If IBM buys Sun, will the lawsuits continue?

This morning’s news of negotiations between IBM and Sun could have a direct effect on NetApp users and also on the NetApp / IBM relationship of re branded filers. After all Sun makes the ZFS powered Thumper and there are lawsuits between Sun and NetApp about ZFS and Ontap. If IBM buys Sun – wouldn’t that mean that IBM is now suing its partner NetApp?

Also, how would IBM position its re branded filers against its own Sun products? IBM is a big portion of NetApp’s sales and this acquisition could seriously jeopardize the relationship between the two.

Here is the article:

Technology Alert
from The Wall Street Journal

March 18, 2009

International Business Machines is in talks to buy Sun Microsystems in a combination that would bolster IBM's heft on the Internet, in data storage and in government and telecommunications areas, according to people familiar with the matter.

It is unclear whether the negotiations will result in a transaction, but if the deal does go through, IBM is likely to pay at least $6.5 billion in cash to acquire Sun, the people said. That would translate into a premium of about 100% over Sun's closing share price Tuesday.
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