ibm-sunIf this supposed “buyout” that’s hitting the news lately is true, then IBM is embarking on its biggest acquisition ever.

These two rivals, which can be compared to the rivalry of Yahoo! and Google are known big players in the business computing world, particularly in the server and operating system including storage business.

Both have relatively reliable server and operating software platforms – widely used by SAP and Oracle users worldwide. According to MSNBC news, Sun Microsystems holds about 10% of the world’s server market. IBM has 32% while HP has 30% server market share.

In contrast, IBM has been known for it’s “proprietary” products while Sun has been leaning towards open source market over the years. Sun released Open Solaris, the OS that powers it’s servers. It has also acquired mySQL, the open source database which powers most websites, including this blog.

Sun also has an open source office software system called “Open Office” which can be used as a Microsoft office alternative. It is free to download.

Some analysts were saying the move of Sun to go full open source could have did the company more harm than good. Conversion of free download softwares to paying customers were not good as expected.

This move of IBM may have something to do with its recent entry towards dominating the “cloud computing” market. Cloud computing refers to that capability for businesses to access business applications over the internet – eliminating the need to invest on local servers and storage systems.

Sun’s products can very well support a reliable data center operations, the key element for cloud computing operations.

With this, Sun’s stocks rose to as much as 80% while IBM’s declined to about 1% recently in the stock market.

If this pushes through, we just hope IBM will still support future mySQL development and still make it a free product.

What do you think?