Rumors prompted me to do a Google search on << HP “identity management” exit >>. The second resulting link brought confirmation in the form of this Burton Group article.
From the article, HP is not declaring “end of life” on its IDM products (the “Select” family, made up of Select Access, Select Audit, Select Federation and Select Identity) but they are restricting them to the current customers rather than going after new ones. Which sounds like an end of life, albeit a slow one that gives customers plenty of time to plan and execute their transition. Good for HP, because that’s one area in which you really don’t want to make precipitous decisions (as sometimes happens when an IDM effort is kicked off as a result of a negative security event).
My first reaction is to wonder what this means for my ex-colleagues, including the IDM people I sat next to (most of them from the Trustgenix acquisition) and the remotes ones I interacted with in the context of HP’s software standards strategy (Jason Rouault and Archie Reed, both well-known and respected in the corresponding standards efforts). These are all smart people so I am sure they’ll find productive work either in HP or outside (the IDM domain is booming).
My second reaction is puzzlement. This move is not very surprising from the point of view of the market success and financial returns of HP’s IDM suite so far. But it is a lot more surprising in the context of HP’s BTO strategy. I am sure they realize the importance of IDM in that context, I guess they must have decided that they can do it based on partner products rather than HP products. Hopefully they can maintain the expertise even without further developing products.
The Burton Group article quotes Eric Vishria, “HP Software Vice President of Products”. Based on his title I would have been in his organization so I would have known him if he had been there when I was at HP. Which tells me that he probably came from the Opsware acquisition, soon after I left. The Opsware people now have a lot of influence in HP Software and it looks like they are not shying away from bold moves.
[UPDATED 2008/5/22: HP appears to have struck a deal to migrate its IDM users to Novell.]