the dwindling desktop computer market. People working on doomed …
Chris Williams, 27 Jun 2016

Vendors suspend tech orders as Brexit slaps Brit pound

BREXIT If there is one thing the IT industry despises it is uncertainty and there was lashing of the stuff poured across the UK following the Brexit vote. Most major vendors already came out in favour of the Remain camp - including Microsoft, IBM, HPE, SAP, EMC, Cisco and many others - the result was so unexpected for the community …
Paul Kunert, 24 Jun 2016
German battleship sinking at Scapa Flow

Quantum is shutting down sync'n'share biz Symform in July

Storage firm Quantum bought the Symform cloud consumer/small business file sync and share business in August 2014 – and is going to close it down on July 31. It has gone from acquisition to closure in 23 months. Why? According to a Quantum FAQ: "Quantum is discontinuing the Symform service due to its strategic business focus …
Chris Mellor, 17 Jun 2016
Extended GPIO B+ raspberry pi

Raspberry Pi distributor Premier Farnell in £792m Swiss buyout deal

Premier Farnell, British Raspberry Pi distribution firm, is set to be purchased by Swiss group Dätwyler Holding for £792m. In a letter to investors released today Premier Farnell said an agreement had been made to allow Dätwyler to take over the company, subject to shareholder and regulatory approval. Leeds-based Premier …

Fujitsu UK calls time on Entatech distie deal

Fujitsu has given Entatech their marching orders following a review of the UK line-up designed to tackle over-distribution, but it has granted a reprieve to Ingram Micro and Arrow ECS to get their act together. Kevin Matthews, UK sales director for Fujitsu’s Technology Products Group, said the review criteria involved sales, …
Paul Kunert, 14 Jun 2016

Eject button hit: UK overlords of tech distribution split

What a week it has been for high level UK departures, with three major tech distributors – Arrow ECS, Ingram Micro and Wick Hill – parting with a big cheese. First up is Nick Thurlow, veep of north west Europe at Arrow, who confirmed to us he is leaving at the end of this month a little over three years after he joined from …
Paul Kunert, 03 Jun 2016
Pennies in a jar. Photo via Shutterstock

Go Comparex: Microsoft house counts cost of dealing with

The cost of righting historic accounting wrongs and winning lower margin or empty calorie government business has left Microsoft licensing slinger Comparex UK nursing losses. The firm piled on the British Pounds in the year ended 31 March 2015, growing turnover organically by a whopping 31 per cent to £41.95m, P&L accounts …
Paul Kunert, 02 Jun 2016
Sorry we're closed

UK distributor Steljes goes titsup

Specialist audio visual distributor Steljes Ltd has called in the administrators after liquidity dried up in what was its 29th year of commercial life. The company had “suffered from severe cash flow difficulties over the past year”, a rep at insolvency practitioner AlixPartners, which is managing the end of life process, told …
Paul Kunert, 24 May 2016

Cock fight? Not half. Microsoft beats down Apple in Q1

Microsoft won bragging rights over Apple in Britain’s biz slab sales stakes following the first full quarter the two rivals went head to head with their Pro devices. The iPad Pro, released in last October, sold 107,000 units in the UK in Q1 versus 275,000 Surface Pro devices, which was up on the 83,000 units Microsoft flogged …
Paul Kunert, 23 May 2016
£10 notes. Pic: Howard Lake

Mega UK distributor DCC Tech: 2016 was our annus horribilis

The once seemingly unstoppable distribution juggernaut DCC Technology hit some unmovable barriers in fiscal ’16 caused by slumping tab and smartphone sales and the loss of a retail gig. The parent of UK trading arm Exertis admitted today it had endured a "very difficult year". The LSE listed firm still managed to bump up …
Paul Kunert, 17 May 2016
Woman pays for something online with her credit card. Photo by Shutterstock

Experian Audience Engine knows almost as much about you as Google

We have grown so used to credit reference giants like Experian knowing almost as much about us as Google, but unlike Google, they put this information up for sale. This is perhaps why we have forgotten that Experian could form the basis of one of the most powerful personal intelligence systems in the world. And that it is a …
Faultline, 09 May 2016
Nerd fail photo via Shutterstock

Who you callin' stoopid? No excuses for biz intelligence's poor stats

Business Intelligence (BI) systems are designed to turn raw data into useful information, so why don’t they do the job properly? Why do most of them fail so completely to make use of the huge range of capabilities that the analytics world has to offer? Even at the most basic level, they fail catastrophically to take simple …
Mark Whitehorn, 02 May 2016
whitehall road in London. <a href="">Albert Pego</a> / <a href=""></a>

Central gov spent £6.3bn on IT. Nearly half handed to just 3 suppliers

Central government splashed £6.3bn with IT suppliers for the year 2014/15 – with 42 per cent going to just three suppliers, according to government data shared with The Register. Sixty-five per cent of the total figure was hoovered up by 10 suppliers, with HP coming top at £1.2bn, followed by Capgemini at £861m, and BT at £ …
Kat Hall, 29 Apr 2016

IBM bungs deduplication in FlashSystem arrays

IBM launched three new all-flash array products, including an all-flash DS8888 monolithic array. It says the three products each have a minimum latency of 250 microseconds, and use IBM's proprietary format flash drives, called MicroLatency modules. Big Blue says the MicroLatency technology transfers data within the flash …
Chris Mellor, 28 Apr 2016

Microsoft fingered for Western Euro PC tragedy

Microsoft last year effectively murdered one part of the mobile PC market that was going gangbusters - Windows with Bing (WwB) - and unsurprisingly this is now reflected in weaker sales across Western Europe. The low-cost WwB portables reached distributors by summer '14, designed to counter what was seen as a growing threat to …
Paul Kunert, 27 Apr 2016

Official: EU goes after Google, alleges it uses Android to kill competition

The EU's competition authority thinks it has a smoking gun against Google. Consumers suffered because Google’s contracts with phone OEMs prevented the market from creating a better Android, the EU Commission alleged today. It has sent a formal Statement of Objections to Google that forces Google to come up with remedies or …
Andrew Orlowski, 20 Apr 2016

Gartner's broken out its crystal ball again. Huawei's object storage bods won't be happy

Comment Gartner's gurus have ranked the top twelve object storage suppliers in a Critical Capabilities report, with Cleversafe at the top and Huawei last. The report states: "Object storage is pervasive as the underlying platform for cloud applications that we consume in our personal lives, such as content streaming, photo sharing and …
Chris Mellor, 18 Apr 2016

Exertis slurps wireless distie Siracom

One of the UK’s bulkiest tech distributors Exertis has piled on a few more pounds by acquiring wireless infrastructure and security minnow Siracom for an undisclosed sum. Siracom, which also has offices in beautiful Basingstoke, sells products and services from vendors including Samsung, Fortinet and a bunch of lesser knowns. …
Paul Kunert, 07 Apr 2016
Doctor Who – The Zygon Invasion. Pic credit: BBC

The BBC flashes £560m ICT deal at hungry tech suppliers

The BBC has once again opened its wallet and is enticing suppliers to bid for a £560m ICT and hosting contract – part of its plans to replace its mega £2bn Atos contract. Over the next eight years it expects to splash between £400m and £560m on the deal, via a "single contracting entity" for end user compute services, hosting …
Kat Hall, 05 Apr 2016

Gov to take axe to big IT contracts soon, will hand chunks to SMEs

Chief executive of the civil service, John Manzoni, has promised the government will start chopping up its big IT contracts in the next year and kick its dependency on just a handful of suppliers. Amyas Morse, auditor general at the National Audit Office, told the Public Accounts Committee yesterday that 51 per cent of …
Kat Hall, 22 Mar 2016
Apple iPod touch

Apple's largest UK reseller Jigsaw24 is for sale

The UK’s largest Apple reseller, Jigsaw24, is for sale, multiple industry contacts have told The Channel. The Nottingham-based B2B seller has hired Deloitte to run the process, a move that comes just three years after private equity outfit NorthEdge Capital (NEC) moved in to back a roll up by the management team. In recent …
Paul Kunert, 18 Mar 2016

Centerprise International recruits channel vet to apply commercial balm

Distribution veteran Jon Atherton has rocked up at Centerprise International as group commercial director, the company has confirmed. Founder and owner Rafi Razzak, told El Chan his new hire will oversee vendor management, commercial marketing and the specialist distribution business. “We’ve created a new post, in the past …
Paul Kunert, 16 Mar 2016

Microsoft has crafted a switch OS on Debian Linux. Repeat, a switch OS on Debian Linux

OCP Summit Put down your coffee gently. Microsoft has today released the source code to an open-source operating system, based on Debian GNU/Linux, that runs on network switches. The software is dubbed SONiC, aka Software for Open Networking in the Cloud. It's a toolkit of code and kernel patches to bend switch hardware to your will, so …
Chris Williams, 09 Mar 2016

Dirty data: Tech-heavy Thames Valley scores big in adultery index

The UK’s tech hotspots have made a shockingly prominent showing in an adultery website’s list of the most adulterous towns in the UK – though some, thankfully, showed a dramatic slippage in extra-curricular activity compared to last year. Adultery site Illicit Encounter has helpfully applied a bit of big data magic to its …
Team Register, 03 Mar 2016


Frank Jennings

What do you do? Use manual typwriters or live in a Scottish croft? Our man advises
A rusty petrol pump at an abandoned gas station. Pic by Silvia B. Jakiello via shutterstock

Trevor Pott

Among other things, Active Directory needs an overhaul
Baby looks taken aback/shocked/affronted. Photo by Shutterstock

Kat Hall

Plans for 2 million FTTP connections in next four years 'not enough'
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella


League of gentlemen poster - Tubbs and Edward at the local shop. Copyright BBC
One reselling man tells his tale of woe