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The Ellison Files: Oracle Strikes Back

Court documents in a Silicon Valley brawl suggest HP misled customers and partners
The Ellison Files: Oracle Strikes Back
Photograph by Valerie Macon/AFP/Getty Images

Over the course of a few months in 2009, Hewlett-Packard’s top executives engaged in a furious debate. Intel was considering halting production of its Itanium chip, a high-powered but expensive workhorse that had fallen out of favor with nearly every company except HP. If it went extinct, so too would HP’s Integrity line of servers, which still made a ton of money for the Silicon Valley hardware manufacturer. The executives decided to hide the outlook from their customers, business partners, and even employees. “The Itanium situation is one of our most closely guarded secrets,” wrote Martin Fink, the head of HP’s high-end server business, to another executive.